Newest Review: ... night. There is not much difference between an executive room and a normal room. In the executive room you get free sparkling water and ... more
Far from the best hotel in Glasgow
Hilton Hotel (Glasgow)
Member Name: dbarcl10
Hilton Hotel (Glasgow)
Advantages: Good views over city
Disadvantages: Poor service, basic rooms, not worth the money, definetely not 5 star hotel
The hotel is a five star hotel, with approx 400 bedrooms over 20 floors.
Since being built in 1990, this hotel has dominated the skyline over Glasgow, and as such has amazing views from the upper floors.
I last stayed in this hotel for New Year in 2006. We booked an Executive room which is a more spacious room on an upper floor which also allows guests entry into the Executive lounge on the xx floor, with complementary snacks and drinks. At the time this cost approx £200 excluding dinner for the two of us to stay one night, although a quick check on the Hilton website states that a similar room for New Year 2008 would cost £268.
Upon arrival at the hotel I struggled to find the entrance to the underground car park, which, despite the entrance being located directly in front of the hotel, was poorly signposted. When I finally got the car parked, it was a short walk to the lift which takes you directly to the reception area. The reception area is impressive, a big open space, quite luxuriously decorated and gave us high hopes for an enjoyable stay.
We had a 10 minute wait at the reception desk whilst the 3 receptionists dealt with other guests. When we got to the front of the queue, we didn't get an apology for our wait or a friendly welcome to the hotel. This wasn't a major issue at the time, remember it was New Years Eve and the staff were harassed by the increasingly big queue forming in front of them, but unfortunately was a sign of things to come.
Once we had checked in and had signed for various things, we were told our room was not quite ready, and would take another hour. Now, by this time it was already nearly 4pm, check in was advertised as being 3pm and we wanted to get to our room, freshen up and get changed for dinner before the night's festivities.
The receptionist told us to leave our baggage with the concierge and have a seat in the bar, where we would be called once our room was ready. The concierge however had disappeared, so we ended up taking our baggage into the bar.
Not being called by about 4.45pm, we approached the reception to ask when our room would be ready, as we had dinner booked at a nearby restaurant for 6pm and we wanted to get ready. The receptionist basically said that the room was ready, and they had been too busy to let us know.
Being non-smokers, we obviously asked for a non-smoking room, so were quite surprised when we entered the room to smell a strong smell of cigarette smoke - an unbearably strong smell. Now, I understand that some people may smoke in a non-smoking room, but considering that there were 3 ashtrays dotted about the room, it was obvious that we had been given a smoking room - not what we had asked for.
Worst was to come when we noticed the bedding. A dark stain was on the bottom on the bed, and on closer inspection, the mark was still damp, and had a strong smell of coffee. It appeared that someone had either had the room previously and been moved, or the bedding hadn't been completed changed.
Either way, we made a phone call to reception to ask to be moved to a clean, non-smoking room. Reception sent the housekeeping manager up to the room, who spent 10 minutes saying it hadn't been left like that when she had inspected it. Finally though she agreed to move us, although all the Executive rooms were full, so we would need to be downgraded to a standard room, although they offered to refund the difference in price and still give us access to the Executive Lounge.
The standard room was, surprisingly, the same size as the Executive room, but nicer decorated and had obviously been recently upgraded. Both the Executive and the standard rooms were basically furnished, with a double bed, built in wardrobe, widescreen TV and en-suite. The Executive room had a small seating area with a table, whereas the standard room had only one chair. Complimentary toiletries in both the Executive bathroom and the standard bathroom were the same.
By the time was had moved rooms and received our baggage it was after 6pm, so the hotel offered a free meal as we had missed our dinner reservation. We chose to have room service, which was OK but nothing remarkable, and certainly not up to a 5 star standard.
I believe the hotel has 2 restaurants and a number of bars, however we didn't try them on this visit.
As stated previously, the Executive Lounge can only be accessed by those guests staying in Executive rooms or above. The lounge was unremarkable and quite small, with seating for only about 15 people. A range of alcoholic and non alcoholic drinks where available, and a small buffet.
In the basement of the hotel is a small leisure centre, with a swimming pool, Jacuzzi, steam room, sauna and gym. I believe there are also treatment rooms if you're looking for a facial, aromatherapy etc. We made use of the swimming pool and sauna, both of which were spotless. Unfortunately the water in the pool was freezing.
On checking out, the receptionist asked if we enjoyed our stay, and wasn't at all interested when we said "no". Our reduced rate room and free meal had not been processed through the system so the reception tried to charge the full lot to our credit card, and it took a number of calls before she finally found someone that could cancel part of the charge.
When she asked if we were parked in the hotel car park, she informed us it was a £5 a day charge to residents, payable at the concierge desk. Until this point we thought that parking was free.
We were looking forward to a relaxing night away, but unfortunately, it wasn't to be found in this hotel. The staff were disorganised and unfriendly, and the rooms were basic.
If you're looking for a hotel in Glasgow City Centre, don't stay here - it isn't worth the money.
Summary: Not worth its 5 stars
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