Monte Carlo to Paris June 13, 2015

We are taking our first River Cruise and first on Tauck arriving in Monte Carlo a day early (June 12, 2015) and would like any comments suggestions on this cruise as well as connecting with anyone else going on this cruise.
Bob and Barbara Martell Naples, Florida

Comments

  • This is an amazing cruise with something for everyone. For your sake though I just hope Tauck have spoken to the management of the Fairmont Monte Carlo and you are not treated like lepers like we were last year.
  • Thank you for your candid comments about your experience at the Fairmont Monte Carlo. I will be there in August 2015. I will now be aware of how we may be treated by the staff. I had similar bad experiences with staff in Sorrento and Rome on a Tauck trip. I wrote Tauck an extensive letter. My travel agent said that these people are just rude and that is how it is. I do not accept this. Tauck should just change hotels for their guests who are spending hard earned money and complaints like ours should not fall on deaf ears. I am on a land journey so we will see how this may differ. Again, much appreciation for your post.
  • I certainly hope Tauck has spoken to them. We spent too much money to be treated badly.
    Bob & Barbara Martell
  • edited April 2015
    As for the Fairmont Monte Carlo (just so anyone who searches the Monte Carlo property can find the correct, er ... offending one) I do believe the Fairmont Monte Carlo has had the frighteners put on them, but as to what good it does ... or has done to date ... I don't know. I would really love someone to report back here. Past guests, please? After so many months I think the "official" response has perished on the Western Front. Perhaps we should be reminding the Fairmont Monte Carlo the debt their country owes their Australian guests. Any American guests can piggy back on the sentiment. (Granted, Monaco is an independent Principality, but they defer to France for security matters. And it is quite a way from the Western Front, but heck, we need to find an advantage where we can.)

    I, too, am facing the unpleasant prospect of a stay at the Fairmont Monte Carlo. I had planned to extend my stay by a week ... but in the face of the reports of such inhospitable "service" for this "hospitality" establishment, I changed my plans. I now fly out immediately to another European city.

    I can only suggest that in the face of any visible slip in the otherwise exemplary Fairmont service standards at the Fairmont Monte Carlo, we do a Peter Finch and refuse to take it any more. I'm sure Fairmont HQ would not want their brand's reputation sullied by one property's behaviour.

    (Before any prospective piggy backers start screaming you might want to check the history of WW1's Western Front. Very, very carefully. You can seek confirmation in US military archives.)

    Cheers,

    Jan
  • We are coming on this trip as well.
    Mindy and Micheal from South Dakota
  • Looking forward to meeting Mindy and Micheal from South Dakota. We get in a day early June 12 :)
  • I can not imagine any one having a less than stellar time at the Fairmont Monte Carlo. Our family of five stayed there last summer. The staff and everyone we encountered were a cut above as always at the Fairmont. Tauck has reserved wonderful view rooms. The staff graciously helped our son plan a 50th Wedding Anniversary celebration at a local restaurant. We were not treated any differently than any other hotel guest. Tauck is a first class operation and after 12 tours I can assure you that you will have the best accommodations available at any Tauck destination. Please don't let on person's experience dampen you enthusiasm for this trip. As a side note - if you can fit it in, be sure to visit the Palace. It is worth your time. We took the Hop On Hope Off bus right outside the hotel. Castle tour takes a very short time and it is worth the time. Our only disappointment in Monaco was the famous "Casino". They charge you 10 Euros and you must have your passport with you to enter the facility. The building is beautiful but you are not particularly welcome unless you are a real "high roller". I wished we had just taken a photo op here and not gone inside as we were informed by guest leaving the casino - "it is not worth your time!"
  • lxyldyhb wrote:
    I can not imagine any one having a less than stellar time at the Fairmont Monte Carlo. Our family of five stayed there last summer. The staff and everyone we encountered were a cut above as always at the Fairmont. Tauck has reserved wonderful view rooms. The staff graciously helped our son plan a 50th Wedding Anniversary celebration at a local restaurant. We were not treated any differently than any other hotel guest. Tauck is a first class operation and after 12 tours I can assure you that you will have the best accommodations available at any Tauck destination. Please don't let on person's experience dampen you enthusiasm for this trip. As a side note - if you can fit it in, be sure to visit the Palace. It is worth your time. We took the Hop On Hope Off bus right outside the hotel. Castle tour takes a very short time and it is worth the time. Our only disappointment in Monaco was the famous "Casino". They charge you 10 Euros and you must have your passport with you to enter the facility. The building is beautiful but you are not particularly welcome unless you are a real "high roller". I wished we had just taken a photo op here and not gone inside as we were informed by guest leaving the casino - "it is not worth your time!"


