My Four-Hour Stay At Marriott’s Aegon Mykonos

255

Read the full saga:

Yesterday I checked into the Aegon Mykonos, a Marriott Autograph Collection property at 5:20PM, and checked out that same evening, following the most uncomfortable confrontation I’ve ever had at a hotel. First for some context, make sure you read the previous posts.

My “energy” wasn’t good enough for the hotel

We had met our friends who were also staying at the hotel (their experience was disappointing as well, for what it’s worth), and a couple of hours after our arrival we headed to dinner. We were waiting in the hotel’s driveway to go to dinner. One of my friends went in the lobby briefly and came back out and noted how several hotel staff were huddled around a computer and were acting strange.

A moment later, as we were standing in the hotel’s driveway, a lady approached us. She asked “are you staying here?” She wasn’t in any sort of a uniform and asked in a nice way, so I assumed that maybe she was just making small talk, and came to the hotel for a meal and wondered how the accommodations were.

With a smile (and to be honest) I responded “yes, unfortunately.” And that’s when things got wild…

“Are you the one posting? Are you OMAAT? You have been posting negative comments since you got here. We don’t like that negative energy, we are all about positive energy at this hotel.”

My jaw dropped to the floor, because how do you respond to that? None of us said anything.

“You know, what you are doing is illegal. You can’t post pictures that don’t belong to you, those are the photographer’s intellectual property. This is very illegal, you can get in trouble.” It’s hard to describe how vicious she was while telling me how good her energy was and how bad my energy was, and how threatening her tone was about my “illegal” activity. Sometimes the tone says more than the actual words, and this was one of those cases. She almost reminded me of Amy from Amy’s Baking Company.

I assume she was referring to the photoshopped picture of the hotel that I shared (which was on Marriott’s website, and I credited to Marriott), comparing it to how it really looked (for the record, the power lines were definitely photoshopped out — this hotel is brand new, and the power lines were presumably there before the hotel).

The Aegon Mykonos pool

“That’s your concern, rather than the amount of false advertising this hotel is doing? Wow.” And yes, there’s a lot more false advertising this hotel is doing, which I’ll cover in a separate post.

So, who was this person?

The woman who confronted us never stated who she was, and frankly we were so caught off guard that we didn’t even think to ask. Based on the fact that she wasn’t wearing a uniform, how she was dressed, and how she referred to the hotel as “we,” I believe she may have been one of the owners or an investor (in some form or another).

When we later addressed the staff about this interaction during check-out and referred to her as the owner (based on our assumption), they didn’t suggest that was incorrect.

How is this for positive energy?

I had provided a very quick update to a colleague about what was going on, and then he pointed out that this comment had been left on the blog:

“Wow you obviously have issues! Get a Life! It’s obvious your issues are personal! This blog should be objective!”

I wouldn’t have noticed it (since those kinds of comments are pretty common). But here’s an interesting twist, which I’ll share in the same way that I learned about this (I’m whiting out the IPs, but the IP the comment was left from and the IP I used when looking up my own IP were the same).

Of course I can’t say with certainty who left it, but I’m sure it wasn’t any member of the hotel staff, and definitely not the lady who confronted me, because they are all about good energy, right?

We didn’t feel comfortable staying here anymore

As we got into our taxi for dinner, we were all speechless at what we just witnessed. At first we didn’t say anything, but then we suddenly all started to agree that we didn’t feel comfortable staying there. Our plan was to go to dinner and then check out afterwards.

But as we kept driving to town, we felt more and more uncomfortable about the situation. The lady who approached us seemed so unhinged that we worried if we might return to the hotel and find ourselves locked out of our rooms, find our luggage thrown out of our rooms, or find that she called the cops on us (after all, you’re in a foreign country, and you don’t know what connections someone has). The fact that she thought this was the appropriate way to handle this customer service disaster made me question her judgment otherwise. We just couldn’t go to dinner and pretend nothing happened, so we asked the taxi to turn around.

As we arrived back at the hotel, we saw the staff all still huddled around the computer at reception. We booked another hotel in a matter of minutes, and then proceeded to check out.

Our friends went to the front desk first to check out, noting that the combative way that the owner acted made them feel uncomfortable staying there. Apparently the general manager and others seemed genuinely shocked.

I wasn’t quite as diplomatic when I checked out. I just said “please just cancel our reservation for all four nights, it’s clear you don’t want us here anyway. We’re leaving. By the way, if someone from the hotel is going to leave a comment on my website telling me to get a life, I’d recommend using a VPN.”

“We don’t use VPNs here.”

“Yeah, I know.”

Bottom line

I have spent literally thousands of nights at hotels, but this was a first for me. I’ve never been confronted so aggressively by someone who works for a hotel (or perhaps even owns it in some form?), and the general incompetence at this hotel rivals some of the worst properties I’ve stayed at.

I can’t recommend avoiding the Aegon Mykonos enough, from the hotel’s genuine disdain for Bonvoy members, to the lady who likes to lash out at guests, to the hotel’s downright deceptive marketing practices (which I’ll cover in a separate post).

Fortunately I couldn’t be happier about the hotel we switched to. It’s an independent hotel, there was a bottle of wine and a welcome amenity waiting in our room even though we booked 30 minutes before we got to the hotel, and the service has been incredible. When we commented on how great the service was, the response was “we like to treat our guests like royalty.” It was a nice reminder of how hospitality is supposed to work.

Now the adventure of trying to get my Bonvoy points and suite night awards redeposited starts…

Conversations (255)
Oldest comments are displayed first.

The comments on this page have not been provided, reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any advertiser, and it is not an advertiser's responsibility to ensure posts and/or questions are answered.

Type your response here.

If you'd like to participate in the discussion, please adhere to our commenting guidelines. Anyone can comment, and your email address will not be published. Register to save your unique username and earn special OMAAT reputation perks!

  1. 23H

    I wonder if the Ben S review on TripAdvisor came from the same IP address.

    This is all so ugh. I have a week booked here in July and looking at other options now.

    Marriott better address this directly and correctly.

    1. Kaleb_With_A_K

      I have already reported to TA that this is a fake review. I also provided in the report a link to the post here where the hotel is posting on the blog.

    2. Steve

      Yah, I reported that fake review to TripAdvisor, as it's obviously a troll review.

    3. kabukijuul

      That is super-shady. I reported it as well. I was considering staying at this hotel on an upcoming trip to Greece. No way now!!

    4. Steve

      The review was probably a reader having a laugh. TA will remove it in time but for now that provided some excellent comedy today on a friday, its ok to have a sense of humor every once in awhile.

    5. Corey Sacken

      I seriously doubt it was a reader. I absolutely believe it was the hotel.

      I would gather over 90% of the reviews for that hotel or entirely fake and generated directly by them. The hotel is so stupid the IP address was probably not even masked.

      Their response to his review was absolutely pathetic. Honestly a business like shouldn't be allowed to continue like that. You get much better service at a super 8.

    6. Creditcrunch

      There are 2 reviews now, have also reported

    7. LovetoFly

      Yea...I cancelled my August reservation as well. I don't have the energy to deal with a fraction of this....

  2. John

    Wow! I’ll be following your advice 1000%! What an awful place! Luckily I just used all my Marriott points! Unless if I have to stay there, I’m done with Marriott!

    1. Stefan

      What does Marriott Bonvoy have to do with this awful property other than that it's a hotel where you can redeem your points at? It's obviously a shithole but that doesn't reflect in any way on Bonvoy or other properties.

  3. Sel, D.

    They acted like that AFTER finding out who you are???? That’s when they should have done the exact opposite - moved heaven and earth to get you into a suite and fix your stay. Complete gyro brains. They’ve Bonvoyed themselves.

  4. JoePro

    Awesome!
    I once got a $200 Dining credit on a whim because there was a cockroach in our Hyatt room.
    With the exception of high tier (St. Regis, Ritz), I don't think I need to bother with Marriott.

  5. Elena

    Will you review the new hotel you are staying at?

    1. JoeSchmo

      My guess he's using IHG points to stay at one of the boutiques that are now bookable

  6. Steven M

    You've learned that the ancient Greek hydras are alive and well.

    Congrats on an unfortunate lesson that sooner or later we all learn in life.

  7. Ryan

    Thank you for posting about your experience, Ben -- will be sure to avoid this hotel in the future.

  8. michael

    Yikes, this is awful. I really don't want to change the subject per se. But reading this is making me lose my inner travel bug. I was on a flight with United where we were rebooked for a flight over 24 hours after our orginal departure time. They wouldn't give us back our luggage and they provided us with no hotel accomodations (despite being premier members). Every hotel in town was booked so we were...

    Yikes, this is awful. I really don't want to change the subject per se. But reading this is making me lose my inner travel bug. I was on a flight with United where we were rebooked for a flight over 24 hours after our orginal departure time. They wouldn't give us back our luggage and they provided us with no hotel accomodations (despite being premier members). Every hotel in town was booked so we were stuck paying on our dime several thousand dollars for a room that would have generaly gone for a few hundred bucks. Do you think customer service since things re-opened has just gone down the drain?

    1. Anthony

      What town was this where every hotel was booked?

      I think what has happened in a lot of travel industries is that demand is outstripping supply, hotels know customers are less sensitive to service and price right now, and companies are desperate to make money back from the past 15 months. For example planes are just about full here in the US, but I am not seeing domestic carriers ramp supply and routes back up...

      What town was this where every hotel was booked?

      I think what has happened in a lot of travel industries is that demand is outstripping supply, hotels know customers are less sensitive to service and price right now, and companies are desperate to make money back from the past 15 months. For example planes are just about full here in the US, but I am not seeing domestic carriers ramp supply and routes back up to prior levels. Some hotels are still closed, and many that are open can't find the employees to serve guests. Many people seem willing to pay more for travel than they were pre-pandemic. A lot of this is still being sorted out

    2. Lisfranc

      "Many people are willing to pay more" = Inflation

      "Can't find employees" = More lucrative to get tax free money from the Uncle Sam than go to work.

    3. Graham

      Ehhhh, thats a lazy line. The unemployment has given people breathing room. Most of these places aren't paying enough to recruit and they're finding this out the hard way.

    4. TLS

      A lot of people decided to get a new career with decent pay as well. This isn't a US only problem you know...

    5. JayWA7

      which means its time for employers to start paying more---i get frustrated when people pull out what you just said and then don't follow it with what I just said. Kinda nasty to infer that people making more money on unemployment benefits DURING A PANDEMIC are at fault.

    6. TLS

      It happens during trade shows and similar events.

    7. michael

      This was on Maui on Memorial Day. $1700 for parking lot view at the Hyatt. No more Maui for me.

    8. ptahcha

      If the cause of the delay is within the airline's control, submit the receipt for reimbursement. Or see if your credit card used to purchase the airfare has trip interruption/delay insurance.

      Then again, part of your story does not line up. Thousands of dollars for one hotel room close to the airport? Not handing back checked luggage? That does not make sense.

    9. TLS

      Sure does, I was in a similar situation a few years ago, traveling to Cancun from Asia, with a stop over in Austin. AA decided not to fly, due to rain in Cancun (go figure and it didn't really rain, as my SO was already there), so I had no access to my luggage and had to fork out for my own hotel, as AA told me weather related incidents aren't covered. The hotel wasn't...

