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Forums Hotel loyalty schemes IHG One Rewards InterContinental Edinburgh – lounge and rooms

  • NorthernLass 6,706 posts

    There was quite a bit of publicity when it happened!

    https://www.edinburghlive.co.uk/news/edinburgh-news/luxury-edinburgh-hotel-blasted-over-20477225

    We had a nice time, and the breakfast was very good, IMO, but the service definitely didn’t match the price tag, which often tops £400 pn these days.

    dst87 255 posts

    Well that is disappointing. That story completely passed me by. I guess I’ve been lucky with the service, as everyone has been great except at breakfast as previously noted.

    Lets see how I get on this year! 😬

    AnotherUser 180 posts

    Yeah – that is disappointing! I’d found the service and the room very good earlier this year (hence planning to come back), though it sounds like I lucked out with the weather! Good to know that they’re being fairly restrictive with free upgrades now – booked a room category where a 1 category ambassador upgrade will give me a junior suite, so at least we should have a decent size room

    Me2 8 posts

    Hi – I recently stayed at this hotel, as Ambassador and Diamond IHG member.

    We were originally quoted what we felt was a ridiculous amount for adding Club Lounge access for 2 people (£130 per night). I pointed out (as others have already commented) that we already have breakfast included as Diamond IHG members so it was not really worth it, but there was no discount offered to account for that.

    However, on check in we were offered the chance to look at the lounge and to then decide if we were interested in access for £30 per night (This was for the 2 of us, so £60 total for 2 people for 2 nights). This was a discounted rate to acknowledge that we already had the breakfast free of charge. We decided that on balance we would go for it – and not only so we could report back here ! Maybe they had been reading the Head for Points Forum.

    It was a good place to sit and relax at the end of the day and also in the evening for a drink (and if you get one of the window seats a chance to people watch and see some excellent Christmas lights on George Street).

    The afternoon tea was very good (scones with cream & jam plus other cakes) and in the evening there was canapes (cheese & crackers etc though not really enough food for a full meal if you were even a little bit hungry). The fact that it was much quieter than the public bars was a big benefit. The lounge has very attentive staff serving and you can also self serve.

    An extra bonus was that the hotel even deducted the £15 Ambassador food and drink benefit from our final bill, which further reduced the overall cost.

    Me2 8 posts

    Hi – I recently stayed at this hotel, as Ambassador and Diamond IHG member.

    We were originally quoted what we felt was a ridiculous amount for adding Club Lounge access for 2 people (£130 per night). I pointed out (as others have already commented) that we already have breakfast included as Diamond IHG members so it was not really worth it, but there was no discount offered to account for that.

    However, on check in we were offered the chance to look at the lounge and to then decide if we were interested in access for £30 per night (This was for the 2 of us, so £60 total for 2 people for 2 nights). This was a discounted rate to acknowledge that we already had the breakfast free of charge. We decided that on balance we would go for it and not only so we could report back here ! Maybe they had been reading the Head for Points Forum.

    It was a good place to sit and relax at the end of the day and also in the evening for a drink (and if you get one of the window seats a chance to people watch and see some excellent Christmas lights on George Street).

    The afternoon tea was very good (scones with cream & jam plus other cakes) and in the evening there was canapes (cheese & crackers etc though not really enough food for a full meal if you were even a little bit hungry). The fact that it was much quieter than the public bars was a big benefit. The lounge has very attentive staff serving, and you can also self serve.

    An extra bonus was that the hotel even deducted the £15 Ambassador food and drink benefit from our final bill, which reduced the cost slightly more.

    rk1 47 posts

    Stayed at the Edinburgh Intercontinental a few weeks ago. Two nights with lounge access and was Ambassador diamond member. Check in was poor with no recognition of diamond status. Room was tiny. Unfortunately I did pay the 130 pound per night premium for lounge access – a complete waste of money. I only booked because of the IHG offer on my amex card but booking was rejected by amex because it was an advance booking.

    So overall a rubbish experience at the Edinburgh Intercontinental and I have no intention of returning. Kimpton much much better.

    NorthernLass 6,706 posts

    Amex wouldn’t know whether it was an advance booking, they pay out regardless unless the method used by the hotel isn’t aligned to the Amex offer (someone has explained this in an earlier post on this thread).

    Amex has now applied my £70 and given me an extra £50 for having to chase it so many times!

    My experience was very similar to @rk1, and so far I’ve had no acknowledgement from the hotel of the “feedback” I provided on this! I’m also disinclined to return, especially while they’re asking £400+ for a cosy room!

    dst87 255 posts

    Ouch. @rk1 what was your experience like in the lounge? You said it was a waste of money but didn’t say much about what it was like. Though I struggle to imagine getting £130 of value per night at any lounge honestly.

