the pursuit of quality in a fleeting life

Pray for St. Regis

ticket to relaxation

Recently, I had the pleasure to spend a couple of nights at the St. Regis Spa and Resort in Monarch Beach, CA.  Set in the rolling coastal hills, this oasis of rest and relaxation was much needed after the stressful few weeks that preceded the stay.  The resort was gorgeous, the Executive Suite was ginormous, the pool expansive.  Personally, the experience redefined the standard of resort living and had set the bar for every journey thereafter.

Although much short-lived for such an amazing room (which included huge beds, a large desk, two sitting chairs, a huge master bathroom, walk-in closet, huge shower, giant flat screen tv, a balcony overlooking the gardens, and enough open space to play twister), we certainly maxed the full day that we had to spend there.  We ordered room service, got massages at the spa (AMAZING!!!), laid out by the pool, had an amazing dinner, and relished in the temporary luxury we were living.

What more could we possibly ask for?  After all, we were staying at the St. Regis.  Contrary to the point, we were not WOW-ed by the service we received during our tenure at the resort.  Outlined are some of the missed expectations that we had experienced:

  • Lack of initiative:  we called down for room service and twice we were told that they would page the butler and twice, the butler never called (within a timely manner, about 10 minutes, then 5 minutes).  We eventually just called in to in-room dining and ordered.
  • Poor follow-up:  the first evening, we ate at the Stonehill Tavern on the premises of the resort.  We had a dinner lasting approximately two hours which should have only taken about an hour to an hour-and-a-half at most.  The staff was very attentive to its corporate visitors, but neglected those on leisurely stays.
  • Mediocre staff:  I understand that we were staying at a five-star resort that heralds its prestige in all of the marble that was used to incarnate this monument to luxury, but with that comes a higher level of humility.  The staff was not as interested in the enjoyment of our stay at their resort and of course without the people that I had the pleasure of sharing my time with, this mini-vacation would have just been (without stressing for better terminology) mediocre.

Ultimately, I had a wonderful experience at the St. Regis; however, I do not expect to stay there again anytime soon.  For the price of the room, I will try my chances at a smaller room, but down the street at the Montage.  Until then, I’ll just have to pray a little bit harder for St. Regis.

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