Pasir Panjang Inn / Baseless accusation unfairly made by hotel management
20 August 2016
On 19 August I made a booking for an overnight stay from 20 August to 21 August for 2 adults at Pasir Panjang Inn on Agoda. We had made a previous visit on 31 July to 1 August and are regular guests at the Inn.
At 10 am on 20 August, I made a call to inquire on the earliest possible check-in time and were told we could check-in at 11.30 am, nothing else was mentioned.
We took a cab, costing us $20, from my workplace and was looking forward to getting some rest after working a 12 hour shift.
We arrived at 10:50 am and while checking-in, the manager, Michael, suddenly shouts from his desk asking if we stole the hotel's bed-sheet and pillow casings on our last visit, shaming us by publicly accusing us of stealing in the front of the receptionist's desk located in the lobby.
We answered honestly that we did not steal any items and instead was trying to help the cleaners with some of their tasks as we extended our stay by 3 hours and having experience in working as a chambermaid at Porcelain hotel, I understood the pain of having to clean a dirty room in a hurry.
We assisted by taking the dirty bed-sheet and pillow casing, rolling it into a bundle and leaving it outside in the corridor.
After explaining our actions and intentions, we received an accusing comment that his cleaners were unable to find anything, and made a remark that it was "funny", "not normal" and "weird" for guests to help make-up the room and continued insisting that we stole the items.
I asked politely for him to check CCTV for footage of the corridor but he was very reluctant to and refused to check.
The manager then left without updating us and left us standing at the counter with no clue of what is happening, only coming back to view the CCTV footage 20 minutes later, which took around another 10 minutes, and took photos with his smartphone but did not share them with us.
Michael seemed to want to avoid continuing the investigation after checking the CCTV footage. I asked him to call the authorities to investigate the issue but he fervently refused and declared, "I am not going to make this a big issue, I am not going to charge you for the missing items but I am not going to let u check in." No proper follow up was given and he just walked away, leaving us with a wasted taxi trip and the stress of having to rush to book another room in other hotels on a weekend.
Better methods of approaching this issue would have been to;
- Prepare evidence (if any) and investigate thoroughly before guest's arrival and present said evidence in a fair and transparent manner, ensuring to watch footage from other areas such as the lobby, exit or lift instead of just one area.
- Informed us of the missing items when we made an inquiry on check in time/ when booking was made/ sent email or messaged me after last visit.
- Be unbiased and not narrow minded, staff can make mistakes too, carefully evaluate both sides and give judgement only when conclusive has been presented and verified. Be more professional and do a proper follow up if you choose to turn away guests especially when said guest is a regular and the accusation is groundless.
Overall, the whole incident has been unfair to us, accusing us regular customers of stealing without a proper investigation and relying solely on the cleaner's testimony. Extremely disappointing to have to go through such an ordeal at an inn that we frequent.
A desirable resolution for this matter would be;
- Compensation for the costs incurred due to being unfairly turned away.
- A proper report of the incident, including related CCTV footage of the actual person responsible for the loss of items.