By Mario Ng
JW Marriott has always been a popular hotel in Singapore since it started operations. One key reason we figured is probably due to its location in the city. The JW Marriott branding does not hurt either. We also know that it is supposed to be a trendy hotel that appeals to millennials. With these in mind, we decided to spend a night in the Premier Marina Bay View Suite!
Check out our Facebook page here for more pictures taken during our stay at this hotel!
The service provided by the hotel staff was generally fine, although we note some inconsistencies in their service levels. While most staff were quite friendly, there were a few situations where the service were not up to par at a five-star hotel. One case in point was when we requested for a late checkout, and we were greeted with a not-so-friendly staff. We completely understand how late checkouts may not always be possible, especially if our stay is over the weekend. However, we feel that the delivery of such explanations should always remain professional and friendly. We did note that her supervisor was much more professional and took the time to understand our concerns. Another point to note was how we noticed a piece of clothing (undergarment) left behind by a previous guest in our suite. We informed housekeeping about this and they promptly took action. We also received a bottle of red wine soon after informing them about this and this does show the professional service standards in this area.
Most of the hotel’s facilities are located on level 18, and it is a good place for everyone to chill and relax.
The first thing that comes to mind is JW Marriott Hotel Singapore South Beach’s instagram-friendly swimming pool on level 18. It is indeed quite a nice swimming pool and gives you a fantastic view of Marina Bay when you are swimming. It also has a shallow area for toddlers, which is really nice, since toddlers should also be entitled to a great view! Not to forget those Instagram posts for them as well! At night, it was rather windy and we thought it was a good time to swim then, especially if you just came back from a tiring and hot day out!
The famous Instagram swimming pool
Looks familiar? The Instagram-friendly seating area at night
For those with a group of friends, this hotel is surely the hotel to stay in. Also located on level 18 with the Instagram pool, is a pool table, table tennis table, and carom for guests’ use. While couples may not find this appealing, we see how millennials might enjoy a great time at level 18. Note that the view while playing a game of pool is also amazing. We enjoyed looking out towards the Singapore Sports Hub while at the pool table.
Bonding activities available on level 18
Located on the same floor once again is the hotel’s gym. Fully equipped with weights and treadmills, towels are also provided, so expats can perspire a little after a hard day’s work.
Not many might know, but the hotel also has another swimming pool on level 6. It offers guests yet another fantastic view of this city, this time facing Suntec City and Pan Pacific Singapore (check out our amazing time spent at Pan Pacific Singapore here!). In our opinion, it is also the “proper pool” where guests can actually swim laps. Not to say that you cannot do that on level 18, but we feel that with less distractions, this pool is more conducive for such sporting activities. You will also be pleased to find out that this is an infinity pool, and it is relatively peaceful in the mornings (we checked with the staff). When we headed over around 10am, we only saw three groups of guests there, leaving plenty of space for us to take pictures and pose for Instagram.
The "proper" swimming pool on level 6
You don't need the Instagram swimming pool if all you want to do is catch some traffic
As we only managed to stay for a night at JW Marriott Hotel Singapore South Beach, we decided to have our breakfast at the executive lounge, as with our practice for most hotel stays.
Having breakfast at the executive lounge, we know that the choices will be limited compared to its main restaurant, as with most hotels. However, we were still quite pleased with the selections, with quite a good variety of western and local choices available.
Executive Lounge - A healthy-ish breakfast
The usual western choices were available, so I made sure to grab some sausages, bacon, hash browns, and tomatoes. Obviously, croissants and pain au chocolat were taken as well. Besides the standard egg station, there are also fresh poached eggs served in a mini-bruschetta Benedict style. It was quite delicious. I proceeded to have some smoked salmon and cheese, both of which I feel are important ingredients to a good start to the day. I was tempted to take some cold cuts as well, but ultimately decided not to, just so I could please my Chinese tummy.