      Sure does, I was in a similar situation a few years ago, traveling to Cancun from Asia, with a stop over in Austin. AA decided not to fly, due to rain in Cancun (go figure and it didn't really rain, as my SO was already there), so I had no access to my luggage and had to fork out for my own hotel, as AA told me weather related incidents aren't covered. The hotel wasn't expensive though and covered by travel insurance.
      Still, really annoying, as the flight was delayed until next morning, within some rule that saved AA, instead of cancelled altogether.

    10. Corey Sacken

      Stick to airbnb's and you avoid these shenanigans. I've stayed at close to 100 locations and I've had minor issues at maybe three or four. One serious issue which was ultimately negotiated with a significant decrease in price.

    11. Sloane

      Counterpoint, AirBnB can cancel on you and leave you in a pickle without anywhere to stay, so it’s not a sure fire thing. Not to mention what it does to the local housing market.

  9. Luke

    "huddled around a computer and were acting strange."

    We know obviously what website they were looking at huddled together, perhaps for the first time which is how the lady asked specifically if you were of.

  10. Joe Chivas

    The Aegon Mykonos is my favorite hotel in Greece. Lots of positive energy.

    1. RF

      I think you have your wires crossed? It should be the opposite.

    2. Timo

      This time I hope you used a VPN before posting. Doh!!

  11. Alex Z

    Wow that was awful! Thank you for writing about this. You should leave as many bad reviews as possible all over the internet

    1. Aaron

      Well, on the hotel's website, a person named "Tiff" did reveal a bad review a few days ago lol

  12. Erica T

    Please don't let this crazy person deter you from standing up for yourself in the future. You mentioned speaking up was a hard decision. Too many people take advantage of the situation when people prefer to avoid confrontation.

  13. Lisfranc

    “We don’t use VPNs here.”

    “Yeah, I know.”

    Love it!

  14. CeeJay

    To me it seems like hotels are more emboldened now than pre-covid. I've seen them pull some shady stuff the last few months in an effort to wring out as much money as possible. I stayed somewhere last week and wanted to check in at 2:30pm and the check in agent says that check in time is 3pm but if you want to check in early its $25. I said so you have a room...

    To me it seems like hotels are more emboldened now than pre-covid. I've seen them pull some shady stuff the last few months in an effort to wring out as much money as possible. I stayed somewhere last week and wanted to check in at 2:30pm and the check in agent says that check in time is 3pm but if you want to check in early its $25. I said so you have a room that's clean and available but I can't have it for another 30 minutes unless I pay $25? And she said yes so I waited in the lobby for 30 minutes.

    1. Matt

      Similar thing in Portugal last week. Arrived at Iberostar Algarve at 2pm. “Sorry check in is not until 3pm but you can check in early for €35.” The hotel was 50% full. Never really encountered that before.

    2. Kathryn

      We asked the Hyatt Place in Santa Barbara to please hold our luggage last week (May 2021) for an hour until our room was ready but were informed this was not possible "due to Covid." I informed them that my suitcase was not exhibiting Covid symptoms, and that Covid doesn't typically spread on surfaces per the CDC, information which they naturally did not appreciate. Every amenity at this property was also still unavailable "due to...

      We asked the Hyatt Place in Santa Barbara to please hold our luggage last week (May 2021) for an hour until our room was ready but were informed this was not possible "due to Covid." I informed them that my suitcase was not exhibiting Covid symptoms, and that Covid doesn't typically spread on surfaces per the CDC, information which they naturally did not appreciate. Every amenity at this property was also still unavailable "due to Covid," from the hot tub to housekeeping. I'm all for being safe which is why I didn't really leave my house last year. That said, we've stayed at a dozen other hotels this year (now that we are vaccinated) where everything was available, like Carmel Valley Ranch or the Alila properties here in CA. At this point the "due to Covid" excuse for keeping things closed and providing shitty service is bullsh*t.

    3. Raylan

      >At this point the "due to Covid" excuse for keeping things closed and providing shitty service is bullsh*t.

      Extremely true. All of the Hyatts I've gone to still have closed club lounges, but surprise surprise! The restaurants where you pay to get food are open! Exact same level of covid risk but one makes money and the other doesn't, so it isn't a surprise which one gets opened.

  15. S&S

    Well done.

    I'm happy you are choosing to state things as they are and not being unnecessarily nice (as is your wont at times) to such clowns, who do a disservice to their brands in particular and the hospitality sector in general.

    Mykonos sure seems to have its hands full with such issues.
    Must be the demand gets to their head.

  16. JJ

    Wow…. I appreciate the fact that you explicitly stated that this is a travel nightmare but not a ‘real life’ tragedy.

    That being said, this is beyond horrible customer service. I hope you are able to communicate with corporate and get some assurance they will take action with the hotel up to and including taking them out of the program.

  17. Steve

    Thanks for the heads up on this one Ben, I am considering the Greek islands in the next few weeks and will be sure to avoid this headache, sorry you got Bonvoyed pretty badly on this one.

    1. Aaron

      Why would you avoid the Greek islands entirely? Lucky just said they went to another hotel and the service and energy there was a complete 180 from what was experienced here.

    2. Steven L.

      If you read carefully, he said “avoid *this* headache” (emphasis added), meaning this hotel in particular.

  18. cancel Aegon

    Vacation stay at Aegon Mykonos for 5 days officially canceled! Wow I am sorry you had to go through all that, but to be treated like that with using points and suite night awards, NO THANK YOU! I hope the GM and Owner read this comment but I was traveling with 10 people in July and we were going book 3 rooms, sounds like we are going to the Hyatt property now just across the beach!

    1. Kaleb_With_A_K

      Voting with your wallet is the best thing to do to let this hotel know it can't get away with this sort of BS!

    2. Mark

      Unless you’re a 20-:something and like to go clubbing night after night, it’s hard to imagine any reason to spend 5 days in Mykonos.

      I’m not sure why Ben and friends thought 4 days there was a good idea to begin with.

      So many better islands with more to see and do.

    3. GBOAC

      So Mark you're blaming Ben for the situation he encountered. If only he hadn't chosen Mykinos; he shouldn't have known.
      Not a helpful comment.

  19. Charles

    This is absolutely awful customer service. Started bad but the way they handled it is almost like a worst-case scenario.

  20. Kevin

    Sorry you got bonvoyed. Whenever I chose a hotel, I always read the one and two star reviews on TripAdvisor as the posters’ posts as well as managers’ replies tell you what you need to know about the property. The owners of this property don’t get power of reviews from online/ social media. Good luck to them as they will need it. Lol. That woman just sound dumb.

    I only stay at Marriotts when there are no other choices.

  21. miamiorbust

    Also have an upcoming trip to greece this summer. Wasn't considering this property (not my preferred island) but was considering other Marriott properties. Will be a hard pass on all Marriott properties now. Your experience sums up in a more extreme form what many of us are experiencing. There are so many other hotel options, especially in greece. There is simply no need to deal with Marriott. If anyone from Marriott is reading, starting getting...

    Also have an upcoming trip to greece this summer. Wasn't considering this property (not my preferred island) but was considering other Marriott properties. Will be a hard pass on all Marriott properties now. Your experience sums up in a more extreme form what many of us are experiencing. There are so many other hotel options, especially in greece. There is simply no need to deal with Marriott. If anyone from Marriott is reading, starting getting control over your independent properties. Many of us don't just spend on vacation settings. We spend far more on business trips in large cities where marriott-owned properties should be a dominant brand. It is garbage like this that is driving us away from all marriott properties. The whole point of the marriott brand is predictable if somewhat boring experiences. That brand is being completely blown up - and not in a good way. SOPs: learn them, love them, live them.

  22. Gregg

    Wow! This is proof positive as to what little control Marriott has over their properties. Either Marriott is blind to hotels like this one killing the Marriott brand, or they’ve made the conscious decision to ignore it.

    Note to Marriott: Those who think they are too big to fail are often the ones who do fail.

  23. Charles

    1. They cancelled your confirmed suite award so they could sell the room, because for them you where "staying for free" (using points, which costed you a lot of money). Then they blame Marriott.

    2. They confronted you because you are just telling what is happening, and that is unacceptable to them. They insult you on OMAAT using the same hotel IP.

    3. They flood their tripadvisor with 5 star fake reviews. Just next to...

    1. They cancelled your confirmed suite award so they could sell the room, because for them you where "staying for free" (using points, which costed you a lot of money). Then they blame Marriott.

    2. They confronted you because you are just telling what is happening, and that is unacceptable to them. They insult you on OMAAT using the same hotel IP.

    3. They flood their tripadvisor with 5 star fake reviews. Just next to your review they added another one impersonating a Bonboy member that is having a mega great time with them. What a coincidence.

    Thank you for standing up against these thugs

  24. AJ

    Wow - sorry you had to experience that and thank you for sharing it. My wife and I are planning our honeymoon to Greece and will be in Mykonos for a few days in the coming months. Do you mind sharing which hotel you switched to so we can try and secure a reservation there?

  25. john

    Why. Are. You. Still. Using. Marriott.

    I rather stay at a Motel 6.

    1. Andrew

      Life happens. I swore off Marriott but am currently writing this from Ritz Carlton Residences Waikiki booked with a STARS rate. Sometimes, you gotta do what you gotta do.

    2. Krystyna

      You are 100% correct, John! Marriott doesn't give two hoots about customers.

      I recently stayed at a Marriott in Tampa where I was "upgraded" to a room with two queen beds from the king room I purposely booked. Oh yeah, the upgrade was to the lounge floor - yet the lounge was closed due to "covid." There was dust on the remote and under the beds, along with food and drinks from a previous...

      You are 100% correct, John! Marriott doesn't give two hoots about customers.

      I recently stayed at a Marriott in Tampa where I was "upgraded" to a room with two queen beds from the king room I purposely booked. Oh yeah, the upgrade was to the lounge floor - yet the lounge was closed due to "covid." There was dust on the remote and under the beds, along with food and drinks from a previous guest in the fridge. So much for enhanced cleaning protocols. If I was staying more than one night I would have left and gone to the Hyatt.

    3. Tom

      Was this the Marriott Water Street right next to the convention center? My stay there about three years ago was literally the worst experience I’ve ever had at a hotel. Truly abysmal customer service.

    4. cahbf

      I'm Lifetime Plat on Starwood and got so sick of being Bonvoyed I switched to Hyatt and Hilton and never looked back. How quickly they ruined 20 years of loyalty.

  26. isaac

    Im 50/50 on this. Yea the hotel dropped the ball, and if its 1 thing I HATE its when Im being lied to.

    However I dont care if you spent $1M with Marriott, prior to this how much have you dropped at this hotel? Unless its a Corp owned hotel not 1 cent of what you spend at other hotels or on the CC goes to any hotels bottom line. If anything when staying...

    Im 50/50 on this. Yea the hotel dropped the ball, and if its 1 thing I HATE its when Im being lied to.

    However I dont care if you spent $1M with Marriott, prior to this how much have you dropped at this hotel? Unless its a Corp owned hotel not 1 cent of what you spend at other hotels or on the CC goes to any hotels bottom line. If anything when staying on points or a cert the hotel might actually lose $$ on your stay

    To be fair no one is holding a gun to the owners head forcing them to be with MR or any chain. And they just didnt see or understand that they will have to give a $1K+ suite away for a few cents. And as more and more hotels realize this they do deflag and then we complain why are so many hotels leaving

    Over Mem Day weekend I used pts for a hotel where they got back $60 yet the room was selling for $600 and they ended up being soldout, they werent too happy losing that extra $540, and I dont blame them. Ive stayed in recent months apx 6 times at the hotel, do I consider myself a good customer? NOPE as every time my final bill is $0 and I dont have to pay for parking,resort fee or breakfast

    1. Kevin

      Like you said, no one is forcing those hotels to be part of Marriott.

