This is a beautiful cozy property. The woman who runs it, Kavitha, is either a scam artist, or just blatantly unethical in her business dealings. She used a bait and switch tactic on my fiancee and myself. We booked her entire lodge through VRBO (https://www.vrbo.com) for our wedding. They price guarantee and we found her rental as $1500 per day. With taxes it amounted to just over $1900. There were two rooms booked for our date, but we didn't see
that as an issue. 6 beds off of the 61 wouldn't hurt us, and we were still willing to pay the full rate of the Lodge, even minus the two rooms. We paid for the lodge and she invited us to come look at the property.
When we got there, we quickly started to see how she had misrepresented the property, which is advertised as sleeping 61 with a hot tub and a restaurant attached. The Lodge doesn't sleep 61. To hit the 61 mark, you have to rent her two out buildings, that she informed us would cost us more. Well, a couple hundred more dollars wasn't too bad. It was a little off-putting, but we pressed on. The suites are supposed to have beds for 3-4. What we found were very tiny rooms with a single, old, metal, poster bed and a pull out sofa couch that would sleep one to two people.
We continued our walk around and found out she isn't allowed, under code enforcement, to let people in the hot tub even though it is advertised as available. We also find out that the restaurant isn't open, even though it says OPEN on the hotel marquee, and it is advertised with a menu on VRBO. We ended up convening in the closed dining area to talk details.
She informs us that she may not have the restaurant open for business in July. She then tells us that if we will just let our reservation with VRBO lapse, she will write up a new contract that involves the two out buildings. I agreed as long as we were able to keep our base price that we had already agreed on, and we would just add the price of the two buildings on top, as well as keep the dates open for us while she drew up the rest of the contract.
She agreed, shook our hand, and we left feeling not satisfied, but hopeful that it would work for what we needed. This was on a Friday Jan 6th, 2017. The following letter is what we received five days later on Wednesday Jan 11th:
Thanks for visiting us last week.
I am sorry to inform you that we have at least 2 bookings for the weekend of July 15th at this point and want to check with you if there is any other day that will work for you. In terms of renting the lodge,
For week days in summer the rental would be $3000 per day which includes stay for 63 guests and weekends would be $3500 per day. There would be an event fee of $300 per day.
Please let me know if this would work. The fee to block a date at the lodge is $500. If you are able to choose any other week day we may be still able to make this work.
Summer dates go really fast. Sorry about the inconvenience caused.
That was a shocking jump in price of over 100%, and it felt like she was playing on our needs by stating "Summer dates go really fast." We went back to her VRBO page to reply and found that she had changed her listing from $1500/day to $3500/day. We decided to try to remind her of our original agreement and sent her back the following letter:
"As this point, I would like to go with our original offer, which was put through VRBO, which I had already paid for, in full, on my credit card. What the ad said was sleeps , and that there is an onsite restaurant. I am willing to negotiate a little, but this is double what was originally offered.
I do not care if we don't have the two rooms that are already rented. The dates are not movable.
Donna Thompson and Dusty Dionn[e]"
We waited and received a letter stating that she did not want to correspond anymore.
We reported the event to VRBO who asked us to put in a review. We informed Kavitha that we had been suggested to do so, and when we returned to the page to leave our review, we found that either VRBO had removed every instance of Alexander's Lodge from their site due to TOS infractions, or Kavitha removed herself due to fear of our review going public.
All in all, what we received was an unethical business deal, where the business owner offered things that were not available, pulled a bait and switch, price gouged us, and tried to avoid paying her listing company the fee they rightfully earned. We ended up finding another venue for our wedding.