Have been to Republic multiple times before but this was the worst experience and I will never go back to this establishment.
Won a VIP table on Instagram for this past Thursday. We arrived and the hostess brought us to our table - enjoyed our drinks throughout the night. When we were ready to leave, server brought us the tab (which is gratuity + taxes when you get "VIP treatment"). I specifically told the server that we would be paying in cash for the bill plus her tip. We ended up giving her at least $100 in cash (our check was for $51) but I wanted to add $20 to her tip so I told her to put that on my debit card. Little did I know that she would be charging me for the entire bill plus the $20.
When I called to complain about this, not only did I have to call 3-4 times before getting any real help, but the management just kept telling that my bank had placed a "hold" on the money and that was why my debit card charge was for $85! At no point has this "Hold" gone back onto my card (I was told it would go back on Monday). All the while, one manager spoke with our server, and our server told her that we all paid her separately in cash (not true, all the cash was left in the book) and she also told her manager that she knew one of us personally (also not true). I was never refunded any of my money and the manager on duty that I spoke with even had the nerve to say that they "comped us a bottle of liquor" insinuating I shouldn't really be complaining - keep in mind, this is part of what you win when you receive "VIP"... I just cannot believe this place. I've never had a worse customer service experience and I will never go back.
Republic lost all credibility with us...Thursday night found us looking forward to the Third Annual School Supply Drive at Republic. (http://www.charlestoncitypaper.com/charleston/third-annual-school-supply-drive-at-republic/Event?oid=5349300) We shopped for supplies, having fun thinking about when WE were back in school so many years ago, and looking forward to an evening of cocktails and supporting a good cause. On the way over the bridge, we even heard an advertisement for the event.
Imagine our surprise when the host knew nothing about the event. So we went to the bar and found out...nothing. No one knew anything about the event. We asked several other patrons who were also holding book bags of school supplies. Nothing. Finally, one gentleman at the bar said a manager had come out, and bought him a drink, but that event was cancelled. So we asked to see a manager. We were told he was out (at 10:00 p.m. on a Thursday??).
We figured we would enjoy a cocktail at least, to salvage the evening. We stood at the bar (with 5 empty stools), and a bartender directly in front of us, wiping glasses, for over 7 minutes. No acknowledgement, no order, nothing. And two other bartenders at the end, talking to each other.
At this, we gave up and left. Yesterday, we stopped by Mamie Whitesides Elementary, and dropped off the supplies to an extremely grateful Ms. Pounder, the principal, working outside at the school doing landscaping.
Republic, you dropped the ball on this in a big way...
P.S. Does it seem absurd that a bar bans ball caps inside, but then is selling a ball cap with their name on it?
OK drinks. Horrible service. The bartender (possibly owner) was disrespectful and confrontational. Better to take your business a few doors down to any of the other cocktail bars on King St.
Why was my comment removed? CCP censorship? Really?? Or is someone in Palmer's back pocket? If you think the following 2 reviews are by different people, who just happened to register and post for the first time on the same afternoon, I've got some news for you: they aren't. It's slick marketing aimed to temper a negative review. Let your product speak for itself, CC. And stop posting glowing reviews for O Ku, without identifying yourself as GM of an establishment owned by the same parent company.
"Best bar in Charleston! Excellent service, delicious drinks, and tasty food. Will be back again and again! I'd give it more than 5 stars if I could!"
"This place really has a unique and mature environment. Service and technique are unbelievably polished, creative, and just plain fun! Classy establishment."
Slow, long-winded service. My girlfriend said the juice tasted old and when she tried to tell the bartender she just gave her attitude. WASTE OF MONEY! Much better bars around like the Belmount or Hom.
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