Very pleasant resort but unprofessional practices A review of Alderbrook Resort & Spa
This is a beautifully renovated resort but the professionalism of some resort practices does not match the magnificent surroundings. My wife and I made a reservation for a one-night weekend getaway. The best rates we could find were on Expedia and they still were close to rack rates. We chose the top-of-the-line (and naturally more expensive) room with unobstructed Hood Canal and Olympic mountain views. We decided to pay extra for a great view with a balcony becuase of the long days this time of year and because we could only stay one night we decided to splurge. Because we made the reservation only a few days in advance, we would be charged for the room even if we cancelled. Fair enough, that was disclosed, but for the kind of money we were paying I expected no tricks.
Well, we showed up and after waiting in line for a while a very pleasant clerk gave us the key to our unit. We found it but it was not the view room that we had paid for. It was a two-bedroom cabin with a kitchenette. It faced a very pleasant large grassy courtyard along with other cabins. It definitely was not waterfront; you could see part of the water from the front porch but couldn't see the mountains at all. This was not what we had reserved and paid for. If we had kids with us or if we were going to be staying longer, then the cabin with its kitchenette would be nice. But that's not what we wanted.
So back to the front desk and another wait in line. I politely told the clerk that the cabin was not what we had reserved and paid for; I showed her my reservation confirmation. The clerk then lectured me that I had received an "upgrade" (whether I wanted one or not) and showed me the resort's brochure to prove that the rack rate for the cabins was a little bit higher than for the waterfront rooms. Whatever!! We didn't want a cabin with no view and I certainly didn't need a lecture as precious minutes of our getaway slipped away. The clerk said it was then probably Expedia's fault and I should expect such things if I use "outside" reservation services. What the?!?!? This was getting annoying.
With a sigh the clerk finally said she would speak to the manager to see if something could be done. She acted like I was asking for some special favor instead of the room they had promised me in exchange for more than two hundred of our hard-earned dollars! Well, after 10 more minutes (this is now 45 minutes after we first showed up at the resort), it turns out that a waterfront room was available after all. Now wary, I asked if I could look at the room first. Well, the room we finally were given was exactly as promised and it was beautiful. It was spotless and nicely furnished. It had nice touches like an empty refrigerator discreetly hidden in a cabinet instead of one of those obnoxious mini bars. My wife and I finally opened our bottle of Champagne and enjoyed the fabulous view from the deck. The rest of our stay was great...we enjoyed a nice (but expensive) dinner in the restaurant downstairs and after dinner went for a swim in the large glass-enclosed pool overlooking the water. Very nice.
I guess my problem with this place was the management's attitude. There was never any apology or acknowledgement that the resort had put us through some inconvenience through no fault of our own. Instead I was made to feel like I had done something wrong and had caused them a great deal of trouble. For the rates this place is charging, customers deserve better. By the way, add $10 to any quoted room rate for the mandatory "resort fee," whatever that is.
Having said all this, we'll probably be back because the physical surroundings are so nice. If the rates were a little less and the management more professional, I would give five stars instead of three.