Thanks for the opportunity to reply to the review that, in light of the facts, is false and offensive with regard to the apartment and my impeccable reception. I will explain all the reasons to follow. After five years of activity, three apartments available and hundreds of kind and grateful guests for the reception received, this is the first negative experience that happens to me. Start telling the story of Florin, from booking to departure.
Florin books the apartment at the beginning of December 2017 for a stay from 26 to 31 December 2017 together with the girlfriend, his parents, and the mother of the girlfriend (5 peolple not 6). After booking without request for information, I immediately get available by contacting him on the phone number provided to thank him for the reservation and to meet particular needs at the time of check-in. I inform him that upon his arrival, he will find everything necessary for a comfortable vacation and that I am available to provide him with all the directions in case he does not find his accommodation easily. Guests arrive in the evening with light clothes when in Catania the temperature is about 5 degrees centigrade and they complain that they feel cold as soon as they leave their car rented at the airport. I give directions to park the car and describe how to move inside the residence showing the entrances, the automatic gate for parking, the view of Etna and the sea and shops in the area where to make basic purchases. I welcome them at home, letting them find the air conditioner on, to enjoy a warm and pleasant environment, the lights on to light up the whole house, a panettone (Christmas cake of the Italian tradition) on the table to make a quick snack in case they had hungry and fresh water in the fridge. I show him the whole apartment, describing to the smallest details where to find what can serve him. Everything is available to them. Guests begin to look and look suspiciously at everything they find around. Clearly everything is clean and tidy and they have nothing to complain about. With great intrusiveness and before officially taking possession of the house by signing the contract and handing over the keys, they start to prepare the tea. I do not oppose any resistance but I would have liked to finish the check in to allow to do what they wanted. The house would be available to them for 6 days. I show him where to find the pillows, the duvets, the ironing board, the clothes pegs, the toaster, the immersion blender, I show him how to use the TV remote control and the air conditioning, I show him the use washing machine and microwave oven. I explain to him that the kitchen uses the gas cylinder and that if the bottle should finish, I will immediately send the spare part at my expense. Guests check the beds, go around the house, suspicious. The beds are all clean, the bedspreads, mattress covers and pillow covers are all new and clean. The duvets are in the wardrobe along with sheets and towels (3 towels per person). Hot water is ready in the water heater to take a shower. I provide guests with soap / shampoo for showering, soap and dishwashing sponges, surface cleaning grease sprays, a new toilet roll and a plastic bag in the trash can.
I provide guests with an additional bunch of keys, without being in my obligations for their request that I accept without any problem. I provide guests with the keys of another apartment in the same residence to use the internet as not yet present in this apartment (as specified by the description of the services on the ad). After reading the entire lease and having photographed it, Florin agrees to have found the apartment perfectly intact and suitable for its needs (the contract is fully valid for Italian law and for tax purposes and allows to write if the apartment or its contents do not respect what was presented on the ad.The writing space reserved for guests remains empty because everything is perfectly as expected). The apartment is rented at a very low price that allows you to recover the costs of taxes, cleaning, laundry, consumption, ordinary and extraordinary maintenance, my personal time dedicated to keeping everything intact and functioning, without guaranteeing a real gain but I feel good and I'm happy to allow educated families to spend a holiday spending very little. Less than 15 euros per person per night. Only for the quality / price ratio, the guests should have felt grateful and grateful but unfortunately it was not so. Guests show a Romanian passport. I register the guests, as required by law, to the Italian police. After two days, without any notice, the guests ask to check out early (not immediately but two days after the request) because they say they feel cold. I give directions to adjust the temperature of the apartment from 22 to 30 degrees.. If you are not comfortable in an apartment, you are not asked to check out two days after the request but leave immediately. An excuse to want to change the area and pay even less than the agreed price. Of course I refuse because the problem is invented and aimed at discrediting accommodation and services, as well as having a discount. From here the problems and the repetitions start. Florin asks for a change of toilet paper and a trash bag. I answer that they cost very little and that they can also buy them on the spot. I specify that as soon as I checked in, I invited guests to call me if they needed anything but not a plastic bag and a roll of toilet paper. Perhaps the guests had exchanged the house and me for a hotel and a butler. The provision of a large toilet roll was guaranteed at check in and the same for the garbage bag. Point out that the Italian law does not allow you to provide any service after renting the house and therefore I would have violated the law by providing additional services. For the Italian law you have to deliver the apartment without being able to add services during the stay and so I did.
