Rated 1 out of 5 by hazelnut15 Not worthy of Westin brand
I am an SPG Gold member, and a regular, enthusiastic customer of Westin properties. My wife and infant daughter stayed two nights at the Westin Forrestal Village while attending a wedding reception nearby. We didn't think twice about booking this hotel because of our past experience with the Westin brand. We actually have 2 more Westin stays upcoming, but after our experience at this hotel, we will reconsider any future stays with this brand.
From the moment we arrived, it was clear that this property does not deserve the Westin brand, nor does it belong in the SPG family. Our specific complaints are as follows:
- We arrived by car. In the driveway, there is no greeter, no bellman, no valet. There is a sign stating "Valet Service Available Upon Request"; however, in the lobby there was no Concierge desk, no bellman, no valet...only a long line at the Front Desk. There was no chance of getting valet, even if I went looking for it. And to be clear - you can't claim "Valet" service if a customer has to go find the valet. That's not how it works.
- There were no luggage carts available in the lobby to assist us with taking our bags inside.
- At the Front Desk, there was a separate line for SGP Gold / Platinum Members Only, however the agent on duty was taking all comers from the long line. The front desk was busy and there were not enough agents to handle the volume. Frankly the lobby was quite chaotic, not the relaxing arrival we expect at a Westin.
- When we checked in I asked for a package which was delivered to us at the hotel. We had Amazon send a package of diapers ahead of time rather than having to pack them on our flights. We were informed at the front desk (at about 6:30PM) that the package had not arrived yet. However, Amazon tracking indicated that the hotel had signed for our package at 9:30AM. We called Service Express from our room to ask again. The agent, Rebecca, said that she would check and call us right back. She did not call back. I called again in an hour, and again Rebecca said that she would check in one final place and call us back. Again, she never called, but about 20 minutes later, at about 8:30PM, an agent delivered the package to our door. It had been misplaced, and the front desk was misinformed about receipt of the package.
- We ordered room service for dinner on the first night. The meals were good quality, but our tray arrived with only one set of cutlery and one napkin, despite the fact that we had asked for service for 2.
- We travel light, and when staying at Westin hotels we count on the in-room robes rather than packing lounging clothes or pajamas for when we're in the room. There were no robes, which is the only time we've ever seen this at the Westin. We called to request 2 robes. The Service Express agent said that "he would have to check with housekeeping about that". Check what? Whether we're allowed to get robes at a Westin? After an hour of nothing my wife called again. The agent (Dave) said he wasn't sure if they had any but would check again. 15 minutes later, Dave showed up at our door with 2 robes, which should have been in our room when we arrived.
- After dinner we got ready for bed. My wife noticed immediately that the bed was made all wrong. The mattress pad was on top of the sheets; the heavy flat sheet (usually over the pad) was the bottom layer; and the softer topsheet hidden at the foot of the bed, never having been unfolded. We had to completely strip the bed and make it ourselves, in the normal style of Westin hotels which we know well.
- I took a shower before bed and found the shower hardware to be leaking and substandard. The tub drain plug would not stay open so the tub filled with water during my shower; I had to hold the plug open manually to get the tub to drain. The diverters did not work well, so there was constant flow from the tub spout, shower wand, and shower head all at the same time. I did my best and had my shower, but it was far more effort than it should be.
- The batteries in the TV remote were so weak that it did not work from the distance of the head of the bed. I had to move close to the TV to get any response from the remote.
- We left the hotel in the morning to go exploring around Princeton. We were gone from 8:00AM until about 2:00PM . We returned to find that housekeeping had not been in our room yet. No fresh towels, bed unmade, trash cans full. This would not be a catastrophe normally, but when traveling with an infant, anything that can simplify and streamline our time in a hotel room helps. And for a Westin, we expect more. We expect housekeeping to be able to make-up our room while we're gone for 6 hours, rather than having to interrupt us later. In the afternoon, we were in our room from 2:00PM until about 7:00PM when we left for the wedding reception. In those additional 5 hours, housekeeping did not arrive. We had to use our wet towels again to get ready for the party.
