We submitted our concerns to Doug and Bonnie and were looking for 2 nights compensation back, approximately $1000 after spending 10 days there. We were a group of three discerning couples that have travelled extensively and hold down professional jobs. Two of us are General Managers of hotels. Here is our letter that we sent to the owners and they refused to give us money back but instead offered us 2 free nights when we return to the ST. Thomas. Not sure how many times I would get there from Canada lol!
Anyhow I would never do this type of review but I have no recourse left but to inform other potential guests.
Dear Doug and Bonnie:
We are writing this letter after having given our experience at Casa Azure a great deal of thought since our return to Canada. This letter is on behalf of Darryl, Trina, Darren, Karen, Tom and Cheryl.
When we booked our holiday we of course had high expectations as I think anyone would, with the amount of time and money we spent planning this special event. In all honesty there were hours of time spent on finding just the right place. After several phone calls and many emails back and forth we as a group decided on your property. It presented very well on the internet and appeared that it had most everything we were looking for. You were also very accommodating in offering great suggestions on what to do and where to go.
Darryl and Trina were the first to arrive and spent the first 3 days and nights at your property. First of all I want to first say that the pictures do not give a clear idea of the quality of the property. Although the place had an amazing view, your property was tired and very basic in quality. Although the property seemed generally clean, (I say generally, partly because of the humidity and I understand that), esthetically the property was cluttered with old and very tired decorations and furnishings. Sometimes the saying of “less is more” is fitting. This would allow a feeling of more space in your home and would also be less of a burden for your housekeeper to have to wipe and clean. Both of the door screens were off the guides in the downstairs unit and the upstairs unit had holes in the sliding door screening. We pointed this out to Curlson when we first arrived. He said he would let the house keeper know. Those considerations aside what was most disconcerting when getting settled and finding our way around was the discovery of a large rat in a trap by the barbeque. (We took pictures of this for the record). The next day we called your housekeeper and informed her about our surprise and that we would like it to be taken care of. Revealingly, her response was “is it dead now?” The fact that she knew about the rodent was quite surprising, more so because she left it there in the first place, dead or alive!!!! She then said that Curlson had called her to tell her about the screens and informed us that the screen guy would be coming in the morning and would also remove the dead rat. I asked why there were holes in the screen and she said it was most likely the rat. The screen guy came that next morning to fix the screens and he reluctantly took care of the rat. He also confirmed that he was called the day before but was too busy that day to change the screening from what was obviously rodent infiltration. Later that night we were out enjoying a glass of wine, enjoying the view and along came another rat along the front window ledge directly towards us, we scared that off with loud noises and movement. The rat ran back towards the bush and wall that separates both properties. Two nights later Darren and Karen joined us but we decided to not inform them about the rats and have it affect their holiday. The next day after their arrival we were having drinks and Darryl decided to tell Darren but not Karen of the incident. Darren then informed Darryl that in the morning on the lower level they spotted a rat caught in another trap, (more pictures of this!) So we all talked about this and decided to call the housekeeping lady back again and had her call an exterminator. Having another couple joining us that evening, we did not want them to know about these incidences for fear of ruining their vacation. The exterminator was very helpful and informed us that there had been a problem with rats for the last 2 weeks at this property. He also showed us the third trap being used on the corner by the sitting area of the pool. He reset the other two traps and left.
Another comment that has to be made was the very loose and piled sheets that made us scratch and itch for the first few days. We than began to think about bed bugs. We ripped apart the bed in the middle of the night to find huge amounts of dirt/dust and debris under and throughout the bed. Thankfully, no bed bugs though. We washed that bedding and replaced it with another set in the storage area that was not loose, but piled as well. Over the mattress and beneath the sheets on the bed was a crunchy fabric, (for wetting the bed and staining??), and a big worn out and stained foam pad. Every time we moved in the bed, a crunchy noise would happen. The bed itself was fine after we took off the child proof toppers. My point is that the bed, linens and pillows at this price point needs to be luxurious. A good sleep is a must at any property selling overnights!
Furthermore when we turned on “all” ceiling fans, huge clouds of dust flew over the house and required us to clean them . A half an inch thick of dust on the blades!! Not exaggerating. We were not looking, just happened to notice when they were turned on.
Now how would you react to this? Obviously we should have been informed of the “rat issue” prior to our arrival, as staff and contractors were working on this problem well in advance. At this point we could have decided if we still wanted to stay there. We all feel very let down and upset that you were not forthcoming about this. Our expectations certainly were not realized. We know that these things happen and sometimes you do not want to inform your guests of issues, like bed bugs in a hotel or rats at your rental establishment. But when your guests experience them it tends to get expensive.
I am asking you to please let us know what compensation you are willing to offer. Having spent as many years as I have in the hotel business I would refund the entire stay of the guest that had similar experiences, first of all to apologize but also to protect ourselves from further damage to our reputation. We are certainly not looking for a free vacation at your property but feel we paid entirely too much money for this type of experience. We do not wish to cause trouble but I am sure you can see if from our collective point of view.
Please kindly get back to us so we may know what your thoughts are.
Darren, Karen, Tom, Cheryl, Darryl and Trina
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|How easy was key pickup/access to the property?||Overall condition of the property|
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