      If they don't feel like being in the Marriott network is financially beneficial to them, then they can drop out (or not join in the first place).

      Besides, if the hotel is charging $600 a night, the cost of absorbing free stays via points or certificates is incorporated into the cost of doing business.

    2. GoAmtrak

      Sounds like the owners need to do their homework. They can't have it both ways. The award reimbursements and elite perks are an indirect cost of the massive distribution and marketing advantages of flagging with a global chain. It's on the owners to do the cost-benefit analysis beforehand. I'm sure the chains are predatory in how they dictate certain terms, but certainly none of this should be the guest's problem.

      Many folks will consciously avoid...

      Sounds like the owners need to do their homework. They can't have it both ways. The award reimbursements and elite perks are an indirect cost of the massive distribution and marketing advantages of flagging with a global chain. It's on the owners to do the cost-benefit analysis beforehand. I'm sure the chains are predatory in how they dictate certain terms, but certainly none of this should be the guest's problem.

      Many folks will consciously avoid chain-flagged independent hotels, just as many will order takeout food directly from restaurants instead of through GrubHub. But that's a different conversation.

    3. ForzaItalia

      It sounds to me like these unscrupulous owners have every intention of having it both ways for as long as possible. They bear no shame in accepting the benefits of using Marriott branding while having no qualms about not honoring their end of the bargain. A Trojan horse as it were.

    4. 23H

      If the hotel was indeed sold out, the reimbursement from Marriott is significantly higher than if the room was otherwise empty.

    5. Luke

      How do you know it was $60 reimbursed to the hotel, you familiar with the reimbursement rates sent from the corporate division to individual hotels?

    6. Jig

      Most readers of this blog would know the inaccuracies in your statements, but for you and those who don't:

      A Marriott brand hotel gets additional revenue overall from being associated with Marriott, which is why they also accept giving the program benefits to members. Only wanting the revenue while avoiding the agreed benefits is reneging on the deal, regardless of your net profit on an individual customer.

      Regarding your Mem day stay, the hotel does...

      Most readers of this blog would know the inaccuracies in your statements, but for you and those who don't:

      A Marriott brand hotel gets additional revenue overall from being associated with Marriott, which is why they also accept giving the program benefits to members. Only wanting the revenue while avoiding the agreed benefits is reneging on the deal, regardless of your net profit on an individual customer.

      Regarding your Mem day stay, the hotel does get the average daily rate for the stay when it is almost or fully sold out, so they didnt lose anything and that individual stay was as solidly profitable as most cash payers.

      For times when not almost or fully sold out, the reimbursement for your stay will probably be enough to cover their incremental cost and maybe a bit of their fixed cost. So a breakeven stay, and remember they get the overall revenue boost from their Marriott association.

    7. Phillip

      I agree that a hotel would prefer to make more money in any case than let a room go on points, but let’s not forget that being part of Marriott (or any big hotel group) drives business to them. One would like to think more than they could muster on their own although of course that’s not always the case. So there’s a balance there somewhere. They can’t just have the money spinning latter of a partnership when it suits them.

  27. LarryInNYC

    Well, at least a bad travel experience makes for great blog material!

    I mean, it's called the hospitality industry. Sorry for the Aegony you're experiencing. It's so easy: "I'm so sorry, sir, there has been a computer glitch between our systems and Marriot. The suite is not available for the first two nights of your stay. I hope you will accept my apology and will be my guest for dinner in our restaurant those two nights."

  28. Randy

    I'm super sorry to hear about this unfortunate experience. I just completed stays at all of the Waldorf Astoria's and the Conrad in the UAE and Hilton has treated me right! I had plans to consider this hotel in Greece later this year. Ben, thank you so much for this review. I absolutely appreciate your honest opinions! I will absolutely avoid this hotel! I have zero tolerance for people who disrespect you!!!

  29. JT

    WOW, what a nightmare. Marriott should be ashamed to be associated with such a dishonest and poorly run hotel.

  30. VÍTOR SILVA

    This is no privilege of Marriott hotels, I am suing a Mercure in southern Brazil for deceiving marketing - I paid for a suite, was put in a regular room, was yelled at by the general manager at the lobby and Accor claimed there was no problem at all, despite the proofs - and the humiliation, the sentence is due in two months!
    It is very important to share such situations, so we know how to behave, what to avoid, thank you for the contribution!

  31. Steve

    As mentioned above, once they found out that you were writing about the hotel, they should have done everything they could to turn the situation around. I’m sure they will blame it on Covid somehow...just like all the US hotels that are not bothering to reinstate basic services like taking out your trash at least every few days.

    1. GBOAC

      Steve while I agree it would have been in their best interest to turn the situation around once they found out who Ben was, it's better for us that they didn't since we now all know how despicable they really are.

  32. Mike

    Hi Ben,
    You should check out tripadvisor today. Someone just tried to post a review under what seem to indicate it's you (Ben S.) This review was totally opposite of your experience at the hotel. not sure if it's the hotel or some prankster.

    https://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g6376021-d17822730-Reviews-Autograph_Collection_Aegon_Mykonos-Kalo_Livadi_Mykonos_Cyclades_South_Aegean.html

    " Super staff , in a brand anew hotel by Marriott. We ve stayed 3 nights using our Bonvoy points even though upgraded to junior suite, couldn't be more...

    Hi Ben,
    You should check out tripadvisor today. Someone just tried to post a review under what seem to indicate it's you (Ben S.) This review was totally opposite of your experience at the hotel. not sure if it's the hotel or some prankster.

    https://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g6376021-d17822730-Reviews-Autograph_Collection_Aegon_Mykonos-Kalo_Livadi_Mykonos_Cyclades_South_Aegean.html

    " Super staff , in a brand anew hotel by Marriott. We ve stayed 3 nights using our Bonvoy points even though upgraded to junior suite, couldn't be more happy as the rooms were pretty new and comfy ! Credits to the staff who made our stay special, giving us all the necessary information about the island and being ready to help 24/7. Special thanks to Costas from the guests experience team! See you in August guys.. Many thanks..Ben"

    Will surely avoid this property.

    Cheers!

    1. Dmitry

      The reviewer is definitely based in Greece, has only reviewed one place every two years, and has only ever given 5 starts. Smells like a fake review for sure.

    2. Dmitry

      A new review appeared on the Marriott hotel page today as well that also looks suspicious. Looks like their damage control plan for this is more fake reviews.

  33. ST

    Thanks for the heads up on the attitude towards rewards stay. Just cancelled my 3 nights on 50K certs which I thought was great value but not worth if guest isn't valued. There are plenty of choices closer to town.

  34. panda

    It’s coming from inside the house! haha. What a lousy attitude they have. Good luck staying in business with that ‘energy’.

  35. Traveler

    Please keep their feet to the fire! Don't let up on this!

  36. Commander707

    Ben, thank you so much for sharing your honest opinions and experiences. I am very sorry to hear that this hotel treated you this way! I absolutely appreciate you and all that you do. You have truly inspired me. There is absolutely no way in the world I will ever stay at this hotel! I will not tolerate anyone who disrespects you. Happy Pride month!

  37. John

    Not surprised at all. As I said in a prior comment I am Greek American and have been to Greece numerous times. I can’t recall a time I have gone without getting angry / yelling at someone for their lack of basic customer service. Most things go smoothly but there’s always that one person that sours the trip. They think I’m just a “dumb” American but once I lay into them in their native tongue...

    Not surprised at all. As I said in a prior comment I am Greek American and have been to Greece numerous times. I can’t recall a time I have gone without getting angry / yelling at someone for their lack of basic customer service. Most things go smoothly but there’s always that one person that sours the trip. They think I’m just a “dumb” American but once I lay into them in their native tongue their tune changes and I will usually get treated differently. It’s just the nature of the beast there

  38. Nelson

    Is it me only or how do I manage to see all comments instead of only 3?

    1. Jamie

      I had to click "load all comments" and a side window popped up.

  39. minervamaga

    Big yikes all around. Glad you got out of there when you did, you just can't trust people anymore. I hope we'll get to here about the other hotel?

  40. MT

    This was clearly no way for the hotel to act and you would assume a property associated with a large corporation would be much more professional and what I am about to say in non way excuses their behavior.

    By posting your almost live updates and naming the resort while still being on property in by your own admission a foreign country it does come across you were playing the game of wanting your blogger...

    This was clearly no way for the hotel to act and you would assume a property associated with a large corporation would be much more professional and what I am about to say in non way excuses their behavior.

    By posting your almost live updates and naming the resort while still being on property in by your own admission a foreign country it does come across you were playing the game of wanting your blogger status to be picked up and the hotel to the change course and treat you differently, that or your actions were far from sensible given the situation.

    If you truly didn't want the attention of the hotel, then posting about your experience after the event rather than a blow by blow, post by post account would have been the better way to do it and to be honest a far better way to be able to give a honest review of the property that your readers could possibly expect to receive.

    I do believe you had a very bad experience and did the correct thing to leave, but there does seem a hint on DYKWIA about the posts, which it appears left a very bad taste with the owner of the property who decided rather than risk any more better just to encourage you to leave as they were probably very angry (which you were risking happening on a foreign country a long way from home). I repeat I don't think they should have handled it how they did, but by the posting on here you were creating a situation where it would go either very well for you or very badly.

    1. Andrew

      @MT

      I totally agree with you MT. In Ben's defense, he initially didn't name the hotel and the initial article was just about being denied the upgrades. I think people pushed him to write more a bit if you check the comments section.

    2. Stuart

      @MT I don't often defend Ben but in this case I will. For too long Marriott has been getting away with disconnect and rogue properties throughout. For the regular guy, even an Ambassador as I am, no one will listen and nothing ever changes. It's out of control. In fact, what Ben did is bring even more awareness of the shenanigans we deal with on a regular basis. I think in this case doing it...

      @MT I don't often defend Ben but in this case I will. For too long Marriott has been getting away with disconnect and rogue properties throughout. For the regular guy, even an Ambassador as I am, no one will listen and nothing ever changes. It's out of control. In fact, what Ben did is bring even more awareness of the shenanigans we deal with on a regular basis. I think in this case doing it while he was there is even more justified. A drama in real time will get a lot more attention than a "this is what happened a few days ago." And these days, we need as much attention as possible so that Bonvoy will wake the heck up.

    3. James S

      Sure, there is a hint of DYKWIA....but this seems like the right time to pull that card.

      Ben's not asking for free drinks, free upgrades or anything at all. He's not saying "I am special and you need to serve me." He's asking to get what he paid for.

      He's also not on assignment working for a company where he can write off the experience as business. He's there with family.

      Posting live...

      Sure, there is a hint of DYKWIA....but this seems like the right time to pull that card.

      Ben's not asking for free drinks, free upgrades or anything at all. He's not saying "I am special and you need to serve me." He's asking to get what he paid for.

      He's also not on assignment working for a company where he can write off the experience as business. He's there with family.

      Posting live was one way of giving them one last chance to fix the situation. But even facing the consequences of their actions, they decided to make things worse. Thats an experience any guest will have with them and everyone should clearly avoid them at all costs.

    4. RK

      Agree with MT. What was the motivation to post the play by play before checking out? You were looking for points as compensation and not just “a sincere apology” - that could be acquired post-stay via one of many feedback avenues. Sounds like you wasted lots of family vacation time by dedicating time complaining and moving hotels. So you didn’t get a suite after expecting one? Big deal. Who travels with family to sit in...

      Agree with MT. What was the motivation to post the play by play before checking out? You were looking for points as compensation and not just “a sincere apology” - that could be acquired post-stay via one of many feedback avenues. Sounds like you wasted lots of family vacation time by dedicating time complaining and moving hotels. So you didn’t get a suite after expecting one? Big deal. Who travels with family to sit in a room? Just take the hit and be grateful you can travel abroad right now, and with family.

    5. Raja

      I agree. How dare you post something about travel on this blog.

  41. Chris

    Just...wow. I absolutely agree that once folks at the hotel knew who you were, they should at least have put on their customer service face to keep up appearances. Not that you should have gotten _better_ treatment than other guests, but once they figured out that you were actively posting about your stay, the staff should at a minimum have met their obligations and given you the courtesy entitled to any guest.

    I will also...

    Just...wow. I absolutely agree that once folks at the hotel knew who you were, they should at least have put on their customer service face to keep up appearances. Not that you should have gotten _better_ treatment than other guests, but once they figured out that you were actively posting about your stay, the staff should at a minimum have met their obligations and given you the courtesy entitled to any guest.

    I will also say that it took me a while to figure out why the pool pictures were so troubling. Yeah, staying at a place with overhead power lines in vicinity of the pool is no good. Both view _and_ comfort are affected there.

    I look forward to Marriott's inevitable corporate speak response and the hotel's vain attempts to ignore, dismiss, and eventually apologize. These things do tend to follow a trajectory. I suppose the hotel could actually try to sue you or your IP to get your comments removed, which is also a thing I guess.

  42. John B

    Ugh, I have a stay booked her for the end of July. It seemed like such a great redemption when I booked it and now I don't know what to do. Maybe this will spur them to change their attitude? That could just be wishful thinking on my part.

    1. James

      I also have stay booked here and am starting to come to the terrifying realization that their TripAdvisor rating probably comes from fake reviews.

    2. Mick

      This is the mindset that allows the properties like this to never change.

    3. KEVIN

      It’s call don’t tempt fate. Go some where else where guests are valued. Why spend the precious holiday time and hard earn money/ points fighting with management?

    4. gfrew

      This is one time where I have to say, cancel. Vote with your wallet that you don't support people being treated like that and then the hotel just lying about it and also keeping up their fake reviews.

  43. snic

    Positive energy! I'm looking forward to your review of the independent hotel where you ended up.

  44. Charles

    First and second night (while using points) = The hotel cancel your Suite Award and tell you "you are staing for free" so shut up.

    Third and fouth night (while paying rate) = Your Suite Award is honored.

    What a COINCIDENCE the Marriott's "error"!!! The "you are staing for free" means shut up, we cancel it and sell the suite to another person.

  45. PD

    Where is the threat to safety? I understand you were not comfortable staying at the hotel. I wouldn’t feel comfortable either. However, you strongly suggested that the hotel staff might have physically harmed you. This was clearly not the case, based on your own recollection of events. Frankly, your experience here was terrible and you are completely justified in your outrage. I will be avoiding this hotel in the future. However, it might be wise...

    Where is the threat to safety? I understand you were not comfortable staying at the hotel. I wouldn’t feel comfortable either. However, you strongly suggested that the hotel staff might have physically harmed you. This was clearly not the case, based on your own recollection of events. Frankly, your experience here was terrible and you are completely justified in your outrage. I will be avoiding this hotel in the future. However, it might be wise to more carefully consider the consequences for some of the things you are publishing. You seemed to not have been in any danger greater than an early check-out. The word you used in your previous post, “unsafe”, is highly suggestive. I hope you can edit in more clarity.

    Wishing you and your family happy and safe travels.

    1. AdamH

      I think when the GM alleged he was doing something illegal you could argue that was the dividing line -- especially in a foreign country -- I would not have felt safe at that point.

    2. Steven L.

      > “You know, what you are doing is illegal. You can’t post pictures that don’t belong to you, those are the photographer’s intellectual property. This is very illegal, you can get in trouble.” It’s hard to describe how vicious she was while telling me how good her energy was and how bad my energy was, and how threatening her tone was about my “illegal” activity.

      I don’t know about _you_, but if I’m vacationing in...

      > “You know, what you are doing is illegal. You can’t post pictures that don’t belong to you, those are the photographer’s intellectual property. This is very illegal, you can get in trouble.” It’s hard to describe how vicious she was while telling me how good her energy was and how bad my energy was, and how threatening her tone was about my “illegal” activity.

      I don’t know about _you_, but if I’m vacationing in a foreign country and someone comes up to me and starts up with thinly-veiled legal threats, yeah, I’d feel a little unsafe.

  46. Chris

    I could not even imagine how many hyatt points my concierge would send to me if this was a hyatt property. I was in New York at the Hyatt House in Chelsea. For some reason someone knocked on my door and came barging in with a manager as it was the previous occupant and he was looking for his phone. I was a bit taken aback and on a call as well so I just...

    I could not even imagine how many hyatt points my concierge would send to me if this was a hyatt property. I was in New York at the Hyatt House in Chelsea. For some reason someone knocked on my door and came barging in with a manager as it was the previous occupant and he was looking for his phone. I was a bit taken aback and on a call as well so I just let them do what they needed to do. My concierge emailed me after my stay to check in and I casually mentioned it. 20,000 points showed up in my account the next day. Same with union issues at the Andaz in West Hollywood. Banging drums at 6am. Hotel knew it was an issue and they apologized with 25,000 points.

  47. Brian G.

    I cannot believe Bonvoy has not stepped in yet. I assume that you are Platinum or higher in the program, if they cannot step in for this issue what value do they provide?

    1. Stuart

      Surely Marriott read this as well as the hotel! Ben must has some connections within Bonvoy to raise it further, if not I think this might give him a few connections

  48. Jimmy

    The hotel is back to selling their suites, including for a check-in today.

    1. Stuart

      That’s because Ben has left an empty one for them to sell

    2. 23H

      They're being sold in both the Revive compound, and the (apparently closed) Retreat compound - which the GM claimed was impossible (but Ben has a screenshot of).

  49. mark

    You keep saying "we" but you never define upfront who "we" is. If you start the post by saying who is with you, it's appropriate to say "we." But to start with "we" and never define who is traveling with you leaves a unfilled question for your audience.

    1. Kaleb_With_A_K

      Do you read his other posts? It's clear who Ben is traveling with.

    2. Bao

      This post is midway through his series of post on this Greece trip. He didn't mention it here but it's stated a lot of time in previous posts that he is taking his Mom and her partner on this trip.

  50. Stephen

    This is really shocking. I never stay in Marriots anyway, always Hyatt if possible, but I am a professional tour guide in Washington DC, a member of the professional association of tour guides here and I am often asked for recommendations for hotels/bars/restaurants and based on these reports and responses about lousy Marriot service I will never recommend anyone set foot in any property associated in any way with Marriott. I'm going to share these...

    This is really shocking. I never stay in Marriots anyway, always Hyatt if possible, but I am a professional tour guide in Washington DC, a member of the professional association of tour guides here and I am often asked for recommendations for hotels/bars/restaurants and based on these reports and responses about lousy Marriot service I will never recommend anyone set foot in any property associated in any way with Marriott. I'm going to share these threads with my local professional association and the worldwide guild for tour guides.

  51. Pastramionrye

    Thanks Ben for writing about your experience and standing up to improper behavior and dishonest practices. When stuff like this happens to me, I feel utterly powerless. I have no platform to air my grievances and can only write a review on a travel site, to which the hotel's manager or chief damage control officer will respond with a generally insincere and canned statement.

  52. Steve

    And Greece wonders why their economy is in such bad shape compared to the rest of the EU, they dont value hard work or working at all and clearly dont care about customer service. To me this isnt Marriott's fault as much as it epitomizes the lazy greek culture.

    1. Pences

      angry "Ameri-kun" racist rant...outed !

  53. Sammy

    Ben - have you heard from Marriott PR yet?

  54. Sir Walter Raleigh

    Appalling. Proud of you Ben for standing up to the hotel!

    Your main mistake was expecting a sense of hospitality from (Southern) Europeans. With the exception of Spain, that’s not much of a thing there.

    1. Pences

      Stay out, then..the vast majority of Southern Europeans don't want more transients in their countries...Mississippi, Alabama for that Southern "hospitality" you're expecting.

  55. mike

    Ben, PLEASE for the love of GOD..

    PULL that DYKWIA card towards Marriott and have them force the hotel to make this right

  56. Bonvoyed

    Hey Ben, please consider having a section in your blog to name and shame these trashy hotels. Would not want a post like this to be forgotten

  57. Ray

    Dang, I’m sorry you went through all that. Totally unbecoming of a Marriott property (in my experience anyway). Thanks for the warning, I suppose.

    I’ll be sure to share the tea with my friends

  58. Jessica

    I wish someone would make a show that's "Kitchen Nightmares" but for hotels, because I bet this episode would be a DOOZY

    1. CeeJay

      They do have one, with Gordon Ramsey no less called "Hotel Hell" you can probably find a few episodes on Youtube, it's pretty good.

  59. Jessica

    A TripAdvisor review from last month mentions the owner's wife- pretty sure that was the lunatic who confronted you.

  60. beachfan

    Ben, I very much appreciate taking this on for your readers.

    A suggestion from someone who normally speaks up on these things - don't wait until check-in, speak to the GM before you get there. That way, things don't get this bad.

    Thanks again!

  61. steve

    sucks you had that interaction, but, no customer should have that kind of interaction. who gives a shit about the do you know who I am crap.

    good luck getting your points back.

  62. Mike

    I looked at this place well before Ben’s experience and contemplated staying here. Definitely will avoid and book with another chain.

    Shameful.

  63. mitRoy

    I love positive energy, so I’ve just booked 3 rooms in Aegon for 10 days in August. I might be making another booking tomorrow, if only I can convince my friends from North Korea to join. I also might have a few friends coming over from Australia, so that’s probably an another booking for a week or two. Different stay dates actually don’t matter. If there’s any change of plans, then we’ll just cancel for free 7 days before arrival.

  64. Mark G

    Hello Ben,

    Thank you for these trip reports! Reading them feels like the world is returning to normal. However, the content makes me think there will be some growing pains as the world opens back up.

    I work with a number of Italians and my partner is Greek and I'm not surprised by the customer service response, especially given that the country just started welcoming back tourists a month ago. European businesses in general are...

    Hello Ben,

    Thank you for these trip reports! Reading them feels like the world is returning to normal. However, the content makes me think there will be some growing pains as the world opens back up.

    I work with a number of Italians and my partner is Greek and I'm not surprised by the customer service response, especially given that the country just started welcoming back tourists a month ago. European businesses in general are much more employee focused compared to American companies where employees are constantly in fear of loosing their jobs. This coupled with them being closed for a year means they will need to relearn how to treat customers professionally or they will go out of business. My biggest criticism of my Mediterranean work colleagues is that they will find any excuse to not give the customer what they want if it requires any additional work. In sales this is the kiss of death for new business, but often this is completely ignored.

