Arriving at the Beverly Hills Hilton at 1 am, all we wanted to do was get the room, get our son in bed, and rest before the 7 am meeting.  The company had arranged the hotel, they said we could pay for a junior suite – so in the booking I had requested an upgrade to a junior suite and that a crib be available for our son. The confirmation letter came back acknowledging this.

If you read their website “Opened in 1955 by Conrad Hilton, The Beverly Hilton has combined the excitement of Hollywood with the elegance of Beverly Hills for over 50 years. With the completion of a $80 million renovation, the Beverly Hilton emerges as a beacon of modern luxury.”

The front desk said, “your room may not be ready.” Did I say that this was 1 am, not 1 pm? Yes, one hour after midnight. Room was paid for that night. This is not fun. But the next one was better: “We don’t have a crib in it, but our bellman will get one up there if there isn’t one in there.”

Me: “Did we get a junior suite?”
Them: “Oh, let me look. No it isn’t, but it has a lovely view.”  At 1 am, I didn’t want a view.

The room wasn't large enough for a play pen

The room was ready in ten minutes. We arrived and found a small room, but it did have a view.  No crib.  The bellman then brought up a play pen and adult size sheets. I rejected it and called the night manager who said he didn’t know where the cribs were kept but would call the head of housekeeping at home (it is now 1:15 am).

At 1:25 the bellman brings back the play pen, saying he can’t find the cribs. I ask him to bring the night manager back. The night manager comes back- so I start to record the conversation on the iPhone. His first words, “Are you going to litigate?”  I assured him that I was not. When I asked why there was no crib in spite of making the reservations at least a week in advance (probably longer), the night manager stated that the reservation always say, “if a crib was available.”  Great attitude.

So I pushed it a bit, “Let me get this straight, you are the night manager, you have a customer who is arriving late, a crib is requested and the first thing you tell me is that you have no idea where the cribs are kept?” He admitted that he did not. He said he tried to call the head of housekeeping but the phone was not answered.  I pointed out that a reservation on the books, one might think of having the crib taken care of around check-in time (10 hours before) and not at 1 in the morning.

The night manager then pointed to our 9 month old son and said, “I’m just trying to get this resolved for him, are you telling me you are refusing this playpen?” Even at one thirty in the morning my tired sarcasm was in full steam: “I’m so happy all you care for is my son, and want him to sleep in a playpen with no mattress, adult sheets, and no blanket. That you care so much you wouldn’t think about anything else but my son.”

The manager then said that he was going to comp our stay and the parking. I told him that was not necessary (and it wasn’t comped). I never wanted or asked for a rebate.

What would have made me happy? Simple,  for the night manager to have done the following, “Mr. Simpson I am so sorry this happened to you. I promise I will learn where these cribs are and that no one will ever have this happen again.”  The standard email letter from corporate headquarters did not offer such reassurance either.

Having lots of Hilton Honors points from staying in Hilton properties as a single guy provided one perspective. As a dad one has to wonder if the night manager’s defensive attitude is the corporate attitude. Perhaps this hotel chain is simply not interested in families. Somehow a Motel 6, or other family hotel, would have been a better place to stay with a child.

As chairman of the board of a corporation that had a number of hotels in its portfolio we received this nice letter from a family who had stayed at the Hyatt Regency. “Your manager finding there was no crib for our daughter, went to the store, purchased one- and had it assembled and in our room in no time. “

The difference between a 3 star and 5 star hotel is service. This night manager appeared more interested in the letter of the law than helping someone. The next day we went to the Four Seasons, and it was a world of difference.

We give the Beverly Hilton one star. In Beverly Hills, with so many great hotels,  this is not one you need to put on your list.

Final Note: we do not like posting bad reviews of any place we stay. We think that great hotels and great hotel staffs will have issues and will find a way to take care of them. In emails and other follow up with Hilton we never heard the words that this issue has been resolved- something like this : “everyone knows where cribs are kept, and if someone comes in late we will make certain the room is ready and ready for the infant.”  In the next room to us was a couple with a child – who came out of the elevator as the night manager and we were talking. The next morning they came to us and said they felt like they should apologize because they did get a crib but thought our points with the night manager were simple, clear , without raising a voice.

We did receive an email from the Hilton hotel stating the hotel would contact us within three days…it didn’t.

– Here it is below:

Dear Terry Simpson,

Thank you for contacting the Hilton Internet Contact Center regarding your concerns you had at the Beverly Hilton.

I apologize that your crib was not in the room when you arrived at 1am. I hope that the staff was eventually able to find the crib you needed. It is our goal to provide only the highest level of customer service and accommodations for all of our guests who choose to stay at a Hilton Family hotel and based on the details you provided in your message, we deeply regret that we have fallen short of that goal. Please be assured that we will be sharing your feedback with the hotel directly to facilitate a resolution and response to the issues you have expressed.

To ensure your feedback is addressed at the appropriate level, please allow up to 3 business days for the hotel to contact you at your email. In the interim, should you need a status regarding this issue please contact us directly at or call at (888)240-6152.

In contrast here is the email sent to us from the Four Seasons Hotel in Beverly Hills:

 Dr Simpson,

Greetings from Los Angeles and the Four Seasons Hotel, where we look
forward to welcoming you and your family tomorrow.  I wanted to introduce myself in advance, but also hope to have the opportunity to greet you in person as you arrive.

We have set aside a lovely deluxe executive suite as your accommodations, and hope you are entirely comfortable here.  I have confirmed your requests for a crib for JJ, and for the suite to be babyproofed.  Please let me know if you have any other preferences for your suite (a favorite snack or beverage, for example), so that we may ensure you feel “at home” while you are with us.  Additionally, it would be my pleasure to assist with any arrangements in anticipation of your arrival.  Please let me know your travel details if available so that we may prepare your suite accordingly.

Wishing you safe travels and an enjoyable trip to Los Angeles.

Best regards,

Sunil Watumull
Director of Guest Relations
Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles
300 S Doheny Dr, Los Angeles, CA 90048, USA