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at the Vanderbilt, Auberge Resorts Collection
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Jul 8th, 2020
My Husband and I had stayed at this hotel years ago when it first opened in Newport and loved the stay. Seeing that it had been taken over approx. 2 years ago by the Auberge group lead us to believe the quality of the hotel would still be good if not great. We thought .....2 years they must have invested some money and updated. BIG MISTAKE on our part!!!! The hotel is totally run down. Stained carpets, stained furniture, bad lighting in rooms and bathrooms. We were not even give the suite we had pre paid for, the size of bed was incorrect. This is after waiting for the room to be ready. We arrived after the advised check in time so as not to have to wait to get into the room. The staffing level is not up to par either. The one front desk person also became the car valet when we returned from dinner. No other support staff around. It seems as if the Auberge group is just warehousing the property and collecting what they can from unsuspecting guests. I really was shocked at the condition so run down. Auberge hotel group should really be ashamed!!! So many other really lovely hotels in Newport pick another to go to. TRIPADVISOR.COM USER
Unfortunate decline of an iconic boutique hotel...
Jul 1st, 2020
I am not sure how to begin...We loved this spot after several previous visits but will never be back. Even though the staff tried to serve us, the grounds and amenities are withering away from years past. The Grace Vanderbilt was known for luxury, comfort, ambience, and allure. With the change of ownership and perhaps COVID, the atmosphere and ambience have changed. First, this establishment was never dog friendly. Now apparently, you must share the pool area with not only a family of screaming kids but their dog too. Rest assured however, the Golden Retriever at dinner was very well-behaved... Next, when I arrived, I asked for dinner and breakfast reservations from what should have been the concierge. My stay is over and I am home still waiting for any confirmation that I have those reservations from surrounding establishments...thanks for the follow-through. In years past, I would have an itinerary all set for the length of my stay. I had to make reservations at various establishments to ensure I could eat. My room was clean, quiet, and comfortable as usual. The beds and linens are lovely; however, my TV did not work and required a staff member to come back and forth three separate times in the middle of the day while my husband and I were trying to enjoy our privacy. He was not able to fix our TV until the next day. It was eventually fixed but for the level of interruption, I didn’t bother telling him the scale in our bathroom wasn’t working either or that there was no hair dryer to be found. With regard to the indoor pool, it is always nice, except I had to turn on the sauna and and wait 45 minutes for it to warm up. My husband and I walked 6 miles and wanted to unwind. The facilities looked desolate as if they were lying fallow for months, unused and ignored. It was inconvenient and annoying that I had to get the sauna going so that we could enjoy it. Also, we were always able to use the spa on premises. We would call for same day service and make appointments when we arrived. Suddenly, the spa can no longer makes same day appointments. They are now a "per diem", as needed spa. That info is critical at the time of check-in, especially when we were only staying two nights. If they had told us about the “as needed” reservation, we would have asked them to make reservations immediately. Forget the spa...We couldn't get a massage because we no longer had the time to book it. Critical information at time of check-in... In terms of wait staff, the young college kids were lovely. There were not many people on staff, so there was always a wait for everything - whether drinks at the pool, dining service, etc. I felt bad for the college kids working because they had to do everything. Although they were working hard, there was a refinement lacking from years past with their converse sneakers and jeans and their overt lack of knowledge about fine dining service. My morning coffee was cold, and when I finally received a hot cup, I had to stir it with my fork because there was no spoon. I could have asked for one, but the wait would have been excruciating and honestly, you get to a point where you do not want to point out one more thing. Were we patronizing a refined hotel or in a local bar? The food was excellent, but the ants all over the outdoor tables on the patio was off putting...as were the weeds everywhere. The patio is quaint and beautiful but in need of some care and not as spectacular an environment as in year's past. For some reason, this establishment refuses to open its Indoor dining room and forces its patrons to eat outside. There is a wonderful dining room and indoor bar that could be used in the evening, but they keep it closed and isolated. There is an outdoor firepit, but they do not light it. There is nothing after hours for patrons to enjoy the atmosphere. Although we had a lovely time, this stay was unlike the splendor and extravagance of the past. The manager spent his time with another couple at dinner talking “shop” and profit margins about business opportunities while we were trying to have a romantic anniversary dinner. He later apologized for the intrusion because I had to relocate to get away from the animated business conversation, but in year's past, that situation would never have happened. The Grace Vanderbilt was elegant, charming, refined. It seems new management tried to keep alive what once was with no understanding of the culture that made it special. Funny, when I made the reservation, the staff member asked if there was a special occasion, I explained it was our anniversary. In the past, we would have been greeted with Prosecco for this occasion, a note would have been left in our room with chocolate covered strawberries, and an acknowledgement at dinner would have happened. During this trip under new management, it was ignored and the ritual replaced with loud, intrusive “shop talk” during our dinner. Clearly, the culture has changed. Overall, this boutique hotel is still clean, comfortable, and quiet; however, this trip lacked the elegance, luxury, and refinement that justifies the expense. TRIPADVISOR.COM USER
Mar 16th, 2020
Cannot say enough about the service at this Newport hotel- large suite was perfect and the food is off the charts good- walking distance to everything-gorgeous hotel. Doormen wait for your arrival, check in Person, Elena was fast, courteous and very welcoming. The hotel, staff and food was extraordinary- can't wait to go back TRIPADVISOR.COM USER
Vanderbilt in Newport RI
Mar 10th, 2020
This was our first trip to Newport and the Vanderbilt staff made the experience extremely pleasant and relaxing. Hotel was centrally located and the accommodation was most luxurious. Suite was gigantic and comfortable. Bathrooms were spectacular. TRIPADVISOR.COM USER
Very Relaxing Stay
Mar 1st, 2020
Friendly staff, clean rooms, comfortable beds and pillows. We stayed in a loft room with the bedroom and main bath being upstairs and a pull out couch, second tv and half bath downstairs, this could very easily could accommodate a family of four. We were there in the winter and the blowers for the heat were a little loud but I understand they are replacing them soon. Great Location to everything in Newport. Lovely breakfast, fantastic oatmeal! TRIPADVISOR.COM USER
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