    NorthernLass 6,706 posts

    I emailed Ambassador again yesterday to let them know I still hadn’t heard anything from The George about my stay and they’ve immediately given me 15k points by way of apology so hopefully any “feedback” will trickle back to the hotel!

    rk1 47 posts

    @ dst78 – The lounge experience was the worst we’ve experienced when compared to 5 others we have visited ( Park Lane, Sydney, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Vienna). For example on first day sandwiches are supposed to be served from 2pm – we waited until 2.30 and nothing arrived so we went to a local cafe. Food in the evening is limited and is mainly cold cuts and fish that require some refrigeration so after a few hours the food didn’t look too appetising For both evenings the food was exactly the same which could be tedious for anyone staying there for an extended period.

    Overall I did feel for the staff as I got the feeling the George just doesn’t have the staff to manage the lounge properly. There is nobody checking lounge access in the evening so anyone can just wander in without paying any premium. Staff wander in when they can but you get a feeling of part-timers working in the lounge possibly pulled in from other day jobs in the hotel.

    Only positive was there were so few people my wife and I have the entire lounge to ourselves for most of both evenings.

    @ NorthernLass – I was asked for feedback from the hotel whilst on train journey home. I made it very clear I want no ‘ come back again and give us another chance’ type response as I don’t see why my misfortune should be viewed as a positive training benefit for the hotel. Surprising I did receive an almost immediate response from the General Manager which was genuinely apologetic and he offered 60K IHG points as compensation which I accepted.

    NorthernLass 6,706 posts

    Interesting – I’ve now dug out the actual email questionnaire and filled it in!

    Me2 8 posts

    @ rk1 – regarding the AMEX IHG £70 credit – we also didn’t get it automatically.

    I spoke to Amex yesterday who said that the way the hotel processed our payment, meant that for some reason the AMEX system didnt pick it up as qualifying spend (and it had some odd extra reference on the card statement).

    Amex were very happy to process this manually and the rebate appeared today on my online statement….so you may want to do the same. Good luck.

    dst87 255 posts

    Noticed a couple of days ago that the upgrade that was applied to my booking shortly after booking (from a Junior Suite to a 1 Bed Suite) has been reverted.

    Curious to hear what happens at check-in today and if I end up having to ask for the Ambassador compensation. I’ve never not had an upgrade before.

    They also emailed me offering lounge access for £30/person/night… despite this being included already with the room I booked. I replied and have heard nothing, so already my experience this year is worse than last year. 😬

    rk1 47 posts

    @ Me2 ‘I spoke to Amex yesterday who said that the way the hotel processed our payment, meant that for some reason the AMEX system didnt pick it up as qualifying spend (and it had some odd extra reference on the card statement).Amex were very happy to process this manually and the rebate appeared today on my online statement….so you may want to do the same. Good luck.’

    Unfortunately my booking was an advanced booking and as AMEX pointed out advanced bookings are not eligible.

    dst87 255 posts

    Sure enough, checked in and “there was no available room”, though the upgraded category of room was showing on my reservation from around when I booked in January until a couple of weeks ago.

    Clearly they decided they’d rather sell the higher grade room instead of the room I was in. But it seems that if the award is “guaranteed” then the higher category should effectively be locked in at the point of booking.

    Person checking me in was very apologetic and the duty manager a little more defensive but more or less apologetic. Manager advised to feed it back to IHG.

    Standard 10k points awarded and she chucked in some extra drinks vouchers too. Still, the Jr. suite is lovely and we stayed in the exact same room 2 years ago.

    Won’t ruin our trip, and hotel and staff are as lovely as we remembered despite this issue.

    Tracy 284 posts

    Staying here tonight for Hogmanay. I’ve used a free night cert for the room but I will be paying £60 for the lounge access and will spend a fair bit on food & drink for dinner etc. I have the spend £300 get £70 Amex offer. Just wondering if I can charge it all to the room and pay today as the offer expires 31/12 but I won’t be checking out until 1/1…..

    AnotherUser 180 posts

    @Tracy I’d think many hotels would be happy to do this (and the George were happy to take payment for a future booking of mine in advance). Some have systems set up to not allow advance payment for F&B spend, but definitely a reasonable request on check-in. I’m sure the hotel prefers customers who spend a few hundred on F&B over tightwads like me 🙂


    @dst87
    I don’t think the hotel us obliged to block out a higher category room at the time. To show you as updated then reverse it is crappy, though!

    Tracy 284 posts

    Thanks @AnotherUser, I’ll try and make a payment after I’ve charged dinner to the room 😂

    Grant 109 posts

    Any feedback from your stays @Tracy @dst87? I am booked in for two nights next month, one on points the other with my last Creation voucher, and am wondering whether to switch to the Kimpton given recent mixed experiences. I have an expiring Amb membership though and keen to squeeze out one more use from it if I can.

