Finding the electric car chargers at Four Seasons Hotel Lumiere Place St Louis was a serious chore. On a previous visit when staying at Hotel Lumière we had no luck.
We learned about the electric car charging station installations online. I figured they would be in the parking garage and easily accessible to the general public. Turns out I was wrong.
As our cab pulled into Lumiere Place heading towards Four Seasons Hotel – we saw a Chevy Volt pull into the parking garage. This got us interested in trying to hunt the charging stations down again.
When checking into the Four Seasons on the eighth floor ( yes you check-in on eight – my second stay ) – we asked the desk agent about the location of the electric car charging stations. She got a slightly confused look on her face – like no other guest had ever asked. She politely offered to call valet to inquire about the location. We declined and stated we would ask valet ourselves later.
During our stay we asked three other employees about the location. One stated the chargers were on fourth floor. No such luck. The other hilariously stated that the electric car chargers were on the eighth floor – I so wanted to start busting out laughing – but I held my composure. Not sure were they would be hiding on eight. Cielo Italian Restaurant and Four Seasons guest check-in are located on that floor. The next day the third person go it right. After being slightly confused by the question he figured out what we were asking. He stated they were located on the first floor. Can’t remember if he stated in the valet parking area.
Common theme is – employees might need a refresher on what amenities the property offers. All three of the male employees we spoke to seemed to be valet staff – that could have been a wrong assumption on our part. Everyone including the front desk gave a questioned confused look when we asked about the chargers.
The number of electric car owners is growing dramatically on a daily basis. It should be kept in mind that many of these owners are upper middle class to very well off financially. Also keep in mind that many of these owners base their hotel purchase on charger availability. Many hotels, malls, shopping centers and casinos still haven’t figured out that charging stations do bring in customers. Walgreens is one company that figured that out ( I provided video evidence of that below ).
After a two day search I did finally locate the electric car chargers – thanks to the last employee we asked. They are located in valet area on first floor of the parking garage. When entering the garage – Tesla Motors chargers are to the left. To the right you will find one GE Energy WattStation ( some owners have experienced issues with these units ).
I’m assuming since the chargers are located in the valet area – that owners will have to valet park. I am not sure if any fee is required. Also not sure if the units can only be used by Fours Seasons guest. In all my visits to Lumière Place I’ve only seen two electric cars on property and one a few blocks down. I thought the recent Chevy Volt we saw would be plugging in – but where it pulled in would not lead to the chargers. This Chevrolet Volt I recorded last year on the property was not hooked up.
I’m unsure if casino visitors and Hotel Lumière guest that own EV’s are allowed to use this service. Most of the charging stations I have come across are located in publicly accessible areas. The Four Seasons ones are within the valet area and at least one employee will let you know that very sternly.
This recording was taken with my Samsung Galaxy 5. Since we were heading to a Cardinals game at Busch Stadium I didn’t have my video camera with me. I wasn’t bothered while recording the Tesla chargers. As I was finishing recording the GE WattStation a valet employee pulled up in a car and engaged me in conversation.
His tone was very stern and off putting. I calmly explained I was just recording the charging stations. I told him we asked the front desk and several valet about the location of the chargers. I let him know I was a checked-in guest at the hotel. All he kept saying is that I was in valet area and I needed to leave.
If he had a different tone I wouldn’t have been so downright angry. But instead of asking me if I was needing to use the chargers or politely stating I’m glad you are interested in them but I’ll need you to leave as soon as possible – this is a secure area or something to that effect – the employee was just rude.
It was very clear what I was doing. It should be kept in mind that several security vehicles drive up and down the floors of the parking garage on a regular basis. I’d have to assume there are plenty of video cameras in the garage – especially the valet area. Very few properties don’t have cameras nowadays. But considering this property has a casino – almost every location has cameras.
My point is – if I was up to no good – someone would have easily seen that and appropriate action would have been taken. There is rarely a good reason to be rude to a guest. It was probably to early in the day to have gotten a visit from Josh Towbin a.k.a. “Chop” a.k.a. the King of Cars look alike that works security on casino floor at Lumière.
Valet attendant would have really freaked out if I had been using my usual video camera. It is attached to a monopod and actually does look a bit like a weapon. Would have hated to see how things turned out if I’d been recording with that hardware.
While I understand the importance of security – some people can take things to far. Honestly there are a few security employees working the casino floor since the sale that seem to have a bit more unneeded attitude and giving that hard look to customers during my past few visits. This property didn’t use to be like that. The valet employee will claim he was just being vigilante and doing his job. But you can do that without being rude.
What the employee didn’t know is that I was recording so that I would have article content. I’m a big fan and promoter of electric car technology. I go out of my way to give hotels I stay at with charging stations promotion. So that EV owners will know those properties have that amenity available to them. What should have been a positive guest experience was not – do to how the employee engaged the customer.
As my links below clearly show I have recorded and promoted Tesla Motors in many locations. My first hands on Tesla experience was at Schlafly’s Tap Room in St Louis. I was one of the first guest when Tesla had their public opening of the downtown Chicago store. I’ve visited the St Louis store. I have recordings from Chicago, St Louis and points in between. You will see several videos of Tesla Model S charging at the Superchargers in Normal Illinois ( this was the first Supercharger location in the Midwest ).
All I was trying to do that day was add to that collection and to promote the chargers at a later date. What I got for that was a really lousy customer interaction and a bad start to my day.
Keep in mind the experience didn’t sour me on the property. The other night I tried to book a room for August 15 checking out 17th. But all the COMPED rooms were booked for that weekend. Although in many cases it only takes one employee to make a customer not want to come back. Rarely do I return as a customer after a bad experience.
A quick afterthought. I’m not sure I would want to trust someone else to plug in my electric car. Especially considering how much a Tesla Model S cost. Granted it’s not rocket science – but at times can have quirks.
Disclaimer – I am a very minor Tesla Motors stock owner. Unfortunately I didn’t have near the amount of money I wanted to invest in this company. But I do own a few shares.