Beachside Relaxation at Marriott Rio De Janeiro

Beachside Relaxation

 

 

Last month, while visiting the beautiful Brazillian capital of Rio, we stayed at the JW Marriott Rio De Janeiro. The five-star property, located at 2600 Avenida Atlântica in Rio de Janerio, Brazil, contains approximately 245 rooms and suites and faces the famous Copa beach front.

We chose to stay at this hotel for both safety and location reasons. After hearing stories of security challenges in the Brazillian capital, we wanted to make sure that we stayed in an upscale spot that was filled with tourists and well guarded by the police. Moreover, since this was our first time and we had heard about Copa beach, we wanted to experience it firsthand by staying nearby.

Beachside Relaxation at the JW Marriott Copacabana sunset

What Makes it Family Worthy?

The hotel is close to several shopping areas and a fifteen-minute drive to major shopping malls in Rio, as well as various eateries along Avenida Atlantica. This establishment is a short walk away from the famous Copacabana Beach, and a private section of the beach is reserved for Marriott guests. The local subway station is likewise only a few blocks from the building.

Fellow Travelers

This hotel mainly hosts vacationers, solo couples, and families that wish to be close to the beach and enjoy the waterfront.

Beachside Relaxation at the JW Marriott Copacabana chair

Décor

The spotlessly clean public areas of this building had darkly hued neutral colors enhanced by elegant touches of metallic colors. Patterned chairs and carpets in other sections of the hotel gave the building additional “old world” pizazz.

Welcome

Because of the safety concerns, I had called the front desk and asked for a hotel limo to pick us up at the airport. Somehow, the order was lost. After realizing the mishap, we ended up booking a cab straight from the airport when we arrived at night, which sped on the freeway like a bat out of hell. It got so bad that we were all praying to get to the hotel in one piece since the driver did not pay attention to our pleas to slow down. When we finally arrived, the personal was apologetic and checked us in as soon as they could. The hotel also sent us a small welcome dessert plate as an apology, which we thought was a nice touch.

Beachside Relaxation at the Marriott Rio De Janeiro drink

Room

We stayed in connecting rooms on the 16th floor, 1620 and 1618. Both rooms had excellent views overlooking the beach area.

The cozy rooms contained fluffy pillows and comfortable bedding. The furnishings in both rooms were similar, with the only significant difference being that one had two double beds and the other featured a king sized bed.

The nightstands in each room held an alarm clock, a phone, and some complimentary bottled waters. There were also lamps over the beds with several electrical outlets near the nightstands that were excellent places to recharge both our phones and our I-pods. We were grateful that, as Marriott Gold members, we were provided free wifi.

Beachside Relaxation at the Marriott Rio De Janeiro bed

One of the main perks of staying at this particular Marriott was the copious amount of storage space provided for us. Both our rooms had well-lit, wooden paneled closets that contained irons, hangers, and bathrobes for our use. A large cabinet that also housed the in-room safe was provided to hold even more of our personal belongings. There was a small foldable luggage rack in the room as well, but we had plenty of places to put our gear and didn’t even need to use it.

The rooms had a desk area with a large chair and well as a small sitting area with a lovely armchair and footrest. Hotel guests should also take note of the coffee making supplies and large LCD televisions provided in the rooms.

Bathroom

The bathroom was fairly standard for the Marriott and contained the usual amenities of soap, shampoo, conditioner, and lotions. The room’s walls were in hues of brown with speckled granite tile floor that matched the sink and countertop. There was a combination shower/bathtub with a curtain and a grab bar.

Beachside Relaxation at the Marriott Rio De Janeiro bathroom

Amenities

The hotel has a 24-hour reception desk. It also is home to an especially detail oriented concierge service that has won several international awards. However, we commend the professional staff at the Marriott Rio for their stellar service and the way they accommodated our son with autism.

Patrons who tire of going to the beach may want to check out the hotel’s rooftop swimming pool instead, or book treatments at the luxurious onsite spa. Those trying to stay fit will be happy to know that the hotel has a gym overlooking the nearby beach so those exercising can do some “people watching” while on the various machines.

Beachside Relaxation at the Marriott Rio De Janeiro sink

Should hunger strike, travelers can dine at one of the two onsite restaurants for some delicious snacks or Italian grub.

