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Silver Sands Beach Jeddah - Shameful experience today

Silver Sands Beach Jeddah - Shameful experience today

Old Oct 15th 2010, 3:54 pm
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Default Silver Sands Beach Jeddah - Shameful experience today

I just wanted to share what happened to a friend and me this afternoon in Silver Sands Beach in North Obhor, Jeddah.

We arrived at 1.00 PM. After entering (and pay the 100 SAR, yucks, 20 GBP to go the beach (!)), we walked right and left and we found only an empty spot right next to the entrance (an umbrella with two nice wood chaise longues). The beach was ultra packed and obviously "oversold". Since our spot was right next to the entrance, anyone in the cafeteria or the entrance check-in could see us and our stuff.

We were there for like 2 hours (with service and maintenance people walking in front of us) with no major problem.

At around 3.30 PM a Sudanese guy comes and begins to shout in Arabic . Since neither me or my friend speak Arabic, we told him to call his manager or someone who speaks English if there is any issue.

This guy (the Lebanese-like Manager) came and in a very unpolite way, he told us that that area is reserved for people who has annual fee and that we have to move now (unsurprisingly, at that time there were already free seats in the "public" area, so previously they didn't care that we were in the "VIP" area until free seats were available in the other area, since they "oversold" the beach). Funny thing is that there is no way to spot to difference between the "private" (for annual fee holders) and "public" (for people like us who paid one ticket) beach. Same furniture, same everything, no boundary, no panel. The only apparently difference is a small number on the umbrella stick (that honestly could mean anything, for instance the table number that there is in any restaurant). Also this guy tells us that this is in the Beach Regulations that are written in a panel next to the cafe (before leaving we checked, and as expected, there is nothing about that, though it is written that women must be dressed in an Islamic way )

We told him that there is no way to see the difference and that for 2 hours some staff (even he!) were walking in front of us and this hadn't been a problem, and also the way he talked to us was anything but polite (Basically "Get out of here"). The guy lost his nerves and he tells us we should leave... and the hilarious thing is that he asks us our name, nationality, sponsor/company and passport/iqama. At that point me and my friend looked at each other and we were thinking this was a kind of candid camera (that would be especially funny in Saudi Arabia ). Maybe he thought we would give him our passport ??? Since we told him that obviously it is not his business where we work or which country we come from, he just became even more angry and said we can stay today there today but we are not welcomed again in Silver Sands Beach (that in a menace way, fortunately there are quite a few private beaches in Jeddah; we usually change from weekend to weekend).

Five minutes later, a second Sudanese (I think the guy in the door) came and insisted to move out and he told us again that we are not welcome again.

Obviously they tried to bully us and after a while we left. I don't feel confortable in a beach where every 5 minutes someone is inviting me to leave because we are not welcomed.

I wouldn't have (or my friend) any problem if he would ask us to move to another place in a polite way, explaining us that the (unmarked) area is for annual-fee payers. Unfortunately his talk was extremely rude from second 1. He obviously didn't expect us to get back and question his unpolite remarks.

That just been my experience at Silver Sands Beach. Such situations remind me that customer service in many places in this country is still pitiful when compared to Western standards.

If someone knows how I could make a formal complain (if something like that exists on this country), I would be grateful. And in the meantime, if someone reads this, I hope that she or he will consider another beach in Jeddah.

Thanks,

Daniel.
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Old Oct 16th 2010, 5:08 am
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Default Re: Silver Sands Beach Jeddah - Shameful experience today

It sounds to me, and correct me if i'm wrong, that you sat in a premium area and after being told you weren't welcome you dug in and chose to remain there. I always fly first class and nothing bothers me more than people in coach using the first class washroom. I paid extra so I wouldn't have to wait in line or use a restroom after 42 other people have. I remember when my daughters all had boyfriends over at the house when they were teenagers and when I told one of them to leave and they hung around saying goodbye for 5 or 10 minutes, they never got to come back because when I say go, I mean go now. Leave immediately, and thats what I think you should have done. It's beyond me why people want to remain where they clearly are not welcome. It really is.
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Old Oct 16th 2010, 9:07 am
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Default Re: Silver Sands Beach Jeddah - Shameful experience today

