During our trip to Shenzhen, we stayed at the JW Marriott Hotel in the Futian area.
The lobby looks nice, huh?
We got a big room with access to the Executive Lounge on the 27th floor. It’s a Deluxe room with double beds.
The room was nice and spacious – the beds were comfortable.
The room had nice amenities.
There’s a sofa for guests; it’s also great for lounging while reading and watching videos on my tablet, and good for naps. There’s also a big, nice desk for writing and working.
There’s a TV that has a good channel line-up, especially of foreign channels.
Here’s the coffee / minibar section:
The closet has robes, an ironing board, safe, and an umbrella for guests to use (return it so you won’t get charged). You have the option to buy the umbrella.
The bathroom was divided into the main bathroom area where the sink, counter and the tub are, and there’s a toilet stall, and a shower stall. I wish the stall walls weren’t clear glass for privacy, and I was a bit disappointed that they didn’t have a bidet, but other than those, I don’t have any complaints about the room at all!
There’s a TV in the bathroom:
They have the usual shampoo, conditioner, shower gel, lotion, toothbrush sets, vanity sets, etc… Hair dryer is in one of the drawers. They also provided some bath salts that you can use to soak in the tub.
The housekeeping staff was polite and friendly. They gave us some apples every day, they gave us complimentary water every day, they turn down the bed at night.
The electrical sockets are the three-prong kind, but since I always bring my universal adaptor and a power strip, I didn’t have any problems.
The curtains have a motor that opens and closes them with the flick of a switch 😀 It’s old technology, but it’s still fun.
WIFI WITH FACEBOOK ACCESS!
The hotel has good, strong WIFI with access to Facebook, Twitter, Viber, etc… I was worried that we wouldn’t have access to regular internet in China, but fortunately, Marriott’s internet has no such restrictions.
Why is this such a big deal? China bans Facebook, Twitter, etc… on its internet. You won’t be able to access those sites in China unless you subscribe to some sort of VPN.
With Marriott’s internet, I was able to update my Facebook status, check up on friends, and talk to people via Viber, Messenger, etc…
The hotel’s wifi is strong – I am connected whether I’m in the room, on the executive lounge, by the pool, at the lobby, and even in the hotel driveway. I noticed this as I was walking back to the hotel, I was still about 1 minute away and my cellphone started receiving notifications already 🙂
I felt like the hotel’s location was away from the main areas. There was really nothing of interest to me when I was walking around the hotel. There were office buildings and many restaurants walking around the area behind the hotel, so there’s always some place to eat if you need to, but there weren’t any main attractions nearby.
This is the view from the front of the hotel:
A good thing about the location though, is that there’s a Shenzhen Metro station just 2 minutes’ walk from the hotel. It’s the Chegongmiao Station. A popular local mall called Coco Park, and the 4th tallest building in the world, the Ping An Financial Center, were just 2 stops away at Shopping Park station.
A note about the Shenzhen Metro
If you are not used to it, you might find it odd that they have x-ray scanners where you need to pass all your bags through before you can enter. It’s exactly like going through airport security.
Coco Park is a popular shopping mall in Shenzhen, it has most of the imported brands. I didn’t even attempt to buy anything imported here because I know prices in China are on the high side. I just wanted to see what’s available and to see how much Shenzhen has changed. It looks like Hong Kong now, but more spacious.
I noticed that there are many health-related shops – a lot of fruit smoothie, healthy drink, healthy food type places have opened up! It seems that the people in Shenzhen have become very health conscious. Even browsing in the supermarket inside the mall, I hardly saw any processed foods, as in canned goods.
All the food I saw was very fresh – from salmon to giant vegetables and fruit!
I’ve never seen a mango this big in Manila.
Fresh Salmon! It’s so orange!
Australian Wagyu at 50% OFF! I really wished we had access to cooking equipment!
Something very popular are face masks! Whereas here in the Philippines, the masks are usually sold individually, in Shenzhen, and in Hong Kong, the masks were being sold in bulk. Like people buy boxes of the stuff. They have aisles just dedicated to face masks.
This shop called 妍丽 was selling Gucci, Burberry, Emporio Armani, Bulgari and Boss items as if they were just drugstore items! 😀 I think they are authentic.
Ping An Financial Center
It’s the 4th tallest building in the world as of this writing. Tickets to up to the viewing deck cost RMB200 each, with no food nor anything else. Senior citizens and children get discounts. We didn’t go up because visibility was poor that day. It had been raining for the past 2 days.