Executive Lounge

The executive lounge at this particular Marriott is fabulous. From the incredible breakfast spread that it offered with colorful fresh cut up fruit to the elaborate happy hour, we never went hungry. The Happy Hour had so many different appetizers and complimentary drinks to choose from that we never made it to a sit-down dinner in the city.

On the day we stopped by, the lounge staff was serving a vast assortment of finger foods and sandwiches. Those with heartier appetites had the option of enjoying spicy chicken soup or stew and rice. A large tray of bread served to round out the repast.

Beachside Relaxation at the Marriott Rio De Janeiro food

The executive lounge also provided to go breakfasts and snacks, which is an unusual feature for these lounges. We loved the fact that even if we took an early morning tour, the lounge supplied us with a boxed breakfast to go.

Autism Travel Tips:

  • The room bathtub has grab bars, but bath mats are not provided so travelers should pack their own.
  • The rooms have thick drapes that do a good job blocking out the light. Therefore, light sensitive individuals should not worry about getting plenty of sleep.
  • The hotel is not pet-friendly, so allergy sufferers need not worry about pet dander in the rooms.
  • Although it has incredible views of the Copa beach, the room windows are small and do not open.
  • There is no lifeguard at the pool. Because of this, visitors need to be watchful if their kid can’t swim.
  • If your kid is an escape artist, ask for a room that doesn’t face the atrium since it can be dangerous if they lean over.

Beachside Relaxation at the Marriott Rio De Janeiro end

 

Family Stay at the JW Marriot Downtown LA

 

Last month, we had a unique opportunity to stay at the luxurious JW Marriott Hotel in downtown LA while attending the BlogHer 2016 conference. This hotel is situated right next to the Staples Center and is part of the LA live complex that includes the Ritz-Carlton hotel – another Marriott property.

Family Stay at the JW Marriot Downtown LA bar

The Hotel

Located at 900 West Olympic Boulevard Los Angeles, California, the 21 story, 805-roomed premises is a smoke-free, pet-free zone within walking distance to the L.A. Convention Center. It is close to many tourist attractions, stores and museums in the newly revived Downtown area.
The hotel is in a central location within the LA Live complex, with its multiple food venues and movie theaters. The JW Marriott also boasts a well-run executive lounge and a  luxurious pool with kids’ toys.
It is within walking distance of some grocery stores and is not far from the city’s larger malls. All of these factors make this hotel a great attraction for many families visiting LA.

Family Stay at the JW Marriot Downtown LA outside

 

Our Welcome

As Marriott members, we had already requested a feather-free and quiet room noted in our file. However, I did call the front desk manager to check and reiterate that all would be ready before our arrival.
Even though on the day we checked-in, there were hundreds of guests there for the conference waiting in line, the process went smoothly. Within fifteen minutes I had the key to our room in my hand, and I was on my way to my room on the 20th floor.

 

Family Stay at the JW Marriot Downtown LA decor
The Decor

The hotel had magnificent decorations with modern-looking hanging crystal lamps and chandeliers spread along their lobby areas.
The hotel atmosphere was hip, vibrant and ‘very LA.’
Apart from the conference goers (the hotel is a favorite for conventions and symposiums attendees), one can expect to rub elbows with families, solo travelers and even a few celebrities – this is LA after all!
The surprise factor was without a doubt the Adele wax statue with which we could take a selfie and pretend we had just attended the Grammy awards.

Family Stay at the JW Marriot Downtown LA flower

The Room

Our room was decorated in warm hues of oranges and creams, along with green accents in the carpeting.
It was a surprisingly large room with a convenient layout for a family of four. We received complimentary bottled water because of our Marriott Platinum status. Our room featured two double beds that were comfortable and could easily fit a family with young kids.

Taking the kids to (1)

One of the first things we noticed was all the storage space. The sizable closet was well-lit and contained an iron, ironing board, a safe that could easily fit a 17’’ laptop, and complimentary robes.

Conveniently placed mirrors added to the functionality of the room. As in most hotels, the room had a chest of drawers that served as a stand for the 42 inch TV. These were deep drawers in which we could comfortably place our belongings.

Family Stay at the JW Marriot Downtown LA room

 

The room also had a mini-bar fridge and a stocked coffee center. There was also a writing desk with a slide out shelf that had a  built phone and electrical sockets for plugging in electronic devices.

