[Hotel Review] Crowne Plaza Changi

Such a view right!?

It was a much anticipated CNY staycation, especially so when we booked a suite for 3pax (3rd pax at an extra charge). It was my first Crowne Plaza experience in Singapore (actually, ever) and I was super excited!

Its also a unique location – going for a holiday but not actually flying? I thought it would be a special thingy for me and family.

What I loved about the hotel is that its has such a nice resort vibe. The corridors are alfresco and plenty of greenerys around so you actually dont feel at all that you are in a city hotel, except of coz the view of the planes + runways remind you.

Address – 75 Airport Boulevard #01-01 Singapore 819664. Website. Tel: 65-6-8235300.

Price -$375.39++ per night for a king bed suite (non smoking) + $80++ per night for the 3rd person charge = $1,072 for the 2night stay in total. This is under the YOUR RATE by IHG® Rewards Club Advance Purchase promotion.

Check In – checked in efficiently at the front desk at about 1:30pm. I was not asked if I would like to get checked in at the lounge unfortunately. I also received 2 welcome drinks redeemable at Lobby Lounge for being an IHG member – strange that its not for 3pax tho. I also wasn’t explained the wifi details although I figured that out for myself quite easily. They granted me late checkout until 3pm which was quite nice of them. They also took time to explain that while I requested for room to be on the same floor as the Lounge, those had no runway view and offered me to a room on level 9 which had a partial runway view. Nice initiative I must say!

Location – Connected to Terminal 3 of Changi Airport and its is accessible via both level 1 and level 2, although the front desk for checking in is on level 1. The train station is right below the property too – it only took me less than 45mins to reach from Cityhall. Super efficient location, and I can imagine so for tourists especially.

Room – I was given suite 913 and it was really quite nicely fitted out! Good and smart use of the 72SqM space with a living area, a sitting ledge area, a guest bathroom, a work desk, mini bar corner, walk in wardrobe, king bed, 2 TVs, and a big master bathroom complete with a bathtub. But some wear and tear were visible, and the housekeeping can be more thorough, with obvious dust gathering on some spots and the carpets not cleaned very well.

Facilities – the pool was lovely and big enough to do laps, and the gym was big for a hotel gym and quite well equipped. No staff manning either tho – you just enter with your key cards.

Club Lounge – the 1st lounge I see that has staggered cocktail hours : 5:30pm – 6:30pm they start with alcohol and canapes, and 6:30pm – 8:00pm hot food continuing with alcohol of course. I only managed to stay for hot food one evening and the kitchen was completely overwhelmed by the crowd – food started running out halfway into the queue. Not sure why as the lounge was only half filled at that point. Terrible impression I must say for a 5-star establishment. Quality of the food was also sadly lacking as the hot food selection included local carrot cake and poached green veg, and a creamy soup. Other than that it was just bread, cheeses, and small selection of desserts. Spacious and comfy seatings though.

Service – this for me was a big issue. The staff at the lounge was the most unwelcoming bunch I’ve ever seen – most of them had no smiles although they were cordial while clearing your plates and glasses. Maybe they didn’t mean it but I felt they were reluctant to extend service when I asked simply because their response is so curt and sometimes, surly.

It also irked me that when I walked in with my family, I asked one of the staff if they needed my room number and she said yes. After I sat down, a Caucasian couple walked in and asked exactly the same thing – she said “of course not!” and proceeded to seat them. I was flabbergasted at the obvious discrimination.

CHECK OUT – this links back to the bad service by the Club Lounge. I went down to the front desk at level 1 to check out as I thought it’ll be easier to get a cab out instead of toggling between 2 floors. But the queue at front desk was terribly long, so I reconfirmed with a front desk staff that I can check out at the Club Lounge instead, and headed up.

When I reached, the Lounge’s reception desk, it was empty but I caught the attention of a young lady who was in the other end of the lounge. I told her I wanted to check out. She directed me back to the desk, and made a call to someone, saying that a guest wants to check out (the conversation happening right in front of me). The next minute, she hanged up, and told me that she is a trainee and not authorized to check me out, and if I could go to the front desk at level 1. I explained to her that I had just came from downstairs after being directed so, and there was a long queue. She looked apologetic, but explained again that she is not authorised to check me out. She asked me to proceed to the guest relations desk and not the front desk queue.

I did so, and when I reached back downstairs, there was a queue at the guest relations desk too. I queued for 20mins before being served despite being the 3rd in line.

The time I wasted heading up, then coming back down again, could have been saved right from the start. This is the first lounge I’ve experienced not being able to check out Club guests, which should be a basic Lounge benefit. And shouldn’t the right thing to do be to get someone who is actually authorized to help rather than send your guest downstairs, especially when you know your guest just came up from there?

I gave my feebdack to the gentleman who checked me out – and to his credit he was very apologetic and acknowledged that it should not have been this way and offered me complimentary drinks which I declined as by then I just wanted to check out and go home.

The check out experience totally ruined my staycation experience. I would still recommend the property as it is a nice place after all especially with its resort-ish vibe but I would recommend that the management takes a serious look at their service level.

I’ve given my feedback on Trip Advisor and also wrote into the hotel’s contact email. Let’s see what happens.

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