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  • Riviera customer service...

    Two somewhat unrelated incidents taking place right at the end of the con have utterly and absolutely soured me on the Riviera more than any other trouble that i or close friends of mine have had in the past.

    I ask for your feedback.

    1. The Bee Incident / Alleged Refunds
    There were very prominent rumors circulating on Monday and Tuesday that the Riv was offering to knock one day off of people's bill in recognition of the closed pool on Sunday night. PoolCon is something a lot of us look forward to, and i was seriously upset when it was canned.

    I mentioned during my check-out that i had actually booked three rooms this weekend, most of which checked in on Wednesday and stayed all the way through. One was extended to today (Tuesday). This was all to give my team a chance to be settled early and relax afterwards.

    I spoke to the desk staffer about the discount that was being discussed by many people. She denied this was taking place. A manager then came out, and also stated baldly to my face that this was utter fabrication.

    I ask you... did anyone here get a discount for one night of their stay if you complained about the bees? I wasn't looking to knock all three rooms down, you dig? But when a total of 15 nights were on my tab overall, asking to see that shifted to 14 wasn't too out of line, in my view.

    2. Customer Service Attitude
    I thank everyone who attended the Beer Cooling Contraption Contest. I particularly thank the people who offered up their team's personal thermometers (which some folk had for calibration and tweaking of their devices while running) towards use in overall scoring.

    I had ordered a package of additional thermometers well in advance of the con. I requested delivery right to the con. They were small enough (naturally) to be in a basic Priority Mail letter envelope. Would you believe that at 10:40 PM on Monday night, as we were packing to leave, i got a message saying i had mail at the desk? I went down and was startled to see the thermometers had arrived, and i had totally forgotten about them.

    Later when checking the web, i found that they had actually arrived and been signed for on Thursday the 30th.

    Here's where i cannot begin to explain my upset... neither the night manager nor the day manager (the latter being the individual who denied any bee compensation above) would admit to me that the hotel had goofed somehow. I called and later stood down there multiple times with screenshots and web pages and other documentation -- long after anything meaningful could be done, naturally -- and they would never even admit that i was accurate in my version of the events.

    I mean, fuck... there comes a time (especially when the damage is done and someone isn't being a dick but just asking to have their distress recognized) where you just fucking say, "You know what, you're right... we totally failed on this one. While we can't do anything about this right now for you, we're going to see to it that someone tries to come up with an answer for how this could have happened so that future guests are not similarly troubled."

    Then the manager could just fucking do nothing, which we all know she would do anyway, but at least there's the illusion of being conciliatory. That's what blew me away this year... staff not even pretending to be sorry for inconveniencing us when the occasional screw-up happened.

    Anyone else want to comment? I'm especially eager to hear any sort of confirmation on the "bee refund" rumor.
    "I'll admit I had an OiNK account and frequented it quite often… What made OiNK a great place was that it was like the world's greatest record store… iTunes kind of feels like Sam Goody to me. I don't feel cool when I go there. I'm tired of seeing John Mayer's face pop up. I feel like I'm being hustled when I visit there, and I don't think their product is that great. DRM, low bit rate, etc... OiNK it existed because it filled a void of what people want."
    - Trent Reznor

  • #2
    Re: Riviera customer service...

    I took a walk over to the Encore and the Wynn. Going back to the Riv felt like I was going to a trailer park.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Riviera customer service...

      Originally posted by astcell View Post
      I took a walk over to the Encore and the Wynn. Going back to the Riv felt like I was going to a trailer park.
      Well.... it kinda is. One of my favorite quotes from The Mighty Joe:
      "Ahh.. the Riv. Gotta love is trashy charm. If I had a body condom on, I would hug it!"
      Happiness is a belt-fed weapon.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Riviera customer service...

        I'm pretty sour on the Riv at the moment as well. The pool was closed more than it was open and they screwed up my reservation.

        Also, did anyone else have key card problems? I had to have my key replaced 3 times! I really enjoyed being locked out of my room in a bathing suit and having some bitchy cunt demanding to see ID, when I clearly had no place to carry any. Oh, and waiting for security so I could get in my room and prove I was me was fun. I got so paranoid of being locked out that I wouldn't even go to the ice machine w/o id.

        And it was fun being threatened with a ban for sitting around the penthouse with less then 10 people talking. Yes, this happened. We had no booze, no music, just people talking.

        And I'm sure Soloman will want to share his story of security letting themselves into his room in the middle of the night looking for a party that clearly wasn't there.
        Last edited by Abby_Normal; August 5, 2009, 08:34. Reason: typos
        "There are no failed experiments, only more data"

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Riviera customer service...

          This year I stayed at Circus Circus. While yes there was clowns on the TV my experience was terrific. The staff was helpful during check-in and my room was nice. The walk to the Riv wasn't bad either.