    Also the informal way the hotel handled your complaint and approached you to scold you is pretty in line with what I'd expect for a hot headed Greek with a provincial mindset. Remember this is a country where they will throw plates and flip over tables when they are celebrating. Basically you have to build a rapport with the employee for them to treat you well, but it's hard to do that over electronic chat when you're resolving a booking error, esp. when they don't know that treating you well will really benefit them.

    I'm glad you stood up for yourself and found what sounds like a really great boutique hotel. It would have been a mistake to stubbornly stay in the hotel and have a mediocre experience.

    1. TLS

      It happens more and more frequently everywhere though. In Cancun the hotel staff was mostly interested in selling time shares and didn't take a no for an answer.
      In Thailand a lot is the hotel staff seems to be fed up with tourists.
      In French Polynesia, well, they just don't care, although it's not as bad as China, where they treat you like you're a moron.
      The US, well, they simply don't...

      It happens more and more frequently everywhere though. In Cancun the hotel staff was mostly interested in selling time shares and didn't take a no for an answer.
      In Thailand a lot is the hotel staff seems to be fed up with tourists.
      In French Polynesia, well, they just don't care, although it's not as bad as China, where they treat you like you're a moron.
      The US, well, they simply don't have time for you, if you're not holding a tip...

      I'll say that Vietnam is the most friendly place when it comes to hotel staff, not had a bad stay there yet.

  65. Charles

    I really don't know. Supposedly the hotel is not telling the full story.

  66. FNT-Delta-Diamond

    This hotel is managed by SWOT Hospitality Management Company. https://swot.gr/

    The CEO is Panos Constantinidis and his email is [email protected]

    1. Lisfranc

      Probably a good list of properties to avoid.

  67. Kuloko

    During the past year I found some excellent service and very accommodating front desk at Bonvoy hotels while other were inexperience and borderline rude. However, what was the point to write 3 posts about a case when a blogger was denied a fantastic suite with a pool he booked on points? Last time I was "walked" out of a hotel (granted, it was a Hilton property in Salk lake City) the front desk was very...

    During the past year I found some excellent service and very accommodating front desk at Bonvoy hotels while other were inexperience and borderline rude. However, what was the point to write 3 posts about a case when a blogger was denied a fantastic suite with a pool he booked on points? Last time I was "walked" out of a hotel (granted, it was a Hilton property in Salk lake City) the front desk was very naive about walking out a Diamond member. They told me that they were trying to reach me because one of their frequent guest decided to extend a stay and they do not have a room for me (I was staying 1 night). They were not aware that they to provide additional compensation except a room in another hotel (they did both things at the end). Also, Lucky was not walked out but rather offered a lesser suite, which would be OK for many of us. With a smaller hotel in Greece a compensation for this downgrade is likely to be hit or miss. The hotel owner likely lost a lot of Euros because of Covid and no bailout from the government. Marriott is paying the hotels only pennies on the dollar for the award stays and it looks like they managed to sell that suite for real money. Perhaps, they did not remove the suite inventory on time like many hotels in US. The latter is a typical solution - no suites are available even when they are still for sale. And why make a post about the power lines visible from the pool?

    1. FNT-Delta-Diamond

      "Marriott is paying the hotels only pennies on the dollar for the award stays and it looks like they managed to sell that suite for real money. Perhaps, they did not remove the suite inventory on time like many hotels in US. The latter is a typical solution - no suites are available even when they are still for sale."

      That is just 100% untrue. Properties get paid money, good money for points and suite...

      "Marriott is paying the hotels only pennies on the dollar for the award stays and it looks like they managed to sell that suite for real money. Perhaps, they did not remove the suite inventory on time like many hotels in US. The latter is a typical solution - no suites are available even when they are still for sale."

      That is just 100% untrue. Properties get paid money, good money for points and suite night certificate stays. Moreover, points are "real money." All of the hotels know this before they affiliate with Marriott. Maybe this hotel should join Preferred Hotels of the World or whatever one of those independent collections with no defined benefits or points is called.

    2. Charles

      1. Why write 3 posts about being denied a suite? Because it goes against the concept of suite night upgrades - completely defeats the purpose.

      2. It was only a lesser suite - as Lucky said, the confirmed upgrade is the whole reason he booked.

      3. Why make a post about power lines? Lucky says he will be making a post about this hotel's false advertising. It isn't this one small issue but representative of a larger one.

  68. Greg Lewis

    Thank you so much for your report. I read it just in the Nick of time. I was about to book that hotel for my 1st trip to Greece. So glad I didn’t.
    Marriott Titanium member.

  69. Francis

    I’m sorry you got to experience this but im glad you posted about it! I was gonna stay there using SNA’s next month! Cancelled that booking. I don’t like this hotel’s “energy”

  70. Jason

    It is obvious the hotel seems to have some egotistical issues. But not withstanding, let get this straight. You have 2 separate reservations and are using 2 SNA upgrades or one? I always thought the rule was one, so the hotel seems justified to give you complimentary junior suite first 2 nights and then move you to presidential suite the next 2 nights for the second reservation. Except for the top suite for all 4...

    It is obvious the hotel seems to have some egotistical issues. But not withstanding, let get this straight. You have 2 separate reservations and are using 2 SNA upgrades or one? I always thought the rule was one, so the hotel seems justified to give you complimentary junior suite first 2 nights and then move you to presidential suite the next 2 nights for the second reservation. Except for the top suite for all 4 nights, I'm not sure what else you are asking for? Lastly, please remember you are a foreigner and goodwill ambassador. Fight what you deserve or believe you are entitled to but also try not to step on anyone's toes and definitely don't demand to speak to managers in Karen-style. It seems you are very sore about this first world problem as you had mentioned. When I chalk up bad experiences at a hotel, I remember who treated me well and who did not. Unfortunately, as many hotels go the franchise route, most Marriott customer service can not help you until you have exhausted your options with local management and generally have already checked out of the hotel. Lastly, state what exactly it is you want. I've always enjoyed your threads but now they are beginning to read like rants. If you are trying to use 1 SNA for 2 reservations then you know that is not really possibly or within the terms. If they can't upgrade the suite until the 3rd night, then stay somewhere else for the first 2 nights. Life is short. Sounds like you would be bitter if you stayed there anyways the first 2 nights. Stay somewhere that needs and appreciates the business instead.

    1. FNT-Delta-Diamond

      You sound like the battered wife who keeps coming back for more.

    2. Deborah

      You really should READ the posts. He booked 2 nights and applied 2 SNAs and then booked 2 more nights and applied 2 SNAs. All 4 SNAs where confirmed and the hotel yanked back the first 2 and put him in a standard room. I would be livid just like him if that happened. That's just not how it works.

    3. Jason

      Are you sure it was just regular room? He said they would give him a junior suite for the first 2 nights and then switch to larger suite for last 2, or junior suite for all 4 nights. Maybe this partly a Marriott glitch. I was on an award stay and the hotel I was at said they didn't have any way to encode the reservation. So bottomline, suites were only for sale apparently. Wonder if this is similar situation.

    4. kaboom

      it is so condescending to dismiss an issue as a "first wold problem". and...are you really pointing out that "life is short" to a man who is traveling with his mother who is battling ovarian cancer?

  71. AmyinIrvine

    Thanks for the candid play by play. Just wow. This hotel definitely will be axed from the list when we go to Greece.

    Would LOVE to know where you moved to that is treating your party so well.

  72. Pences

    Frustrating and disappointing, the least. Flashbacks of past customer service experiences with the now demised national flag carrier of Greece, Olympic Airlines.

  73. Eric

    This is the best content I’ve read here in ages. I’m waiting anxiously for the next installment and am dying to hear how (assumedly) horrified Marriott is going to be after learning of all this!

    This hotel is (and should be) going down in flames

    1. FNT-Delta-Diamond

      It's like a Penthouse letter ... except the bad blogging design format, unreadable font and horrible commenting system.

    2. Steve

      I couldn't agree more about the website redesign. Why would anyone do this to a perfectly good website? Sad.

  74. derek

    They need to go to posh school in Japan, if there is such a thing.

    Good employees who are tactful but don't give away the store are hard to find. Seems like it also applies to owners, too.

  75. MJS

    I know you like freebies and I know the big chains compensate you for recommending them. I travel a lot for work and a decent amount for pleasure (obviously not nearly as much as you, but can't remember the last time I stayed at a chain hotel. Boutiques and independents are absolutely the way to go. The experience is just so much more enjoyable.

  76. FNT-Delta-Diamond

    This blogging and commenting platform is HORRIBLE.

  77. Eric

    I've been following this whole saga as I'm about to book our Greece trip - I know which hotel I WON'T be booking! I'm so sorry you had that experience - maybe Marriott should boot them. Like you, a lifetime Platinum Ambassador and rarely have any issues and when I do I typically just brush it off but THIS is another level.

  78. Jake

    I was going to ask if on the Marriot system your name was flagged as being a blogger or something but that wouldn't seem to be effective at all...

  79. Eric

    I flagged the reviews too - I mean hell, they couldn't even spell your f'ing name correctly!

  80. Santastico

    Welcome to Greece!!!! What you described is very typical of Greece. Although it is a lovely country, hospitality and being nice is not very common. BTW, don’t blame 100% on Marriott. The hotel os probably owned by locals and just uses the Marriott brand so I can guarantee you Marriott will have a chat with them.

  81. Bao

    Ben, I'm so invested in this whole saga!!! Hahaha. Where did you end up staying?
    I saw a comment from a Marriott Sale rep asking you to contact her, did you? Has Marriott PR team learned about your experience and tried to contact you yet?

    Nail-biting, I tell ya!

    I leave for Greece in 11 days and have booked award nights at a Marriott hotel, I hope my experience will be better. It's...

    Ben, I'm so invested in this whole saga!!! Hahaha. Where did you end up staying?
    I saw a comment from a Marriott Sale rep asking you to contact her, did you? Has Marriott PR team learned about your experience and tried to contact you yet?

    Nail-biting, I tell ya!

    I leave for Greece in 11 days and have booked award nights at a Marriott hotel, I hope my experience will be better. It's the last of my points with them. From the comments, I will dial down my expectations for Greece accordingly.

  82. Gerard

    While this hotel and their owners are probably hurting financially because of COVID-19, those in the hospitality business should know better than to act like this! Thank you for standing up to them, Ben, even though it must have been very uncomfortable for you.

  83. seat1Cnew

    Very sorry to hear about your experience - I'm amazed they hadn't already picked up that you were going there before you arrived (have they never heard of a Google news alert?!) but once they realised it was you they should have been falling over themselves to remedy the situation.
    Of course, they should never have allowed the situation to arise in the first place...

    (PS - it's taken me days to be able...

    Very sorry to hear about your experience - I'm amazed they hadn't already picked up that you were going there before you arrived (have they never heard of a Google news alert?!) but once they realised it was you they should have been falling over themselves to remedy the situation.
    Of course, they should never have allowed the situation to arise in the first place...

    (PS - it's taken me days to be able to get an account to work on the new site - not the easiest process!)

  84. CAE

    Wow! I was actually going to book a stay here in August- not a chance now!! Wow!!

