Abu Dhabi (New) Marriott

Discussion created by ssindc on Oct 3, 2016
Latest reply on Oct 3, 2016 by deannad

First impressions of the new (as in really, really new) downtown Marriott in Abu Dhabi:

  • Convenient downtown location;
  • Excellent and responsive pre-arrival communications from the management and concierge staff - this is really appreciated;
  • Upgraded to a splendid executive level corner room - huge, comfortable, nice layout;
    • greeted (despite my middle-of-the-night arrival) in my room with a visually attractive and oh-so-delicious plate of desserts - if they weren't so yummy, they would have been nice just to look at...
    • universal electrical outlets in numerous locations around the room - it is amazing to me how slow international hotels have been to adopt this traveler-friendly perk;
    • fast, reliable internet service - OK, OK, this should be a given, but I'm just back from a trip to another continent where, despite staying in a high end hotel, we struggled with lousy/inconsistent internet service all week.
    • in room coffee service
    • excellent work surface, a desk chair (on wheel) that adjusted to an appropriate height, and not one but two pens and pads of paper - HOORAY - Have Pens (and paper) Disappeared From Hotel Ro... | Marriott Rewards® Insiders
    • nice view;
    • a huge, comfortable reading chair with ottoman with a perfectly located over-the-shoulder reading light;
    • voluminous, excellent storage drawers;
    • cushy Marriott robe - aaaaahhhhhhhhh.
  • The bathroom is visually pleasing, spacious, and comfortable
    • brand new, fluffy, bath sheet - a huge, plush, soft and fluffy towel;
    • the square toilet was intriguing - one wonders if everyone finds it comfortable (but it worked fine for me);
    • a full spa tub, plus a shower - I admit that I'd prefer a shower door or curtain wall - the open shower is relatively common in en suite Euro-rooms, but (and maybe this is my problem) I am incapable of showering without water spreading onto the bathroom floor.
  • Very impressive breakfast experience in the concierge lounge, which offered a selection of stunning views.
    • full breakfast - although, in fairness, the selection of options compared favorably to large, international buffet - a visually attractive (and, potentially, overwhelming) selection of breads (with numerous spreads, including a honey comb/fresh honey), cereals and nuts, hot foods (regional and international), meats (and smoked salmon), a stunning selection of colorful, tasty fresh fruit options, juices, cold drinks (including San Pelligrino mineral water, even Red Bull for the millennials), and hot drinks (including a nice espresso/coffee machine).
    • helpful, attentive staff.
    • *** for the folks who feel strongly about this issue, I was intrigued that the concierge policy is "no kids," but I have no idea if that is enforced or not....  [Obviously, this is a polarizing issue: Children no longer allowed at Concierge Lounge? | Marriott Rewards® Insiders  - Concierge  Lounge Etiquette | Marriott Rewards® Insiders ]
  • Plenty of dining options, including - in addition to the concierge lounge:
      • and, yes, the concierge lounge evening offerings did not disappoint - to the contrary, there were an obscene number of visually attractive, diverse, and tasty offerings, including meats (chicken on skewers, sausage, shrimp), vegetables, pasta, breads, nuts, a colorful row of desserts, a well stocked bar (including a variety of chilled glasses and stemware), a wall of cold drinks, and.... well, you get the idea...
    • JW's - a stylish steak house;
    • Kuzbara - Mediterranean
    • Grounds - the ground floor coffee bar/lounge area;
    • the rooftop poolside bar (and grill);
    • one of the most extensive (and colorful) room service menus I've ever seen; and
    • the Velocity bar, which looks like a multi-level sports bar on steroids (and it wouldn't surprise me if it's a happening spot later at night).
  • I'm not sure if I've ever stayed in a Marriott quite this new - it apparently opened last month (September 2016);
    • not everything is completed just yet:
      • the attractive/stylish spa is not fully staffed (yet);
      • no doorknob (yet) on the inner door to the 20th floor concierge lounge;
    • cheerful, enthusiastic desk staff still learning some of the check-in nuances - despite the smiles and good graces, it's a little frustrating during a middle-of-the-night check-in.
  • Granted, Abu Dhabi is not short on high-end lodging options - in fact, it's hard to choose among the cornucopia of exquisite options - in the past, I've both enjoyed and been impressed with:
    • the Rotana Beach Club - a local classic - splendid beach and recreation, great food, very nice rooms, etc.;
    • the Etihad Towers - architecturally stunning, highest/best views, the very definition of luxury.
    • At least at this point, however, the Marriott is (extremely) competitively priced. I have no idea if I got a new hotel teaser rate, but my stay was priced far below the rates that my colleagues were paying at other properties, and no one entering the lobby, seeing my room, or visiting the concierge lounge would think the Marriott is anything other than a high-end/five-star/luxury property.

Sorry, folks, travelling without my camera equipment on this all-work-and-no-play trip.  But I've previously posted plenty of photos of Abu Dhabi, including the utterly captivating mosque: Abu Dhabi: Grand Mosque, Etihad Towers, etc.