          I will say that walking through Clown Town was a totally different experience though....I would stay there again.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Riviera customer service...

            Originally posted by Abby_Normal View Post
            And I'm sure Soloman will want to share his story of security letting themselves into his room in the middle of the night looking for a party that clearly wasn't there.
            Ugh, I wish you were kidding. Solomon was kind enough to brew up some coffees and provided a nice -quiet- place to chill and talk. I would actually like to hear his perception of events.
            If a chicken and a half, can lay an egg and a half, in a day and a half... how long would it take a monkey, with a wooden leg, to kick the seeds out of a dill pickle?

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Riviera customer service...

              Originally posted by Abby_Normal View Post

              Also, did anyone else have key card problems? I had to have my key replaced 3 times!
              Pre-con I had lots of keycard issues. At one point my card worked, but then mysteriously stopped working again two hours later. I think there may have been some mag stripe defects with some of the Defcon room keys...or the same people responsible for the bee conspiracy caused it.
              The dude abides.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Riviera customer service...

                Originally posted by Xodia View Post
                Pre-con I had lots of keycard issues. At one point my card worked, but then mysteriously stopped working again two hours later. I think there may have been some mag stripe defects with some of the Defcon room keys...or the same people responsible for the bee conspiracy caused it.
                The Riv tried to tell us it had something to do with cell phones, or the other magstrips in our wallets, which sounds silly to me.

                They told me to keep them separate from everything else in my wallet/pockets. If this was a real problem why wouldn't they provide some kind of shield for the cards?
                "There are no failed experiments, only more data"

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Riviera customer service...

                  Originally posted by Abby_Normal View Post
                  The Riv tried to tell us it had something to do with cell phones, or the other magstrips in our wallets, which sounds silly to me.

                  They told me to keep them separate from everything else in my wallet/pockets. If this was a real problem why wouldn't they provide some kind of shield for the cards?
                  I kept mine in a pocket separate from everything else and it still happened. Not to mention, I keep lots of plastic in my wallet without separation and rarely have any issues. The Riv is just cheap I suppose.
                  The dude abides.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Riviera customer service...

                    I had a similar incident happen with an MP3 player I'd ordered for Defcon last year at the front desk. Like, WAY TOO SIMILAR. >.< I got it on monday.
                    ======================================
                    DJ Jackalope
                    dopest dj in the galaxy. *mwah!*

                    send in the drop bears!
                    ======================================

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                    • #11
                      Re: Riviera customer service...

                      I wasn't expecting much from the Riviera but wasn't too impressed with their service.

                      My friend who booked the hotel room called Wednesday to confirm our reservations for a room with 2 beds to accomodate 3 people and arrange for late arrival. When we arrived late on Thursday night (around midnight), we were told that they were out of this room type so gave us a single king bed and provided a rollaway bed. They also said that we could switch to a 2 queen bed room the next night. We weren't thrilled with this but were all tired from a 5 hour drive and just wanted to sleep.

                      We were pleasantly surprised with how nice the rooms are. I've stayed in New York New York and Monte Carlo and felt that the room was almost on par with those more expensive hotels. And they are definitely nicer rooms than Excalibur or Circus Circus. Our rollaway bed showed up about 30 minutes later which seemed a little excessive. It also came sans pillows so I had to roll a blanket up and swipe a pillow from the bed.

                      The next morning, we decided that our sleeping arrangements were ok as the rollaway bed was acceptable so I called the front desk around 8am to ask if we could just stay in that room. They put me on hold for a moment then came back to say that there was no manager present and that we'd have to call back at 9. Seriously? The staff is not empowered to make any decisions as to what room someone stays in? Pretty lame...

                      Like I said before, I wasn't expecting much and the Riviera delivered as expected. I think the most friendly staffer I ran into was a security guard who told my friends they couldn't walk toward the hotel elevator area while smoking. So we stood and chatted while my friends finished their cigarettes and he was a super friendly guy.

                      This was my first Defcon so I don't know what the previous venue is like. It seems like Defcon could do better in the venue department - especially in this economy where Vegas is hungry for business.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Riviera customer service...

                        Originally posted by Abby_Normal View Post
                        The Riv tried to tell us it had something to do with cell phones, or the other magstrips in our wallets, which sounds silly to me. They told me to keep them separate from everything else in my wallet/pockets. If this was a real problem why wouldn't they provide some kind of shield for the cards?
                        there is actually a modicum of science to back this up. what it all comes down to is coercivity.

                        magnetic materials can be fabricated with varying degrees of coercivity... meaning how much magnetic force (as measured in gauss) is needed to write data to the mag stripe. cards with low coercivity are more easily erased, updated, etc... this is common with hotel room keys since they are often get reused and one needs to ensure that key cards can be properly erased and re-worked multiple times. while our commemorative Black Hat and DEFCON key cards obviously aren't made for people to reuse, the equipment at the desk can only work with one type of mag stripe system.

