Grand Plaza is delighted for offer a free fruit basket to any guest who writes a review on Trip Advisor, Expedia, Booking.com., Agoda, Laterooms or Orbitz. Call Reception on 0 to claim your free fruit basket if you have decided to write one. Reviews are very useful to us for improving the standard of our rooms facilites and services in the way that guests would like to see them improved. In this hotel around half of the improvments are the ideas of the staff and the other half are the ideas of the guests. The reason we have make up lights all around the bathroom mirrors is that a female guest complained that she could not see her face in the bathroom mirror. The reason that we have butterfly sofa beds is that guests complained about the pull out type where you sleep on a thin mattress supported by a metal frame. So 2 years ago we replaced the pull out type with the hinged type which opens out into a no compromise full double bed. But please be aware that, regretably, in this competitive world, there are hotels which write their own reviews. There are agencies which can be contracted to visit hotels and write reviews and worse still there are hotels which write or contract bad reviews about competing successful hotels. Grand Plaza is normally on the first page of the main hotel websites. This is because we are a large hotel and we have enough high quality rooms to keep that position. We are a successful hotel. So we attract slam reviews from our competitors. Our present review scores as of June 2012 are 4/5 On Trip advisor, 7.8 on Orbitz, 7.7 on Agoda, 7.6 on LateRooms, 7.4 on booking.com and anywhere you like on Expedia depending upon their software. With booking.com we were actually an 8.0 review score on average in May 2012, but we have 2700 old reviews written before or during the Olympic refurbushment which drag us down to 7.4. Ideally a good 4* hotel should be above 7.5 and nearer to 8. The first obvious slam review we saw was related to a competing hotel in Kensington. Here is a copy of the review...
'A sham, place not a reflection of what is advertised'
Reviewed 22 July 2011 NEW
When you hit apartment hotels on booking.com, this place shows up top of the page. 4 stars and looking good with such a good rating. Reality is more like a 2 star place. We changed apartments three times in two days, and thats only because we kept going to the front desk. They're not apartments, they're more like holes in the walls, dirty and shabby ones too. Most staff polite but with no action. We paid over 300 pounds for a triple executive . Only 2 twin beds and the other was a couch pullout. On bathroom. We stayed also in a competing hotel in Kensington on this same trip, what a difference. Same amount footed out for for two rooms, one King and one twin, two big bathrooms, and even a nice breakfast patio to go along with the king room. Staff at this hotel professional and helpful. It changed our perspective of London hotels. Luckily. otherwise it would have remained bad with the Grand Plaza.
Location wise, can't fault the Grand Plaza. It sits between Queensway and Nottinghill, and Hyde Park is a short walk away. Thats about it. Many other hotels in this area. don't bother with the Grand Plaza.
Room Tip: there's no best room. The place needs a major overhaul and a reality check.
Stayed July 2011, travelled with family
At the time of that review we were number one on booking.com. So loads of people were checking out our trip advisor page (where the review was posted). These people would have seen the review, believed it to be true and booked this competing hotel which at the time was a 3* serviced apartment block with no dining facilities and bunk beds in the kitchen of some of their apartments. We were a 4* serviced apartment block with full breakfast catering and obviously no bunk beds. We got the above review removed from trip advisor on the grounds that is was advertising for a competitor. Incidentally this competing hotel have since then upgraded themselves to be a 5* establishment on their expedia listing! But their hotel pictures have not changed since they were a 3* hotel last year. Earlier this year this competing hotel was ranked 2 places below the Dorchester on Trip Advisor which is a totally absurd ranking. The reason they scored so highly was that in our opinion they write or contract to be written or arrange for themselves a large percentage of their reviews. We deduce this from the fact that although they only have 67 apartments, they get the number of trip advisor reviews one would expect from a hotel 7x their size. They get more than one trip advisor review per day. Normally you would need a 400 room hotel to achieve that number of reviews. So they basically 'arrange' the extra reviews themselves. We calculate that they are arranging around 85% of their own trip advisor reviews. That, we believe, is how they go to be 2 places beneath the Dorchester in the trip adivsor rankings. Here is my favourite absurd review that appears on their trip advisor page...
As good as the Ritz... but less!
Reviewed 25 August 2011
So there is a snapshot into the real word of hotel reviews! This is another reason why we encourage guests to write reviews. We like to get some real feedback!
For the insightful exposee of the dark side of Tripadvisor fake reviews see the link below: