My Aria Mistake Rate Dilemma
Back on May 26 I found a great deal at the Aria in Las Vegas on Booking.com. (Actually I saw the deal on Extreme Hotel Deals via my friend Doc Maur.) The deal was for a Penthouse Suite which normally goes for close to $1,000 per night, but was costing $110 for one night only next April. (That price includes the resort fee!)
Earlier this year I stayed at the Aria and thought it was a decent enough hotel, but not something I would go out of my way to pay for again. This Penthouse Suite though is not part of the regular Aria, but instead is part of their hotel within a hotel known as Sky Suites. In other words, this is a room I would definitely pay $110 for.
Before I go any further, this is how the Penthouse Suite is described on their website:
We’ve left nothing to chance in creating our Penthouse Suites. Within this 1,465 square-foot sanctuary you’ll find lavish décor and amenities, pulse-quickening, one-of-a-kind views through floor-to-ceiling windows, and our exclusive one-touch in-room technology that allows you to easily customize your suite’s features. Our 1-Bedroom Penthouse Suite wraps you in a luxuriousness you’ll be reluctant to leave.
Sounds awesome right? Are you jealous? Well you shouldn’t be. I have been excited about this booking for the past 23 days since I confirmed it and they charged my card. Of course, this morning my excitement went away when I received the following email from Booking.com:
ARIA Resort & Casino at CityCenter Las Vegas has been in touch with us today regarding your reservation 7#######3. They informed us that due to technical issues they have oversold the type of room you have chosen (Penthouse Suite) .Unfortunately, this means that they won’t be able to honor your reservation as booked. We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.
Instead they can offer you the Deluxe room with a food and beverage credit of $100.00.
The Wind Out of my Sails
So they oversold the room? That really isn’t surprising given the very low rate. Their website does also show this type of room is completely sold out for the one night I am booked for. There are plenty of other suites though and other category rooms which makes me dislike their proposed solution.
They want me to take a “Deluxe Room” which is actually their lowest category. This is a standard room on a low floor with a freeway view. Being an MLife Platinum I checked their rates for this night and the room is going for $105 before resort fee. My rate is about $75.
Yes they are also throwing in a $100 food & beverage credit. although that isn’t anything too special. When I stayed at Aria earlier this year I paid $100 for the night and that also included the same $100 credit. So this would be marginally better than my MLife offer but not much.
So I responded to Booking.com asking if they were willing to do anything more. Remember they didn’t even offer to give me a room with a view, but simply their lowest category. A few hours later they responded that Aria said no to them.
In my next response I asked if they would give me a Penthouse Suite on an alternate date. I do live here and thus have some flexibility. What do you think their response was to that? They said sure I could do a different night in a Penthouse Suite and all I would need to do is pay the rate difference. What?!? So why don’t I just cancel and rebook?
What to Do
I did respond one more time asking for them to get a supervisor involved. At this point I am not playing the role of angry customer, but the wording of their original email indicated to me that some people had this rate honored until the hotel filled up. If that is the case then I have a problem with them cancelling or changing my reservation almost a month after it was booked and my card charged.
The chances are this was a mistake rate, although we aren’t talking about a $5 rate here. My rate is just slightly below the rate they are selling their basic room for on the same night. I’m not sure how far I am willing to push and if I will take a Deluxe Room. Most likely I won’t, considering I stayed in one earlier this year and I won’t even receive Hyatt credit.
So at this point I am a little torn. I have booked several mistake rates in the past that weren’t honored and while it is upsetting I have moved on. Never have I had a hotel come back nearly a month after the booking was confirmed and try to change things.
What do you think? Should I just give up and cancel? Should I keep the basic room and enjoy the hotel or should I keep pushing to find some sort of a resolution. They do after all have regular suites available on that night and many other room categories.