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    awful service, shady staff, RUINED my last night

    We booked 3 rooms and fully paid for them prior to arriving. We had done this for all of the accommodation for our trip through a travel agency and had no problems at all. For our last night had to return to Istanbul to fly out. Unfortunately because of a Formula One event, many hotels were booked, including the Marmara in Taksim (where we had stayed at the start of the trip). When we arrived, tired after a long day of driving from the coast to Izmir and then flying to Istabul, we were met with blank stares from the staff and the claim that we had "no reservation." After many calls to the travel agency (who luckily were still in the office on Saturday night) and the Richmond's reservation department, it became clear that this was very much their fault and NOT ours. We had already paid and had written confirmation from the hotel and yet they apologized VERY reluctantly. Finally they said they would find us another hotel for the night. After 2 hours in the hotel lobby, and many frustrated calls to hotels, all booked because of the Formula One event, they found us a spot in what they claimed was a "five star" hotel. They said the rooms were bigger and more expensive but they would pay the difference because of the mistake. As if they were doing US a favor!! We were loaded into the Richmond hotel van and spent another 30-45 min.s driving around Sultanahmet lost, while the Richmond hotel driver asked over 10 different people directions and couldnt find his way. Finally we made it to the hotel in time to go to bed and wake up at 6am for our flight. Not only did the Richmond ruin our final night, but they were very unhelpful making up for their negligence, we had to cancel a dinner reservation we had had for a week, and were shoved away to some dumpy rooms far away in Sultanahmet that were in NO way 5 star.

    by leila310, 8/28/07

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