Holiday Inn Express & Suites Columbia - Downtown

501 Taylor St | Columbia, SC 29201-2738  [SEE MAP]Columbia, SC  [SEE ADDRESS]
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Guest Reviews

TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 3

Good but not impressive

Jul 12th, 2019

My wife and I came for one night. The hotel is nice and clean although they have lots of renovations so floor looks dirty in places. Nothing special really, especially the gentleman who checked us in was polite but unwilling to smile to us. I think I’d still choose to stay here if I pass by Columbia again. TRIPADVISOR.COM USER 

TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4

One setback won't discourage a repeat visit

Apr 22nd, 2019

Disclaimer: Although a travel agent, I will always review based on a traveler perspective with customer insight as I have been in that industry longer and is what drives my repeat business and recommendations. I booked this hotel for a stay for a couple of days of me being in Columbia for a concert. I booked it based on a few different factors being previous reviews, the brand that offers a travel agent rate, my own perception of the hotel beforehand, and the close proximity to the location of the concert. I honestly look for a few things going on a trip. Customer service (how well is the customer I.e. me going to be treated, and how well do the employees like their jobs), cleanliness, close proximity to various things in where I will be and a slew of small details. Although I look for these things, because I have spent years in customer service, and hospitality management, I have learned how to be a better traveler, and am not hard to please. I also am a person who reads the amazing disclaimers and fine print that most don't read so that I am not in for surprises. The day before I arrived to the hotel, I received a phone call from a number that I did not know where I continued to say hello but could not hear anyone. I later found out upon check in that that was Misha from the front desk at this particular hotel. Upon check in my reservation could not be found. Misha was very helpful and diligent in trying to find my reservation. However, there was another lady at the desk who unfortunately I did not catch her name, who mid way into looking for my reservation, looked up from what she was doing to tell me that my reservation had been canceled due to the card on file not being able to be authorized. Being that I am also an IHG rewards member and this was my first agent travel booking that I did through this brand, when booking the reservation, the card on file was linked to my IHG account which was not the card that should have been on file. I will take that mistake graciously as I did not double check that upon leaving the agent booking going into the IHG part of the reservation. However, on my confirmation there was nothing in fine or regular print that said that my reservation would be pre authorized the day before my stay, so honestly, just based on the fact that I am not hard to please I let it roll off of my shoulders. Misha apologized and tried her best to ask questions about trying to reinstate my reservation despite the fact that the other lady said she had already sold that room in an oh well sort of way. I explained to them (because I really wasn't upset, more off put by the customer service on one part than the other) that another room would be fine. Misha tried to reinstate my reservation but kept being told it could not be done and that I would just have to rebook it myself. Meanwhile the other lady left and another lady came out who I later found out her name was Jasmine. They worked together to try and help me rectify the situation and were honest the entire way through in telling me that if they rebooked it it would be a higher rate than if I booked it on the site. If I have learned one thing is that great customer service can bring a guest back for years rather than selling them out for a buck and treating them poorly. This entire time, my demeanor never changed and the atmosphere was laughter and great customer service and conversation even after I found the agent rate was no longer available (which I believe the previous lady knew), and booked at a higher rate. Jasmine finished up my reservation then it was on to the room. I have to say I cannot stand the after smell of a clean in a hotel room. You know the one where the mop is old and someone tries to use the bleach on it and it smells like bleach and mildew? Yeah that one. Well this location DID NOT have that smell and the room was amazing and clean. Everything worked, the beds were great, and the room was well stocked with towels and toiletry and the Keurig was a bonus on the coffee in the room. Every time we left or came back in we were greeted but so were other guests down to personalizing the greeting and it is that personal touch that I love in customer service. The lady for breakfast was amazing and so sweet. I watched as she went to go clean a table off as soon as someone got up and the towel dropped on the floor, I was so happy when she picked it up, took it back and got a new one. You'd be amazed the amount of restaurants I see that don't even do that. Breakfast was good, and parking was free and safe. I found that the hotel is actually really close to a lot of things. If I did not have my children and it wasn't raining I would not have mind the walk to the places we went to eat. The gentleman that worked the overnight shift was an absolute pleasure as well upon check out. If I could recommend anything as a traveler, someone who has been on the other side of that desk and also someone who now would decide or not decide to send people to this location it would be two things. I don't think employees during the day at least should have ear buds in their ears at the desk. I have seen this quite a bit in many establishments and have found that due to this things get done wrong and more mistakes are made because the employee is not really paying attention the customer. The young gentleman on night shift had his earbuds in his ears at the desk (not during the overnight part of his shift earlier on) and there were quite a few guests at or around the desk at that time. Number two cherish your patrons more than your dollars. I am not hard to please and I let things roll off of my shoulders before it really gets to me, but that is not the case with a lot of people. My situation could have been someone else's who could have become really upset and decided not to visit or recommend this hotel to others. It may not seem like a big problem but in the age where word of mouth travels faster than it used to because of the internet, one bad review could go a long way and I am talking a true honest review. I take some that I read with a grain of salt because I can read through a lot of honesty versus not dishonesty. However, there was part of me as a traveler that resonated with a reviewer that reviewed recently who talked about honesty. I felt like there was a bit of dishonesty in the beginning, and that my room got sold off for a higher rate. That is my opinion. However, the customer service that came after that reassured me I was still in good hands, and I honestly can say I was. I didn't let that little moment or the extra money I had to spend kill my time with this hotel, but that is me and I don't speak for everyone in this and for some that could be detrimental to their vacation or stay. Some people save for these trips little or big and having to come out of pocket extra because of something like this might end their stay with this particular hotel and brand. In all honesty I would stay again due to the customer service save, and the hotel is nice, the accommodations are not bad at all. Yes the walls are thin, but I was never bothered by anything. I would also recommend this hotel to clients, but would also make sure that I am checking up on my end to make sure their travel goes smoothly. TRIPADVISOR.COM USER 

TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 1

Honesty is everything

Apr 12th, 2019

I have been a Platinum IHG member for several years and during this time I have only staying in IHG properties. A perk of the status I have achieved has been upgrades I received when booking rooms. Upon a recent stay I had called the hotel several days before arrival and was provided and upgrade and the staff member told me the type of room I would be in. Upon my arrival the room i was guaranteed was not the room I was provided. I spoke with a staff member who fully admitted a mistake had been made but she had no way to correct it. I was told the room was sold to someone else, I was told the upgrade was never made by the original staff member, there were several excuses not sure what was the truth. For the first time I decided to hold the hotel accountable for their mistake and decided not to stay and after a long discussion with a staff member I was told not to worry they did not feel refunding my points was an issue and they would speak with the manager personally and follow up with me. When I never heard from anyone I called the manager who said he listened to the phone conversation when I called for the upgrade and he made excuses and said he wasn't doing anything to make it right. Needless to say I never heard from the staff member that committed to following up either. So in short, the hotel made me pay for their mistake and when I reached out to IHG rewards they backed the hotel as it sounded like the general manager misrepresented the true situation to them. As a result IHG has lost a client they has been extremely loyal over 30,000 points, no one even made an effort to even try to own their mistake or attempt to make it right. It is a bad feeling when you have a trusted business and personal partner that loses your trust. So my recommendation to travelers in business or for fun to Columbia do not stay at this property, chose one that your hard earned money or points as in my case are honored and you can trust the word of the people with who you do business and partner. I am sure the hotel will try to spin this in some other direction but this is what happened and this is the truth. Also, if Platinum member want to know what your loyalty is worth, it is 30,000 points! TRIPADVISOR.COM USER 

TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 3

Disappointment with this hotel

Apr 5th, 2019

My sister and I were in town with my niece to tour USC. My sister booked the rooms and was promised two adjoining rooms. We got to the hotel one hour early and asked to check in. We were not greeted for about 15 minutes while one desk agent stood there and another was waiting on someone. When we were helped the woman was quite short with us and rude. It turns out my sister booked through a third party and the hotel doesn’t have adjoining rooms. The woman could have cared less stating it happens all the time. She didn’t seem to care that the rooms weren’t even next to each other. She spoke inappropriately to her coworker in front of us. There was another disgruntled customer she argued with while waiting on us. We never did receive friendly helpful service from any of the front desk. One guy never took his ear buds out. Outside of this our stay was ok. The beds were comfortable. The shower was amazing! The rooms had no USB ports which seems highly outdated. Our room faced traffic on the second floor and it was LOUD! Thankfully I had my noise machine. Breakfast was a disappointment. The 2 ladies who worked it were super friendly and excellent at their job! We also didn’t realize the hotel was so far from campus. Will seek out a hotel closer to USC next time. Be prepared to drive wherever you need to go. TRIPADVISOR.COM USER 

TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5

Wonderful experience!

Mar 9th, 2019

I had such a wonderful experience staying at this hotel. I had never stayed in Columbia before and was looking for a nice, quick overnight getaway and I was so very satisfied! I arrived at the hotel in the middle of pretty severe weather and the receptionist greeted me warmly and got me checked in with no issues. Accommodations were exactly as described online and immaculately clean! A tornado actually touched down with a few miles of the hotel, and the staff handled it calmly and with ease. I was extremely pleased with my entire experience and will definitely be a return customer! TRIPADVISOR.COM USER