  85. Betty Bellomy

    Wow, this treatment is truly outlandishly awful. I am a Marriott Bonvoy member and have booked Marriott for 2 trips this year alone. To learn that ANY staff of one of their hotels feel they can treat guest that way is alarming!

  86. Deborah

    OMG! Tripadvisor now has a review with Ben's full name giving the hotel a glowing review down to how attractive the owner is. I reported it.

    1. Bao

      Saw that. Didn't even spelled his last name correctly.

  87. Quique

    Gosh, I was seriously just planning where to stay this summer. Definitely won't be at Aegeon Mykonos! I looked at it on Google maps and notice a number of their good reviews come from accounts that have only ever written that one review. Sketchy.

  88. Joeboo

    Lucky, so proud of you & your friends for bailing! You are 100% in the right. There are so many great hospitality choices in this world/ how do they plan on staying in business treating customers like that...
    Thank you for all your ground breaking work & reviews.

  89. Greg

    What a horrible experience for you. Although these are challenging times while the pandemic is still raging through most of the world and we probably should not be travelling far from home, your experience sounds awful. Thanks for reporting.

    What I was wondering is are you hoping to get your points/money back? I thought Marriott's policy is "Please note that a change in the length or dates of your reservation may result in a rate...

    What a horrible experience for you. Although these are challenging times while the pandemic is still raging through most of the world and we probably should not be travelling far from home, your experience sounds awful. Thanks for reporting.

    What I was wondering is are you hoping to get your points/money back? I thought Marriott's policy is "Please note that a change in the length or dates of your reservation may result in a rate change" so that you could either be charged for leaving early or at least not get any points back.

    Seeing how travel is so challenging now during Covid, it would be interesting to note the penalties for no-show, cancelling day of and the like.

    Also were you offered 2 breakfasts from your elite status at this resort.

  90. Bill

    Loved "your" review on Trip Advisor. Someone needs to clue in this hotel as to the power of sharing information. And how easy it is to see a shallow fake.

  91. mike

    Everyone go onto TA and rip the property and GM a new one.

  92. Brian

    What happened here is disturbing. I hope you enjoy the rest of your trip at the other hotel.

    Tbh up until now I think you were being unnecessarily confrontational (unnecessary in the sense that it doesn’t worth ruining your vacation mood over two nights… just get the upgrade refunded and deal with it through Marriott later), but what’s described here really crossed a line.

    And there seems to be a campaign to destroy this property’s ratings on google. Way to go!

  93. Johnson

    Read those Greeks to filth!!! LOL. Complete embarrassment.

  94. Stephen Taylor

    I'm a lifetime premier Marriott bon voy card holder. Sometimes going with the flow is much easier!

  95. Luke

    Didnt know your name is Ben Schlepping , based on the update made on the TA review today :)

    Also saw the response to your TA review from the hotel management who is claiming the powerlines were added sometime recently and after the photos on their website were taken which I find very hard to believe looking at its condition.

    1. Ben

      @ Luke -- I can't even count the number of lies in the hotel's TripAdvisor response. Just for one that's very easy to prove on the spot, the hotel seems to be claiming that photos aren't photoshopped, but rather the power lines are above the pool due to the "fast pace construction development" in Mykonos. In other words, they've been built in the few weeks since this portion of the hotel opened.

      Well, they've been...

      @ Luke -- I can't even count the number of lies in the hotel's TripAdvisor response. Just for one that's very easy to prove on the spot, the hotel seems to be claiming that photos aren't photoshopped, but rather the power lines are above the pool due to the "fast pace construction development" in Mykonos. In other words, they've been built in the few weeks since this portion of the hotel opened.

      Well, they've been there since at least 2011, as pointed out by a reader:
      https://twitter.com/mattkawashima/status/1400864520784867329

      I guess another post is coming soon! It actually blows my mind how much deeper of a hole this hotel's management is trying to dig...

    2. FNT-Delta-Diamond

      Maybe because they know Marriott International won't de-flag them.

      This hotel is managed by SWOT Hospitality Management Company. https://swot.gr/

      The CEO is Panos Constantinidis and his email is [email protected]

    3. map

      Hey, Fancy-tourist-boy! You want that high-speed internet (no VPN!) in your room, we need wires. Through the pool or on a pole? Which you want? I thought so. No photoshop -- used wife's favorite: instagram "NoWiresNoWrinkles" filter.
      Thanks for the 5-dot review.
      Regards, pc

  96. Nathan

    I’ve stayed here before - back when they first opened. I had a good time and found the staff to be incredibly warm and friendly, including the GM. Sometimes it easier to catch flies with honey, rather than vinegar. A lost art.

  97. AZTravelGuy

    The urge to travel to this property and troll them in person has manifested itself. The TripAdvisor trolling reviews are great though.

  98. Jake

    Check the IP for Jig’s comment post! And THANK YOU for letting as all know NOT to stay at this hotel!

  99. Chicagoan

    Judging by the looks of things on various reviews sites people are coming out of the woodwork with their opinions on this hotel :-)

  100. Jack

    Good luck, hope it all works out.

  101. Commenting Commenter

    This is so horrible, Ben! Just reading the story gave me anxiety!
    Thank you for posting about this. People need to know. The hospitality business keeps getting away with more and more, and nothing happens, so this needs to be called out.

  102. Regis

    Just shows how you cannot trust TripAdvisor. If that most obviously fake review passed TA's internal controls to prevent fraudulent reviews (which TA says are "robust"), it means they have no controls.

    Digitally altering hotel pictures like that of the pool, basically grossly misrepresenting the hotel facilities, as well as accosting guests like that should be grounds for Marriott to terminate their agreement with the property for cause.

  103. Aaron

    All they had to do was honor the SNA for 2 nights. Now look at all the backlash they are facing.

  104. Grey

    A lot of people are saying that this is typical of Greece, but I feel like perhaps you have had bad luck.
    Whenever I want a beach/island holiday, I tend to go to Greece and go to one of the Mitsis hotels. It is a local Greek chain made up mostly of 4 and 5 star all inclusive resorts which feature a la carte dining options. And on the couple of occasions that I...

    A lot of people are saying that this is typical of Greece, but I feel like perhaps you have had bad luck.
    Whenever I want a beach/island holiday, I tend to go to Greece and go to one of the Mitsis hotels. It is a local Greek chain made up mostly of 4 and 5 star all inclusive resorts which feature a la carte dining options. And on the couple of occasions that I have pointed out complaints to the manager, I have received nothing but a gracious response. But then, this chain is primarily targeted at Europeans and tries to encourage its customers to come often, whereas perhaps the chains that are catering towards Americans don't expect as much return, so don't find it worthwhile to invest in a positive experience in the same way.
    But I think that it is not accurate to say that you won't get good service at Greek hotels. Especially in that price range.
    If you want to spend a lot of money on a hotel in Mykonos, try the Greco Philia. They will spoil you and have rooms with phenominal views.
    If you want other islands, look up the Mitsis chain. They are great value for money and great service.

  105. Peter g

    What a slum of a hotel managed by Neanderthals. Don't worry Ben your famous and Marriott will sort it out at a corporate level and until they do I won't be staying at Marriott hotels.

  106. Mike S.

    I have been a loyal Marriott customer for over 20 years, it’s the only chain I stick with for pleasure or business trips. Most Marriott hotels give exceptional service, I was planning to book a couple of rooms their for a friends trip in July, but after this I will give it a miss and take my business to another establishment. A hotel should never treat a loyal customer less because of using their points,...

    I have been a loyal Marriott customer for over 20 years, it’s the only chain I stick with for pleasure or business trips. Most Marriott hotels give exceptional service, I was planning to book a couple of rooms their for a friends trip in July, but after this I will give it a miss and take my business to another establishment. A hotel should never treat a loyal customer less because of using their points, we spend a lot of money to accumulate them. Thx Ben for the insight

  107. echino

    Ahahaha! Guys, stop trolling already! TripAdvisor review posted by "Ford Beckett":

    GM Pavlos was making inappropriate remarks towards my husband Ben. At one point he touched him inappropriately. At that point he tried to offer us a suite upgrade, but we declined and left. We will not be back!

  108. Roamingredcoat

    Uhh, well I guess at least it was not in Thailand, given how that turned out for that guy.

  109. LiuX

    So a hotel with near perfect reviews on TripAdvisor until your crew gets there and all of a sudden it turns to crap? I'm sure there is no culpability on the blogger's side, LOL.

    I have a feeling this hotel fully rewards it's premium and full rate paying guests just fine, as evidenced by dozens of other positive reviews.

    1. Megan

      Liux...or should we call you Gm Pavlos or his lunatice wife? lol

    2. FNT-Delta-Diamond

      A guest with titanium status who pays two nights with points and two nights with cash is a premium, paying customers.

  110. GregA

    Thank you so much Ben for posting this information in real time. I have vacation in a week. My original plan for London wasn't going to happen (spent an hour with BA this morning to cancel my award ticket.) I was considering Greece as a last minute option and even showed my wife pictures of the Aegon Mykonos as it looked great and would have been where we booked. So glad we decided not to travel there.

  111. SCR

    So sorry for your experience BUT happy you shared -- thank you. We had reservations for a week later this month, but just canceled. We were looking forward to staying here based on the pictures and reviews (which were fake). Rebooked at another spot on the island.

  112. Stuart

    I have thought about this a bit today and it's clearly a toxic situation. No doubt at all that Marriott is out of control in how they manage their franchisees within the brand. Hilton is nearly as bad. Hyatt is better as they own far more and have a smaller footprint to easily manage those that are not.

    There is no magic bullet at this point. Ben and others can escalate and complain all...

    I have thought about this a bit today and it's clearly a toxic situation. No doubt at all that Marriott is out of control in how they manage their franchisees within the brand. Hilton is nearly as bad. Hyatt is better as they own far more and have a smaller footprint to easily manage those that are not.

    There is no magic bullet at this point. Ben and others can escalate and complain all they want. You can cancel them. But in the end they come back and are fine. The monster is too big. This, in itself, is the biggest issue. These brands have become so large and so powerful (and in every back yard) to the point that they know that they can control you. This property will manage the Tripadvisor things you have all posted, they will be vanquished in a few days. Things will quiet down. And the Aegon will go on within Bonvoy for better or worse.

    What is sad is that these processes transcend to a different level. The smaller boutique properties that can't hide within the larger entity like Bonvoy end up being "canceled" after some prominent person has a bad experience. We all make mistakes. For these hotels under the larger brand umbrella, that's ok. But for smaller hotels outside of the large brands it becomes a matter of survival. So, in the end, Ben and everyone just keeps feeding the monster. Including me.

    This is why Ol' Arne at Marriott called it, "Noise around the edges."

    1. FNT-Delta-Diamond

      IHG is by far the worst when it comes to franchisees, though they did de-flag hundreds of bad properties around 2010. But that's 11 years ago ago. Many of the "new" Holiday Inn properties from 2010 or 2011 haven't been updated since then and are starting to show their age. There's a reason why Starbucks doesn't franchise. IHG and Marriott should hire the brand standards folks from McDonald's because McDonald's seems to enforce standards upon franchisees.

    2. FNT-Delta-Diamond

      I think we have to stop viewing Marriott or even IHG as "hotel brands." Our expectations are grounded in them being a brand that owns or manages its hotels. This false reality creates a lot of bad experiences. Marriott is basically Expedia.

