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“Unbelievably unbearable”

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Candlewood Suites Virginia Beach / Norfolk
Ranked #43 of 109 Hotels in Virginia Beach
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 12 July 2012

I write this, neither in search of recompense nor in hopes of an apology. I pen these words only as a warning to future unsuspecting travelers that might plan their vacations to Virginia Beach and choose a hotel that strives for mediocrity.

There comes a time in every traveler's life when the cruel, twisted hands of fate decide, that the vacation for which significant planning time was required, to take a detour into the abyss. This year's vacation for us, at least, was one such misadventure. The abyss, wrote Nietzsche, looked back and, furthermore, mocked us. There was a singular, unique event that changed the course of what had been, until then, an enjoyable time with family and friends.

It was the simple act of checking in to the Candlewood Suites in Virginia Beach, VA. The staffs' inability, nay, refusal to accommodate our request for connecting rooms with our traveling companions left us bewildered and befuddled. With our hefty deposits and threatened cancellation fees in the clutches of this dastardly corporation we were left with no option but to register and hope that whatever nefarious plans the staff had in store for us could be, at least, minimized.

Then we discovered that Candlewood Suites idea of clean is contrary to what most people actually do consider clean. The bathroom was squalid. It was dirty enough that we wondered if we were on a hidden camera show, checking for our reactions. Alas, such luck was not our fate. No black light was needed to see the grime. There was muck around the tub that we couldn't explain. There was years of dust, dirt and other people's scum in the vent. The curtain rod was broken. You could see the profoundly unprofessional results of granite tile laying gone horribly, horribly wrong. It was as if Candlewood Suites had deliberately looked for the most inept contractor around. I can't prove this, of course, but I am sure a bunch of drunken chimpanzees had worked on the bathroom of our room.

However, despite all that, and hoping the foulness wouldn’t get any worse - it did. The toilet bowl was the nastiest violation of them all. There was a layer of dust all over the toilet; but even more shocking were the growing splotches of mold and mildew making a permanent home in the bowl itself. Add to that, the distinct smell of cat urine sprayed with an air freshener and you have a deadly cocktail. “The children,” I thought, “what about the children?”

Presented with photographs of the horror (or as we referred to it, Superfund site 52), the manager on duty assured us, that the problems would be swiftly and satisfactorily addressed. We left, comfortable in the knowledge that our stay was going to get better (or, at the very least, not worse). Alas, this was not to be. We learned that of the numerous bathroom (and general cleanliness) issues with which we were plagued, only 3 (three), were “fixed”. Did you see the quotes there? It is to signify irony (or sarcasm).

The maintenance man secured the shower rod, removed some gunk from the bathtub, and halfheartedly cleaned the toilet. That’s the short of it. To elaborate, there was dust in the bathroom from whatever method he used to secure the shower rod; the bathtub was re-caulked in random areas, leaving grime in others; and the toilet bowl had only one mildew stain unenthusiastically scrubbed. The toilet in general remained dirty and covered in dirt. And, for the “pièce de résistance” (notice the quotes there – irony about to be perpetrated), the maintenance man cleaned the silicone with one of the guest towels and left in on the floor.

The front desk staff, although friendly and affable, quickly pasted on the corporate smiles whenever we approached. Bringing our concerns and issues to the front desk, we learned, to the surprise of no one, that the staff was trained only to regurgitate the standard company party line. The manager, either through sheer stubbornness or a very strong sense of indignation, was not as conciliatory as we had hoped. No help for us - the holiday seekers; the searchers of fun; the goers to the beach.

So, Candlewood Suites, if you choose to acknowledge this review I want to leave you (and your future guests) some statistics upon which you may cogitate. I believe I have researched the veracity of these statistics, but don’t believe me – do the research yourselves. Armed with this data, as well as my narration on this less than pleasant stay at your establishment, I plan on informing every person I meet the experiences of my stay. You shall not be troubled by us again as we will, with as much effort as we can muster, avoid your facilities. And, if it should be that CWS becomes the only hotel in the world, we will sleep in cardboard boxes.


Statistics:
A dissatisfied consumer will tell between 9 and 15 people about their experience. About 13% of dissatisfied customers tell more than 20 people.
Source: White House Office of Consumer Affairs, Washington, DC

86% of consumers quit doing business with a company because of a bad customer experience, up from 59% 4 years ago.
Source: Harris Interactive, Customer Experience Impact Report

91% of unhappy customers will not willingly do business with your organization again.
Source: Lee Resource Inc.