    NorthernLass 6,706 posts

    I haven’t stayed at the Kimpton for a couple of years but we were definitely treated better there than at the George, regardless of being Ambassador!

    dst87 255 posts

    Any feedback from your stays @Tracy @dst87? I am booked in for two nights next month, one on points the other with my last Creation voucher, and am wondering whether to switch to the Kimpton given recent mixed experiences. I have an expiring Amb membership though and keen to squeeze out one more use from it if I can.

    Honestly I had a lovely time. The staff were great, once again, and I found the lounge really pleasant. Despite not getting the “guaranteed” upgrade, the junior suite that we booked was still lovely, spacious, and comfortable (we’d stayed in the exact same room previously).

    Maybe I have incredibly low standards, but I was very happy. What I would say: the hotel is split in two, with the original George Street townhouse (c.17), plus a newer tower at the back (c.1960s). The suites we’ve stayed in have all been in the townhouse section, while the standard room I had was in the tower. I find the overall experience much nicer in the townhouse, but I don’t know for sure how the room categories are divided between the two.

    On the lounge, the member of staff there was brilliant. There was always a member of staff when we were in, though the previous poster is right that the room has no access control. We were asked for our room number when we entered.

    Soft drinks and snacks are available all day, and between 17:00 and 19:00 they added a bar and canapés. Bar was self service (which I prefer) but I saw others ask for a drink which didn’t seem to be a problem. Drinks selection was basic – a vodka, whisky, and run, with various mixers. Red and white wine. Maybe a sparkling too, I can’t remember. Canapés were fantastic and also self service. Nothing that would constitute a meal though, except by quantity if you really wanted to.

    Breakfast included a continental buffet plus an a la carte menu that you could order from. The food on the buffet was pretty good, but the “cooked to order” food was mixed. My scrambled eggs were overcooked IMO (I like ’em runny), but Alex’s omelette was good. I had the full breakfast the second day and it was above average but not exceptional.

    Personally I wouldn’t pay £60 / person / night for access. I also notice that the prices of the suites seems to have gone up _significantly_ since we booked, so I’m guessing the opening of the lounge has been factored in.

    Readers should be aware that I paid £570 for two nights in a Jr. Suite over Hogmanay using an AMB free weekend night – I’m well aware that we got an exceptionally good deal there.

    dst87 255 posts

    Well… I left a big reply, but it seems to have disappeared when I tried to edit it… That’s odd. Posting again here, but if this ends up duplicated feel admin can delete whichever one they like!

    Any feedback from your stays @Tracy @dst87? I am booked in for two nights next month, one on points the other with my last Creation voucher, and am wondering whether to switch to the Kimpton given recent mixed experiences. I have an expiring Amb membership though and keen to squeeze out one more use from it if I can.

    Honestly I had a lovely time. The staff were great, once again, and I found the lounge really pleasant. Despite not getting the “guaranteed” upgrade, the junior suite that we booked was still lovely, spacious, and comfortable (we’d stayed in the exact same room previously).

    Maybe I have incredibly low standards, but I was very happy. What I would say: the hotel is split in two, with the original George Street townhouse (c.17), plus a newer tower at the back (c.1960s). The suites we’ve stayed in have all been in the townhouse section, while the standard room I had was in the tower. I find the overall experience much nicer in the townhouse, but I don’t know for sure how the room categories are divided between the two.

    On the lounge, the member of staff there was brilliant. There was always a member of staff when we were in, though the previous poster is right that the room has no access control. We were asked for our room number when we entered.

    Soft drinks and snacks are available all day, and between 17:00 and 19:00 they added a bar and canapés. Bar was self service (which I prefer) but I saw others ask for a drink which didn’t seem to be a problem. Drinks selection was basic – a vodka, whisky, and run, with various mixers. Red and white wine. Maybe a sparkling too, I can’t remember. Canapés were fantastic and also self service. Nothing that would constitute a meal though, except by quantity if you really wanted to.

    Breakfast included a continental buffet plus an a la carte menu that you could order from. The food on the buffet was pretty good, but the “cooked to order” food was mixed. My scrambled eggs were overcooked IMO (I like ’em runny), but Alex’s omelette was good. I had the full breakfast the second day and it was above average but not exceptional.

    Personally I wouldn’t pay £60 / person / night for access. I also notice that the prices of the suites seems to have gone up _significantly_ since we booked, so I’m guessing the opening of the lounge has been factored in.

    Readers should be aware that I paid £570 for two nights in a Jr. Suite over Hogmanay using an AMB free weekend night – I’m well aware that we got an exceptionally good deal there.

    dst87 255 posts

    I can’t change it now, but I realise that I wrote c.17 for the original building which is clearly not accurate. Before someone calls it out! 🙈

    NorthernLass 6,706 posts

    Lol, @dst87, someone was raving on TA about the ICPL being a wonderful example of Art Deco when AFAIK it’s actually a bit of a 1970s monstrosity!

    Grant 109 posts

    Many thanks @dst87, sounds like you enjoyed yourselves and you definitely got a good deal.

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