Sep 10th, 2004, 01:51 PM
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I was going to answer Neil on the mmmm mmm Andy thing post but have been punished for my deeds by not being able to post there - I have been blocked!!.
I was going to say that I am quite happy to see criticism beeng made and suggestions for improvement but only when it is done appropriately or in the context of the problem.
A mouldy time, a cracked edge is not deemed suitable for a death penalty and perhaps it should have been dealt with in a better manner without too much whining about it being a 5 star property.
In comparison Neil, I booked and paid for accommodation in Victoria, Vancouver Island and when I got there they didn't have a room for me. Because it was a busy time there were no other rooms available in town which was why I had made the effort to book 3 months in advance and get a confirmation of said booking, remembering it was also pre-paid.
In the end we were put into a store room which was 6' x 12 ' next to the ice machine outside the door and the lift - both of which went non-stop all night. We were not given any compensation nor refund and when I posted a scathing report on the Canadian board I got jumped on from every which way. In the end I was told " well what do you expect if you book in a 3 - 4 star Hotel????
I think overall the hotels in Australia are excellant both in terms of value for money and their service to the customers. I have been to the Sebel Palm Cove and I am sure that had they been asked in a pleasant way all would have been fixed without any fuss.
It was not a reason to write a nasty report on Fodors and on Frommers for that matter, other than perhaps saying that it would have been nice if the tiles and the whatever had been 5 star to match the rating.
Fodors is, as Frommers is, a board where you can have fun if you want and get a lot of helpful information . It should not be the place where you can take out your petty frustrations and pay-back a property or a person whose livelihood is build into the travel/hospitality industry. The appropriate and better way of doing it is to be factual and not fanciful. Andy is 31 yrs old and single, ergo Andy is probably not worldly wise and learning something from his approach will make him so in a very short time.
lizF is offline  
Sep 10th, 2004, 02:37 PM
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Liz, I see nothing wrong with publicly criticising poor service, as long as you've raised the issue with those responsible and received no, or inadequate, attention, and your criticism is appropriate to the gravity of the offence. I think our friend got caned because he infinged these rules.

I used to work in a service industry, and I know that most customers won't complain to you about a bad experience - they'll just walk (if walking is an option) and then badmouth you to everybody they know. It's a pity, because companies with a good service culture prefer to get direct feedback, preferably while there's still time to fix the problem for them, but at least to ensure that it's fixed for future customers.

Regrettably, though, there are lots of slack, indifferent companies out there who really don't try very hard, and they deserve to be put in the public stocks. For the law of the marketplace to have an effect, consumers must be informed.

Some people of course are born malcontents who feel the rest of the world is out to get them, and there's no pleasing them.
Neil_Oz is offline  
Sep 10th, 2004, 06:04 PM
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Wasn't that storeroom also featured in "Best of Show"?

AndrewDavid is offline  
Sep 10th, 2004, 06:09 PM
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Well the"post a reply" option for any of us seems to have vanished fom the Sebel thread.

I'm sorry this thread did not show up sooner. I was in Seattle the week before last and could have zipped down to Vancouver, WA and evaluated the accomodations at Andrew's house. Pity

AndrewDavid is offline  
Sep 11th, 2004, 04:15 AM
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Most of the posts on the Sebel question are IMO unacceptable bullying.

There is a small group of posters who consider that they define what the standards are for (a) posts to the boards(b) the standards that travellers should or should not accept in hotels (c) the way travellers should or should not behave around the world

They sometimes see themseleves as the perfect travellers, with no flaws and heaven help you if you dare to criticise something they quite like - because they probably see that as an attack on their judgement

Further, I like most people, have bad days - I can have a hissy-fit over tiny things on these days. I'm also prepared to admit that occaisonally I just won't click with a hotel and I will see faults left, right and centre - often it's that first 3 minutes at the hotel that set me up. Similarly, I can go to a hotel on a good day and put up with all manner of things going wrong and still love the place.