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled with family
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13  Thank Levontstropp
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
IHGCare, Guest Relations Manager at Candlewood Suites Virginia Beach / Norfolk, responded to this reviewResponded 26 July 2012

Dear Levontstropp,

Thank you for leaving such a detailed review of your stay. We do appreciate your feedback as this helps us to determine where we need to improve. Your comments have been passed to the appropriate departments to be addressed.

Thank you again for bringing this to our attention.

Katie J
Case Manager
IHGCare

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155 - 159 of 216 reviews

Reviewed 2 July 2012

Parts of the suite are updated and parts aren't. Granite in bathroom but cabinets under sink were a mess and all broken apart. Molding around tub was gross.

Air in living room worked well but hot in bedroom.

When we opened fold out couch for kids to sleep, there were wadded up old sheets in it. When I asked for a sheet, blanket and pillows, we got one of each and no fitted sheet so i had to go back down to get more myself.

When we came back from visiting friends at 10pm, 3 police cars were in the parking lot taking a man away in a police car from the hotel.

I would NOT recommend this hotel!!!

  • Stayed: July 2012, travelled with family
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1  Thank JordyBear
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
IHGCare, Guest Relations Manager at Candlewood Suites Virginia Beach / Norfolk, responded to this reviewResponded 1 August 2012

Dear JordyBear,

Thank you very much for your recent stay with us. We are deeply sorry we fell below your expectations. Our hotel is very proud of its level of service, cleanliness and quality of its product and for this reason your comments are very troubling and will certainly be looked into. We’d like to obtain some additional details regarding your experience, so we have sent you a private message.

Sincerely,

Irish V
Case Manager
IHGCare

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Reviewed 19 June 2012

Understaffed: we checked in on a Saturday afternoon, and there was ONE girl working - she was nice enough but bomarded with requests, was running all over the hotel doing miscellaneous errands before she was able to check us in, was frequently interrupted & she was rarely at the desk - YOU WILL BE LUCKY IF YOUR WAIT IS UNDER 15 MINUTES if you stop by the front desk & she's not there. There is even a phone to use (press 0 to dispatch her on a cordless phone she carries on all her errands), but that just alerts her to your presence - it doesn't take away from the wait! At check-in another guest came by the desk to ask for a little bottle of shampoo and conditioner, and the hotel was "completely out." When we asked for a pack of regular coffee the next day, they were out of that too. Absurd.

Aside from having to wait upwards of 15- 20 minutes each time we stopped by the front desk, we were also told that the hotel's pool was actually not on the property but at a neighboring hotel, so we could "walk over there" if we wanted to swim - NOT an agreeable situation when one of us is disabled. Here's a thought: don't advertise a pool if you DON'T HAVE A POOL. Irksome, indeed.

Room was modest, carpet was creepy-dark & dingy, walls had suspicious stains splattered about, and there was black mold all over the bottom of the shower curtain liner. Bathroom seemed to be the cleanest spot in the room :/ Also, there are few TV channels, and most of them are so dark and distorted that you get no picture - bravo, food network, lifetime, etc. There is no travel channel, weather channel, local news, etc., and the channels are all misprogrammed: it will say USA and actually be ESPN - every channel is like that, so you're flying blind.

Oh, and something else they don't tell you -- there is NO ICE MACHINE (again, you can go to an upper floor of a neighboring hotel for such a luxurious amenity, but devise/bring your own ice bucket, because you won't get one here!). Especially for a disabled party who needs cold fluids throughout a given day, especially in the summer, this was unacceptable. Simply ridiculous.

At check-out, we spent 17 minutes waiting for them to print a receipt (I don't know about you, but when spending over $300 at a sketchy-at-best establishment, I want a receipt for my records!), while a line of irritable guests formed behind us. Upon determining that they could not figure out how to fix their printer, they offered to fax my receipt... Fax it where, exactly? I'm checking out of a HOTEL, which likely means I'll be driving for a while (hours) in order to get home, so even if I had a home fax machine, who would prepare it to receive a fax? I said that was not acceptable, and I told them I was going to proceed to move our bags from the room while the staff attended to the line of other guests, but said I'd be back for my receipt - they never could get it printed. They offered to email it, which I accepted, and after writing down my email for them to type into their system/send the email, I was assured that the email was SENT. Not so. Seven hours later, I call them and say that I've not received the email. I was given the excuse, "Oh, we didn't know what name this was for, so we didn't know which receipt to send..." Then why B.S. me at the desk, saying you sent it in the first place??? And what were you doing when you were busily typing away after I gave you my email address, if you weren't mailing the receipt like you said?! Oh, and the written email address that I gave them to use in the moment and then took back into my own possession for security's sake? Yeah, that was hanging around on the front desk for those seven hours, because they couldn't remember my room or name because the check-out took so damn long BECAUSE of THEIR ineptitude. Great.

