Over 16 days on my Eastern European trip, I stayed at a number of SPG/Marriott hotels because (Marriott Minsk Review)
- I have a ton of points
- The stays are free
- They’re supposed to upgrade me to the best available room, although I sometimes have to fight for it
- I’m a Platinum SPG guest
- I love using promos and codes for free stuffMarriott Minsk Review
Here’s my list of hotels that I stayed at on this trip:
- Grand Hotel River Park, Bratislava : Nice Jr. Suite upgrade, phenomenal bathroom, no issues on the upgrade process from standard to a Jr. Suite. Marriott Minsk Review
- Marriott Budapest : Decent Corner Jr. Suite upgrade, significant issues on trying to upgrade from a standard to a Jr. Suite
- Metropol Palace : Jr. Suite upgrade, no issues on trying upgrade, but this should not be a Luxury Collection hotel.
- Sheraton Bucharest : Jr. Suite upgrade, but had issues upon trying to upgrade
- Lviv, Ukraine … this was through AirBnB – this was also it’s own horror story … and the subject of another post
- Marriott Minsk … read below
- Westin Zagreb … Jr. Suite upgrade, no issues on trying to upgrade
- Four Points Ljubjlana … It’s a Four Points … they did upgrade me to their largest room … but it’s a Four Points, so it doesn’t count.
Getting into the hotel Marriott Minsk Review
It’s about a 45 minute Uber ride from the airport. I highly, highly suggest that you grab an Uber, regardless of your personal feelings for the company. It was super convenient and the price was awesome …
The hotel lobby is very well appointed with a beautiful open concept atrium. This is a low profile hotel where it’s super wide but with about 6 floors. It is located on the bank of Svislach River over which my room had great views from its balcony. As such, it offers good opportunities for walks or bike hire along miles of walking/cycle routes through verdant parks. I enjoyed watching the canoes and kayaks being expertly handled by members of the adjacent club.
The Junior Suite
The rooms are all brand new, since the hotel is a little over a year old. I was upgraded from a standard room to a hospitality suite. The room is very spacious with a separate bedroom. The lounge, dining, wet bar area has plenty of seating options. The wet bar has a large minibar into which you could also store most private food items, if you decided to do so. A Lavazza coffee maker is available along with capsules and complimentary bottled water.
Generally there are plenty of outlets located throughout the room, including at the bed. There is also an HDMI connection to the two tvs in case you want to hook your laptop up. The Wi-Fi speed was perfectly fine, including for video streaming. The bathroom has a step-less walk-in rain shower with plenty of water pressure. The bathroom and overall the entire room was very clean with modern furnishing.
The executive lounge was the star of my stay
I ate here everyday I was here. There were different options for dinner and breakfast was always excellent in the lounge. With my non-love of dairy enhanced food, eating in Eastern Europe was a bit of chore. I never had to worry about this with the lounge!
Also there were never a lot of guests in there, so if you’re a Plat Marriott/SPG member, you’ll have an almost private executive lounge available to you for most of the day and even on the weekday evenings.
- Other services
|High Speed Wired/Wireless Internet Access||Complimentary Wi-Fi with excellent speed. This is a true business hotel, if just for that reason alone.|
|Concierge||The staff had decent information but didn’t go above and beyond with extra things to see. I asked specific questions on things to do and there wasn’t a lot of extra feedback.|
|Parking/Valet||Didn’t use any parking as I was always in an Uber|
|Dining||I only ate at the lounge which was excellent. Full sampling of food, liquor and service. Excellent!!!|
|Pool||People should go to Eastern Europe for the jacuzzis and spas. This hotel is no exception to that rule|
|Gym||Mid tier gym – has enough equipment for a good workout.
|Business Center||Reasonable business center, nothing out of the ordinary|
- Overall thoughts
This is a great business hotel and but personally rates a strong 8 for me but easily a 9 in comparison to what is on offer in other cities on my trip. This is definitely what I expect from a Marriott.
|Staff attitude, conduct and support||Initial greeting was decent by Maria and Elena. The sight of 4 over-entitled, demanding lifetime Plats and Golds is enough to throw anyone off their game. I was particular harsh and over the top but the staff held strong and delivered a good check-in experience. I received my Plat welcome letter, which advised me that I should be upgraded to the best available room (no asterisk or anything).
Upon trying to upgrade to a suite, I met with some resistance, but they upgraded me to a hospitality suite. ith the front desk staff at the time failing to offer/inform me of all the Platinum amenities available at this hotel.
|Hotel Cleanliness||Exceptional. There wasn’t a thing that was out of place.|
|Location||This would be the only negative thing about the hotel. It’s is not close to the downtown/old town areas … relatively speaking. It’s about a 12 minute Uber ride, which is about 30 mins in reality because Uber here is so new and inefficient|
|Would I return?||I would definitely return to the hotel.|
||This is a business hotel. There were a lot of business people in the hotel, but there are facilities for the kids to be on the water.|
|Good for business travellers?
||Definitely a good business hotel and is geared to those travellers with higher end expectations from the Marriott.|
|Value for price paid?
||I can’t think of a better spend of 3300 SPG points per night. For two nights, I transferred over 7000 SPG points to make up the 21000 Marriott points.
This is compared to the 35,000 per night for the Marriott Budapest. There wasn’t even a comparison for the amount of points spent.