Originally Posted by E6B View Post
It sounds to me, and correct me if i'm wrong, that you sat in a premium area and after being told you weren't welcome you dug in and chose to remain there. I always fly first class and nothing bothers me more than people in coach using the first class washroom. I paid extra so I wouldn't have to wait in line or use a restroom after 42 other people have. I remember when my daughters all had boyfriends over at the house when they were teenagers and when I told one of them to leave and they hung around saying goodbye for 5 or 10 minutes, they never got to come back because when I say go, I mean go now. Leave immediately, and thats what I think you should have done. It's beyond me why people want to remain where they clearly are not welcome. It really is.
Dear E6B,

I am happy to correct you, because things didn't happen that way.

I don't know if you know the beach. Apparently there is "premium" area (that we knew after we were told by the management) that looks exactly like the "normal" area and, as I explained in my previous post, has absolutely no boundaries, physical separation, warning sign or anything. Basically, as the guy told us later, "up to this umbrella is premium and rest is normal". How should we or anyone know that?

The comparison that you made with the First/Economy class in a plane is anything but accurate.

- First, when I fly in plane I see very clearly the differences between classes, and I have a ticket that says where I should seat (unless I fly in Ryanair that does not have any class) . This is not the case, I have a ticket with no indication on where I should seat or where I should not. And worse, there is no indication on site on where the two areas begin. If I would have a warning sign saying that I should stay in the "normal" area, I would cope with that.

- Secondly, when I fly First or Business, I will have a flight attendant that will check my boarding pass to check that I am in the right place (and they will see clearly if there is more people in the Business area that the number of sold tickets). Which is again not the case. Staff people saw us from minute 1 and didn't tell anything because it was "overbooked". As I told afterwards to this guy, he could tell us whenever he saw us seating there, to move right away.

As I explained, when we arrived the beach, it was packed with no other free place except this umbrella. We sat there, the manager and staff saw us (as I told before, this area is right next to the entrance and the cafeteria, so they clearly saw us; even some staff brought us food to the umbrella) and didn't say anything.

The first mistake was here with the management because they clearly oversold the beach. It happened to me in any other beaches some other times, they tell you that you cannot enter because it is full (or you can enter at your own risk that there will be no place). They didn't tell us anything and it is easy for them to verify how many people there are inside. Obviously, more people means more cash for them.

However, after more than 2 hours (when some spots were already free in the "normal" area), they thought it was time for us to move. The guy told us in a very rude way to move of this area where we were not allowed to be. So we asked him why they didn't tell us before (he saw us) and how we should know that this area (with no indication), is premium. He didn't attend to reasons.

As I said before, there would be other ways to handle this situation:

- First, when we first arrived and saw us, ask to move and look for another place. They didn't because there was no other spot.

- If he wanted us to move at that point, explain what happened (the beach was full, this is premium, etc.) and ask politely to move to other place. I don't expect a Sudanese guy shouting us in Arabic and afterwards a Lebanese shouting us in English.

If you think that the way they handle the whole situation (from overselling the beach to shouting us from second 1) is a right way to do things, we have clearly very different views on what a customer service should be.

Regards,
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Old Oct 16th 2010, 9:26 am
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Default Re: Silver Sands Beach Jeddah - Shameful experience today

It sounds to me like some local chap, that has a bit of wasta came in and saw there was nothing for him.
He flexed his wasta and hey ho sorry to say you were in the wrong place at the wrong time.
If you havent any wasta here in the sand pit then sorry.
Unfair game set and match.
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Old Oct 16th 2010, 9:28 am
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Default Re: Silver Sands Beach Jeddah - Shameful experience today

If you are looking for 'customer service', KSA is not the place to be.

The incident seems entirely typical of what tends to happen here. It goes with the territory. Roll with it.
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Old Oct 16th 2010, 11:40 am
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Default Re: Silver Sands Beach Jeddah - Shameful experience today

Out of curiosity, are we talking male or female friend?
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Old Oct 16th 2010, 1:29 pm
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Default Re: Silver Sands Beach Jeddah - Shameful experience today

Originally Posted by DNG View Post
I just wanted to share what happened to a friend and me this afternoon in Silver Sands Beach in North Obhor, Jeddah.