    There was a huge long thread on this hotel last year with two or three others having the same experience as ozojohnno. Though there was an initial response from Tauck Tim, there were no more postings positive or negative about the hotel. Hopefully the original problem was resolved.
  • edited May 2015
    Well, we all know you have to take the reviews in Trip Advisor with a pinch (nay, a huge bag) of salt, but if you cast a critical eye over the last 3 month's worth of reviews of the Fairmont Monte Carlo you will find some interesting patterns. The last time I checked The Fairmont Monte Carlo's entry was after Rod's review here last August. Then, there were only a very few negative comments and none of them were addressed by the otherwise very keen General Manager. Now, however, over the past couple of months there have been many more negative reviews and, although varied in detail, they seem to be following a pattern. Interestingly enough, the keenness of the GM has been engaged to acknowledge these negative reviews ... and not to refute them, but to apologise and to seek to engage further with the reviewer.

    That tells me something. Depending on your literary bent, things are ..."crook in Tallarook" or "something is rotten in the state of Denmark."

    I so agree with you that this is not characteristic of the service you and I have come to expect from the Fairmont brand. That's why this is so disturbing. And similarly, after 19 past Tauck trips, 1 imminent and another 2 in the works, I already know that ..."Tauck is a first class operation." On the other hand, individual operations can go rogue and it's very difficult to expunge this thorn from the bunch of roses. (Oh what tortured prose I can write on a Sunday morning! :) )

    It sounds very much like a staff moral issue. Some people should just never be "seen" in the hospitality industry ... best to keep them well away from any guests! I am delighted to hear your interactions with the Fairmont Monte Carlo's staff were up to standard and were no less than any guest should expect from any Fairmont hotel ... or any other concern worthy of the "hospitality" industry. Consistency of service levels is everything. This looks to be the root of the problem and what has engaged the Fairmont's GM recently. As a future guinea pig, I do hope he is successful. Regardless, my plans are made. I'm getting the heck out of Dodge as soon as I can while pondering where to find an edible breakfast while I am there.

    Cheers,

    Jan
  • lxyldyhb - My comments and subsequent trip advisor review on the Fairmont, Monte Carlo was not based on what a couple or family might experience at this establishment but how, we as a tour group, were treated. It was one of those occasions that you simply had to be there to see and feel the contempt for tour groups. To be herded into a room for a breakfast of stale pastries and powered scrambled eggs whilst standard customers were receiving a fine breakfast or to have the worst Tauck farewell dinner imaginable may not have been in the Fairmont style but it did happen and all I can hope is that since that experience which was reported by many no longer is a part of the Fairmont, Monte Carlo's repertoire.

    Take the Fairmont out of the picture ( I wish Tauck would and restructure the tour to end in Nice) and the rest of the trip was conducted to Tauck's high standards and was truly memorable.
  • Our family of five was with the Provence to Paris tour last summer and I stand by my comments. We were treated "Royally Pardon the pun.

  • Is that the land tour? I imagine your group, unless you were on a small group departure of approximately 24 people, was what? 45 people maximum? That would be quite a deal smaller than a full compliment from the Swiss Sapphire which is 118. I think we can narrow down some of the reported service issues with the Fairmont Monte Carlo to groups, as Rod reported last August and as various Trip Advisor reviewers have also noted.

    I am sincerely glad you enjoyed your stay at the Fairmont Monte Carlo. Nothing is more off-putting than a hospitality business treating guests without any ... hospitality. I am equally glad that the staff of the Fairmont Monte Carlo treated you in a fashion that is commensurate with the brand's standards and the basics of good hospitality practice. All the rest of us can do, guinea pigs all, is hope that the staff will now treat all their guests ... whether individuals, small tour groups, conference attendees and larger groups of all kinds with the same level of service that is embodied in the French national motto of egalitarianism.

