On 9 December, Mediacorp actress Cynthia Koh posted pictures of herself on a “paycation” at Hotel Jen Orchardgateway.
First of all, what’s a “paycation”? Who knows?
Second of all, turns out things did not turn our well for the actress, as few days later she posted pictures of bed bug bites on her arm, which she said were acquired from the hotel room she stayed in.
Cynthia lodged complained but the hotel got back to her saying that no insect was found in the room that she stayed in.
“Thank you for the email and we are really sorry to know about the bites on your arms.
Our housekeeping has thoroughly checked the room and could not locate insect/bug in the room. We have put the room out of service for post control to ensure safety. Moreover we have pest control monthly to upkeep cleanliness.”
Unhappy with the “bad reply”, she pressed on. In a follow-up email, the hotel’s general manager Herve Duboscq repeats that the room is free of bedbugs but as a “measure of good faith” offered to compensate Cynthia’s medical bill on top of offering her a two nights complimentary stay.
Is the customer always right?
So who is telling the truth? The 40-year-old actress did not want to push matters further and thanked the hotel staff. The service industry has always followed the mantra that the customer is always right, even if they are wrong.
On the surface, the hotel looks less-than-good refuting Cynthia’s claim that the bedbugs came from the room she stayed in, especially when she has pictures of those nasty bites to share with a substantial social media following (even after the Instapurge). But if the hotel admits to having bedbugs, that will deal a real blow to its reputation too.
In a world where customer’s criticisms can reach thousands, if not millions, companies have a real worry on how an unhappy customer can wreck havoc on a brand.
So what is a manager to do? Dish out complimentary stays for de-bugged rooms of course.