Several days ago I woke up a little after 6am at the Sheraton Macao Hotel (full trip report to come) and decided to order up coffee from room service. They explained that I could tell them how many cups of coffee I wanted, and that’s what they would fill the pot to. So I asked for 6 cups.
A short while later room service delivered the coffee. It seemed awfully light for 6 cups. I poured two cups, and the pot felt nearly empty. So I called back down to in room dining. The same person I ordered from answered, and she remembered that I had ordered 6 cups. She said she’d send up 4 more cups right away.
So at 6:30am there’s a knock on the door, and the man who delivered the first pot of coffee appeared. He didn’t have a pot of coffee in his hand. Instead he declared: “I am here to investigate.”
I told him that we had ordered six cups of coffee, I poured two and that’s all there was.
He lifted the pot of coffee and said, “there’s still some left”.
He then said it’s not possible that we could have gotten less coffee, because the machine is electronic. They specify how much goes in the pot.
There I am, standing in a bathrobe in my hotel room, being told that it’s not possible that I could be missing coffee and in any case the coffee I ordered was right there, in the pot!
What was I trying to pull, anyway? He thought I was trying to cheat the hotel, to get extra coffee without paying for it.
He then poured the remaining coffee from the pot into an empty cup. It filled only half way. I said, “You were right, there were actually two and a half cups.”
He harumphed, walked directly outside the room, and handed me the pot he had brought along with the four replacement cups of coffee I had been promised — once I satisfied him that I wasn’t actually trying to steal coffee.
I was embarassed, I was angry, I don’t remember ever having been told by a hotel before that they didn’t believe me… let alone over coffee.
And then I told myself that I was in Macau, over Chinese New Year, and that the hotel must find that people do try to scam them for little things. And that they believe they’re better off insulting an honest customer and catching the scammers (they must lose that much to scams) than assuming their guests are telling the truth.
Coffee must be expensive to make, after all.