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Helen Beggun Jul 8th, 2001 06:01 PM

Beware Hotel des Marronniers in Paris
Dear Readers, <BR> <BR> If you're looking for a hotel in the St Germain (6th) district of Paris, do not use the Hotel des Marronniers on Rue Jacob. The Hotel does not honor its reservation confirmation. <BR> <BR>. On June 2nd, just before departing for Provence, I was horrified to learn that the Hotel had canceled my reservation for 10 nights beginning June 19. This reservation had been made the previous January and confirmed with numerous faxes from the hotel. Explanation: " human error - so sorry. <BR> <BR> By June 2, every hotel room in Paris was booked through the month, so I had to fall back on the Hotel's offer to put us up in another hotel. This turned out to be a decidedly inferior establishment -- filthy, rundown, unairconditioned, in a decidedly uncharming area right next to the Sorbonne. <BR>No adjustment in rates despite considerable inconvenience . <BR> With temperatures rising in Paris, in our hotel room, and in many restaurants that lacked any air cooling or fan, we sought an air conditioned room -- anywhere. We found one in a hotel outside of Paris, in the La Defense area that only has business and government offices -- nothing else. <BR> <BR> We managed, but all this certainly put a damper on things. <BR> <BR> Regards, <BR> <BR> Helen B.

Ruth Jul 9th, 2001 05:54 AM

Helen, <BR> <BR>Sounds like you had the same problem a number of others have had with the Hotel St. Louis. Thanks for letting the rest of us know about this hotel.

jim Jul 9th, 2001 06:03 AM

I've heard of this happening throughout Europe, most recently to friends who booked a week's stay at a hotel in Rome and then we're told "sorry" when they arrived -- although they said the replacement hotel was OK. <BR> <BR>Mistakes do happen, but the hotel's response should be something more than what you got at the des Marrionners. I'm not a travel agent, nor am I shilling for them, but what happened to you is the very reason why I always use the same agent when I travel: They know me, and if there are any problems with reservations, I know I can trust them to handle it or get me a refund (which is exactly what happened last year). <BR> <BR>Anyway, thanks for the heads-up about the des Marrionniers.

Lesley Jul 9th, 2001 07:35 AM

Helen, <BR> <BR>This happened to us at the hotel Lucchesi in Florence. We were actually on a British Airways holiday, the flight was late, and when we arrived at the Lucchesi late in the evening on a Saturday, they claimed they'd never heard of us and what's more they were full. At this point, I think they just expected us to leave. I was ready to find the most expensive hotel in Florence and bill British Airways for the difference, but my husband had other ideas. He had this fantastic tantrum there and then in the lobby. Withing three minutes it had cleared as if by magic. He just about stopped short of rolling about on the floor and screaming. At first I was so embarrassed and tried to pretend I wasn't with him, but he kept it up and refused to be fobbed off. I could see that the staff were embarrassed (you couldn't ignore him) and anyone who walked into the lobby just walked out again. It worked. Suddenly, they found that they did indeed have a room available. It wasn't our room (which we were moved to the next night) but it was better than walking the streets of Florence on a Saturday night with suitcases trying to find a room. <BR> <BR>Lesson - don't put up with it. "Sorry" isn't enough. <BR> <BR>If your hotel is a Fodors, make your views known on Rants and Raves.

Thyra Jul 9th, 2001 09:44 AM

YOu know, I used to be all for reconfirming your reservations a day or two before you arrive, but stories like this are starting to appear more and more. Another poster suggested after you've made your initial confirmations... don't confirm again until you actually arrive, since it's much easier to say "sorry, you don't have a room" when you are overseas and still have time find another place. <BR>One thing is certain though, you should always ALWAYS...carry paper copies of any faxed, mailed or emailed corresponsence with you.. one or two that you can present them to the hotel owners.. when they are "not finding you in the system" or whatever. <BR>But still thanks for the warning Helen.. I am sorry you had such a rough time.

elaine Jul 9th, 2001 01:27 PM

There HAS been a lot of this sort of thing showing up lately. <BR>I have no particular fondness for the Marronniers having stayed there for one night once, but that was due to the miniscule room size in proportion to the price, as well as to unpleasant staff. <BR>However, if "human error" caused the problem, then "human correction" certainly ought to have solved it! <BR>Let your feelings be known in as many places as possible, and tell them that you are spreading the word. And as Lesley said, don't forget <BR>Rants and Raves elsewhere on this website, as well as at <BR> where you can also leave comments.