Walter_Walltotti is offline  
Sep 11th, 2004, 05:31 AM
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Goodness - what did I miss? - being just an occasional visitor to this board. Seems someone complained publicly about a mouldy tile and a cracked edge in a 5 star property.

And fur flies!! Agree with all that has been said about complaining first to the establishment in question. But on the whole, never having stayed at the Sebel Reef (yes?) in Palm Cove, but having spent some time in the area in July - my instinctive reaction is..

If, in a beautiful place - on holiday - with the GBR, etc on your doorstep, a cracked edge seems so important ..

That's really sad. And the complainant?
Only 31? Even sadder.
alice13 is offline  
Sep 11th, 2004, 06:53 AM
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I'm intrigued by the fact that the "post a reply" button was taken off after 36 replies. Yet the thread itself is alive and well, just gradually sinking to the bottom, which means that anyone could reactivate it simply through cutting and pasting and re-posting it under the same heading! I am also intrigued by the Fodors administrators and what they must think as they "censor" the various posts. Do they peruse everything as a matter of course, or do they only react to complaints (and I would imagine that andrews-whatisname may well have complained when the thread passed its thirtieth post!) I, for one, have never heard from the administrators, even though I once tried to contact them about a post of mine which was summarily removed. I wonder if they sit in front of their computers, every now and then calling out to each other. "Hey, come and have a look at THIS!" Do they think we are doing them a service, or are we just a pain in the neck? It would be so nice if they would come forward and identify themselves!
Alan is offline  
Sep 11th, 2004, 12:42 PM
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I just read this thread and the original post. While I think the original complaint was a bit much, I have to say (and I'm sure I'll get flamed for this), I was disappointed to see such snide responses from posters I have much respect for. Perhaps it was because I didn't read the thread from day one, but a good chunk of it did appear to me to be of a taunting spirit. Alan, FYI, threads like that get deleted or censored all the time on the Europe and US boards, where most threads of that flavor seem to abound.

31 and single = not worldly wise eh? Wow. Grand statement. I'm sure at 31 I have a lot to learn (in fact, I know I do), but in my short time on this earth I have seen 50 year olds that are far less worldy wise than some twenty somethings I have met (although I would be the first to agree that as a grouped age, stereotypes exist for a reason.)

My two cents.
crazymina is offline  
Sep 11th, 2004, 02:01 PM
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This board and the most part the participants can stand on their past performances of having one of the most balanced debate forums compaired with any of the other Fodors boards.
Crasymina we know is not an Australian and perhaps Walter Walltotti is not either but if they were AND they did know ( having spent time there ) the Sebel Palm Cove that the service and everything else is top class then I am sure that they would also have taken umbrage at Andy 19374645 post. It is one thing to give information about services in the travel industry & talk about the good the bad and the ugly in general terms but it is quite another to denigrate a service, hotel, B&B, hostel, campsite or whatever that perhaps might have a serious downturn effect in dollar terms to the establishment that far outweighs the problem perceived by the guest of that establishment.
In common law there is a case against slander and libel but not when it comes to forums like this. Nor does the establishment have the opportunity to have its say or give its side of the arguement. Therefore those of us who think that things are unbalanced or unfair feel that that situation should be attended to and we will do it in our own Australian way whether others like it or not. If others have another story to add to Andy's then they have the option of either saying so on this forum OR not reading this forum at all but coming onto this forum like Crazymina and Walter, out of the blue so to speak, and suggesting that a remark, by probably the one person on the forum who has been the most consistant, level headed and helpful person to so many people, is snide then this is a very sad day.
How dare you tell us how we should react or what we should say and how we should say it.
If Walter had a "hissy fit" one day in real life where he could be prosecuted it would surely stop him from having one. But when is it right and fair to hit someone who cannot hit back - "hissy fit" or not - whatever that is!

lizF is offline  
Sep 11th, 2004, 02:23 PM
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Liz, no I'm not Australian. However, I respect and like many things Australian. I think my posts over the years here have confirmed that. My current partner is Australian, and I hope to retire someday. Just because I am not Australian, does not mean that I can't contribute to this board with some degree of confidence.