We had access to the Executive Lounge on the 27th floor – getting Executive Lounge access depends on your room type, and whether you have any perks from Marriott memberships. Here I’ll be talking about the food at the Executive Lounge and at the breakfast buffet at Cafe Chinois on the second floor.
You need your key card to access the Executive Lounge – you’ll need to tap it on the elevator so it will take you to the 27th floor, and then you have to tap it again by the door to enter.
The Executive lounge offers a small buffet breakfast, afternoon snacks, and cocktails (a small buffet dinner spread). One of the staff said that I couldn’t take photos, but the others were okay with it, so I was still able to sneak in a few pictures!
We had most of our meals here. I mean, it’s already part of the package – we didn’t have to spend extra for food! I was also a bit hesitant to go out and eat around Shenzhen because I had a bad case of food poisoning (oysters) during my last visit to Shenzhen, eating at the night market. But the food at the Marriott was safe – I didn’t get sick or anything at all.
At night, they had liquor available.
As for the food, it’s okay – I’ll eat it, it’s presentable, it’s not bad, I’d consider it good, but it’s not wow. Some of the cakes were very good, though.
One thing that I noticed about the food was that the vegetables, the seafood, the meat, etc… were really fresh.
I am so used to our Manila hotel buffets that this one seemed provincial in comparison. There were only 4 stations, and the food was generic.
The dimsum station had regular dimsum, nothing really special about them. On the other side, noodles, fried rice, stir-fried veggies and plain congee were available.
There’s the bread / dessert section that I didn’t try at all because lately I’m just not feeling like carbo loading on cakes and pastries.
There’s a salad and fruits section that also had fresh fruit juices. One thing I liked about this salad section was the smoked sole, which I kept going back for. It’s like our smoked tanguigue, but not as dry. They also had smoked duck, etc…
The other section had eggs, bacon, sausage, some Japanese maki and miso soup.
Unlike here in Manila, where we usually have the choice to have breakfast either at the Executive Lounge or at the big, public breakfast buffet downstairs, the rules at this Marriott were different. Make sure you’re clear on what you are entitled to as a guest, or else, they charge almost RMB 200 for the buffet breakfast.
While Manila is suffering from hellish temperatures of 40 C, Shenzhen has a cool 22 C. Apparently, swimming isn’t a popular thing to do at this hotel. I was thinking about taking a cold swim, but the pool seems deserted…
We really enjoyed our stay at this Marriott, mainly because of the nice, spacious room and the Executive Lounge access. Having been to Shenzhen since I was in my teens, I didn’t want to revisit theme parks nor go to the night market at Dong Men again (most of the stuff there, you can find in Divisoria). And since we were staying at a really nice hotel, we took the opportunity to relax and just enjoy the facilities – yes to 24/7 aircon!
The hotel itself, the room, the WIFI, were great. Elevators were fast.
However, as a JW Marriott brand hotel, this hotel should be on a higher luxury tier than a regular Marriott. I find the Manila Marriott to provide better service than JW Marriott Shenzhen. While housekeeping was great, the other staff at the hotel weren’t as sophisticated compared to what we have at the Manila Marriott. They’re not as smooth as what we’re used to here in Manila. Some of the restaurant staff easily get flustered when I ask what the food is in English, and they scramble to look for another staff member who speaks some English and whom they can shove in front of me instead, so I switch to Mandarin to put them at ease. I don’t mind this, it’s fine. Just FYI for those who might not speak Mandarin.
What was not great was when one of the staff racially profiled us for extra scrutiny, especially when he saw that we were from the Philippines. The nice Chinese lady who handled our check-in was on day off on the day we checked out, so the Chinese guy who handled our check-out was being bibo (roughly translates to someone who wants to be a teacher’s pet) and didn’t believe us when we told him that the lady told us we could have breakfast either at the Executive Lounge or at Cafe Chinois and he wanted to charge us for breakfast at Cafe Chinois. He was being combative, saying something about visitors from Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines. I asked the lady twice on separate occasions just to be sure, 1) upon checking in, and 2) the first time before we had breakfast, and she said I could choose either place to have breakfast, no charge. He eventually waived the charges after he was able to call the lady, and he insisted that it was all miscommunication, and acted like we should be grateful that he waived the charges. In the first place, I asked and was told we could have breakfast there. Twice. If they told us we couldn’t, we wouldn’t have, and would have stuck to the Executive Lounge breakfast. Their buffet breakfast wasn’t even that great, the one at Manila Marriott is way better! This is why I am docking them on the customer service front.
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