  113. D3kingg

    I’d say moving forward always wait to write a trip review after the trip. I’ve watched hot shot aviation you tubers lodge airline complaints inflight before on social media to then be confronted by the purser within moments who had been contacted by the airline on the ground.
    I’m currently at a motel stay in Alaska and wrote them a positive but not perfect review. Hope the owner doesn’t get pissed. Lol

    1. FNT-Delta-Diamond

      I also think Ben made a mistake by doing the whole drip-drip-drip tease of his stay and his trip. I remember a couple years ago when he flew somewhere and noted how the service improved notably between the first and second flights with the airline (think it was Chinese). Of course, he had written about the airline between flight experiences. For the sake of an objective experience (both good and bad), he or any other...

      I also think Ben made a mistake by doing the whole drip-drip-drip tease of his stay and his trip. I remember a couple years ago when he flew somewhere and noted how the service improved notably between the first and second flights with the airline (think it was Chinese). Of course, he had written about the airline between flight experiences. For the sake of an objective experience (both good and bad), he or any other travel blogger probably shouldn't publicize where they are going until after the trip is complete.

    2. Ben

      @ FNT-Delta-Diamond -- I generally agree, though in retrospect I actually think it was beneficial in this case.

      The reason I posted about this to begin with is because I genuinely wanted to know what people had experienced in the past when suite night awards weren't honored, since it had never happened to me before.

      Given how engaged readers were with the story, I figured it was only fair to provide some follow-up. I didn't...

      @ FNT-Delta-Diamond -- I generally agree, though in retrospect I actually think it was beneficial in this case.

      The reason I posted about this to begin with is because I genuinely wanted to know what people had experienced in the past when suite night awards weren't honored, since it had never happened to me before.

      Given how engaged readers were with the story, I figured it was only fair to provide some follow-up. I didn't reveal where I was staying until after I checked in, so I got the "true" check-in experience.

      Lastly, the fact that I live blogged really set off the hotel's management and showed how unhinged they are. If anything I think that's in the interest of potential guests and Bonvoy members, and is the most likely to lead to change.

  114. Alan

    What a saga, Ben - eek! Great coverage though. Good luck with Marriott corporate though, they're pretty dreadful. Not Accor level bad, but pretty bad. Hilton and IHG are just streets ahead in comparison. SPG were decent in the past but have gone massively downhill since they were taken over.

  115. Ben

    Wow. What an awful wretched experience. I’m sorry you had to deal with that. I had actually booked this hotel on points for August. Very glad I cancelled!

  116. Sam Wolfe

    Oh dear. 1 week ago a booked a 2-night stay at this hotel (I won't say which month, because the Owner Lady will probably hunt me down and sabotage my stay). I should cancel, I guess. This sounds terrible. Oh, Greece...

  117. Paolo

    It’s not helpful for people to be writing fake TA reviews in support of your position. It just adds to the confusion and probably gives weight to the view, as claimed by the hotel, that they’re being subjected to blackmail ( obviously not YOUR intention). It’s important for readers to have faith in the sincerity and integrity of travel bloggers. In that regard, I mostly rely on three of the better known ones ( Matthew,...

    It’s not helpful for people to be writing fake TA reviews in support of your position. It just adds to the confusion and probably gives weight to the view, as claimed by the hotel, that they’re being subjected to blackmail ( obviously not YOUR intention). It’s important for readers to have faith in the sincerity and integrity of travel bloggers. In that regard, I mostly rely on three of the better known ones ( Matthew, Gary , Ben and Lucky) and a couple of the lesser knowns. People piling on TA in mock and fake outrage, never having been near the property, is particularly unhelpful.

  118. John

    Yes the hotel staff were horrible, Ben. But the real underlying point is that while Greece is a good tourist country, it sorely lacks a hospitable culture for 'paying' guests in service sectors (e.g. hotels, airlines, shops). It's just not in their culture for Greeks to be nice and pleasant at 'service'. But outside of work, the hospitality is better in home settings if you happen to be a friend or social guest. This is...

    Yes the hotel staff were horrible, Ben. But the real underlying point is that while Greece is a good tourist country, it sorely lacks a hospitable culture for 'paying' guests in service sectors (e.g. hotels, airlines, shops). It's just not in their culture for Greeks to be nice and pleasant at 'service'. But outside of work, the hospitality is better in home settings if you happen to be a friend or social guest. This is hard for many to admit, especially if you're Greek (and I can fully understand why), but it is the uncomfortable truth that must be acknowledged.

    1. Ben

      @ John -- It's a good perspective and in many ways you're right. However, at high-end independent hotels I've found service in Greece to be very, very good. They manage to bring that "hospitality is better in home settings" attitude to work, though obviously that's not always the case.

  119. KEVIN

    They are so lucky that Ben's followers tend to be 35-60 year olds who wouldn't bother to lift their fingers to trash this hotel on social media. If it was a young blogger such as None Stop Dan post this review, you can be sure this hotel will have endless social media clean up that they wish they can turn back time and reacted more hospitably. But then again, I'm sure this hotel's target audience...

    They are so lucky that Ben's followers tend to be 35-60 year olds who wouldn't bother to lift their fingers to trash this hotel on social media. If it was a young blogger such as None Stop Dan post this review, you can be sure this hotel will have endless social media clean up that they wish they can turn back time and reacted more hospitably. But then again, I'm sure this hotel's target audience isn't 20 year olds but more of Lucky's audience. This more mature set may not blast them on social, but they speak with their wallets and I'm sure tens of thousands if not hundreds of thousands of dollars have been lost by this hotel because of this post and they deserve the punishment that's being dished to them. Maybe they will start to act like a real hotel than to post fake reviews under Ben's name on TripAdvisor...

    1. Stuart

      Yes, because maybe we are more mature?

  120. Morgan

    I am disgusted, sounds like an absolute sh*t show at that hotel, I was thinking of staying at the Aegon for future trips but now I will most definitely not and tell others I know to stay away! thanks for letting us know Ben!

  121. davistev

    Just cancelled my reservation. I value Ben's opinion.

  122. ELDEEN ELLIS

    Is this in Thailand? (I am being sarcastic)

    1. Ben

      @ ELDEEN ELLIS -- Hah, I had actually thought about how this experience would play out in Thailand as all of this unfolded. Thank goodness Greece doesn't have such ridiculous laws (at least as far as I know).

  123. Marvin

    Maybe you should have created a slideshow like this to better get your point across:
    https://www.slideshare.net/politicsjunkie/yours-is-a-very-bad-hotel

  124. BrentNewdick

    I wouldn't trust any place in Europe charging €1000-1500 / night to begin with.

    Just go and actually travel, Greece is also so much more than tourist trap Mykonos.

    1. Raymond

      Could not agree more. Had many wonderful trips to Greece, Mykonos was not one of them. Overpriced and way overrated.
      There are so many other options at far better value. Spend your money at small family owned enterprises. You will not be disappointed.

  125. Ryan Silveira

    @Ben
    Glad you made it to a safe hotel. Not questioning your credibility at all but the optics (given the previous reviews on TA) seem all to be positive and by folks with multiple reviews of various properties. Then came your review and a slew of fake reviews from both sides of the fence. It would be probably nice in the future to perhaps record your full interactions with staff when they go bad in order to combat lies.

  126. Gaaaaaa

    I recently had a same outrageously unacceptable experience at Marriott Anchorage Downtown. Thank you so much for documenting your experience. I do think Marriott has gone downhill and it is extremely difficult to complain and nothing is being done. So far, no one has even acknoledged there was a problem.

    1. FNT-Delta-Diamond

      It's worth saying -- again! -- that the VAST MAJORITY of all Marriott-affiliated hotels across all Marriott brands, including the hotel in Greece and Marriott Anchorage Downtown, are neither owned nor managed by Marriott. The vast majority of hotels are managed either by the owner (franchisee) or a third-party management company hired by the owner (franchisee). Marriott only manages a small minority of properties. Marriott is effectively no longer a hotel company. Instead, it's becoming...

      It's worth saying -- again! -- that the VAST MAJORITY of all Marriott-affiliated hotels across all Marriott brands, including the hotel in Greece and Marriott Anchorage Downtown, are neither owned nor managed by Marriott. The vast majority of hotels are managed either by the owner (franchisee) or a third-party management company hired by the owner (franchisee). Marriott only manages a small minority of properties. Marriott is effectively no longer a hotel company. Instead, it's becoming a marketing platform and booking engine for hotels. Guests are the product that Marriott sells to its customers, the hotels. In the case of the Marriott Anchorage, it is owned and operated by Columbia Sussex: https://www.columbiasussex.com/hotels/

  127. Drew

    Sounds like there are two sides to this story - Ben you do come across incredibly entitled and privileged , not to mention you complain about every and anything - and surprise surprise that can rub a lot of people the wrong way. I’ve just left Mykonos for another island and have nothing but good things to say - politeness attracts politeness

    1. FNT-Delta-Diamond

      Ha. That's just not true. Every reader on here gives him a hard time all the time for never complaining or enforcing guaranteed benefits of elite status.

  128. Aaron

    Now I am curious to know where and how the GM touched Ben inappropriately...

  129. Nico moreno Vicari

    Hey there. Thai is so crazy! We checked into another Bonvoy property in Mykonos yesterday afternoon: the Mykonian Kyma. Only that upon check in, it turned out we weren’t staying at the mykonian Kyma, but another hotel front he same group (same area actually, not a huge deal, but it was shocking to not have known this beforehand).

    The staff was welcoming, in our case. However, I had been emailing the general manager and...

    Hey there. Thai is so crazy! We checked into another Bonvoy property in Mykonos yesterday afternoon: the Mykonian Kyma. Only that upon check in, it turned out we weren’t staying at the mykonian Kyma, but another hotel front he same group (same area actually, not a huge deal, but it was shocking to not have known this beforehand).

    The staff was welcoming, in our case. However, I had been emailing the general manager and the customer service people days in advance about really wanting to secure an upgrade and some sort of perk during our stay, given that it was a very special weekend (anniversary). To give you some context, I’ve been a Titanium member for a few years now. Yeah, I’ve been totally spoiled by the great treatment I get almost everywhere I go. I’m guilty of that. But this one time I made an effort to ensure I get something ‘special’, trust me, I feel anything but special. The person I was talking to completely disregarded that I was a titanium member (I never even had to say this myself at checkin!!). The room we got was at the very lowest possible end of the membership status (nice view, but incredibly small, not even bottled waters, nothing). And the hotel is far from at full capacity right bow, given covid’s reduced tourism.

    I called reception to get a taxi for a restaurant reservation we had- and we were standing outside for a good 20 minutes before my partner went to check back in at the reception- well, they hadn’t even called it.

    Breakfast time was chaotic. Food running out all the time. Wasn’t comfortable.

    Poolside menu/drinks: we basically got watered down drinks for €16 each!!! That’s craaaazy!

    Also- our miniature room had a nice selection of Nespresso pods, teas, everything. Well, we didn’t even have a coffee/espresso maker, or a water heater. Why even have the coffee pods there? They said it’s for covid reasons- I sort of get it. However most hotels I’ve been staying at in the past few months (US and south America, And recently Ukraine/Turkey), they all had such amenities.

