‘UnClubbing’ the Room

Amid the several health scares that we both have – my husband has been diagnosed with a ‘atypical’ hemangioma of the liver, for which he requires additional tests including an upcoming MRI scan to properly ‘rule out’ more scares, while I have a gastric inflammation that shot to 900 points from an otherwise dormant score of 67.5 tested a couple of months earlier; we still; or at least I managed to convince ourselves that we need a break and planned a weekend escapade to a five-star beach resort, carefully opting for a Club Room instead of the regular Deluxe or Standard Rooms that were listed. The amenities promised were luxurious bath facilities, excellent breakfast, and importantly, access to the Club Lounge which boasted of all day availability of continental snacks, hot and cold beverages, wi-fi and a happy hour for alcohol. Understanding that it is the holy month of Ramadan, and with our current gastric issues, the happy hour was not all that appealing, but I did look forward to the quite ‘lounge’ time to spend on writing with a smoking hot cup of cappuccino. Two days before the trip, along with the several calls made to several doctors and specialists, my reservation with the hotel was confirmed, and the specification of the club room ascertained. I even had a member of the hotel’s staff call to remind me that the Club was for adults only, owing to the alcohol availability as she noted the age of my little one as one among the guests. I assured her that my son would not be visiting the premises.

Upon check in, the staff upgraded us to full board – the reason being that the Club lounge was closed ‘until further notice’. While one said it’s a policy during Ramadan, another went on to say that restorations to the premise were ongoing. We checked for ourselves – there were no renovations whatsoever, but there was no staff either. It was just a dead room with furniture and unoperated coffee machines. When I complained, they offered us a bottle of red wine, assuming that we intended to use the lounge for some alcohol. “You have a desk and wi-fi in your room, Ma’am. What else could we provide you with?”. If that was the case, I think I would have booked a standard room with breakfast, at 140$ less. They still don’t get the point. No extra privileges too – like the newspaper, late check out, high tea, etc that are synonymous with Club rooms at a five-star resort.

To club it all, a huge disappointment for that kind of pricey weekend. And now preparing for the MRI…

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