You are jumping the gun when you say that my comments were directed toward Alan. Alan, by now, I would hope know that I have only respect for him. However, I did not see the initial post that Alan wrote (I believe it was deleted). My comment was towards a few of the posters who I do very much respect, not just Alan. It does not mean anyone is a bad person. Only that I was surprised to see the responses that I perceived as less than friendly.

And of those posters whom I respect, it includes you Liz. While you can be quite cantankerous, I for the most part, like that. I remember a time when due to attacks on this board, you decided to leave and not grace the board with your presence anymore. Yet you are still here, and I believe that is a testament to your commitment to giving solid advice. Whether I agree with your style of communication or not, that, in and of itself, is commendable.

I am getting quite familiar with "Australian Style", and the spirited, unapologetic nature of it. It's one of the things that I adore about my boyfriend. Still, I would ask that you have some sensitivity to those of us who are not accustomed to it. If you tell me how dare I tell people how to respond, I would imagine I could ask the same question of you.

crazymina is offline  
Sep 11th, 2004, 02:49 PM
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Yes Mina you could ask that same question and I would say that whatever you wanted to say was your decision and yours alone and that would be fine by me as it is but it still my right to say or defend (it) if I feel like it.
Alan et al, including me like to have a bit of fun once in a while and if you look through the list of posters you will see an all Australian al beit left of centre Canberran, who berated us for being like we are - but we can forgive him because he is from the South ( YES! I got that in again just to piss of those from the south of course). But sensitivity to others who don't understand the way some of us are.... sorry but no! this is the way we are and the way we will stay otherwise we may as well all be clones of Politicians or for that matter, the English, and always say what is expected of us or what is the latest in political correctness.
Being cantankerous sometimes - yes I am but it was you who said "(although I would be the first to agree that as a grouped age, stereotypes exist for a reason.)" and being cantankerous is one "quirk" that I have allowed myself because those who know me know that when I am like that, more often than not I have a smile on my face and I am having a "go" at them. But that is another facet of the Australian way of life for some of us - possibly not all of us and certainly not those from the South who are very much more "proper" in their ways.
lizF is offline  
Sep 11th, 2004, 02:50 PM
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Oh Come on Crazy, you must respect the fact that this thread was good banter and also good fun. The only person not to respond so far is andrews 6.5.

I am sick of seeing grim news around the world and this thread gave me a great opportunity to have a laugh with my "chums" from everywhere,most of whom I know very little about about.
(Which is probably just as
Chill out..please
Mucky is offline  
Sep 11th, 2004, 03:00 PM
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Sure Mucky, I can respect that. And I would be surprised if the original poster responded. Banter between chums could be quite intimidating to the guy.

Thanks Liz, for your response. The reason I have always "liked" you (although I may be confrontational from time to time) is that you remind me of a lady who worked for me. She was cantankerous as hell, and rubbed a few people the wrong way (especially if they didn't know her). But she was the funniest person I knew, and really a lovely woman, and still one of my favorite people in the entire world. I suspect, also by what you said in your last post, that you are a lot like her.

I understand more the south vs. north thing. My boyfriend is from S. Australia. I just had two guests stay for a week from Australia who are from Queensland. Talk about straight shooters...but a hell of a lot of fun.

I know you Aussies are a fun bunch, and I certainly would like to see your rapport continue. I just wanted note that many who visit this board looking for advice are not, and it could appear intimidating, is all.