- After we left the room for the evening, I called the hotel from my cell phone to request housekeeping and fresh towels. Nobody answered my first call. The phone rang for a minute, then a recording said that nobody could answer my call, and disconnected me. I called again and got a service rep; when I asked for housekeeping and especially for fresh towels, she said that there were no fresh towels in the hotel, and they didn't know "if we would get a linen truck tonight or not". No towels at a Westin hotel. It's crazy, but that's what she said. No towels. I asked her to send housekeeping and fresh towels before we returned to the hotel at about 9:30PM. We were away from 7:00PM until 9:30PM, and we returned to an unmade room. No housekeeping all day. On the bright side though, someone had entered our room and thrown - thrown! - a set of fresh towels onto our bed. They left all the wet ones in the room too, and simply plopped a pile of fresh towels onto the foot of the bed. Long story short - housekeeping was atrocious. Totally unacceptable. Over a 2-night stay at a Westin hotel, we couldn't get housekeeping at all, and we were lucky to get a set of towels plopped-down on our unmade bed late in the evening of our second night.
- We departed on Sunday morning, and I needed to accomplish 2 things before leaving: get a copy of our bill at the front desk, and get a strong cup of coffee for the road (we didn't have coffee in our room, because housekeeping never came to replace the coffee packets I used shortly after our arrival!). First, the front desk: there were no agents. This was 9:00AM and there were no agents at the front desk. There were, however, 5 guests standing around waiting for service, and there wasn't an agent in sight. I stood there waiting like everyone else for a solid 5 minutes. One woman wandered behind the front desk, wondering if she could just drop her keys in a box or something. A young man in line asked me "am I in the right place to check out?". I told him, yes, it's the Westin agents who aren't in the right place right now. After far too long, two agents emerged from the back room together. The gentleman walked right by the crowd of people and disappeared, not saying a word to anyone. The young woman slowly stepped behind the desk, eyes down, keeping her distance and not offering to help anyone, or even saying a word. I approached her and demanded service. I told her that a lot of people are waiting, we have places to go and flights to catch, and if she works here she needs to take care of us. She replied that yes, she does work there, and sorry for the wait. I asked her to print my bill for both nights. She printed one.
Next, the coffee: this should be easy. It's a coffee stand in the lobby of a busy hotel. You offer light roast and dark roast. I drink dark roast. I asked for dark roast, and the server said "sorry, we don't have any dark roast today, only light roast". I guess this Westin gets their towels, dark roast coffee, and Amazon packages for guests all from the same truck.
In closing I would just like to say, sincerely and on behalf of my wife as well, that our stay at this Westin wasn't just unacceptable, it was truly disappointing. We have trusted and enjoyed Westins many times, and we recommend them to others. This Westin will make us re-think all future stays. A property like this really tarnishes the Westin brand, and puts the SPG program in a bad light too. You will have to do much better to earn our trust again.
Thanks and regards
June 29, 2015
Rated 1 out of 5 by Notthishotel I would recommend not to stay at this hotel.
I booked a King bedroom last weekend. After check-in, when I got room, I was confused because it was double bed room. So I checked my reservation again and I found that I booked King bed. So I went down to the desk to ask what happened. When I asked at the front desk they just said "we're fully booked so there is no king bedroom anymore". What? How could they say like that? without any apology for not providing the same room I booked. They should have told me at least when I checked in. But they didn't, just gave me keys like as they arranged the room I booked. And they didn't mention any benefit for Gold SPG member like welcome gift. They even didn't know what tier I had so I needed to request by myself. And DON'T eat any pastry at the Starbucks on the first floor. They were totally dried up and tough like boots.
June 24, 2015
Rated 5 out of 5 by HTD1 Good Stay
Feather Free room request was actually recognized! May not sound like much but for Starwood it is amazing. I'm a Platinum member and stopped staying at Starwood Hotels because they could never have my room feather free (i'm allergic). For the first time in over 100 stays this hotel had my room ready without a 1-2 hour wait. Element in Ewing was over 2 hours the next day. Other notable things... the gentleman at the valet stand was great when we arrived, front desk was pleasant, room was clean. Overall what I expect from Westin but rarely receive.
May 27, 2015
Rated 3 out of 5 by KYtraveler15 Westin Princeton loses its luster
Basically clean and serviceable hotel, but I've come to expect more at this price point. Little things on this trip: Breakfast order hang tag in my room had been filled out by a prior occupant...there were two hair conditioners and no hand lotion by the sink..refreshing urns of flavored water in lobby, but no cups. Two computers and printers, but one printer was jammed, other computer out of order. Staff provided printout of Google map I requested, but to wrong address.
