Here at the Hotel, we’ve had our share of nightmare guests.
I’ve found the hotel to be sort of a microcosm – you can relate your findings in this closed environment to generalizations about people in the world.
Of course this isn’t perfect since we really cater to a certain income level and possibly are skewed to certain age groups and ethnicities. But generally I find that most people are friendly, if forgettable, but every once in a while you get someone you could imagine becoming really great friends with – and then someone comes along who you actually loathe.
My mom always told me about guest horror stories – and I always loved to hear about them so I thought it would be a good place to get them down on my blog.
Jason Van Deushen and the Douche Bags
I had been in correspondence with this guy for a couple of months. You never really know much about people until they arrive – our booking form asks for country of residence, but we don’t always get the city so if they’re from the USA they could be from California or Texas. Big difference. We only know the number of adults and kids, and kids ages (we ask because we charge for kids over 13) so the person could be young or old and we only find out when they get here unless it has come up for some reason or another.
Jason and his 2 buddies had wanted to go white water rafting, so I booked that for them before they got here (and noted that white water rafters are generally on the younger side). He wanted to pay for his room in full before he arrived (a strange request) but I got the authorization and processed it. I set up the taxi to pick them up at the airport. And when they arrived and James checked them in we met three 20-something year old guys.
The first night they were here, we didn’t think there were any problems. Until the next morning, when another guest came into our office almost in tears.
You see, she had been staying in the room next to the 3 guys and had been kept up all night by them. They weren’t just partying. They had picked up some working girls in town (sadly fairly common here), but that wasn’t what had bothered her. The reason she was upset was because they had kept her up half of the night explicitly describing every detail of what they had done with their hookers. At top volume. It was very disturbing to her and she was horrified that people like this existed in the world.
I felt so bad that I gave her the night free and moved her to another room far from the guys. I then had James go over and talk to them, telling them what had happened giving them an ultimatum. They were totally embarrassed, and apologized profusely. They basically snuck in and out of the hotel for the rest of the week, like dogs with their tails between their legs. I lost all respect for them and they couldn’t have enjoyed their vacation nearly as much after the incident on the first day…
Rick P. and the Troublesome Five
This group was 3 couples in their mid to late 30’s. They had bid on an auction that we had donated to a certain charity. So essentially to us they were staying for free for the first 3 nights. They paid for the last 3.
The first night they arrived late and stayed up partying until the wee hours, so our guard Rafa had to ask them to be quiet. Luckily they were one of the only rooms that night so they didn’t disturb people much. The next morning I met them all and they seemed decent enough, though slightly drunk at 9am.
Later that day, I saw them come back from town with no less than 3 cases of beer. I knew they were big partiers so I pre-emptively told them that I wanted them to have a good vacation but that they should know we had a lot of families coming in that day and there would be children staying at the hotel who would be going to bed early. If they wanted to party late and be loud they should go out. They agreed.
Then they proceeded to get WASTED for the next 3 hours of the afternoon. They were dominating the pool, yelling and being ridiculously loud. None of the children who had arrived even wanted to go near the pool because of these rowdy adults. I went over to them and let them know they needed to tone it down a little and they gave me some attitude like “you said we needed to be quiet tonight – it’s only 5pm” so I walked away, hopeful that they would just pass out sooner than later.
As James came out of the office he saw one of their flip-flops floating in the pool. This angered him so much that he took it out and threw it in the garbage. I told him to take it out, and as he walked over to the room to give it back to them he saw one of the guy’s wives so he tossed it in her direction. She took that as him “throwing a shoe at her” and an argument started. Out came Rick. James asked him why they are acting like teenagers and said “How old are you guys anyway?!” Rick got very defensive and a physical fight nearly broke out. I separated the guys and sent James downstairs. Rick went to his room. I called my mom and asked her what to do and she said she would come and talk to them.
My mom used to be a lawyer and she is very good as reasoning with people and playing up the “fairness” issue. She tried to explain our position to them but they were so drunk that one of them kept saying to her “So why did you leave Canada to move to Costa Rica??” all slurry and shit. So she gave them an ultimatum and explained that this was a family place and it was not appropriate behaviour. They said they “didn’t know” it was a family place (which is total B.S. because it says so all over our website) and that they were thinking about leaving. I was hoping they would leave.
Then I didn’t see them for 2 days. Like the VanDouchens, they snuck in and out of their room, embarrassed to see me. Then a couple of days before the end of their trip Rick came up to James and I and apologized for his behaviour. James admitted he had acted unprofessionally and they shook hands. Then they left a day early but paid for the full length of stay. It was such a strange group and I was so relieved to have them gone!
It was such a brutal two weeks but we have had nothing but good guests since, so I guess when it rains, it pours. Speaking of rain we are coming into the rainy season here in Costa Rica. I hope all of you North Americans are enjoying your lovely spring/summer! ❤