Wednesday, December 26

Montigo Resorts - When terrible is an understatement

I booked for Montigo Resorts in Nongsa, Batam because I wanted to give my family an experience of a lifetime and boy; it was truly an experience of a lifetime, but in a negative way!

I had travelled and stayed in many high-end resorts and hotels for personal or business trip, nothing was as terrible as this resort. From the beginning to the ending of our stay, what we experienced were nothing close to what we paid for.

Days before our arrival, I wrote to the resort and ask for early check-in because we will be travelling with young children and an elderly mother, I was told they will try to accommodate my request. So when I arrived at local time 11.30am, after filling out the necessary forms and presented my credit card for check-in, the front-desk staff asked us to take a seat while he check my villa for me. We sat around the lobby and waited. And after half an hour, still no news from anyone from the resort, then my husband approached the front-desk again and this time another staff told us that the check-in is only at 3pm! 

We were unhappy with the answer. Firstly, I don't have to wait for more than 30 minutes to hear that the check-in is 3pm, because I already know, that's why I requested for early check-in and if early check-in is not possible, at least let us know immediately, not after such a long delay. We totally felt like fools sitting there waiting and waiting in vain.

When I confronted the front-desk personnel who did the check-in for me earlier, he said nothing and merely gave me a what-see-like an apologetic smile. WTF!

Knowing that we were unable to check-in, we decided to go to the town (some 40 minutes drive away) for lunch (my kids were starving already), but was told the free shuttle bus only operates in one timing - 10am to town and 4pm back from town to resort. We had to take our own transport there. So we arranged for a $26 per trip ride to town and reserved for our seats back from town with the resort shuttle bus.

When it was 4pm, the resort sent a tiny van to pick all of the guests up from the town. There were more than 20 people all squeezed into that tiny van, it sure spelled hazardous with a capital H! What’s the point of having reservation if the resort just can’t do simple math and had to use a tiny vehicle to pick all its resort guests, exceeding the vehicle’s maximum capacity and endangering the lives of all of us!

Local time was nearly 5pm, when we finally check into our villa. On the facade the villa looks luxurious, but upon closer inspection, you will noticed there are just loads of flaws. The wood of the dining table had split, the TV in the living room had its reception messed up and all channels were shown with 'snowflakes', one of the tap in the master bedroom had loosen, the glass door of the shower creaked badly whenever I tried to close it (and the door won't even stay shut) and our villa's pool was not exactly clean. You won't believe if I told you the resort had only open for business some two months ago. However, these aren't the worst.

What happened next was horrendous! On our first night, the air-con in the master bedroom made a constant vibrating noise. We just tried to ignore it and go to sleep, then around 5 plus in the morning, we were rudely awaken from our sleep by this loud rattling noise, it sounded as if the motor or the blades of the air-con and caught something. I quickly sprung from my bed and turned off the air-con. Then I found water dripped from the air-con onto the table we placed our belonging and my bag was soaked! Fortunately, our mobile phones and cameras were not kept inside my bag or they could have been damaged for sure.

We phoned the resort and told them that we had asked for someone to fix our TV since last evening and no one came (yes, after 12 hours, not a soul show up) and now the air-con is breaking down, they had to send someone over at this instance and we desperately needed house-keeping!

When we came back from our breakfast, only air-con was fixed, the villa was still in a mess and the TV hadn't been touched. I wanted to puke blood already.

On our last day, we were at the only restaurant in the resort for breakfast and suddenly it was pouring. We asked the staff from the restaurant to call us a buggy to send us back to our villa as we needed to pack and check-out soon. The staff took more than 15 minutes to call for the buggy and when I thought the buggy had finally arrived, the buggy left without us because there is a distance from the restaurant and the place the buggy stopped and as it was raining we had to wait in the restaurant, and each time the buggy comes, before we could get to it, it will assume that there isn't anyone needing it and drive away. After the third buggy left us stranded in the restaurant, we gave up and decided to walk back to our villa in the rain with 2 children and 1 elderly mother! Doesn’t that piss you off big time!

Throughout our 3D2N stay, we had to put up with slow responses or even no show when we request for something, lousy management and mediocre services. The grand finale came when we were at the counter checking-out and the resort bus took our bags and luggage and left without us to the ferry terminal! I tried to run after the bus like a mad woman. It was then, a staff from the resort told me he would contact the driver of the bus and we could pick up our belonging when we reached the ferry terminal in the next bus, but no apologies were given.

When we reached the ferry terminal, we managed to retrieve our stuff and I was just dying to get away from Batam and its Montigo Resorts as fast as possible. It has been the WORST Christmas I ever had in my entire life, thanks to Montigo Resorts!

And believe it or not, I came back to Singapore with a fever! What luck!

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