East Hill Mafia / Gaylord National “Resort”

DSCN0077We arrived at the hotel in DC today for the Council on Foundations conference. Taylor and Johnny showed up in matching suits looking like our own enforcers. You know those charity guys, sometimes it takes a little muscle to keep them in line. 🙂

I’ve been to these before, and there is always a lot of good stuff to see and do. I intend to get the most out of them all, however this one is off to a poor start. (The CoF will be hearing from me.) We don’t want to be seen as a bunch of rich folks giving away money to assuage some sort of guilt (we aren’t), yet the Council scheduled this year’s conference at the Gaylord National Resort and Conference Center in DC. Ostentatious waste of money. This place is twice as expensive as any other hotel around, and so far the service is pitiful.

It’s a beautiful hotel, located right on the harbor with a huge atrium facing toward Washington. Yet the room is smaller than the one we had at Courtyard by Marriott last night, and it has less useful furniture. (Fancier, pretty, but not useful. ) We have two beds and a desk chair. No other sitting surfaces, and no floor lamp for my wife to read in bed. All for twice as much money. Did I mention they want $32 for the buffet dinner? And there is nowhere else around here to eat?

Then there’s the service. The valet copped an attitude when I asked to park my own car. I had to practically argue with him to allow me to unload my bags at the front door without handing over my keys. (Keys to the rental which no one else is allowed to drive.)

The piece de resistance: we called at 7:00PM to order some extra pillows for Beth. They make her more comfortable and keep her from rolling out of bed. It’s now 9:30, I’ve made 4 more phone calls, and STILL NO PILLOWS.

Gaylord National Resort: we’re fancy because we say we are. That’s all. One star from me, tops. If you come to the National Harbor area, save your money and stay at the Hampton Inn across the street.

Now I need to go activate my AdSense account. Maybe I can get them to pay me for my opinion.

Update: The pillows finally arrived at 9:35. They were personally brought by the Customer Service representative because even she couldn’t get the bell staff to do it. Thank you, Gaddiel, and boo to the rest of the staff. My opinion still stands.

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