Overall, super shoddy, crap service, unprofessional, and sketchy/dingy. Don't waste your money for what amounts to no real amenities, little to no basic service, and LOTS of angry/irritable fellow guests who make the whole stay that much more intensely unpleasant.

  • Stayed: June 2012
    • Value
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3  Thank LetMeBeFrank
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
IHGCare, Guest Relations Manager at Candlewood Suites Virginia Beach / Norfolk, responded to this reviewResponded 24 July 2012

Dear LetMeBeFrank,

We appreciate your feedback regarding our property. We strive every day to create special experiences one guest at a time and I am truly disappointed we did not manage this for your stay. Let me take this opportunity to apologize for the shortcomings you had experience during your stay and regret you received unacceptable service from our staff. I'd like to discuss your experience in further details. I have sent a private message to obtain additional information regarding your stay.

I look forward to hearing from you and being of further assistance.

Sincerely,

Joel B
Case Manager
IHGCare

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Reviewed 17 June 2012

I was a little skeptical as to the location at first, but it turned out okay. The hotel seems to have been updated with newer furniture, but does NOT have a pool or jacuzzi on property. They share the facilities with the Crown Plaza next door and their facilities are nice. We stayed overnight and I would recommend it for a family.

Room Tip: The only issue I had were children from other families allowed to run freely through the halls screa...
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  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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3  Thank johnluriejr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 June 2012

Being away from home for over a year, I found the Candelwood Suites in Virginia Beach VA to be a charming surprise. The staff was very helpful and friendly. The rooms were large and the location was close to the nearby bases and attractions. Because the property was shared by the Crown Plaza the resturant and pool and gym were avaliable to you as well.

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled on business
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Thank Dennis B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Melinda W, General Manager at Candlewood Suites Virginia Beach / Norfolk, responded to this reviewResponded 13 June 2012

Thank you Dennis B for taking the time to give such warm feedback. We are perfectly set up for extended stay guests, and have ammenities that cater to all lengths of stay. Free on-site laundry, Free internet, Free lending library for DVD's, Full kitchenettes... We want to make sure that you feel like you never left home.You were like family to us and we miss you and your four legged daughter! We hope our paths will cross again. Take care and again thank you for choosing the Candlewood Suites VA Beach for your lodging needs.

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Additional Information about Candlewood Suites Virginia Beach / Norfolk

Address: 4437 Bonney Rd, Virginia Beach, VA 23462-3815
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Virginia > Virginia Beach
Amenities:
Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#13 Business Hotel in Virginia Beach
#32 Romantic Hotel in Virginia Beach
Price Range: $120 - $288 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Candlewood Suites Virginia Beach / Norfolk 2.5*
Number of rooms: 83
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Candlewood Suites Extended Stay Hotel Virginia Beach - Norfolk - Hampton Roads, VA. The Candlewood Suites Extended Stay Hotel Virginia Beach - Norfolk - Hampton Roads is a member of Priority Club Rewards & the IHG family of brands including InterContinental, Crowne Plaza, Hotel Indigo, Holiday Inn, Express & Staybridge Suites Hotels. The Candlewood Suites is the perfect hotel for government (Per Diem), project teams, training, relocation, temporary & corporate housing needs.The Candlewood Suites Virginia Beach - Norfolk Hotel is centrally located mile from the Virginia Beach Town Center @ the Independence Blvd exit of I-264 near I 64; minutes from VA Beach beaches & Norfolk Airport (ORF). Our hotel is close to Downtown Norfolk & Virginia Beach real estate districts; offering near access to Northrop Grumman, Lockheed Martin, Keane Inc., General Dynamics, Little Creek Amphibious Navy Base, Oceana Naval Air Station & Norfolk Naval Shipyard. The Candlewood Suites Hotel offers apartment like suites with all of the conveniences of home to suit your extended stay or short term hotel real estate needs. Our pet friendly hotel (fee) offers studio & one-bedroom apartment - like suites featuring fully-equipped kitchens, spacious living & work areas, TV with DVD players, free wired & wireless Internet. Other features include 24 hour business center, free laundry facilities, fitness center, courtyard with grills & our signature Candlewood Cupboard convenience store. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Candlewood Suites Virginia Beach / Norfolk Hotel Virginia Beach
Candlewood Virginia Beach
Virginia Beach Candlewood Suites

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