We arrived at 1.00 PM. After entering (and pay the 100 SAR, yucks, 20 GBP to go the beach (!)), we walked right and left and we found only an empty spot right next to the entrance (an umbrella with two nice wood chaise longues). The beach was ultra packed and obviously "oversold". Since our spot was right next to the entrance, anyone in the cafeteria or the entrance check-in could see us and our stuff.

We were there for like 2 hours (with service and maintenance people walking in front of us) with no major problem.

At around 3.30 PM a Sudanese guy comes and begins to shout in Arabic . Since neither me or my friend speak Arabic, we told him to call his manager or someone who speaks English if there is any issue.

This guy (the Lebanese-like Manager) came and in a very unpolite way, he told us that that area is reserved for people who has annual fee and that we have to move now (unsurprisingly, at that time there were already free seats in the "public" area, so previously they didn't care that we were in the "VIP" area until free seats were available in the other area, since they "oversold" the beach). Funny thing is that there is no way to spot to difference between the "private" (for annual fee holders) and "public" (for people like us who paid one ticket) beach. Same furniture, same everything, no boundary, no panel. The only apparently difference is a small number on the umbrella stick (that honestly could mean anything, for instance the table number that there is in any restaurant). Also this guy tells us that this is in the Beach Regulations that are written in a panel next to the cafe (before leaving we checked, and as expected, there is nothing about that, though it is written that women must be dressed in an Islamic way )

We told him that there is no way to see the difference and that for 2 hours some staff (even he!) were walking in front of us and this hadn't been a problem, and also the way he talked to us was anything but polite (Basically "Get out of here"). The guy lost his nerves and he tells us we should leave... and the hilarious thing is that he asks us our name, nationality, sponsor/company and passport/iqama. At that point me and my friend looked at each other and we were thinking this was a kind of candid camera (that would be especially funny in Saudi Arabia ). Maybe he thought we would give him our passport ??? Since we told him that obviously it is not his business where we work or which country we come from, he just became even more angry and said we can stay today there today but we are not welcomed again in Silver Sands Beach (that in a menace way, fortunately there are quite a few private beaches in Jeddah; we usually change from weekend to weekend).

Five minutes later, a second Sudanese (I think the guy in the door) came and insisted to move out and he told us again that we are not welcome again.

Obviously they tried to bully us and after a while we left. I don't feel confortable in a beach where every 5 minutes someone is inviting me to leave because we are not welcomed.

I wouldn't have (or my friend) any problem if he would ask us to move to another place in a polite way, explaining us that the (unmarked) area is for annual-fee payers. Unfortunately his talk was extremely rude from second 1. He obviously didn't expect us to get back and question his unpolite remarks.

That just been my experience at Silver Sands Beach. Such situations remind me that customer service in many places in this country is still pitiful when compared to Western standards.

If someone knows how I could make a formal complain (if something like that exists on this country), I would be grateful. And in the meantime, if someone reads this, I hope that she or he will consider another beach in Jeddah.

Thanks,

Daniel.
From their point of view -they let you stay in the premium area because the rest of the beach was full, but once there were free seats in the normal area and someone wanted your seat, it was time for you to move. Quite reasonable, and they might have considered your reluctance to move as being ungrateful. But what they should have done is explained that you could stay there until seats became available in the normal area, or if someone wanted your seats you would have to move. Maybe they feigned anger because they'd let a couple of expats sit in the good seats and then a vip turned up and didnt like it, which could have got them in trouble, so they turned the blame on you. Also by not doing what they shouted at you to do, you were making them look silly in front of an important person. Try not to let these things bother you. As a previous poster said - roll with it. I was taken somewhere by a PRO and when everything was finished and w got back in the car he asked me where I wanted to go. I asked him to take me back to the office if it wasnt too much trouble, at which point he got angry and told me he is a manager and not a driver! Of course I apologised and said it was obvious he was a manager and so he took me to the office anyway. Losing face is very bad business here. It's annoying and I'd never do it at home, but if I have to play meek and pander to egos if it means I get what I want then I will! I find it's best to stay cool, calm and polite at all times. When it comes down to it, it doesn't help yourself to get wound up about these things. And we'll never win!
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Old Oct 16th 2010, 7:35 pm
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Default Re: Silver Sands Beach Jeddah - Shameful experience today