May 14, 2015
Rated 1 out of 5 by Rob7816 Management stinks
I spend about 25% of my life in Starwoods properties, more than 100 nights per year. I've been platinum for 7 years and have an ambassador. You might think that if the hotel was overbooked I would be the last person to be bumped, but apparently not. After flying in from London and arriving at the hotel around 10:30 pm I was informed that my room had been given away.
March 24, 2015
Rated 3 out of 5 by PaulDSTX It is the little things
I stay at this hotel a lot. It is in a good location in Princeton and the comfort level and staff have always been good. I travel to Princeton on business and often work part of the day from my room on calls. I did not appreciate being charged for making toll-free calls from my room. I used an 800 number to call into a teleconference and was billed over $5.00 for that. It's a small thing but I will take that into account when I choose next time.
March 12, 2015
Rated 1 out of 5 by Badtzmaru Far Below Westin Standard of Quality
This was my worst hotel experience in more than 20 years of hotel stays! First, the room was not clean, at least by Westin standards. There were permanent make-up (?) stains on multiple towels. I found someone else's hair everywhere, as well as leaves or something in the tub. I kid you not.
Second, one of the guests pulled a fire alarm at 4:30 in the morning. The entire hotel had to evacuate into the freezing cold. Granted, this is not the fault of the Westin staff, but what happened before and after is. BEFORE the fire alarm incident, these same guests had caused multiple disturbances that kept me and the entire third floor (I'd guess) awake. Granted this was New Year's Eve so some noise is to be expected and tolerated, but this was out of control galloping up and down the halls repeatedly throughout the pre-dawn hours. Security should have evicted them on the second or third call, BEFORE the fire alarm.
I explained my issues to the front desk person upon check out. No attempt to remedy the situation was made. I then called and asked to speak to the general manager. He is gone for more than a week, and the person who answered the phone was uncertain where to send me. She said I could leave a message for the director of operations, but then sent me to the voicemail of someone else. When I tried to leave a message there, the system cut me off.
January 5, 2015
Rated 3 out of 5 by MikeC1227 Room was not serviced once during our 3 night stay
The title says it all. The room was not made up once during our 3 night stay!
December 30, 2014
Rated 3 out of 5 by Holidaytravel2014 Nice facility yet experienced two snags this time
Have stayed here once before and all was good. However, this trip we encountered two problems: hot water was not readily available (took 15 minutes to reach lukewarm shower) and ESPN and ESPN 2 would not tune into the TVs while other channels were fine. To the staff's credit, they offered to send engineering up to our room yet those times were inconvenient for our sleeping schedule and morning departure. Front desk was gracious upon our departure. We were just surprised this happened at a Westin.
December 1, 2014
Rated 3 out of 5 by ggmjr A troublesome trip
I stayed here last weekend for a college visit with my daughter. On check in, our room was about 80 degrees, with the thermostat set at 72. We left for dinner, advised the FD clerk of the potential problem.
Upon our return after midnight, the room was MUCH hotter. Called the FD, no one ever checked the room. Engineering has us move rooms at 1am.
No upgrade, no "hey were sorry, how about breakfast" Nothing. I dont typically do negative reviews, but I have called the property 3 times to discuss this with no reply.
November 26, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Suzkaj Comfy cozy
My daughter and I love staying at the Westin. The comfy beds are our favorite part of getting away.
November 17, 2014
Rated 1 out of 5 by Notanyfun This is not a"Westin"
Very disappointing! Stayed on 10/8/14 - Restaurant was not open and the hotel was full - bar area unable to handle the customers, the tables are uncomfortable, the menu was limited and expensive - food was poor - service not attentive. Housekeeping left piles of room service trays and stuff in the halls. "Heavenly bed" was hard. The rooms are hardly decorated. The smallest flat screen ever. Three weeks ago I stayed at the Westin Alexandria - what a difference! Night and day - Don't stay at Westin Princeton Forrestal Village!
November 10, 2014
Rated 3 out of 5 by aprtur Pretty good, but not my best SPG experience
I had just stayed for two nights (October 17-18, checkout 19th), and left with an overall "okay" feeling about my stay at the Westin in Forrestal Village, primarily made higher due to the front desk staff at checkout.
