High Hill Boredom
Writing this post made me realise how I hardly go on overnight trips with my high school mates. Long story. But with democratic voting, we ended up in Bukit Tinggi.
Wasn't a bad choice when we stepped into the little Japanese hut (the Ume Tatami Suite). Bad timing, though. Our visit was the first day of a one-month water pipe drought for the hill surrounded with lakes and koi fish. The irony.
The main point of blogging about this trip was to highlight customer service. Our lady manager of the day told us she'll be 'upgrading' us to the French Colmar Tropicale Village to cover for the major inconvenience.
Call your customers way ahead to notify of water/electricity/pottery poo problems before they drive all the way to enjoy your semi-wonderful resort.
Hopes dashed, we salvaged the suite with camwhoring around the entire house. I highly suggest having a weekend in the Japanese experience. Rest your fears, it's not Malaysian-made. So you don't get papan floor and pasar malam slippers. The design was well done along with the atmosphere which Sern-Li wanted to meditate with.
We had a long discussion about the pros and cons. For RM1,000 you get the Japanese stuff, a kitchen, three pretty bathrooms, Astro and DVD player, the space to play hide-and-seek, and a butler to escort you up and down the hill. Pretty darn good deal.
We wondered whether we could survive with the water tank reserve though.
So after all the hiding in the cupboards and sleeping on the floor mattresses, we packed our stuff and shuffled down alone the winding hill to the French Village 10 minutes away.
When you've pissed off your customers, the very least you could do is shamefully accompany your guests to the other option.
From that moment on, Sue Anne's face was way down... like zoned out until she saw the French room and got mad at management again. Sern-Li yappered in whatever French he learnt in his semester's worth of class.
At the Colmar lobby, our arranged butler showed us the French room and very pleasantly tried to explain to us our free 'upgrade'.
But the room was obviously NOT an upgrade. *teng Teng TENGGGGG*
Don't let photography and lighting fool you. The bedsheets were made for children. The workings and finishing touches were clearly Malaysian. The room reeks of the smell of old. And it isn't one with nature. Not to mention; no butler, no kitchen with utensils, not enough beds for 8 people, and it's RM 460++ a night, not RM 1,000. (rates)
Please don't call it an upgrade when it is clearly not one. Or, just don't lie to your customers.
Group discussion at the lobby again. We saw the lady manager in her full black suit again. We try to explain to her that this is very frustrating. Even if it isn't their fault that the water supply ran out; this doesn't cover for the disappointment, the petrol and for a very bad first visit.
Sometimes, I'd like to be older.
Very rudely she tells us it's been a rough day and that this is the best she can give us. (Sort of like a take it or leave it) No free spa, no future discounts, no added value to entice us a return and a smile on Sue Anne's face. On empty stomachs we decided to take the offer given it would be a night only.
Rough day or not, you don't shout at customers who are pretty nice irregardless of age, sex, religion or race. And smile even when they try to weasel the lights out of you.
So, we took the lift back up to our room with promise of three beds. Initially, they promised us two rooms to cover for our number. But math must have ran out the door of their heads when we found out that both rooms can only fit 7 not 8 people. So we requested for 3 beds extra to keep together.
My fault for calling a soup-y dish. We requested for bowls to put our compensation for the horrible food and prices at the resort. For Berjaya Hills, they could only afford to give us 2 bowls and about 10 paper cups.
The list goes on:
- Breakfast buffet was short from intercontinental and blooming bright.
- The room had a very much unneeded conference table for about 10 people when the room can only fit 5.
- Activities around the hill were very limited because they are all overpriced. And whatever is free is barely much. 2 smackeroos just to enter a horse stable with only a couple of horses. Ish.
- The free walk around the letdown of a Botanical Garden comes with a restaurant offering RM6.50 for Coke.
- French village is no more than a marketplace selling China products.
Oh, the horror. At least they had swans. But...poor swans. I wonder whether they are properly fed.
I think that Genting probably does a better job at all this. There seems to be no upgrade or improvement from time past. Even their website lives in the Web 0.5 era. Understandably, from a business perspective, the hills aren't their best source of revenue. However, it can also be a good source given the "45 minutes from KL" tagline.
Summary: Business opportunity and Customer Service fails for Berjaya Group of Companies. Look no further, look at Times Square.