Wonderfully located hotel... 7 day/week lounge
This was a weekend stay with my elderly mother (with a teeny bit of business in the afternoon of my Friday arrival). If your business is with the European institutions and especially the Parliament then this hotel isn't very well located for you, try the (also excellent) Renaissance. However if your biz is in the city centre or you're a tourist who wants to be right in the thick of it then this is for you. It's right there, at The Bourse and within a 1 minute walk of the central Grand Place, a few minutes of Mannekin Pis and no distance at all to the restaurants, pubs and shops of Brussels. It's location is a treat.
This trip was was the first time I'd tried the online checkin app, and I'm afraid I found it very wanting. I duly checked in online via the app just as my Eurostar train was leaving the station and it responded en route at about noon advising my room was available. On arrival at the hotel an hour or so later I stepped up to the checkin desk and was simply handed my keys... Wow, so smooth... Except... Oooopps!!! The computer assigning the room obviously thought I was travelling with an enemy and put us on completely different floors! Then we had to wait around whilst our rooms were changed to next door, which the staff happily did...
again and again I am always awestruck at the English skills I find in Europe as I struggle with my schoolboy French, but Marriott's are exceptional, their FD staff are always utterly fluent in English which makes these kind of issues so easy to resolve. Furthermore my mother needed a quiet room and although the rooms initially assigned had a great view of the Bourse, I was informed the rooms weren't exactiy quite at the weekend, with the revellers down below. Hence whilst switching the rooms to the same floor we were also placed in 2 gloriously peaceful rooms right next to each other. The test of any organisation is how glitches are rectified and here the Marriott Brussels passed with flying colours!
unlike the Ren, this hotel keeps it's exec lounge open 7 nights a week meaning free food and beer/wine at the weekends, though with all the wonderful different beers available in Brussels limiting oneself to only e exec lounge offerings is in my view a crime! Mind you it worked quite well for this visit. Evening food offerings are quite good too. I might add that lounge overcrowding wasn't an issue here, it was certainly busy at times but tables were available whenever I was there.
Then there's the midtown grill. Yup, it was great and by great I do mean great. I love steak and this place knows how to serve it. Don't go for the authentic taste of Brussels however that's just as well as Belgian contributions to world cuisine are in the form of beer (there are more difrerent beers brewed in Belgium per head than anywhere else in the world) and chocolate... Mmmmmm, chocolate! So don't feel guilTy when you pick the midtown that you're missing out on the cuisine. Drink the beer, take the chocolate home and you have the best of Brusells! Enjoy Midtowns steaks. I did!
Now if you're like me, daily maid servicing just isn't needed, and here that attitude is rewarded by a €5 bar credit if you leave a sign on your door refusing maid service. That's serves up a fine nightcap!
SO to recap, clean comfortable quiet rooms, 7 day week exec lounge with beer/wine (at weekends breakfast is free for Gold/Plats in restaurant), excellent restaurant and right in the centre of all the action. I really, really rate this hotel... Go, you won't regret it!
Date Stayed: March 2014