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Friday, July 7, 2017

Lake Oconee, Georgia, Reynolds Plantation, Ritz Carlton

I was invited to the Reynolds Plantation Ritz Carlton to give a lecture.  My flight to Atlanta was as usual.  Always plan an extra 15-20 minutes to change terminals at a minimum in Atlanta.  If you are not in First Class, or have to stop between terminals, give yourself a minimum of 30 minutes.  The airport is very busy and the Sky Train is not exactly fast.

Car service was waiting for me outside of baggage claim and the walk to the car is about 5-7 minutes.  On arrival at the Ritz, my room was not ready, so I stored my luggage while I went to give my lecture.  Before that I went by the spa to schedule a facial.  Interestingly, you cannot change the time within 24 hours of scheduling. So once I scheduled, even for a few hours later, I was stuck with it.  The hostess suggested a facial for me and provided a tour of the facility.

The room was spacious and overlooked the resort (pine trees), but from many rooms, I suspect there is a beautiful view of the lake.  The decor is "camp chic" and the bathrooms very typical for Ritz Carlton.  Quickly off to my facial.









Check in and locker assignment was easy.  The locker room is small but with great service.  Overall the facility is small and choppy, located on multiple levels which can be very confusing.  I decided to go to the pool area, because this was the only place where a glass of wine could be served.  In a few minutes the hostess appeared with a complimentary glass of chardonnay which was perfect to start my relaxation time.

Off to the waiting area, with tea and refreshments, to meet my therapist.  She recommended a great facial.  ESPA products are used.  The facial didn't seem long enough and did not include a hand or foot massage, but did include an extensive scalp massage, which I was expecting.  I didn't have my watch but I bet it wasn't quite 50 minutes.  I had a couple of  "add-ons" like a collagen mask, but I didn't realize each would be $40!   Not sure it was worth it.  22% gratuity was included, and since I received a 20% group discount, I guess it all evened out.  Overall, I enjoyed my afternoon at the spa.


Dinner was at the poolside cafe, which was delightful on a summer evening.  I had an excellent hummus appetizer, salad and a glass of wine.  It started raining mid-meal and the staff was diligently trying to get the sliding doors closed to prevent guests from getting drenched.  Bravo!

Turn down service was not performed since I went to bed at 830.  However, earlier in the day a cute little basket of fruit and water was left in my room

A jog on the property in the morning was nice, but hilly by most runners' standards!  There are plenty of trails, many of which are shared with golfers, so look out for amiss drives!





 I was looking forward to a shower upon my return to the room.  When I started my shower I noticed, the shower gel was rather lightweight.  After opening it, only one squirt of shower gel was available.  The only bar of soap was across the room at the sink.  Needless to say, my shower gel ended up being shampoo.  This means that either the gel spilled or it was never changed from the last patron.  I suspect the latter, because when I went to use a qtip, the container was empty except for one open qtip pack with one unused qtip!  This is not to the standard of a Ritz Carlton!

Off to buffet breakfast which was average.  One thing I will point out is that at dinner the night before and at breakfast, there seemed to be many flies.  I get that it is summertime in Georgia, but can't you do something discreet to limit the flies?

At checkout, I complained about the housekeeping deficiency, but other than "sorry", nothing was personally addressed.  Furthermore, I noted the deficiency in my online survey, never to hear anything back from the hotel.

Ritz Carlton at Reynolds Plantation is not recommended by this luxury traveler.

The car service to Augusta Airport was uneventful.  I think I planned too late of a pickup as I almost missed my flight because of construction on the interstate.  Who would think on a Saturday afternoon that it would take 2.5 hours to get to Augusta Airport?  Well I guess it is the Atlanta area, so all bets are off with traffic there.  Fortunately, Augusta's airport is very small.



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