Guests decide to stay (because they do not really have any reason to leave) and they check out a day earlier than expected because I have to meet another person who would come to see them from afar. Free to do so, they leave a day before and they leave the apartment in good condition. To express my gratitude, I give them the extra power consumption of about 10 euros for free and the ungrateful guests do not thank the gesture towards them. I fully refund the € 150.00 security deposit that they left at check in.
The guests invent another story: they complain of having to wait an hour for a shower. False! In the house there is an electric water heater and you have to wait only 10 minutes for the supply of boiling water to be mixed then with the cold one. The faucets all work very well because they were all replaced in 2016, both the bathroom and the kitchen faucet. If they had not really worked, I would have personally gone with the plumber on site for immediate repair but no one told me anything, probably because I would have found everything working on the spot.
The bedroom with a bunk bed allows the entry of hot and cold air from the air conditioning in the living room through an opening in the upper wall that was perfectly visible in the pictures before the apartment was booked. I consider this opening a resource for the bedroom because it allows the best thermal comfort that can be given that allows you to take advantage of the air conditioning of the house. Another excuse to get a discount with the threat of leaving the apartment. The acoustic privacy is perhaps limited in favor of the perfect temperature but on the other hand in the bedroom you go to sleep, certainly not to revel.
In his review, Florin writes that the doors are creaky and the walls are thin. I reply to Florin that the doors are fully functional and that no one had ever complained about such a thing. Provide when necessary to grease the mechanisms with silicone oil and maintenance was done at the end of the summer. Another lie to add to the previous ones. As for the thin walls, I answer that they are brick walls with holes of more than ten centimeters. If you want 1.5-meter-high walls of reinforced concrete, you can choose an air-raid shelter instead of a normal and dignified holiday home.
The most absurd complaint is the lack of internet. At the time of booking internet was not available in the apartment and Florin was aware of it. No disruption on my part. But to satisfy them, I provide the keys to the other apartment to connect at any time if they need it. Pure and simple ingratitude also in this case.
That said, I want to emphasize that this is how the other apartments are used by me and my family when they are not rented to our guests. I like living surrounded by all the comforts and I assure you that all the comforts are there. I used my ability to welcome, my education and my personal training (I graduated in psychology) a job to maintain the apartments that my parents bought with so many sacrifices and avoid selling them because of the many expenses to keep them active and efficient. I said everything there was to say. I explained objectively and impartially how the facts went. I thank Florin for praising the sight of Etna and the presence of the sea just steps away, visible from the terrace of the house. Of course, it would have been impossible to deny the beauty of Sicily.
To the guests that I will have the pleasure to welcome in the future, I remember that I am at your disposal for information and requests and to read all the truthful reviews that are left on this, on the other apartments and on me. When you go on vacation, you must always have a certain level of flexibility otherwise you stay at home. We offer the best we can and see rewarded for their efforts with ingratitude is degrading. Luckily, all the guests we have welcomed have been happy to stay in our apartments and many have also returned to spend their holidays here with us.
I left a positive review on Florin because he left the apartment clean and tidy. I do not want to harm anyone but I describe the facts as they happen, in an objective way and without lies. I am really sorry for the comments and the evaluation that he left hoping to damage me but he will not succeed because I will continue to do what I have always done in the best way and I will continue to receive the apparition of the guests who deserve my hospitality.
Pierangelo B. (proud owner and manager of the holiday home)