Dublin: 3 °C Saturday 27 November, 2021

A cottage owner in Clare seriously shut down a Tripadvisor review that questioned the accommodation's cleanliness

The manager didn’t take kindly to a complaint that the pool was ‘slippy’.

TripAdvisor stock Source: Chris Radburn

AT SOME STAGE over the last few years, Tripadvisor reviews became one of the most important elements of running a business.

If you go on any guided tour or take part in any activity that’s vaguely ‘tourist-y’ in Ireland, chances are you’ll be urged to donate a few words at the end of your trip. Businesses really value those little framed Tripadvisor scores that they hang up in their doors and windows.

As well as that, people genuinely do check out Tripadvisor before deciding on activities or accommodation abroad and one bad comment can hold a lot more weight than ten good ones.

PastedImage-75131 The view from Quilty Cottages Source: Tripadvisor

So naturally we’ve seen businesses get a bit sassy when it comes to protecting their international reputation. Earlier this month, a Sligo restaurant had a savage comeback for a tourist who accused them of attempting to steal his windbreaker.

At the start of the year, a hotelier tried to pick up the pieces after a guest compared the hotels aesthetic to a building from Chernobyl.

This time around, Quilty Cottages in Clare shot down claims that their accommodation was dirty.

The disgusted reviewer wrote:

We stayed here for 5 nights so we could explore the coastal areas, the cottage is a nice size with everything you need in it.

OK, good so far.

But it was a bit dirty around the cooker and in the bathrooms. One of the rooms stunk so badly of mould we struggled to use it.

Fair enough…

There was also no wifi in the houses. If you are looking for a basic place to stay then it will suit you fine. They have an indoor swimming pool which we used, but once again it was not very clean, felt kind of slippery in the pool and there was so much chlorine our eyes were burning before we got into the water.

Despite their complaint, the reviewer still rated it 3/5 and said that there was a pretty green area outside where guests could sit and look out to sea.

PastedImage-83175 Source: Tripadvisor

However, management weren’t impressed with the comments.

They thanked the reviewer, who was from Dubai, for sharing his experience but then swiftly moved on to shutting the negative aspects down.

PastedImage-99261 Source: Tripadvisor

With regards to the allegedly mouldy room, the manager wrote:

I am terribly sorry that “one of the rooms stunk so badly of mould” and we could have sorted this problem for you had we known it before you checked out!

They then quickly went on to make an assumption about the reviewers expectations based on their residency in Dubai. The manager appears to think that everyone from Dubai expects palatial accommodation, even when opting for a cottage in Clare.

PastedImage-24716 Source: Tripadvisor

Responding to that part of the comment, which appears to have hit a nerve, the manager wrote:

I can see that you are based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. I have a friend living in Dubai and I have been told that the hotels and accommodation over there are of an extremely higher class than Ireland. Unfortunately for us, we are not based in your beautiful country of Dubai, we are situated in the West of Ireland and although we might not have everything that meets the standards of your country, most of our guests are very happy with their stay and for that, we are very proud of our “basic place to stay”.

They then addressed the lack of wifi.

PastedImage-23443 Source: Tripadvisor

Finally, they got around to responding to the allegedly ‘eye-burning’ chlorine levels and the slipperiness of the pool.

I’m sorry that it “felt kind of slippery in the pool” but unfortunately this problem is beyond our control as our swimming pool contains water and most people know that when a surface gets wet, it gets slippy.

Now in fairness, the reviewer has visited 71 cities so it’s very unlikely that they’ve never been in a pool before at some stage in their travels. The manager, however insisted that there’s no problem:

Our swimming pool is used for teaching swimming lessons for up to four hours a day and this is the first time we have ever experienced an issue in regards to the cleanliness and chlorine levels. As for the chlorine levels, I was shocked to hear about this as we only use a minute amount of chlorine in our pool since we installed our ultraviolet pool system two years ago.

They quoted the company that installed the ultraviolet system:

The system eliminates up to 90% of chlorine and nearly 100% of chlorine side effects. UV for pools frees your family of burning eyes, skin irritations, foul chemical odours, bleached hair and chlorine allergies.

Then, offering receipts on the situation, they suggested the reviewer send them on his email address:

I can send you records of our chlorine levels for the past three months. Once again I am very sorry that you did not have a pleasant stay with us and thank you for your review.

If the original reviewer was lying about being burned by the chlorine in the pool, well at least they’ll definitely be burned by this hoteliers response.


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Kelly Earley

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