Bait and switch! Beware - Don’t stay here!
I had planned a trip to Dublin for my family in March of 2018. After doing much research, I settled on the Clifden House & apartments and corresponded with Vesta, the hotel manager. When booking online, one must rely on the honesty of the management and of course the photos on the website to see if it meets your expectations. I specifically emailed Vespa and told her our flight would be getting in on Saturday at 4am but we wanted to book the day before (Friday) because we would be tired and need to sleep before we began our sightseeing.
When we arrived, the young man at the reception desk at 5am on Saturday morning the 23rd of June looked rather surprised to see us, and he showed us our reservation which was marked NO SHOW. The correspondence through email (see below) for this reservation was proof that we had informed them that we would be arriving on Saturday morning since our flight did not get in until 4:15 am. I wanted to be sure they held our reservation as late arrival. I had booked Friday too, as I did not want a 4pm check-in on Saturday after a transatlantic night flight. Shocked, I replied that I could not believe it! I informed him of the email correspondence, but he seemed confused about what to do. After a long discussion he reluctantly said that he did have something for us. We had to give our credit card information for a security deposit which we did when asked.
He walked us to the apartment, and he left us there. I shockingly looked around and was very upset. The apartment condition and furnishings were nothing like the luxurious photos posted on the website. I have included the photos that I luckily thought to take before we left. I should have taken more. The apartment needed to be painted as there were scrapes on the wall. The windows were dirty and the blanket in one of the bedrooms was stained. The faux leather furniture was so worn and damaged that you could not dare sit upon it! There were stains on the ceiling. The very shabby furnishings and condition of the rooms was the exact opposite of what they advertised.
We went down to speak to the clerk at the desk and told him that it was unsatisfactory and what would he do about it. He said there was nothing else available. We asked him to call the manager and he said he would not be in until 12 pm. I told him he needed to get in touch with someone to resolve this and he just kept saying there was nothing he could do. Finally, I got him to call the manager, but he did not pick up. I explained that we would not be able to stay there due to the shabby condition of the apartment assigned to us and that it was not representative of what they advertised.
Tired and concerned that we would have nowhere to stay, we found a hotel nearby that was sympathetic to our situation and told the young man then we would have to leave. This was about 6am. We left with our luggage.
I got an email a about 2pm in the afternoon from the manager stating that or reservation was non-refundable! That’s it!
I have spent a year trying to resolve this situation! The manager Tony Rice kept using delay tactics by not being available to resolve the situation during the date we checked in, and then subsequently by not getting back to me after repeated efforts through Capital One and personal emails to him and his staff at the Clifton House. His staff promised that he would call me 3 times and twice he emailed me back that he was looking into it. After one year, he responded to my email saying it was too late to resolve anything, too much time had passed!
I contest that if the apartment was clean and well-appointed as they showed on their website, we would have stayed. This was their fault not ours, and we had considerable aggravation as a result of this. They never refunded one cent to us! Don’t stay at such an unreputable place. This was a bait and switch and caused us a lot of grief. Luckily, we were able to find a beautiful hotel nearby – The Rui Plaza and salvaged our vacation. There are many hotels in the area and I highly suggest you choose one of them.