Thursday, 21 July 2011

New Dave and Buster’s at I-Drive in Orlando, Florida

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Guest Travel Review By Kelly Wade

It was my birthday and I was very excited about going to the new Dave and Buster’s at I-Drive in Orlando, Florida. Upon arriving, we could not find a parking spot. Dozens of vehicles circled the building while many others were parked illegally on curves, behind other cars, and everywhere else they could jam into.

Helpful note to reader: pay the $5 valet and let the good times roll.

Well the good times did not exactly roll. We entered the building to find massive lines and crowds of people waiting. The main problem was the crowds were not sure which line was waiting for what. I did a little reconnaissance and found that several lines were solely for registering a player’s card.

Helpful note: register at home online and if you do not plan to revisit than do not bother at all.

I also found the biggest line was waiting for one young girl to take your name and phone number for the restaurant waiting list; the wait was well over one and a half hours. This seemed a ridiculous waste of time so I approached a manager (term used very loosely) and inquired why it need take so long just to put a name on the waiting list.

The line was taking over one hour just to get your on the ‘waiting’ list. This ‘manager’, think John Candy with a mustache in Blues Brothers, looked befuddled and overwhelmed.

He stated sarcastically, “should we have a separate line for local Floridians”.

“Actually Mr. ‘Candy’, a few small businesses you may of heard about, Universal and Walt Disney, cater especially to locals and it seems to work for them alright.”

Mr. “Candy” talked about how there was 5000 customers on premises. I told him this had no impact on why it took one girl over one hour just to take down customers’ names from a line of about 100 people many of who were in large parties; thus, only maybe 30 names were actually recorded. Also, if there are 5000 customers how about trying to have maybe two employees take down names? Why are large businesses, *cough* Wal-Mart *cough* so opposed to hiring and staffing for proper customer service?

Huge helpful hint: skip the line to get on the ‘waiting’ list. Either eat elsewhere before coming to play games or go straight to the bar area and grab a seat the best you can.

If I return, I will eat before arriving. The food we got was mediocre. We waited one hour for appetizers. The bartender said he was sorry. We did not bother with entrees as everyone around us was complaining about their food.

My birthday experience was rejuvenated by a server in the bar area who took it upon himself to cheer us up. He was very cheerful and friendly. He got us a free round of drinks and gave me a game card and refused to take money when I offered. He wore an orange shirt so he was most likely a trainer, all of the other servers had on black shirts. For any Dave and Buster managers who actually care about customer service this server is about 6ft tall, mid 30s, black, and should be training Mr. ‘Candy’ on how to treat customers.

Once we finally ate and got to the games we had a fun time. There were a tremendous amount of games. However, for just its third day of opening many of the games were out of service. We did manage to win enough tickets to leave with some nice parting gifts. Oh, the water running from the sinks was hotter than a hot tub, so watch your hands.

I hope Mr. ‘Candy’ gets some training and stops leaning on the wall and keeps this place from becoming just another large empty building on I-Drive.

Author Bio: Kelly Wade has been a general manager for some of most high profile restaurants in the country. He’s also owned and operated two successful restaurants in Florida.

Travelsphere Owner: Lauren Axelrod is a certified Executive chef who’s owned and operated two successful restaurants. She also owns the syndicated archaeology website Ancient Digger.

 

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