Expected so much more A review of Le Bourget Aero Suites
My kids and I visit the Twin Cities annually. This trip, we decided to try Le Bourget Aero Suites because it promised a newly renovated "all suites" environment, amenities such as pillow top duvets, and exceptional service. We were impressed with the appearance of the lobby/bar. When we arrived at our room, we realized that one of the two door keys we had been handed, didn't work. (The front desk didn't activate it correctly.) Our room was just okay. The bed area is attractive. The pillow top duvets can't hold a candle to the Westin's "heavenly bed" which we surmise they're trying to duplicate. The pillows are in a word: AWFUL! They'll guarantee a neck ache in the morning given their impenetrable puffiness. I'm not kidding. These things are at least 8 inches deep and can't be flattened. We opted to sleep without pillows. The reading lights above the beds are really neat. The flat screen television is a nice touch. The television, however, can't comfortably be viewed from the sitting area of the suite, or from the second bed (as was the case in our room) because of its placement on the credenza. The television always turns on at full volume, despite the volume level when it was turned off. It is close to impossible to hear the television if it is set at a "courteous-to-other-guests" level over the highway noise and room heater. Television channels are limited, particularly channels of interest to children. Reception is iffy. The unbelievable noise from Highway 494 is deafening, and the room lighting at night is yellowish and dull. The bathroom is just awful. Very tiny. Not at all what we would have expected from the very high expectations generated from Le Bourget's web site. This is an OLD bathroom, minimally upgraded, and marginally clean. Housekeeping sparingly dispenses towels. The tissue box is filled with what we could only describe as tissues as soft as copy paper. There was nothing comforting or soft about the tissues. These tissues are the bottom-of-the-barrel in terms of quality. Another unexpected cut corner for a hotel that seems to want to pass itself off as a cut above the rest. If you use the bar of soap provided, it won't be replaced with a freshly packaged bar the next day (as would be the case in most hotels). Even the toilet paper wouldn't dispense because housekeeping had poorly installed the spare roll behind the to-be-used roll. Absolutely ridiculous. A visit to the front desk to request information on the Minneapolis light rail proved futile. The woman at the desk didn't know anything about the lightrail. She suggested that I wait for her male co-worker to get off the phone because he might be able to help. When the male co-worker got off the phone, he completely ignored me (I was the only person standing at the front desk) because he was busy dealing with a room change for an unhappy "crew" guest. It was explained that the "crew" guest was an airline employee requesting a room change. I visited the front desk several hours later to, again, check into the light rail and, thankfully, encountered someone able to provide a bit of help. At check out, no one asked how our visit was, thanked us, or even wished us a pleasant day. This was certainly not the service promised on Le Bourget's web page. For all of the upgrades mentioned on the web page, I'd say the most important upgrade of all, was overlooked.....invest in noise-reduction window glass when you are located 300 feet away from an extremely busy highway. Even at 1am, highway 494 has considerable traffic. We had so much noise in our room, that we could have sworn the window was open. Believe me on this noise issue. Last month, we had the good fortune to stay at the Doubletree in New York City, located directly on Times Square. If the Doubletree can handle Times Square noise and provide it's guests with an restful evening, Le Bourget should be able to handle the traffic noise on Highway 494. On our third evening, we arrived back at the hotel very late (near midnight), only to find that the one room key we did have that worked, no longer worked. A visit to the front desk confirmed that the card was de-activated because apparently, at check-in, the wrong check-out date had been input. The front desk had to issue another room card. When we parked in the rear of the hotel, we found the back "security door" which is supposed to be accessed via room key, needed no key at all. On two separate occasions, the back "security door" was accessible to anyone, with no room key needed. Oh, and one other strange thing....one of the two Evian waters the hotel provides in the room, disappeared on our second day. We could only surmise that housekeeping needed it to stock another guest's room.