Carry on.
crazymina is offline  
Sep 11th, 2004, 03:09 PM
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am sick of seeing grim news around the world and this thread gave me a great opportunity to have a laugh with my "chums" from everywhere,most of whom I know very little about about.
(Which is probably just as

Well here goes Mucky

I personally am the most wonderful person.... beautiful, tall, graceful, intelligent, congenial, coming up to 34 yrs old and thin with a body that Cathrine Zeta Jones would die for.
Alan is the odd on out though - he is more like Errol Flynn - however if you don't know Errol Flynn then say Terry Thomas without the hole between the teeth - if that still is too old for you then perhaps Benny Hill without the fat would give you an accurate idea. He too is well versed in the finer arts of Statesmanship.
From what I gather from other posters who have met other posters Margo is more like a young version of Marilyn Munroe.
I am telling you this because you can now have a mental picture of some of us and if any other person on this board would like to add thier personal details and information then I too would like to expand my mental pictures of you. Neil from Canberra I 'think' is probably like the head wizard in the Harry Potter series but only he can tell us.
lizF is offline  
Sep 11th, 2004, 03:14 PM
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Thanks Liz,
I know you are telling the truth because I met Alan and he is just like you

Margo Oz is definately a trouble maker, booking police to my apartment just to intimidate me.
As it happens the copper was quite nice looking and if I wasn't married and 41years old with 2 teenagers, who knows what may have
If you are like Zeta I will have to bring my bike and park it.

Mucky is offline  
Sep 11th, 2004, 05:44 PM
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Please let's try not to goad Neil. He's off to China imminently and probably too busy packing to defend himself.


PS w/ 14 posts here and 30 odd on the original Sebel thread we may catch up w/ Michi's: " non usual things to do in Sydney..."

PPS Having dined w/ Margo I can attest she's is a raven haired beauty prone to loosing things, and a great deal of fun.
AndrewDavid is offline  
Sep 11th, 2004, 08:25 PM
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My dear husband Bill, at his last physical checkup, was told by the doctor he was 5 ft. 4 in. to which he replied "I've shrunk." To which the doctor replied "one shrinks with age." "I used to be 6 ft." said Bill. "You were not!" snapped the doctor. Maybe Andy will someday be only 6 ft. and my Bill can take him on (should he live so long).

I think Andy had a case until he began to throw his height around. That doesn't sit well with me nor does condecension so since I've been known to take on anyone if provoked, let me at him (I used to be 5ft. 2in., but have shrunk to 5 ft.)

I'm trying to wean myself off Fodor's Travel, but it's difficult. This post has provided me with comic relief.

I've been reading the post by "kidnme" titled "Australia Experiences - Sharing Info With Fodorites" and wondered where the rest of you were. Haven't figured that one out yet.


michi is offline  
Sep 11th, 2004, 11:43 PM
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It's a bit of a worry that LizF and Mucky compare me to three people, all of whom are long-since dead! Should I be taking a message from that?

I can rather imagine the feelings of Walter amnd Crazymina (who, by the way, is a LONG-time valued member of this forum, so I would always weigh anything she said carefully) thinking this thread was getting a bit much, bvecause there is only one of Andrews123456 (even if that one was 6'8"), and there were about fourteen of
us all after his blood at one stage. In my own defence -- pitiful as this may be -- I would point out that my original rebuke of his post was written when it was just andrews12345 vs Alan, and, therefore, I could not really be accused of kicking a man who was down. I still think my original rebuke was valid, and, in fact, I really do feel quite strongly on this point.

Crazymina, the post that got deleted at the head of all this was not markedly different from the one that you read. The only thing I can recall leaving off the second time was my response to andrews12345's comment that "I reminded him that if he had given me a decent room, we wouldn't be having this conversation". I suggested, in my usual ultra-polite Terry Thomas-Errol Flynn-Benny Hill (Benny Hill!!!) fashion, that what he should have said was "I reminded him that if I had been well brought-up, we wouldn't be having this conversation". Possibly a little strong for the forum, but I didn't think it was in such bad taste that it would be deleted! Anyway, I think it's quite true!

I could write more, but I only just opened up the thread a moment ago, after twenty-four hours off it, and I must fly back a few threads and see again what nice things Liz has said about me! I tell you, it's great to be a saint! Errol Flynn, eh?
Alan is offline  
Sep 12th, 2004, 12:31 AM
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Oh, I see, my SECOND post -- the re-vamped one -- got deleted also! Well, that makes absolute nonsense of what I said to crazyMina above -- she must be thinking that I'm the one who's gone crazy!