    I feel weird saying this: my partner has a similar level of status but on the Hyatt side. Oh boy, they gave us the most incredible rooms in the hotels we stayed at in Istambul and Athens this very past week. The quality seems much much superior. I was really looking forward to my Mykonos stay, but I feel so so undervalued. Let it be noted that I rarely complain about anything, but this lack of consideration and lack of basic amenities at a hotel that’s supposed to be really nice, really baffled me. I’m thinking about switching to a different hotel for the next two nights.

    I totally get what you’re saying!!

  130. Joe Michael Maune

    Welcome to the real world. Not all those smiles are genuine and really hospitable. Simply said, they are there to do their jobs and earn revenue. If they did anything within the capacity of their capabilities in giving you a great feeling while staying with them, you are lucky. Otherwise they just do not care and there are guests out there who are easily pleased or fooled depending on your point of view.
    They...

    Welcome to the real world. Not all those smiles are genuine and really hospitable. Simply said, they are there to do their jobs and earn revenue. If they did anything within the capacity of their capabilities in giving you a great feeling while staying with them, you are lucky. Otherwise they just do not care and there are guests out there who are easily pleased or fooled depending on your point of view.
    They just did not realise who they are messing with. They assumed they have stupid Americans far away from home who will shut up and take what they decide to give to them.
    It was the right decision to cancel your reservations and serve it all properly to Mariott's customer service department and get your points as well as a decent compensation for such an appalling situation. I never thought intimidation of guests are the new standards at Mariott properties!

  131. Susan S Lanza

    The problem with reporting to TA is they really do NOT do much. We experienced this first hand several years ago in Hue, Vietnam at a large well known hotel.

    Good luck - your posts are in fact very important to those who travel. BTW you have a life, it includes traveling

  132. AA

    The unprofessional lady is called Nazira Ghosn Grigorakis the wife of the big failure business man Christos Grigorakis

  133. Eddie

    I'm so so so sorry to hear this Ben, no one deserves any of this, especially when one's on vacation. I can't even begin to imagine what I would have done if I were you, since I'm not, well I don't think anyone is, trained to deal with situations like these.

    Glad you guys switched to another hotel and it's been amazing. And glad you guys are safe.

  134. Sarah

    We are to go here in 3 weeks. I'm trying to find your post on the false advertisement and what the hotel is really like. We as well are staying with points. I'm a little nervous now. I'm glad to hear you had a great stay elsewhere.

  135. Noah

    I was staying at this hotel for a few nights with my cousin and I have to say we had an amazing time. I have stayed at many Marriott Hotels and the owner and her team went over and beyond the service expected and even went so far as open the gym for me. It is a shame that a few comments can really pinge a hotel recommendation but I would really recommend this hotel because it is new everything is fresh including the bed linen and the swimming pool is wonderful.

  136. Millie

    We stayed at a Marriott back in February before and after a surgery I had and the stay was not pleasant and when I did a review I received a nasty message from management. I was charged an extra fee from Marriott because I booked through TripAdvisor and when she replied she tried to say it was untrue and stated that they could have reimbursed me something for the terrible stay but was unable to...

    We stayed at a Marriott back in February before and after a surgery I had and the stay was not pleasant and when I did a review I received a nasty message from management. I was charged an extra fee from Marriott because I booked through TripAdvisor and when she replied she tried to say it was untrue and stated that they could have reimbursed me something for the terrible stay but was unable to because I didnt book directly through them. Needless to say, she got a reply back about her unprofessional reply and I wont stay at any Marriott's in the future.

  137. James E Mullen

    Hi - I am planning g a trip to Greece, Mykonos and Santorini, and would appreciate your recommendations. Where did you stay after checking out of the Marriott?

    Thank you!
    Jim M

  138. DAndrea

    I believe the review and as a titanium bonvoy member, I will avoid that location because of that situation. I travel too much and see how some treat Americans. There is always some sort of jealousy for no reason. Although, I wasn't born in the U.S. I have dual citizenship and I noticed the difference when using my Bahamian passport. As an American you either get treated like royalty or trash. PERIOD!!!

  139. Katie Flodder

    What is the name of the hotel that treated you well?

  140. Otto

    Reviews are a valid way of communicating about experience, however, in my personal and professional opinion it should never get to to point of blaming all hard working associates and put them into a negative spotlight.
    I truly understand your anger but to tell the true story, you should investigate who the "lady in question" was and establish the blame towards her and her behaviour.
    I work myself in hospitality and worked for...

    Reviews are a valid way of communicating about experience, however, in my personal and professional opinion it should never get to to point of blaming all hard working associates and put them into a negative spotlight.
    I truly understand your anger but to tell the true story, you should investigate who the "lady in question" was and establish the blame towards her and her behaviour.
    I work myself in hospitality and worked for Marriott as well for a long time. And I can say, that there are not many companies out there where the guest is valued that much and where the treatment of all guest
    Is the highest company value without any doubt.
    I my personal opinion you should get your anger and views to the real problem which was truly that lady who approached you in a unacceptable way, but you shouldn't put a reputation from hard working people and an entire hotel on the line.
    Than you wouldn't be better then the cause of your troubles.
    But that is just my opinion, thank you

  141. Dwondermeant

    Off topic not a fan of the new look here on the blog but it’s different
    Maybe it grows on you over time
    It’s really the visual being bad as opposed to the format.
    Sounds like a horrible experience I imagine you won’t be seeing a refund anytime soon or will you reach out to Consumer Relations @ Marriott?Or the folks from corporate
    How they behaved is unacceptable

  142. Reno Joe

    Ben, I read your blog and a number of other blogs regularly. A common thread across all bloggers is that, irrespective of hotel network, many owner / operators have poor or unethical business practices. To use an expression, they throw stuff against the wall and see what sticks . . . what they can get away with. The hotel networks seem powerless in many situations and defer to the owner / operator . . ....

    Ben, I read your blog and a number of other blogs regularly. A common thread across all bloggers is that, irrespective of hotel network, many owner / operators have poor or unethical business practices. To use an expression, they throw stuff against the wall and see what sticks . . . what they can get away with. The hotel networks seem powerless in many situations and defer to the owner / operator . . . not wanting to lose a property. In the end, loyalty is not a two-way street. In the end, one is left asking what one is really getting for one's loyal patronage. A breakfast voucher, Wi-Fi, and the occasional upgrade? Go fish.

  143. Penny

    It is hard now days to get people to care . We stayed at Peaks of Otter in Virginia about a month ago. Pictures of room was not the same. Old and dirty. Never could get hold of manager. Didn’t even have bathroom tissue except for 1/10 of the roll. No hand soap. Actually it was expensive and before we got there I called direct and talked to manager and explained that this was a...

    It is hard now days to get people to care . We stayed at Peaks of Otter in Virginia about a month ago. Pictures of room was not the same. Old and dirty. Never could get hold of manager. Didn’t even have bathroom tissue except for 1/10 of the roll. No hand soap. Actually it was expensive and before we got there I called direct and talked to manager and explained that this was a special evening. So disappointed. Called at least 10 times no call back. Once was put on hold for 15 minutes and never got through.
    We all work hard for our money and in these times you need to have a place to go that you can enjoy.

  144. Nancy Collins

    I have had the same negative experiences with red lion seatac rundown nasty house guesthouse inn in tacoma and those extended stays said they found drugs in our room so we cannot stay at any of them anymore I don't know what we did to deserve this treatment. The drugs are lies the guesthouse took money off my card I did not authorize 486$ I can only hope the worst for them

  145. WMLA04

    Don't blame you at all Ben!! I anyone has been following you over the years, you have ALWAYS been kind, generous and frank with your interactions and experiences. The hotel's reaction was simply overboard and why would anyone take the chance of booking with this hotel, especially when there are so many and better nearby choices. I don't like feeling like I'm locked into a specific hotel chain because of points, especially when there may...

    Don't blame you at all Ben!! I anyone has been following you over the years, you have ALWAYS been kind, generous and frank with your interactions and experiences. The hotel's reaction was simply overboard and why would anyone take the chance of booking with this hotel, especially when there are so many and better nearby choices. I don't like feeling like I'm locked into a specific hotel chain because of points, especially when there may be better choices. So, if I know the hotel is good (the one that I have points with), I'll stay there, but if I know of a better hotel (that I don't have points with) then I will stay there instead. Life is just too short and I'm going to enjoy my stay and not screw around with points. I feel that way with airlines as well. The treatment, sometimes, of frequent and loyal customers is rude and unacceptable!! I think we should all take a second look at these loyalty programs. If they are NOT loyal to us, why be loyal to them. Yes, there are always a few bad "apples" "jerks" that ruin things for the rest of us. People who are so aggressive and rude to the hotel and airlines over expectations and points, that everyone becomes defensive and gets treated poorly. But airlines and hotels need to be able to identify the bad "actors" from the truly loyal and "good" customers.

  146. libel_lawyer

    To the person who commented that this write-up could be considered libel: He said "...we worried if we might return to the hotel and find ourselves locked out of our rooms, find our luggage thrown out of our rooms, or find that she called the cops on us (after all, you’re in a foreign country, and you don’t know what connections someone has). "

    He did not say he feared for his physical safety or...

    To the person who commented that this write-up could be considered libel: He said "...we worried if we might return to the hotel and find ourselves locked out of our rooms, find our luggage thrown out of our rooms, or find that she called the cops on us (after all, you’re in a foreign country, and you don’t know what connections someone has). "

    He did not say he feared for his physical safety or that he was threatened with physical danger. The things he cited (locked out of rooms, luggage left out of rooms, cops called in a foreign country) we reasonable worries that any traveler might have given the content of the discussion with the unknown "Amy" woman who made angry threats and who was obviously associated with the hotel. Being made to feel uncomfortable is sufficient reason to have checked out of that hotel, and was the best course of action to avoid any further escalation with possibly angry management or staff. He did the right thing.

  147. Matt

    Be sure to post a review on Google Maps, report any fake pics, and post your own photos. I can clearly see those power lines you mentioned, when using "satellite view" over the property!

  148. Ronald Taylor

    Wow, we are just planning a trip here for 2022. Thank you for your honest blog. Definetly looking elsewhere now.How can Marriott let this happen. now. up the good work.

  149. Licinia

    It's a Marriott "property". I'd expect nothing but snafus and snappers at any Marriott.

Featured Comments Load all 255 comments Most helpful comments ( as chosen by the OMAAT community ).

The comments on this page have not been provided, reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any advertiser, and it is not an advertiser's responsibility to ensure posts and/or questions are answered.

Sel, D.

They acted like that AFTER finding out who you are???? That’s when they should have done the exact opposite - moved heaven and earth to get you into a suite and fix your stay. Complete gyro brains. They’ve Bonvoyed themselves.

Kaleb_With_A_K

I have already reported to TA that this is a fake review. I also provided in the report a link to the post here where the hotel is posting on the blog.

Jig

Most readers of this blog would know the inaccuracies in your statements, but for you and those who don't: A Marriott brand hotel gets additional revenue overall from being associated with Marriott, which is why they also accept giving the program benefits to members. Only wanting the revenue while avoiding the agreed benefits is reneging on the deal, regardless of your net profit on an individual customer. Regarding your Mem day stay, the hotel does get the average daily rate for the stay when it is almost or fully sold out, so they didnt lose anything and that individual stay was as solidly profitable as most cash payers. For times when not almost or fully sold out, the reimbursement for your stay will probably be enough to cover their incremental cost and maybe a bit of their fixed cost. So a breakeven stay, and remember they get the overall revenue boost from their Marriott association.