Originally Posted by E6B View Post
It sounds to me, and correct me if i'm wrong, that you sat in a premium area and after being told you weren't welcome you dug in and chose to remain there. I always fly first class and nothing bothers me more than people in coach using the first class washroom. I paid extra so I wouldn't have to wait in line or use a restroom after 42 other people have. I remember when my daughters all had boyfriends over at the house when they were teenagers and when I told one of them to leave and they hung around saying goodbye for 5 or 10 minutes, they never got to come back because when I say go, I mean go now. Leave immediately, and thats what I think you should have done. It's beyond me why people want to remain where they clearly are not welcome. It really is.
Go - and I mean go now.
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Old Oct 16th 2010, 11:06 pm
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Default Re: Silver Sands Beach Jeddah - Shameful experience today

Originally Posted by E6B View Post
It sounds to me, and correct me if i'm wrong, that you sat in a premium area and after being told you weren't welcome you dug in and chose to remain there. I always fly first class and nothing bothers me more than people in coach using the first class washroom. I paid extra so I wouldn't have to wait in line or use a restroom after 42 other people have. I remember when my daughters all had boyfriends over at the house when they were teenagers and when I told one of them to leave and they hung around saying goodbye for 5 or 10 minutes, they never got to come back because when I say go, I mean go now. Leave immediately, and thats what I think you should have done. It's beyond me why people want to remain where they clearly are not welcome. It really is.
Love pissing in the first class toilet (sink), nothing makes the time pass quicker.

Last edited by twisty100; Oct 16th 2010 at 11:12 pm.
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Old Oct 17th 2010, 5:27 am
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Default Re: Silver Sands Beach Jeddah - Shameful experience today

Originally Posted by E6B View Post
And lastly, but not leastly I have to address the absurdity of getting in your car, driving to a beach and sitting in a little spot allocated to you. Why bother? I live on a secluded beach surrounded by 1000's of kilometers of dangerous jungle. I walk it every morning and everynight and when I go out in the morning with my coffee to catch a few Red Snappers and have a little smoke I'm surprised if i see anyone- it's great.......Doing all that stuff you do and having someone tell you where to sit defeats the whole purpose of the beach.
Looks great!

What are the driving directions from Jeddah, and how long will it take (to the nearest 5 minutes say)?
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Old Oct 17th 2010, 5:28 am
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Default Re: Silver Sands Beach Jeddah - Shameful experience today

nice. where's that?
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Old Oct 17th 2010, 5:40 am
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Default Re: Silver Sands Beach Jeddah - Shameful experience today

Ahhh ok NOT far from Jeddah then.
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Old Oct 17th 2010, 5:46 am
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Default Re: Silver Sands Beach Jeddah - Shameful experience today

look at the properties of the photo - this guy gets banned and comes back with a new name. His photos are all coded red peters.
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Old Oct 17th 2010, 5:48 am
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Default Re: Silver Sands Beach Jeddah - Shameful experience today

Originally Posted by Bijilo123 View Post
look at the properties of the photo - this guy gets banned and comes back with a new name. His photos are all coded red peters.
Pure coincidence
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Old Oct 17th 2010, 5:57 am
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Default Re: Silver Sands Beach Jeddah - Shameful experience today

Originally Posted by E6B View Post
Take United Airlines from DBX to IAD- IAD to DEN then DEN to PVR

26 hours and 25 minutes-

Freshly caught Red Snapper every night
Ah! ....OK. Thought you were putting it forward as an alternative beach in Jeddah.

I'll give it a miss. The place only looks good for washing your dirty stuff, and I'd have to find a somewhat better place than that crummy looking launderette in the photograph.
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