The Frommers Board still has all the posts, including the one taken off here. FYI, here it is as a cut-and-paste:

Author: Alan Date: 09/06/2004, 05:43 pm Message:
"When I returned and informed the manager I was staying, I said, "At least you can offer me dinner." A few minutes later, she calls to say that I could either an appetizer and main course or main course and dessert. I didn't say anything, but the more I thought about it, the more annoyed I became. When I went to dinner, I told the concierge I should get an appetizer, main course AND dessert. He started to go on about how the plan was for dessert or the appetizer. At that point, I cut him off and reminded him that we wouldn't be having this discussion if the hotel had given me a decent room. He gave in, perhaps not wanting to tick off further someone who stands 6-foot-8."

andrews98682, that pathetic little victory tells me very little about the Sebel Reef House, but reams about you and your attitude to tourism, to your host countries, and, probably, to everybody else you run into. Do you see now why so many of your countrymen and women are confused -- even hurt -- by assumptions that they are boorish, insensitive, ignorant, and just plain rude? It's the rotten apples like you that earn them this undeserved reputation.

Every now and again, we get good, honest, regular contributors to this forum who get so sick of responses like the one you wrote above that they say, "To hell with the forum", and give the show away altogether. And that's the forum's loss, because some of them have a lot to offer. This one almost did it for me....I felt such a wave of disgust when thinking about what "travel" and "tourist" means to me, and how different that is from what those words mean to you, that I couldn't find any reason to go on helping any of you. And then I thought of the NICE people on this forum.... people like Margo and John and AndrewDavid and Liz and Mucky and LN... and how much my life has been enriched by "knowing" them (I just hope LizF doesn't read your entry, or she will be in here with all guns blazing, a terrifying thought indeed!)

So I am not going to walk out in a huff, my first reaction. I am just going to swallow hard and make two wishes. The first is that you and anyone who agrees with your sentiments above go somewhere else, not Australia, for your next holiday. Preferably your own country, where there are thousands of hotel room mirrors for you to inspect, and thousands of hotel staff for you to bully and hassle and make yourself feel superior to. My second wish is that your Palm Cove dessert stuck in your six-foot-eight throat.

Alan is offline  
Sep 12th, 2004, 02:03 AM
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Hmm-someone comes on the board with a complaint - dirty shower, for isn't that the only way tiles have a chance to be mouldy in a busy hotel?

This person handled his complaint very badly- or maybe even just wrote his complaint badly.

Ugly American!, you all hiss, going so far as to print his full name, his city of residence, and even take the time to cut and paste your comments on one board to his complaint on another. You call him names, you allude to his behavior being typical of all his countrymen, you make fun of his age and worldliness. But when someone else points out that you all are acting badly, you say, "oh no, we're just australians and thats how we are, so its okay."

No its not, you're being rude bullies, says another sane poster.

"Oh no, we're just having some fun, you say."

I say, you ARE being rude and sinking to an even lower level of bad behavior than the OP. Even Fodors found it offensive enough to block it, but you just can't let it die.

And of course there is LizF:
"It is one thing to give information about services in the travel industry & talk about the good the bad and the ugly in general terms but it is quite another to denigrate a service, hotel, B&B, hostel, campsite or whatever that perhaps might have a serious downturn effect in dollar terms to the establishment that far outweighs the problem perceived by the guest of that establishment."??

This from the woman who wanted everyone to quit flying jetstar, just because she couldn't have an assigned seat? How many would lose their jobs, just because you wanted to fly an airplane at bus prices, yet didn't want to be treated like a discount passenger! Brilliant!

And I have stayed at Sebel Reef, I am Australian, and I saw the original post and every one thereafter. I didn't jump in earlier, and waited till I got full on tired of you behaving like A**hole Au**ies.
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