    Cheers,

    Jan
  • We are also going on our first River Boat cruise and first with Tauck on June 13th - we get in June 13th, we added onto the end of the trip in Paris - looking forward to meeting with everyone on the cruise. Rick and Linda Jackson, Williamsburg, VA
  • ljj6 It is our first River Boat Cruise and first with Tauck also. We are looking forward to meeting you and our shipmates on the 13th :) Bob and Barbara Martell, Naples, Florida
  • We are also on our first European vacation and our first Tauck Tour. We will be arriving in Monte-Carlo on June 11th. We have also tacked on 2 extra days in Paris at the end of the tour. Looking forward to meeting some new friends!
    - Bob and Paula Hopkins, The Woodlands, TX (Houston area)
  • Just back from the trip that started May 4 in Monte Carlo. We loved the Fairmont Monte Carlo - no problems at all. Our suggestion is to go to the Exotic Cactus Garden (Jardin Exotique) on the blue line bus #2. The garden winds down a cliff face and back up it and is breathtaking. My husband had the best massage of his life at the Fairmont, which was a great start to our trip. The breakfast includes made-to-order omelettes and wonderful pastries, fruit, and cappuccino on the deck overlooking the Mediterranean. Our group dinner was outside on a private deck, and the food was terrific. For the meals that were on our own because we came early, the bistros in the mall up the road from the hotel were just right.
  • Nila wrote:
    Just back from the trip that started May 4 in Monte Carlo. We loved the Fairmont Monte Carlo - no problems at all. Our suggestion is to go to the Exotic Cactus Garden (Jardin Exotique) on the blue line bus #2. The garden winds down a cliff face and back up it and is breathtaking. My husband had the best massage of his life at the Fairmont, which was a great start to our trip. The breakfast includes made-to-order omelettes and wonderful pastries, fruit, and cappuccino on the deck overlooking the Mediterranean. Our group dinner was outside on a private deck, and the food was terrific. For the meals that were on our own because we came early, the bistros in the mall up the road from the hotel were just right.
    Just to clarify, Nila, were you on a riverboat trip or a land based journey? I'm asking because there are many more in a riverboat group than a bus group. It's the large groups (not just Tauck groups) that have had unacceptable experiences at the Fairmont Monte Carlo.

    Either way, I'm glad to hear about your recent experience. Let's hope we ... and the Fairmont Monte Carlo ... have turned a corner of sorts on this!

    Cheers,

    Jan
  • Jan,
    We were on the French Escapade northbound river cruise. Our group was 103, and we used three tour buses to get around, so not a small group by any means.
  • edited May 2015
    Thanks for posting back, Nila. Perhaps the Fairmont Monte Carlo has finally got the message. Too late for me to change my plans and stay on, though. I'm getting out of Dodge asap and moving to another location. You have to make your plans so far in advance. When I was making my flight and other travel bookings, things were looking pretty grim at the Fairmont Monte Carlo (from a number of sources) and there didn't seem to be any light at the end of the tunnel. My confidence is still pretty ratty and my expectations exceedingly low, however. I'm just hoping it isn't too dreadful. I think your tips about eating outside the hotel are spot on.

    Another tip for guests at the Fairmont Monte Carlo is to take any empties (from bottled drinks of any kind that you bring into your room from outside the hotel) out with you, lest you be charged corkage. If you have a final drinks do in your room, think ahead. Take the empty Dom Perignon bottles with you on your way out! Rattle, rattle clink, clink .....

    Cheers,

    Jan
  • Nila, I'm so happy that Tauck apparently have got the Fairmont to do all that is advertised. I would not wish the service and food we received last year to be foisted on my worst enemies.... my mother-in-law perhaps but not my enemies.

    Rod
  • Martell, medlund & Hopkinstx - we have had to cancel our trip; Rick came down with pneumonia and won't be well enough to travel with the group; hope you all have a fantastic time and so sorry that we won't be able to meet you all.
    Linda and Rick Jackson, Williamsburg, VA
  • ljj6 wrote:
    Martell, medlund & Hopkinstx - we have had to cancel our trip; Rick came down with pneumonia and won't be well enough to travel with the group; hope you all have a fantastic time and so sorry that we won't be able to meet you all.
    Linda and Rick Jackson, Williamsburg, VA

    Get well soon Rick! Maybe we'll meet on another Tauck trip....
  • So sorry for you Linda and Rick Jackson. Be well and take care :(
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