Gerry Jul 9th, 2001 01:38 PM

It's been suggested that not all posts to Rants and Raves actually show up in the comments.(That they only post the ones they want.) Has anyone found out if this is true? <BR>I would hope that some pressure could be put on these hotels to stop these dispicable practices.

linda Jul 9th, 2001 03:25 PM

Fodorites, On a trip to London in NOvember 2000, I had a long conversation with a gentleman that was very involved with the British travel industry. He voiced strong concern and frustration with US tourists booking into multiple hotels for the same time period. There is a growing awareness of this practice on the part of the British regarding US visitors. They worry that there is no concern on the part of US visitors about the ramifications of this practice--in fact we seem to be quite candid in our acknowledgemnt of this practice. Conversations are beginning to fly over there about our callous approach, even if we do cancel unwanted bookings. He noted that there are increasing conversations between western European countries regarding this practice. My fear is that our lack of concern for them is turning into a lack of concern for us. <BR> <BR>Does anyone have any thoughts? <BR> <BR>linda

Gerry Jul 9th, 2001 04:03 PM

In Italy at least, if you don't show up and haven't cancelled within 72 hours( I believe) you will be charged 1 nights lodging. I have never booked more than 1 hotel. I find this a very inconsiderate and dishonest practice and should be dealt with. <BR>But:If I have made a contract for a room in advance and traveled thousands of miles from home and then am left standing there homeless? This behavior is not only inconsiderate, it borders on being criminal. I find this totally unacceptable and inexcusable.

Jayelle Jul 9th, 2001 04:22 PM

I agree that booking into multiple hotels for the same time period can be inconsiderate, particularly if you wait until the last minute to cancel the unwanted reservations. I think the only way for hotels to combat this practice is to shorten the time period during which you can cancel without a charge. Another alternative that some hotels use is to charge one night's room charge to your credit card as soon as you make the reservation. You will get a credit for the charge if you cancel within the specified time frame, but having to pay such a charge up front, possibly months in advance, would probably discourage a lot of folks from making multiple reservations. I admit that I sometimes hold multiple reservations until I can decide on a hotel, but usually try to do this only with large chain hotels, not the small establishments where this might cause more of a problem.

linda Jul 10th, 2001 07:02 AM

The gentleman I spoke with conveyed that those that do not cancel a reservation are beyond rude. He also felt there is frustration over the growing number of people that make multiple reservations and proceed to cancel all but the hotel they want at the last minute. He stated that the majority in the British tourist industry feel that the 48 hour etc. cancellation policy is designed to handle and aid last minute emergencies of the visitor. It was not intended as an opportunity to make a last minute choice in hotel. I cannot state strongly enough the anger over this option we use to take advantage of the system. That is how it is viewed. <BR> <BR>Any more thoughts regarding this situation? <BR> <BR>linda

jade Jul 10th, 2001 07:24 AM

This multi booking of hotels does seem a curiously American thing. I come from the U.K. and had never heard of this practice until I read this board. I have travelled to the U.S. many times and have noted that a lot of hotels (particularly inns) have minimum stay clauses and swingeing cancellation rules. I booked an inn on Cape Cod for 4 nights and they debited the whole amount from my credit card straight away - even though the booking was for 6 months hence. Isuppose if you are a small business, you cannot afford to lose the money.

linda Jul 10th, 2001 01:55 PM

Jade, How upsetting or unfair does this practice seem to you? <BR> <BR>linda

Donna Jul 10th, 2001 06:32 PM

The booking/deposit/cancellation policies on Cape Cod in the US (and other destinations where the "season" is short and lodgings are primarily privately owned small inns and B&B's) is more stringent that towns and cities full of chain hotels/motels. Most folks know better than to head to Cape Cod without having reserved well in advance (often this year for next), so the proprietor's chances of filling cancelled rooms with "drop-ins" is not favorable. The policies on Nantucket are particularly ridiculous - and, whatever you do, do NOT mention it if you will be there to attend a wedding. <BR> <BR>As for the more and more frequent reports of folks arriving at destinations in Europe to discover that their confirmed reservation is met at the front desk with "no room for you", this is most discouraging. Makes me wonder if I should book two rooms in case one or the other doesn't work out, for whatever reason. Over on the AOL boards, many reports of hotels cancelling to accomodate large groups, and having to scramble to book alternate lodging - difficult in May and June! <BR> <BR>So far, I've had great luck booking well in advance, re-confirming when I book my airline tickets (to advise them my expected time of arrival), and again two weeks before departure. Then, I'll e-mail a day or two before with a minor question or request, just to be sure. <BR> <BR>Even in the US with the chains, I ALWAYS double check a week or two before and call again the night before we leave. My husband thought I was nuts, until the time he arrived in Salt Lake City on business, after a long flight delay, at midnight, and a reputable chain had no room for him - and "walked" him to a horrible alternative. <BR> <BR>

xxx Jul 10th, 2001 07:04 PM

Why are you so worried about it Linda? Are you in the industry?

linda Jul 11th, 2001 07:10 AM

I am interested because of the thread regarding Hotel ST. Louis in Paris, where I had a problem with a reservation. It brought to mind this situation in Britain. People are becoming insecure regarding reservations. Doesn't it make you wonder if it is a trend? I'm not looking for statistics. I am wondering if we are seeing changes in the making but do not "see the forest for the trees". I think it is interesting. <BR> <BR>linda

linda Jul 11th, 2001 07:12 AM

I think I have too much time on my hands. I'm going to take my kids out for long overdue sneakers. <BR> <BR>linda

amazed Jul 13th, 2001 01:42 PM

im amazed that lesley would admitt to what her idiot husband did. he sounds lioke an immature jackass. if i was the cleck i would have trhown cold water on him then called the police dto lug this mental incompetant away. behaivor like that is never warranted and makes you look like the loser you probably are. i hope you keep him home on a leash bad dog

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