The fun element in the room was the swiveling chairs that our son with sensory issues enjoyed the most

The large windows, boasting a city view, had both thin and block out light curtains. We appreciated that the A/C vents were situated away from the beds, so the cold air did not blow directly on us as we slept. We also enjoyed the fact that there was a central control panel to adjust the temperature settings.

Family Stay at the JW Marriot Downtown LA adele

The Bathroom

A stylish sliding door lead to the bathroom. The room, spacious with sleek and decorative tiling, had a shower with a vibrant colored curtain. The mirror added to the spacious feeling of the room. The amenity kit on the granite counter-top consisted of shampoos, body wash, and lotions as well as a hairdryer under the basin.

Apparently, the hotel is quite eco-friendly with the flush button on the commode offering a half or full flush. Keeping with the eco-friendly theme, there is a night light feature which glows a faint green light in the dark to help guests see their way at night.

Family Stay at the JW Marriot Downtown LA bathroom

It would have been better if the bathroom had a lock to allow a nice touch of privacy. We also would have appreciated a grab bar in the bathtub as well as a clothesline for drying towels or bathing suits.

Executive Lounge

The lounge was large and comfortable with plush seating both indoors and outdoors which for LA was a bonus. The evening spread was adequate for a snack, but more hot dishes would have been an excellent addition.
Wines and beers were complimentary, but be advised that hard liquor beverages were not. We loved the fact that unlike many other properties we’ve frequented, this place welcomed kids of all ages, and was the only one to date, it had high chairs handy.

Family Stay at the JW Marriot Downtown LA cage

Restaurants

The hotel offers a few dining options to consider.

For drinks and dining, there’s The Mixing Room, open seven days a week. This restaurant specializes in mixology of customized cocktails.
The WP24 By Wolfgang Puck offers spectacular panoramic views while serving a modern Chinese cuisine while at Ford’s Filling Station, guests can enjoy  Californian Cuisine dishes with a Southern influence.For a quick lunch or killer cocktail, stop by the Glance Lobby Bar.Java addicts should try the Illy Espressamente Coffee House.

Family Stay at the JW Marriot Downtown LA food

Conveniently, the hotel also offers a 24/7 Room service, perfect for those who might get hungry at the wee hours of the night and don’t feel like leaving their comfortable room.

The above are just a few of many options for travelers in the hotel itself, but be aware that plenty of eateries are just around the corner in the LA Live complex.

Amenities

The outdoor pool on the third floor is large, with chaise lounges spread around it and a few private cabanas one can rent. They have an unlimited supply of complimentary fluffy clean towels. Like many other hotels, there were no lifeguards in attendance.
The day we stayed we saw numerous guests relaxing by the water, and yet it didn’t feel crowded in any way. In fact, it was a quiet place to unwind after visiting the City of Angels.

We were pleasantly surprised to see kids’ pool toys available at no extra charge and commented how it was a nice touch by the hotel management to make families feel welcome.

Family Stay at the JW Marriot Downtown LA gym

The gym, included in the stay, faces the bustling Olympic Boulevard. Rather modest in size, the facility had plenty of cardiovascular equipment and free weights. The gym offered free chilled bottled water and clean fluffy towels to use after the workout, a much-appreciated feature.

The hotel was connected via a set of corridors to the Ritz-Carlton hotel so guests could use the spa facilities there. Patrons could get excellent, albeit pricey, body scrubs, wraps, massages, facials and manicures/pedicures in the Ritz-Carlton Spa, as well as use their fabulous steam room.

Family Stay at the JW Marriot Downtown LA pool

Service

We found the service at the hotel to be excellent. The housekeeping staff not only responded quickly to any request we had, but they also made a point of introducing themselves and asking us every day if we needed anything for them to supply.

Family Stay at the JW Marriot Downtown LA chair

Cost

As mentioned before, the hotel in downtown LA was not particularly budget-friendly. However, as they say, you get what you pay for, and the JW Marriot is a superb choice for travelers that come to the city.

Room prices start in the low $300s and go up from there according to season and demand.

Autism Travel Tips:

  • Ask for a high floor to minimize the noise since this hotel is located in a busy area of downtown LA.
  • Bring your bath anti slip mat, since the hotel doesn’t supply one.

 

Family Stay at the JW Marriot Downtown LA tv

 

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