                        keeping low-coercivity cards next to other cards or even next to personal electronics does indeed cause difficulty in many instances. there is no Faraday cage or other type of shielding possible since we're talking magnetic energy, not RF.

                        i used to experienced this once in a while but in a reverse of this scenario... the PATCO train line that runs people in and out of philly here uses a ticket system consisting of a card approximately the size of a driver's license... but the whole rear side of the card is a gigantic mag stripe. the system is ancient (i think it dates from the 50s or 60s) and uses really powerful, heavy-duty magnetic technologies. those tickets can often mess with people's basic bank cards if they are kept too close together in a wallet.

                        as far as hotel key cards goes, i always poke a hole in mine and stick it on my lanyard next to my badge and some essential keys to the TOOOL cases. never had a problem with room access when doing that.
                        "I'll admit I had an OiNK account and frequented it quite often… What made OiNK a great place was that it was like the world's greatest record store… iTunes kind of feels like Sam Goody to me. I don't feel cool when I go there. I'm tired of seeing John Mayer's face pop up. I feel like I'm being hustled when I visit there, and I don't think their product is that great. DRM, low bit rate, etc... OiNK it existed because it filled a void of what people want."
                        - Trent Reznor

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Riviera customer service...

                          Originally posted by astcell View Post
                          I took a walk over to the Encore and the Wynn. Going back to the Riv felt like I was going to a trailer park.
                          Last night in irc someone said:

                          You know why Steve Wynn built the Encore?
                          So he wouldn't have to look at the Riv from his hotel.


                          That pretty much sums it up haha.
                          perl -e 'print pack(c5, (41*2), sqrt(7056), (unpack(c,H)-2), oct(115), 10)'

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Riviera customer service...

                            Now, full disclosure here, due to the nature of my role with Defcon I work with a lot of different folks at the Riv so my opinions may be slightly colored. Overall, I find the interactions with the Riv people to be pleasant. However, there is one noteable exception to that: the front desk. What is the deal with the front desk folks? are they all out on work release or something? Last two years I have only had unpleasant experiences with the people working the desk.

                            Last year it was the girl at the VIP check-in flipping out on me because someone at the main desk sent me to her (my room is on the defcon account, so sometimes our check-in procedures are a little wonky). She kept telling me 'they shouldnt have sent you here' and me saying 'ok, sort that out at the end of shift, in the meantime *someone* needs to check me in'.

                            This year it was attitude and apathy from the front desk. I walk up to check in to my room and begin using the little kiosk thing. I swipe my card, follow the check-in procedures, then get my key. I ask the gal if I can have an extra key and get told 'you need to have the other person on the room check in to get their key'. I explain that the other person isn't coming in till Thursday, but for tonight I have someone (Xodia) crashing in my room. She gives me a heavy sigh and says again 'sir, you need to have the other person check in and they can get their key'. I ask if she didnt listen to anything I just said and I get another sigh and an eye roll. I finally say screw it and decide I will check in the other person so Xodia can use their room key for the night, except the system wont let me do that unless I have a credit card with their name on it. Front desk gal seems to be getting annoyed with me and says rather gruffly 'sir, what are you trying to do?'. I finally begin to lose it on her and say 'look, I'm just trying to fucking do whatever I need to fucking do so I can get an extra goddamn key. Now are you gonna help with that or just sit there and give me a bunch of fucking attitude'. This point she rolls her eyes again, pushes A SINGLE FUCKING BUTTON to generate me a second room key, then hands it over.

                            Really? REALLY? All of that bullshit because this cow couldnt be bothered to push a single button to get me what I was asking for? I know the Riv just let a bunch of people go, this broad should be happy to have a job and should be doing what she can to make sure that guests are happy, rather than acting like her job was cutting into her day. With any luck, the Riv will free her from this terrible time-suck that pays her bills.

                            Outside of the front desk, though, its nothing but smiles and good times. Obviously I get along with Riv security better than most, but I had nothing but good experiences with other hotel staff too.

                            I return whatever i wish . Its called FREEDOWM OF RANDOMNESS IN A HECK . CLUSTERED DEFEATED CORn FORUM . Welcome to me

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                            • #15
                              Re: Riviera customer service...

                              Originally posted by noid View Post
                              Outside of the front desk, though, its nothing but smiles and good times. Obviously I get along with Riv security better than most, but I had nothing but good experiences with other hotel staff too.
                              Since I stayed downtown this year, the only Riv employees I interfaced with were bartenders and wait staff--who were all terrific, especially after you can get them to show you pictures of their dogs.
                              --BC,

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