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Cleveland Diary:
The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

Part Two -- The Bad

Paul Gentilozzi, and his oversized, overblown ego, won the Trans-Am race. Ugh!

Cleveland may have been resurrected from the depression of three decades ago, but they have not learned the art of service. At least not at the Holiday Inn Select - Lakeside City Centre at 1111 Lakeside Avenue. I strongly suggest you avoid staying here. It quickly became obvious that you need to be a con artist to work at this Holiday Inn.

Upon arriving, our room was not ready. No problem. We were early, and we knew this was a possibility. So, we went to the track and checked in after the day's activities. We should have known there would be trouble when in front of us, two guests informed the front desk that they were given a room that was already occupied.

There were two couples in our party with myself the odd man out. The plan was to get two rooms, and I would sleep on the pullout couch in the larger room. Our reserved rooms were not available, so they assigned us other rooms. They promised us that both rooms had pullout couches, and one had a Murphy bed as well. Great. Upstairs we went. No couches. No extra beds. Just a Queen sized bed in each.

The excuses came rolling in. "We recently underwent renovation, and our computers were not updated." The renovation took place a year ago, and last time I checked hotel computers are updated every minute with reservations. So, do you think we can have a rollaway? "We can't find any." Of course they can't find one, they never looked yet.

However, they could get us an extra room, and will only charge us $99. What a minute, didn't you say the hotel was overbooked? "Yes, but we can find you a room." Well then, why don't you find us a room with a pullout couch. "Well, we're overbooked." I'm not joking. They actually came back with that.

Trying to explain to them that finding us an extra room and making us pay $99 more than we were originally going to pay based on our initial reservations was not very fair. This fell on deaf ears. Like I said, con artists. We told them to find us a rollaway, or someone who can give us a room for free. Five minutes later they called back. They found us a rollaway. What a miracle...

After that episode, we thought the hotel bar would be a good place to go. It was, if you like stale pretzels probably left over from the first Cleveland Grand Prix, and watered down drinks, whether alcohol or soda, that were probably made from the rain at last year's race.

After this sordid episode, the hotel said they would reduce the rate on one of the rooms. Guess which rate appeared on the bill upon checkout?

Go to Part Three -- The Ugly of the Cleveland Diary.

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