Monday, May 16, 2016

Quick Update

So I was told I need to update my blog sub-title, and it's true.  So I did!  I have been happily married for the last three and a half years. (I hope you might have noticed based on the fact I spent my anniversary at the Grand America).

I do want to update this more often.  My wife recently started a blog for one of her classes.  Everyone should check it out!  It's at http://www.strengtheningfamilieslds.com/

She's written a few times and will continue to update it.  It's more about her beliefs and feelings and how to help strengthen our families.  I think it's something every family can learn from.  Our families in America have really been under attack and it makes sense to do some fortification!  Perhaps this is why in the Book of Mormon we learn about the Nephites fortifying their cities against attack!

Anyway, that's all for now.  I'm glad I could update everyone and update my sub-heading!

Friday, November 07, 2014

The Grand America Hotel

So a lot has happened since my last post, met a girl, got married, had 4 kids (step kids), became a proctor parent, had several proctor kids.  But this is about my recent anniversary.


I recently stayed at the Grand America (www.grandamerica.com) for my anniversary and after the experience question why it is rated as a 5 star hotel.

I booked my stay on 10/31/2014 for 11/1/2014 through 11/2/2014 with a company card as this was a nice treat my company offered me.  I ordered the Honeymoon/Anniversary package so my wife and I could have something to remember our special time there.  Included in the package is a single rose, two robes, two slippers and chocolate truffles.

When we showed up and checked in I was informed how inconvenient it would be to use my company card, even though I used it to make the reservation.  I would have to fill out a form and then get a picture of the front and back of the card and send that in.  I decided to use my own.

When we got to the room none of the promised package items were there, just a relatively nice hotel room.  I went back to the front desk to ask.  They said since I made the reservation so recently they didn't know what time we were showing up.  Not a big deal, but it would have been nice to surprise my wife when we first walked in. We went to dinner that night and they told me everything would be taken care of while we were gone.

When we came back we had rose pedals on our bed in the shape of a heart with nothing else.  While this was nice, it was not what we ordered.  I called down and asked about the robes, sippers and truffles.  They asked for a size for the robes and I told them an XL and a medium.  A few minutes later I received a call from the on call manager apologizing for things and verified that we wanted a Large and a medium.  I corrected her and said an XL and Medium. 30 minutes later (?!) a knock on the door from Housekeeping.  She brought a Large...wtf...a medium and truffles.  I explained I needed an XL and asked about the slippers.  She asked if I had looked under the sink (that has no knobs or any other indication that there was stuff under there).  She found the slippers, handed me the medium robe and truffles and headed back down to get an XL.  20 minutes later she returned with the correct robe.

The next morning we grabbed some breakfast and decided to use out $100 credit at the shops.  We headed towards the Sunday Brunch and we we got there they said they were just serving menu items as it was only 9:00 am and brunch started at 10.  We decided to walk around a bit and see the hotel and wait for brunch.  After 20 minutes of walking around (turns out everything starts or opens at 10) we returned and said we just wanted to order something off the menu.  They told us they were no longer seating and were getting ready for brunch.

So we went to our room thinking we would order room service.  We found out there that brunch was $50 per person and there was a huge room service fee for something we could get down at the lobby.  So we headed to the lobby for out $4 bagels and $4 small orange juice and $4 for a cup of hot chocolate!  If you get rated 5 stars by charging 5+ times more then what things are worth than the Grand America is a 5 star hotel!

After eating we went to a few shops to spend our $100 hotel credit.  After our purchase we went back to our room to pack up and check out.  My wife tried on her rob and it was too big.  I called down and asked if I could switch out the robe for a small.  They said that would be fine and would try to get it up to us but checkout was in 30 minutes so they said that if they didn't make it up to us they would leave it at the front desk for us to pick up.  It didn't make it up to us so we headed downstairs to check out.

When we went to check out I joked with the ladies there as they were the same from the night before.  They handed me a paper to sign and it was for the wrong Guest.  I would have loved to only pay $193 for my room but I informed them of the mistake.  They got me the correct one.  I looked it over and asked about the $100 Dinner room service charge.  They looked it up and said that was for the turn-down service (rose pedal heart on the bed).  I didn't order the turn-down service but before I could say anything they remembered what happened with things not being ready and told me they would waive this.  I would have said that was the first real show of Customer Care had I ordered that service. Since I didn't, I really shouldn't have been charged anyways!

I asked if the small robe was at the front desk.  She asked, "Oh, you want to purchase a robe?"  ARE YOU KIDDING ME?  I guess their employees don't know what packages they sell there.  I told her what package I got and that I thought they were included.  She made a call and told me they would be down in a few minutes.  She asked if I had used my $100 credit.  I informed her we had about an hour earlier.  Of course it wasn't added in yet so I pulled out the receipts I had and they added that in.  We waited a few minutes for the Small robe to show up and then we left.

I'm not sure I will ever stay at the Grand again.  I expect better service from a 2 star hotel and this is suppose to be the best Salt Lake has to offer?  I have already told my story to a few co-workers and they were amazed after the first half and couldn't believe there was more.  I felt like it was the infomercial of poor customer service!  Maybe my expectations were too high or I have higher standards working in the Customer Support industry.

Thanks you for reading.


Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Kiva.org

I know that I've talked about this before but I still think it's pretty cool.  Kiva.org is a Micro Loan site that allows you to help out people that are less fortunate then us.  Right now Kiva is giving away $25 to start lending!  If you're not a member yet you can get a free $25 (once it's repaid) or re-loan it once it's paid back!  Here's the link:

http://www.kiva.org/invitedby/matthew56816687

Happy Loaning!

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Pictures of the new place!

Another view of the front

A view of the back

The basement kitchen

The hay barn

My house!

So I haven't updated this in awhile. That's because the bank came back and accepted my offer and it's been crazy ever since!
I've been running around trying to get everything in order. I'll post a full story on my house buying experience one day.
In the mean time, I am hoping I'll close in the next 24 hours! I can't believe we are already here! I'll post more pictures soon!