We had a little money saved up in our bank account and were discussing what we should do about that intolerable situation when we found an ad from the Quito Marriott announcing discounts around New Years Eve. It was brilliant! Not only could we shed ourselves of our filthy lucre, but we could do it at a discount! The logic was, admittedly, a bit idiomatic, but it seemed like a good idea at the time.
Also, M. needed one more night in 2017 to maintain her Marriott silver elite status, so the decision was easy. Consequently we reserved three nights, including New Year’s Eve, at the J. W. Marriott in Quito. The advertised rate was, if I recall correctly, $159/night. We upgraded to a room with included breakfast and a large terrace overlooking the city to watch the fireworks. We learned later that the authorities had prohibited fireworks this year, but that is another story.
Our bill altogether, including taxes and a lunch for two with hamburgers, fries and drinks, came to $777. The total upgraded room cost for three nights was therefore probably about $730.
We had stayed at the Quito J. W. Marriott several times before, although not lately. Our stays had been mostly as a stopover on trips between Cuenca and the U.S. What always strikes me first about this property is the immense lobby. The word impressive comes to mind. If it were much larger, it would probably have it’s own weather patterns.
Check in was seamless and the staff were unfailingly professional and polite. They seem to have mastered the difficult art of professional friendliness without crossing into patronizing annoyance.
We asked at the desk which side of the hotel would likely give the best view of the fireworks on New Year’s Eve. After some thought the clerk recommended the city side (as opposed to the mountain view), so we took that. If we had realized that fireworks had been banned this year, we probably would have selected the other side with a mountain view.
Our flight from Cuenca had arrived early and we were at the hotel before 10:00 A.M. The room was not ready yet so we elected to go for brunch at the breakfast buffet. The selection of items was really amazing. I do not have pictures, but there was a large array of items including various meats, pastries, fruit, cereals and, of course, an egg station for omelets. There were also a few Ecuadoran specialties for people who wish to sample the local cuisine. I think it is safe to say there is a large enough selection to satisfy the needs of most people. This breakfast was not included with our room and cost $50 for the two of us.
Our waiter continued the trend of personable wait staff, although M. thought a few of his comments were a little overly familiar. Not rude or forward, but a little too much. He scored points however, by bringing her a couple of pink roses before we left.
Rooms had been redecorated since our last visit and I think the change was for the better. Especially noticeable were the new (at least for us) hard wood floors. They gave the room a more modern, contemporary feel that I very much liked. The room we had (including the bathroom) seemed spacious. This was especially true if the open outdoor terrace is considered. There were plenty of windows so the room was bright and airy when the curtains were opened.
Our room was very quiet. I never heard any sounds from the hallway. I did hear, on just a few occasions, a chair scraping the floor in the executive lounge directly above us. This was minor and not worth complaining about.
As I mentioned above, our room had a large terrace with a table and chairs. We had hoped to watch fireworks from there as the special New Year’s Eve dinner at the Marriott was a little rich for us ($175/person, if I remember correctly). It turns out the authorities in Quito had banned fireworks and the evening was cool and rainy. Despite those obstacles, there were quite a few fireworks going off, although not nearly as many as we had expected.
We went to the executive lounge on the ninth floor for our breakfasts (included with room). This was very convenient as our room was on the eighth floor. The buffet included a station for omelets and a variety of the usual breakfast items. It was not nearly as extensive as the selection in the main restaurant, but it was perfectly adequate for us. It was also less crowded than the main restaurant.
The hotel has a large pool with water falls. Unfortunately the weather was cool and rainy for much of the time we were there, so we did not get a chance to use it. There is also a health center for exercise enthusiasts although the air in Quito (at about 9000 feet) will likely be too thin for most visitors to want to exercise much. This was vacation for us anyway, so no-go on the exercise, although we probably could have arranged a massage or spa treatment if we had thought about it.
There are also a few shops if you feel like taking home some souvenirs. The jewelry shop offers some very attractive pieces in silver (several with an animal or Galapagos theme). There is also a shop selling original art work. Some of the pictures are quite lovely, but don’t expect any bargains.
Formerly there was a restaurant in the hotel that served Mexican food. We were a little disappointed to find that it had been closed and the space used to expand the La Hacienda steak house. La Hacienda looked nice enough, but we did not try it during our visit so I cannot make a comment about it. Maybe next time.
One of my (few) criticisms was that the hotel could use some of their space (they seem to have plenty) to set up one or two independently managed, high end restaurants to allow guests to have more in-house dining options.
The hotel is fairly close to the Mariscal and La Floresta areas so there are a number of good restaurants and other interesting things a short cab ride away. (Cabs are easily obtained through the hotel.) We have spent some time walking in the Mariscal area during the day and enjoyed it. We have not tried it after dark, though, so cannot say what that is like.
Central historical Quito and some of the other popular tourist sites such as Mitad del Mundo and El Panecillo are further away and require a 30-40 minute (or more) ride. The car ride from the hotel to the Quito airport took about 40 minutes.
We very much enjoyed our stay at the Quito J.W. Marriott. We have had the opportunity to visit three J.W. Marriotts in South America and this is, by far, our favorite of the three.
The web page for the Quito J.W. Marriott may be found by clicking here.
Other reviews have been published and are listed below:
Jetsetter.com review (undated) may be found by clicking here
A review from Last Frontiers may be found by clicking here