Take the Stairs

What may be someone’s worst nightmare happened to me Saturday night. Not only did the evening start off lovely meeting friends who were celebrating their 6 year anniversary downtown and going to the 27th Floor fancy bar The Prohibition in the W Hotel downtown Minneapolis. But after spending over $100 on drinks only and enjoying the “bed” where we watched the crowd growing we decided to head back down the 27 floors. Entering into the elevator I positioned myself where I always seem to go near the buttons of the floor numbers and press 1. Within seconds the elevator was full of about 20 people and what seemed to be a crowded experience for usually 5-10 seconds slowly changed—the door closed quickly while Steve and another man gasped because the door had closed while someone had to jump out of it almost loosing their legs!

Within seconds I press the button to 1 again it did not light up. The elevator was stuck on the 26th floor. Very quickly people begin to laugh and cheers each other while others around me press the buttons about 50 times. I call the red emergency button while a guy who felt really cool was on his cell phone with a friend that worked at the W or something. The noise level began to change while trying to figure out what was going on.

Real Life from the Elevator, Steve on the left.

A lady announced over the elevator intercom that this has “never happened before“, which gave us even more of a sicker feeling. Meanwhile after 20 minutes people around us began to feel sick. One girl moved to the front where there was a small “breeze”, which not sure if that made my stomach feel better knowing we could at any minute plummet 26 floors!

The firefighter light began blinking in the elevator just guessing that it was to tell us people were working on it and we heard a lot of banging coming from above us.

Mandy and I in Real-Time in the Stuck-Elevator

Back and forth talking between the intercom lady and us all trying to be calm while others a little intoxicated because it was now 1:00 AM.

40 minutes go by and all of sudden a strong smell of vomit moves throughout the elevator. Steve standing right by me, quietly asks if I have my purse on my shoulder for his shoes are full of puke.

Still in the elevator, we had all told each other not to stampede out of it thinking that would be the next thing a injury of some-sort. What seemed like hours later, trying to not get sick from the smell and thoughts of falling the doors all of sudden open!  I was one of the last ones off even though being one of the first ones inside…

Proceeding to take the 25 flights of stairs down make my legs shake even more. There was broken glass in the halls ways while a few girls not wearing shoes ran down the stairs. It not only was dangerous but scary because the concrete was very slippery!

When arriving at the bottom we were not greeted by anyone or any staff of the W or the even the bars or restaurants. Meanwhile the guys got in line where it seems they were writing down names and email addresses. Mandy and I went to the restroom where finding a man along the way that did say “can I get you anything” and Mandy replied “a drink!” I told him that was an experience that was not only fun but disturbing. He quickly said he worked the bar at Manny’s and didn’t have any affiliation with the W Hotel but could get a drink because of our bad experience. I frankly didn’t care who this guy was nor did I want a drink but quickly drank the vodka cranberry out of just being thirsty.

Just about 5 minutes later going back to the main hotel lobby where JT and Steve were waiting with not happy faces, a bouncer glared at me and quickly pulled the sheet of names that had been put down from the elevator incident.

In any case maybe he thought I was trying to get something for free or was Channel 5 news reporter to interview what happened? But that did not sit well with the guys and we did not feel very helped.

What ended up being a random thing, the W and Prohibition bar handled it extremely poorly. Not only were we looking for an apology but simply some kindness and sympathy from the staff and management. Giving us some reassurance or possible time to get to know more about how or why this could happen at such a high-end establishment.

Online, through instagram, foursquare and twitter my pictures and tweets got the attention of @StarwoodBuzz the official voice of Starwood Hotels that is The W’s management team. But still today nothing back.

Not only did Steve’s new shoes get ruined by the puke, it was the fact that they neither cared or took responsibility.

This is a lesson learned by hotels in environments that things happen that having customer service follow-up right away because even a small gesture of a gift-card or free night stay would have been reasonable because their reputation in our eyes not only have failed and been ruined but will be to our network and local friends.

While writing this blog post, I received a call and message from the Operations Manager at the W Hotel more to come. Was his ears ringing? Later today, a follow-up email from Dan after talking with him today who said sorry and that they didn’t know where the 15 out of 20 people went after the elevator stalled and firemen had came and left. He offered to fix Steve’s shoes. Also an upgrade upon arrival on a future stay based on availability.

Take the Stairs my Friends,
your mn design gal