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Review: JW Marriott Beijing, 1 Bedroom Executive Suite
(ICYMI, This is part of my mom’s Surprise $125k Trip Around the World) So far just today we’ve left the Intercontinental Boston, surprised my mom with a First Class flight to Hong Kong on Cathay Pacific, showered in a cabana at The Wing, pulled off a second surprise by not staying in Hong Kong and continuing on to Beijing in Cathay Business, and NOW we were finally getting to our first real stop, Beijing. Beijing is chalk full of hotels you can use points to stay at. But, how many are 15k points a night with the 5th night free? 60k for 5 nights at a hotel we keep top tier status with that guarantees club access and buffet breakfast? CAHMON! We knew we’d be using the hotel to basically adjust to this time zone, eating, relaxing, and sleeping. This was perfect. Come along and check out the JW Marriott Beijing
There are 2 JW Marriotts in Beijing: The JW Marriott Beijing, and the JW Marriott Beijing Central. We were at the first one.
If you’re looking to book this one its home page looks like this.
Wonder how much one of those Rolls will set you back? So did I. It’s a lot
We ended up getting a van. Beijing airport is massive and if you use the hotel service it includes gate side assistance and VIP transit including private pickup in a special area of the airport that is covered and akin to valet at a hotel. It’s pretty great and it was my mom’s 75th birthday. We weren’t going to take a taxi.
- When: April 2017
- Where: Beijing
- Loyalty: Marriott Rewards
- Price: 60k for 5 nights ( $75 premium for Suite)
- Status: Platinum
- Benefits: Club access and free breakfast at Asia Bistro
The hotel is adjacent to the Chinese Business District and next door to the Ritz Carlton Beijing. In fact, the two hotels look almost exactly alike. The biggest difference is the Ritz will charge you about 3x as many points and not give top tier elites club access or good upgrades. So…why would we do that? There is also a large, high end mall called the China Central Place within about 2 minutes and if you’re looking to get elsewhere in the city, the metro is about 5 minutes away on foot ( Dawang station.)
Arrival and Check-In
They were ready for us. I had emailed the hotel a few days in advance letting them know that we wouldn’t be arriving the first night of our check-in. We would be arriving prior to guaranteed check-in time and it was the same price for 4 nights as it was 5. This was so that we’d have rooms guaranteed and no waiting around after traveling for a LONG TIME. There were bellhops outside and we were at the Elite desk in no time. We were told that we’d been upgraded to club rooms…that’s not really an upgrade as Golds and Platinums have guaranteed club access.
Here’s the thing. I looked online and there were suites available. But we didn’t initially get the upgrade.
I asked about the upgrade, but there was a bit of a language barrier, and my parents were exhausted. The manager said the hotel was booked solid. My folks were going to take a nap anyways and I didn’t want to belabor the point. We also had two rooms and club access, so having a suite wasn’t all that important as we could use the club to hang out together.
Here’s a quick look at a normal club king which I had the whole time, and my parents had for a night:
My folks nap turned into see ya tomorrow! That’s when we discovered the amazing buffet breakfast served at the Asia Bistro.
There is a sincere feeling that customer service is something they take pride in, and it shows in their efforts to create the best possible experience for you. Regardless of getting this buffet breakfast free of charge…I would have paid for it. At 270 CNY.
There were stations from around the world and everything was delicious and fresh.
It was after breakfast that I had the idea to check for an upgrade in the Club lounge.
I’m not sure why I didn’t think of this on the first day. There is a computer station in the club lounge, an American living in China, and it would be easy to show her what I was talking about as well as not have to bridge any language/cultural barriers. AND….it worked like a charm. The problem we ran into with an upgrade upon check-in the day before was that they thought we were insinuating that we wanted a FREE UPGRADE. Well, we would have taken it, but also willing to pay. To upgrade from a normal room to an almost 900 sq ft suite cost us 500 CNY or $73 a day. NOW THAT IS A DEAL and would give my folks quite a bit more space.
We ventured out to the mall next door and when we got back their bags had been moved to 2115 – a luxurious corner suite.
There was en entrance hallway with a powder room that lead to the living room.
Where there was a small work station and bar.
And then the bedroom and large bathroom.
One of my favorite things about 4/5 star hotels in Asia and the Middle East…the amenity kits.
NOW THAT IS MORE LIKE A 75th CELEBRATION ROOM 🙂
It just never hurts to ask multiple people for what you want. As it turned out…there was just a slight miscommunication and the hotel was IMMEDIATELY willing to upsell us to a better room. It just makes sense though, right? Why wouldn’t the hotel want to vacate cheaper, more easily sold rooms and upgrade a top tier elite? It kills two birds with one stone. Enrich the experience for a highly loyal guest, and open up a category rooms that creates more revenue.
We settled in for a bit and then headed to the club for a snack and a beverage.
The club worked well for us, but it’s OLD. The hotel, in fact, feels dated, but well maintained. The trip was planned to start in a place that was quite nice, but not one where you’d feel guilty if you slept the entire time you were there. Mission accomplished. The club was kind of the same thing. Spacious enough, with snacks and nibbles that were great, but nothing was so incredible that you’d feel guilty skipping out on.
I utilized the hotel gym a few times while I was there. It wasn’t over fancy, but quite modern and had all the essentials. It overlooked the pool.
Another nice touch the hotel surprised us with was a birthday cake for my mom.
Overall: How can you go wrong at 12k a night.
The location is great and the rooms are very nice. The hotel is feeling a bit dated, but how can you beat 12k/night with guaranteed club access and buffet breakfast. If you’re looking for the fanciest options or the latest and greatest…you may be disappointed. If you’re wanting a 5 star hotel that’s showing some age and is priced to sell? This is the spot. It fit our needs perfectly. In all honesty, Beijing is so polluted that my parents didn’t really want to be outside much. The hotel provided space, good food, and the proximity to a shopping mall gave us some stuff to do that was nearby and didn’t require a whole lot of exposure to pollution. We were looking for a place that was nice, could be had for points at a good rate, and club level. The highlight of being in Beijing was venturing out to the great wall. An outstanding hotel experience was for our next big spot…BALI!