Saturday, 12 June 2010

Hotel and Inn Review: Marriott Hotel Manila (Pasay City)

Date of Stay: June 12-13, 2010

RATING (Scale of 1 to 10)
Location: *******
Rooms: ********
Condition and Cleanliness: ********
Staff Performance: ********
Room Comfort: *******
Food and Beverage: ********
Other Amenities: ********
Value for Money: *******

The 8-storey Marriott Hotel Manila, located within the 25-hectare, mixed-use Newport City (which includes the world-class tourism complex of Resorts World Manila) project of property giant Megaworld Corp.,  is the first in Metro Manila to carry the Marriott name and the second in the Philippines after the 301-room Cebu City Marriott Hotel. 

The Marriott name had its beginnings in food and beverage when, in 1927, J. Willard and Alice S. Marriott opened their first A&W (after Alice and Willard) Root Beer stand (with nine stools) in Washington, D.C. During the next decade, Marriott expanded its food-service business to include “in-flite” service (later to become the world’s largest airline catering business). 

By 1957, its business extended to hotels when it opened their first Twin Bridges Motor Hotel in Arlington, Virginia. Today Marriott International Inc. is a leading worldwide hospitality company, with over 3,100 operating units in the United States and 67 other countries and territories. 

Mr. Richard Saul, Marriott Hotel Manila first general manager, sums it all up when he said that “Marriott represents a five-star international product that customers can rely on.”

This five-star international standard, plus the best of Philippine hospitality and a distinctive touch of Philippine flavor and color, makes this hotel unique among other Marriot hotels. 

As one enters the lobby, guests are presented with a unique, not-too-stiff and living room-style zoning arrangement that defies convention and emphasizes convenience, rest and creation: a front desk (and the panic-and-frantic pace associated with it) that is almost hidden from view; an  interactive social zone with television sets on both ends (allowing guests to be both social and business-like at the same time), and the Lobby Bar with its high tables and communal tables (for groups that may want to enjoy snacks and canapés) and, for the private person, an individual zone where one can sit down, read a book or enjoy his cake, salad and cool drink.

From the grand lobby, it is impossible not to be drawn to Marriott’s seamlessly integrated restaurant outlets (all with splendid views of the Villamor Golf Club’s fairways) that literally flow from one to the other, each offering something distinct and different for the guests.

The casual Marriott Café, a bright, bold, upbeat and modern version of an all-day dining buffet restaurant, features live and engaging open-theater kitchens and a vast, sumptuous buffet of local and international favorites from the Western world all the way up to China, plus an equally irresistible à la carte menu to order from. 

The sophisticated Cru Steakhouse, a paradise for meat lovers, serves the finest dry-aged, prime cuts of succulent steak (you can choose your cut and see how it is prepared) perfectly paired with the freshest seafood (oysters, lobsters, etc.) and fine red wine.

Meanwhile, the Velocity Sports and Entertainment Bar, an updated and upgraded version of a contemporary sports bar (with multiple, giant flat-screen TVs showing the hottest sporting events from around the globe), offers a central bar, live entertainment, local tap beer and cocktails (complemented by a simple finger-food menu), private zones (for guests who want to watch sports at a corner all to themselves), ample open space for moving around, and distinctive but complementary pieces of furniture.

Java+Coffee Shop specializes in excellent grab-and-go choices of energy-boosting gourmet coffee, freshly baked pastries, breads and other wholesome refreshments and snacks.

Of course, what is a hotel without its rooms.  The 342 exquisite deluxe rooms and suites are all first-rate, all exuding class and comfort, with luxurious bedding, high-speed Internet, 40-inch, full high-definition LCD TVs with IPTV,  new jack pack plug-and-play systems, in-room safe, minibar and spacious work areas.

The two top floors house executive-level rooms and 19 deluxe suites. From the Executive Lounge, guests can enjoy a spectacular view of the Villamor Golf Course.

To relax and unwind, there’s Marriott’s signature Quan Spa, a full-service spa that offers various treatments and services to pamper guests. The spa has four single treatment rooms, one couple’s room, one bathing suite and a reflexology lounge. 

The hotel also has a fully equipped health club (offers cardio equipment, free weights, fitness classes and a pool), grand ballroom, six meeting rooms, business center plus a swimming pool. 

Marriott Hotel Manila: No 10 Newport Boulevard,Newport City Complex, Pasay City.  Tel: (632) 988-9999.  Fax: (632) 836-9998.