The Hilton Canopy in Dallas Uptown walked guests last week, something that happens all the time. But the guests suspects discrimination, and the situation is odd to say the least.
I was alerted to a situation this week through a Facebook group for Hilton Diamond and Gold members. A gay interracial male couple checked in to the Hilton Canopy Dallas Uptown on Saturday, September 14th on a one-night reservation which they hoped to adjoin to their Sunday-Thursday reservation. The pair had arrived earlier than they initially expected and wanted to extend their stay on the front side of their trip.
The first reservation for a single night was in an ADA-room. The second reservation for generally the same room type (though not a designated ADA room) the duration of the stay. The couple had some issues with the property (outlined below) but had asked if they could stay in the same room throughout their stay, the room type was available online for sale at the time they asked and following their checkout.
Following service issues, they were walked from the hotel (kicked out) following the first night without explanation nor alternate accommodation. The booking party holds Diamond status with Hilton, their loyalty program’s (Honors) highest public elite level.
The guests had trouble getting their luggage for nearly a week stay (several pieces) into the hotel and were not offered assistance by the bell staff despite their struggle. Once inside, they spent an extended period of time waiting to be checked in while the staff was otherwise occupied. Once in the room, several service items were missing or unsatisfactory, the room didn’t even have toilet paper according to their account.
The guests raised these issues with the front desk and were told they would be contacted by a manager. By 4:30 pm the following day, the pair were told they could no longer be accommodated in the property without further explanation. The General Manager never called to address their complaints. A duty manager, Clint, was the one who delivered the news that it was time to leave the property without giving a reason why.
Again, without any help from the bell staff with their bags, they found themselves back on the curb and had to contact American Express for a refund of the remaining nights. They booked their stay elsewhere at their own expense. The property did not make arrangements for the couple.
The guests sensed judgement from several staff members starting at the curb. It was subtle, and they don’t think the room was intentionally poorly serviced in anticipation of their visit, they also don’t think that the slow checkin process had anything to do with them.
The couple were addressed rather publicly and never given a reason as to why they could no longer be accommodated. They were walked from the hotel and again without any assistance regarding their bags. It seemed as though there may be something more to the story.
At minimum, if the hotel was sold out for either room type (it wasn’t), and that was the reason for the walk, Honors rules would have required the following:
- Find suitable accomodation at another Hilton if possible with the full cost covered by the hotel
- Hotel General Manager issues a written apology
- $200 cash on the spot
There are some other items but these are the easiest for me to verify.The guests were not offered another location, had to contact AMEX to file for a refund of their costs, the General Manager did not reach out to them or me, they did not receive any cash for their expulsion. They still have not been given a reason for why they were told to leave.
The Hotel’s Response
After hearing the guest’s perspective, I reached out the property to discuss it further. I encouraged the guest to do the same and they were advised the General Manager would contact them on Thursday (following their Sunday checkout.)
Thursday came and went for the guest and they never heard from the elusive manager. Nor did I. I left a couple of voicemails and spoke with at least two employees and was told I would also receive a call from a manager. I never heard from anyone from the property.
I believe wholly that there are always two sides to any story. I would love to provide a statement from the hotel, a counter to the claim or at least the hotel’s perspective on the matter. I am unable to do that at this time.
I have never been walked from a hotel. I do not fit into this couple’s demographic but I don’t want to assume they are reading into something that’s not there. I also do not want to assume that the hotel discriminated. But there are two problems with assuming the hotel did nothing wrong. The hotel failed to reach out to the guests or myself, they failed to do so – that’s either disorganized or dismissive. The property also walked a Diamond member already checked into the property so even if the justification was valid, there was also very little impetus to follow up with anyone and tell their side of the story.
Hilton corporate has been very proactive in the past with me and I imagine that hotel management at the Canopy by Hilton Dallas Uptown didn’t inform them of my requests for comment either. Without their voice on this matter, how could we assume anything but accurate feelings from the guests?
What do you think? Did the hotel discriminate or was there something else at play? Have you ever been in a similar situation?