I had booked an executive room, and upon arrival to my room, had noticed that my bed looked hurriedly made, with crumpled welcome hang cards on it. As it was a late checkin, I then went to my bathroom to take a shower, and noticed that the as-expected-per-SPG bathrobe was missing from my bathroom when I hopped out of the shower. Not a massive deal, so I didn't make a fuss about it, but something I had come to expect since it was even written on the room description (and hadn't been replaced the following day, either, along with my mostly used toiletries). Going to bed early, due to a 7am meeting the following day, I was surprised to hear constant water running in the walls (which continued the following night) and voices from down the hallway and through the wall….somewhat surprising for the top level room available. Breakfast during my second morning was decent at best…chaffing dishes filled with food that was lukewarm, followed by staff attending to me after I had dished up my food only to present me with a bill and disappear (which I had to then track them down to have them work out with the front desk, as it was already included in my booking).
On the positive side of my stay, the Heavenly Bed and Shower were, as always, a treat to behold. There's nothing like a vast number of pillows to find your comfort zone in, or a proper shower head and wand to leave you coming out of the shower totally refreshed. The view from my room was pleasant, as well, being a 6th/top floor view over the courtyard and surrounding area. The staff at the front desk completely reversed my opinion compared to the staff that was on when I had checked in on Friday…pleasant, upbeat, and engaged me in a conversation regarding my profession and email address that had me laughing a bit…it made me wish that things were on that level when I arrived, and in the restaurant, as that would have made all the other issues far less of a problem to me.
Overall, I would say that the Westin Princeton Forrestal Village was a step above your typical hotel, but certainly didn't meet my expectations for reserving an executive accommodation. After my last SPG experience was at a Le Meridien for a similar price, but a far higher accommodation quality (silence, an array of free refreshments in-room, key-coded breakfast area with freshly prepared food a la carte, staff going above and beyond) , I can't say that a base room at Forrestal Village would offer you anything less than my executive room had. It's a great way to earn some extra Starpoints, but I think I might be looking at an Element a bit further away in Ewing for my next stay in the area, unless they get a few things in line.
October 20, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Nova594 Peaceful rest
Great staff, convenient shuttle, and an amazing bed to catch up on rest!
October 14, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by midwestprof Stay in Princeton area
Westin at ForrestalVillage is at a convenient location for visiting Princeton. The hotel is clean and the staff is great. Nearby are several stores and restaurants.
September 22, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by DrDaughter Disgusting bathroom floor
Great hotel. Starbucks should be open later, through the afternoon. My bathroom floor was covered with hairs. This tells me that not only do they not mop the floors, they don't sweep them either. It was disgusting. I'd return, but housekeeping needs to be improved.
September 21, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by smus Location & Staff
Convenient location, the staff are outstanding!
September 17, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by Alphaman06 Stayed here for a conference
The staff at this hotel provided excellent customer service. They were friendly and attentive. I was checked in within 3 minutes. I really liked the excercise facility. It was well maintained and the equipment was great. My bed was comfortable. The only issue I had was in the restaurant for breakfast. The service was kind of slow. I was expecting a buffet on Saturday
September 15, 2014
Rated 3 out of 5 by GlobalTrotter Staffs need more training
The frint desk staff did not recognize me as a platinum member, so I reminded her the platinum amenities, and upgrade availability, but apparently she did not know any of those and asked me back "what is platinum amenity?". When I checked out, the front desk also forgot to convert my green choice option into points. Apparently the staffs need more training.
September 14, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Gibbs87 Friendly Staff
Bartender, Ricardo is Great. he makes you feel at home. mak3es travel a lot easier.
September 8, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by Businesstravellerx Good place for a conference
The hotel was a little tired and not to the standard of decor that I was expecting. However, the food and service that they provided for our conference was excellent. The food was varied and of good quality both in the breaks and for lunch. The staff were very friendly and helpful.
September 8, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by vernon2026 Manager Unresponsive
The Westin at Forrestal Village is beautifully situated in a small developing shopping and restaurant community. It has easy parking and Salt Creek Grill is within walking distance. Upon arrival we were quickly greeted and given our room keys. The room was average. There was a funny smell in the room. Overall good stay. My challenge was with the manager. This was the first of what I hope would be more stays here. I reached out via email to the Manager Ms. Kupfer prior to our stay. She NEVER responded. I find that unacceptable.
