We were impressed from the moment we arrived for check in which was smooth and welcoming. We were a bit disappointed not to be shown to our apartment and this would have been pretty helpful if only to find out how the equipment worked! Having said that, the Reception staff were most obliging and helpful and this added to the enjoyment of our first visit to Birmingham.
We had booked a 'Mini' apartment and we found it to be a comfortable size, neither too small nor too large. We would have liked a slightly larger apartment but had been advised when booking that only the Mini had a walk in shower (which my wife needs as she is unable to use a bath at present following an illness.
My wife and I loved the location, close to the Bullring, main shopping centre and Restaurants, and that the apartment was so well equipped, though we couldn’t work the complicated coffee machine! Simple sachets of coffee would have been very welcome. On the other hand, the orange squash machine was great. The floor to ceiling (opening) windows gave unobstructed views over the city and it was fascinating just to relax and gaze out,
I have to say, however, that we were extremely frustrated that only one of the small screen TV sets would work and even that had very poor Sky reception. We reported the problem but the Supervisor came to our room and admitted that it was not an uncommon problem. Though we didn’t go to Birmingham to watch TV, we cannot understand at the start of the 21st century why a solution cannot be found to what should be a straightforward issue! A larger screen and better sound quality should be expected by guests staying in such modern, city centre apartments. A few more drawers for clothes would have been a useful addition to the apartment. Also, though we had requested a daily maid service, our apartment was only refreshed once during our 4 nights' stay and our waste bins were overflowing, even though the booklet in the apartment says “Don’t worry about making beds, doing the washing up, tidying up……..that’s our job!” We always do our own washing up and make our own beds anyway, but that is not the point!
I have to say that we did experience an unexpected difficulty after we had checked out. My wife left her purse behind on the bed when packing her suitcase, unfortunately. There was less than £30 in the purse but it did contain her Bank Guarantee Card and her MasterCard. We only discovered this loss when we were sitting in the departure lounge at the airport but I telephoned Staying Cool straightaway and spoke to the Reception. We have heard nothing since so it is clear that the purse was not handed in. Happily, I was able to cancel the debit and credit cards the same day but, whilst the error was entirely ours, it is a sad reflection on our times when lost property is not declared by the finder, especially in apartments where such importance is attached to security.
Don't stay here if you don't like heights but do if you love fabulous uninterrupted views
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
3 April 2012
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Many thanks for your feedback and your 4 out of 5 rating, which I think was very decent of you. It's easy to see that you would have had a great stay but for the issues you mentioned.
Let's deal with the most serious issue first which is the one you raised regarding your lost property. Kim, our Birmingham Manager, checked with the Housekeeping Supervisor and the servicing team that we did not find your wife’s missing purse in your apartment on check out. Indeed, a senior member of staff also checked your room as soon as you called but found nothing. All of the individuals involved have been with the company from one year to three years and we haven't had any similar issues. We would certainly consider it a theft if one of our staff stole an item that had been accidentally left behind by a guest. We would be very happy to help the police to investigate this if you would like to report it.
I'm sorry you couldn't work the coffee machine - we also provide a cafetiere for those who prefer a simpler method of using our freshly ground coffee. I'm also really sorry about the housekeeping issue around the daily service you requested. It wasn't noted correctly on your booking by a member of the Guest Relations team which is why it was missed from the daily servicing log - simple human error for which the member of staff concerned is very apologetic.
In terms of the TV & Sky issues, again I can only apologise for the poor signal and quality you experienced. I know that Kim spoke to you about it while you were in house. We have had any number of engineers out to resolve this issue which happens from time to time and affects a couple of apartments on one side of the building for a short period but no-one (not even Sky) can say what causes it or how to resolve it. I know Kim offered to swap your apartment to one that wasn't affected but you didn't want to move as you weren't planning on watching TV.
On a more positive note, we are in the process of refurbishing the oldest apartments and are upgrading the size of TVs in the Minis (studios) as we too feel the original ones are too small.
For the benefit of other Tripadvisor readers, all of our apartments have a walk-in shower apart from the Clubman which has a bath with shower overhead. In the Maxis and Penthouses you have two en suite bedrooms, one with a walk in shower and the other with a bath and overhead shower.
We’re so glad that you found much that was positive about your stay and we’re so sorry to have let you down in other areas. I can assure you that it has been fed back to our management and staff and the matters were taken very seriously by everyone.
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC