The cottage itself seemed adequate if not great in the beginning. The heater in the bathroom didn't work, but the landlord, a Mr. Goss, informed us he had no immediate plans to fix it. The TV didn't work but we didn't go to Cornwall to watch television anyway.
However, for the last two days, we were without hot water.
The last full day of our stay, we had been hiking and *needed* showers that night. However, there was no hot water to be had. For some reason, the boiler wasn't working. The landlord had left no instructions on how to deal with this.
We could not reach the landlord as we could get no cell phone reception anywhere in Porthcurno and there was no landline.
In the morning, same story. No hot water. As we were leaving that day, we just packed out things and got out of there, drove home to the North of England, and had showers there.
When we wrote to the Cornish Cottage Holidays customer service department asking for a partial refund based on the dearth of hot water our last two days.
"Sharon" from Customer Service, who declined to give her surname, said she would discuss the situation with Mr. Goss, the owner of the cottage, and then get back to us.
Here is "Sharon's" reply, after contacting Mr. Goss:
I have now received a reply from the owner of The Lizard, Mr Goss. He explained that after receiving your letter he went to the property to checking the heating and feels that the property is heated to a more than adequate standard although is sorry that you did not feel the heating was sufficient to your needs. He also checked the hot water system and did find a small fault which was corrected within half an hour. Mr Goss feels that if he was contacted on the Friday, when this fault became apparent it could have been easily rectified.
Mr Goss is disappointed that this problem occured during your stay but as the problem was totally beyond his control and he was not given the chance to correct it he does not feel that any compensation is due.
I am very sorry that you did not enjoy your holiday as you should have, and I appreciate this is most likely not the response you had hoped for. However we simply cannot substantiate your complaint, hence making it unjust for us to further pursue Mr Goss for compensation.
Cornish Cottage Holidays hope that this experience has not deterred you from holidaying with us again in the future. I would be delighted to assist you in finding a more suitable property when you book another holiday with us.
Cornish Cottage Holidays
Customer Care Department
So Sharon's idea of customer service is taking the landlord's word against the the customer's? There's no problem because the owner of the property says there's no problem? As stated before, we couldn't contact him because we could get no telephone reception and he lived quite a distance from the cottage.
Any ideas on how to proceed here?
Also, does anyone know of a site where you can review cottages? There are plenty of hotel review sites, such as tripadvisor.com. If I ever rent another holiday cottage again (from another company!), I would like to read customer feedback on the property first.
Moral of the story: don't rent a cottage through Cornish Cottage Holidays and certainly don't rent any property owned by Mr Goss.