September 7, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by arealtor Outstanding customer service
Started with greeting at front desk with Dave, outstanding, then meeting manager Marie very friendly and attentive to my needs and always overseeing all guests coming and going. Very hands on and visible. Complimentary fresh flavored water in lobby was so refreshing upon arrival. And Alexis was extra accommodating when I needed information about health care in the area. I would definetly stay there again. Most comfortable beds and quick elevators. Can't wait to go back
September 6, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by 2014princeton Great Hotel
Hotel was perfect. The heavenly beds were just that...heavenly! We are Starwood owners which is always a bonus and I am involved in the travel industry. Concierge floor was awesome. We were here to drop our son off at Princeton. Highly recommend this hotel.
August 28, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by Brent33 Lovely stay
My wife and I had a delightful stay at the Westin in Princeton for our wedding anniversary. The staff were incredibly helpful and courteous. Wisam Sudah, in particular, was very attentive to our needs and helped us to have a wonderful stay.
August 26, 2014
Rated 1 out of 5 by MollyandBob2014 Too many unruly guests and not enough staff
We planned a romantic weekend away and it didn't turn out that way. The hotel had a lot of guests for the weekend, a large wedding and a large family group. The staff was completely overwhelmed and the facilities and other guests suffered from lack of control over the large family gathering. The pool was not accessible to other guests not involved with the large family group and even it was I would not swim in that water. The conditions were deplorable and I wouldn't even let my dogs swim in it. There was some kind of cooking going on in the room down the hall which filled the hallway with an odor. A large bag of trash was left in the hallway after housekeeping finished for the day. The guests in the large family group brought a ton of children who were unsupervised most of the time and rude. They walked through the lounge with wet bathing suits and bare feet interrupting other guests there who were trying to enjoy any part of the hotel that was still available to them to relax in. They ignored the request of the bartender, who was the only one who spoke up, and pushed him aside and laughed in his face and proceeded to use the lounge as an entrance to the restroom instead of using the access doors in the pool area. Stones & towels were thrown in the pool and the water was so cloudy you couldn't see the bottom. Glasses were being used poolside instead of plastic causing a possible safety risk. At no point did we observe any type of hotel management or security stepping in to try to control them. A lot of guests came down dressed in swimsuits only to find it impossible to relax by the pool anytime during the weekend. At checkout, the man at the desk knew exactly why I said "my stay was not enjoyable". I feel like we were taken advantage of and wasted 10,000 Starwood points plus charged a nightly rate and high taxes, not to mention the dog sitting fees I paid to escape to relaxing weekend. So again, Corporate America wins at the expense of their consumers. I hope a lot of other guests who were dissatisfied with the 8/15/14 weekend at the Princeton Westin confirm my comments.
August 18, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Mom8 This hotel is very clean.
I have stayed in many hotels and was very pleased that it was so clean. I will definitely be back and suggest this hotel to others. I was actually able to get a good night's sleep in a hotel. The location of this hotel is excellent also. Thank you.
August 17, 2014
Rated 3 out of 5 by pblover Loved the Heavenly Bed!
Pleasant hotel with accommodating staff.
The room was well appointed and of decent size, but the layout was a bit awkward, making it difficult for two to maneuver.
The Heavenly Bed, however, was indeed heavenly!
My husband, who has back issues, had the best night sleep in months.
August 13, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by morra this hotel was wondeful for a wedding
everything was done to perfection/ Staff was helpful
August 11, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Ora24 The Hotel Staff Was Pleasingly Friendly
We were there for just an overnight stay however,the hotel staff was pleasingly friendly. The front desk staff were tremendously helpful. In my rush to pack,I forgot my shower cap. We called the front desk and they sent me 2 within 10 mins. As I was ironing my jacket my button got caught and flew off to the floor. We called again,and they sent us a sewing kit within 10 more mins. I found myself in need of an extension cord and stapler, and the housekeeping gent was a gem! He set them up in the conference room so they would be there when I went down to the conference. Thank YOU...Thank YOU...for FIVE STAR SERVICE when I needed it the most!!!!!
August 10, 2014