Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Nightmare in New York: 177 Ludlow Street Review

A Review of 177 Ludlow Street NY, NY: A Vacation from the Twilight Zone.

I preface this blog article by saying "please learn from my mistake, and don't let this happen to you"!

So as many of you know, we had been planning a vacation to NYC this year with the hubby, little monster, and the Grandma until our plans were abruptly, let's say, altered. All of you who know us, or follow us on Facebook, know this has been a very long year for our little family and we were so desperately looking forward to this getaway before Christmas jewelry season started. We spent a year saving up and weeks trying to find the right 2 bedroom apartment to rent on vrbo.com. (We love VRBO, use them all the time and this was the only time we have ever had an issue.)

A couple weeks before we were supposed to leave, Grandma had heard on the news that NYC was having an outbreak of bed bugs. If you know Grandma, you know she is always up on her news:) She had asked me to check with the apartment rental to make sure they were not having any issues. So I, a little reluctantly, contacted Chris Fogwell, the real estate agent for the property, about the bed bug issue along with a few other questions I had.

Several days went by with no response and then I received this email:

No. There are garages, but they are very expensive in New York.

Hmmmm. No response about the bed bugs or anything else for that matter so I wrote again and asked if he could answer the other questions I sent as well. His reply was:

I have not heard of any problems.

That, to me, was not a direct answer nor was it going to satisfy the Grandma so I sent one more email asking:

"So to confirm--you have not had bed bugs in the apartment? Nor do you currently have bed bugs?"

No response. Several days went by and still no response. To tell you the truth I had forgotten I had even asked. I was busy arranging airport pickups, packing, purchasing baby items that meet flight regulations, buying show tickets and the list goes on. Then, yesterday, I get an email that was clearly intended for the owner. It read:

Did you respond to this person? What should I tell her?

Now I was getting sick in my stomach. This was really starting to sound fishy. I replied to his email:

Yes Chris--what should you tell me?

I was not prepared for the answer. A few minutes later I received this reply:

I should tell you that the reservation is cancelled. You sound like a very demanding person. I think you would be better served at a hotel that provides 24/7 housekeeping.

Thank you,


I almost fell over. I was in shock--who cancels a families vacation 3 days before you are supposed to arrive while insulting the customer in the same paragraph? I guess I was demanding. Demanding that we slept in a bed bug free apartment. Demanding that we get a straight answer. Demanding that our sublet would be clean. Yes, I guess I can give him that.

But now what?! We bought plane tickets, booked transportation, and the list goes on. My mind was reeling. And, how was I going to tell Grandma and the hubby we would not be going on vacation, the vacation we had all worked so hard for, planned so long for, and anticipated so greatly for. . . .

So here we are, one day later with no NYC vacation . Hours and hours lost cancelling reservations and trying to get refunds on purchases. More hours lost trying to plan somewhere for our little family to go and relax for a week. We lost the money for our plane tickets (close to $400) and most of all we lost out on experiencing New York.

At the end of the day all my husband and I could do was laugh. It was 12:30 am and we were still packing up jewelry since the day was spend canceling and making vacation plans. At 12:30 in the morning there is nothing to do but laugh. . .it was like an episode from the twilight zone.

I write all this to say--learn from my mistakes. There are people out there that care little about others. And most of all, be demanding. . . and listen to your Grandmother!

Here is the link to their sublets to avoid with all gusto. . .




Sarah said...

curious: why didn't you get your refund from the Twilight Zone hotel and use that money toward a different hotel?

Caught RED Handed said...

They did refund our money for the hotel but with three days until our vacation, there was not a hotel in our price range or that had those dates as an availability.

Cameron and Andrew said...

Man... I sure am sorry! You didn't want to stay somewhere near by that you could drive to from NYC? Maybe stay there for a week and still be able to drive into the city during the day? Def not what you were hoping for, but still be able to use the non refundable flight tickets? What a bummer!

Serena said...

OMG! I just read your blog. That is awful. I am so sorry to hear that your vacation got ruined none the less the loss of the funds you put out. I was raised in a house where the saying was "do unto others as you would want done unto you". My mouth is still hanging from this=:(

Jessica said...

That is absolutely ridiculous! There is a HUGE outbreak of bedbugs, so big that a 2 day bed bug summit is being held near Chicago. How in the world can he call you demanding when you are trying to avoid BUGS crawling around in the beds you and your family will be sleeping in?? Vacation planning is stressful enough and then to not have questions answered that could drastically alter your vacation. The Realtor of all people, who presumably works with vacationers often, should be as considerate and willing as possible to get direct answers to your questions to ensure repeat customers.
What a bummer!

Shannon said...

Sorry to hear that Amy! What a jerk and they obviously had bed bugs! I hope you and your family will have getaway soon. Gotta love the Grandmas! :/

Pretty Things said...

Wow wow and double wow. I'd be calling the editor at the New York Times. They might be interested.

Anonymous said...

I live at that address and YES, there were bedbugs in 2009. The problem was taken of and to date there haven't been any reoccurrences. Your communications with the landlord were typical of the way he does business...completely unprofessional. Hope you got your trip to NYC eventually. it's a great city.

Anonymous said...

every building on ludlow has had bedbugs. they will be everywhere eventually. idiot tourists.