Friday, December 4

Near Death Experience at Crown Regency Elevator (by Kadz)

It was a planned general assembly of our team last January 9, 2009 to watch a movie at the 4D theatre at the Crown Regency Hotel. Crown Regency just recently launched great deals of having fun and excitement to people who would like to have thrilling experiences.

Our girl teammates separately took off and I, my Team Leader (TL), and two of my other teammates had to take the taxi. We arrived at the hotel about 1:00 PM since we still took our lunch together. The hotel was completely different compared to when I first had my stay here in Cebu on hour educational trip. Though it still won’t be the best hotel I’ve been to, it’s worth the awe.

Anyhow, we thought we were earlier than our other teammates so we just first relaxed at the waiting area. I received a text from Badjoi that they are already at the 19th floor so I said to my TL that the others are already waiting for us there. So, we took the nearest elevator that we saw.

A man was already pressing the Up button so we didn’t have to press it again. There were two elevators, one on each side. The one on the left opened first and the man did not notice this. He said that this was going to the basement and soon enough, it just opened. So I entered the elevator first and the others followed. The man pressed the 19(floor) then the close buttons.
It was odd that the door tried to close but then it opened back again. The man had to push the close button about thrice to completely close the elevator. Finally, it sealed.

The elevator just lifted up normally. The man who rode with us on the elevator incidentally was an agent or a sales person for the Crown regency sky adventure. He showed some brochures, explained his deals in the adventure package, and even gave call cards. Everything went fine, until we reached the 19th floor. The elevator seemed to have lifted and then slipped down for about a meter or two. The feeling was like when you were going down the stairs and you were expecting that you reached the bottom, but then the minute you took your first step, you still went down. I don’t know, that’s the closest that I could describe the feeling of it.

Just for curiosity, I asked the gentleman if such elevator motion is normal. He said, “No” so I immediately ran into the conclusion that something was wrong. The elevator then slowly went down from the 19th floor. It was slow but then it’s not the normal speed of an elevator when you’re brought down. The backside of the elevator was a see-through mirror so we could really see our altitude from up there. The floor indicator was on steady 19 even though we know that we were going down.

Zhadd, my other teammate, said that it might be that the elevator failed and the fail-safe. As he explained, it’s a device at the bottom of an elevator that each time the elevator fails; it holds it and then drops it down slowly. My TL asked if the Hotel Agent had any contact from any person from the management who could help us, but he was not thinking well too. I was just holding the bar on the side of the elevator - hoping that it might save me until the door would just open.

I was not silent. I talked a lot. These might be the last words that I could speak. Even though we might get down safely, can we even go out? I was thinking about worse case scenarios already so I had to calm and distract myself when I was in that elevator. just imagine the excruciating thought that our lives were just depending on the fail-safe. 

We passed the 11th floor and the indicator changed to 11. The next stop should be the 4th floor. On my desperation, I pressed all floors hoping that the elevator would open on any of those floors so we could just get out and immediately stop the things that were running in my mind. We passed every floor that we pushed. We even passed the 1st floor. We pressed the emergency contact button for the elevator, nobody answered. We tried again but we could not get any help. The elevator was still going down, and then suddenly it stopped. It was when the door finally opened and we saw the basement when I felt relief. We had to step higher for us to get out since the elevator was not leveled to the basement floor.

We immediately reported this to the guard on the basement hoping that others won’t ride on that same elevator. The guard did not quite get what happened and even wanted an explanation on what really happened. I just told him it failed, and he has to report this. We were hesitant in taking the other elevator. It is a traumatic experience, but we have to let the others know of what happened. We reached the 19th floor and I told my other teammates about what happened.

We agreed to talk to the manager about what happened. All four of us from our team asked for the manager. We were just made to wait at the normal waiting area. The guard just said that the manager will come soon. He then gave a small piece of scratch paper and said we had to write our names there. Our TL wrote them down.

A man, in blue long sleeves and a tie, then approached us and Zhadd explained to him what happened. When he came back to us, we explained further on what happened. Our TL explained to him that our purpose was just to enjoy and experience the 4D theatre. It turned out that it was not fun that we experienced more. It was panic.

The man who introduced himself said sorry and thank you. He said thank you for letting them know about the incident and said that they would contact the engineers or elevator repairmen. He said sorry for what happened. My TL asked him if that’s the best thing he could say, since the damage has been done. He again just said sorry. I then replied to him a “sorry” and told him that his apology does not calm our panic a bit. We were still wobbly by that time. My heart was still pounding fast.

The manager said that if we would like to, we can talk to their General Manager. My TL asked if when would his GM available for this. He said that he is not sure. A man in Maroon long sleeves then passed and the not so Manager said that “that’s him.” We were left there on the waiting area for minutes, maybe an hour. My other teammates were already bored waiting for us. We just said that we will just watch the movie first since it would not take long then get back.

After that, we went to the theatre and the movie just lasted for about 15-20 minutes. We then got back to the waiting area and asked the guards on what time would we be accommodated for the concern that we are raising. He said that the General Manager would be available 5:00 PM. It was still 2:45 by then. We knew they were not interested for the talk. We just spent the rest of our GA fund on the Karaoke/Videoke lounge.

Personally, I felt that the Crown Regency Hotel Management didn’t really care about what happened. Who were we anyways? Well, I’m glad that we are still alive though. Thoughts would still pop up in my mind. What if we were in that elevator with someone who has a weak heart? What if someone was claustrophobic? Funny thing was, we still had to take the elevator going down. No choice. It was a fairly new elevator, not like the one that failed. To add, when I read the indicator on that new elevator, the screen was inverted. The last line of it read, “Boot disc error”.

Evidently, there are still glitches on the technology and facilities of the hotel. What if the skywalk would fail? What if your turn on the edge coaster actually had a wrong twist? What if the insanity orbit rotates off beam? Would you still have your fail-safe just like on the elevator?

Well, that’s enough thrill for a very famous hotel in Cebu. I never thought that I could experience that thrill. The edge coaster, the skywalk or the insanity orbit would not level up to the angst and anxiety that we experienced on that elevator at Crown Regency Hotel Cebu. I’m glad we are alive and that’s a reason to celebrate. So do you want to experience the adventure on this hotel too? Well, I’ll pass… even though it’s for free.


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