Executive Lounge - Fresh poached eggs for breakfast
For my other half, freshly-cooked noodles were in order. We simply chose the ingredients we wanted and pass them to the server, and she whipped it up in no time. Those who enjoy a heavy breakfast will be happy to know that the hotel serves chicken curry as well. We tried it and we mistook it for hawker fare, a real compliment to the chef! Selected dim sum were also available, and they were good!
After some really savoury items, we wanted a treat. And right here at the executive lounge, there were some treats. We indulged in some donuts and muffins. And we washed it all down with some lattes. Overall, a good breakfast!
Executive Lounge - Important treats to begin the day with
The Premier Marina Bay View Suite is a one-bedroom suite that has a full living room as well. With a size of about 100 square metres, you know you are getting a lot of real estate. We stayed one night and really felt the size of it. If you like large spaces, this is definitely the suite for you.
When you first step in, you will actually feel like you are arriving at a home. This is due to the design of the suite, where there is a waiting area at the entrance of the suite, just in case these friends are not exactly welcome into the suite. The suite has white as a primary colour, and this makes the entire suite look clean, although one might also mistake it for being sterile?
Move forward and you will notice just how big the living room is. Nicely designed with large pieces of art, it is tastefully finished and does look like how a home could and should be. The suite also makes use of life-size mirrors to hide compartments in the suite, and this makes the area look even more spacious. The sofa is really comfortable, while the arm chairs were great for napping. With the gigantic television looming behind, the living room was just too inviting for me. In fact, I was guilty of spending too much time watching television rather than talking to the missus.
Premier Marina Bay View Suite - A view of the living room
Premier Marina Bay View Suite - I enjoyed looking at this picture throughout our stay
For those who prefer to work during holidays yet know that they cannot concentrate for long, there is a workstation right behind the sofa. That’s right. This means that you can enjoy watching some television while working, with your family never far from you.
Thirsty guests can make use of Nespresso capsules and TWG teabags to obtain some caffeine, while there is no shortage of bottled water in the suite. We calculated a total of eight bottled water ready for us when we entered. This is something really good as we generally need to call guest services to bring up more water, and this is the one time we did not need to do so. So, drink away!
Premier Marina Bay View Suite - Plenty of options in the minibar
The bedroom is larger than most hotel bedrooms, and we figured this could be due to the impact of the life-size mirrors at work. It feels spacious, and a large television is also right in front of the bed. This is perfect for couples as you can lay together while watching a movie and dozing off at the same time. We know we did, until I struggled to switch off the television before sleeping.
Premier Marina Bay View Suite - We really enjoyed the view and design of the bedroom
The bathroom is another place in the suite that is just huge. In fact, we think the entire bathroom might be some 20 square meters? This is no exaggeration, as we felt so comfortable throughout our time in the bathroom. We could actually loiter around and did not feel claustrophobic. The bathtub is definitely everyone’s favourite spot in the bathroom and we enjoyed it while looking out the window. There is also a stool just beside the bathtub and we think it would be useful if you are bathing a child and this is something useful to have.
The toiletries are provided by Aromatherapy Associates, and are good to use. They smell nice and are actually pretty good for washing your hair and body. We know that some hotels still use more basic toiletries that make your hair really oily and sticky after a wash. With Aromatherapy Associates, there were no such problems.
Premier Marina Bay View Suite - You won't feel dirty with Aromatherapy Associates toiletries
Some unique points about this suite. JW Marriott really makes use of technology. The blinds in the suite are controlled by a switch and you simply push it to decide how much light to let in. One unfortunate issue is that we cannot seem to raise the blinds. This means we were stuck with a blocked view. We did move behind the blinds to catch the view though. Or we simply did not know how to use the switch to raise the blinds! Secondly, the toilet in the bathroom is just too cool. Using the latest technology from Japan (obviously), you are provided with a heated seat that knows when someone is sitting on it. Of course, the standard bidet comes with it. I tried it and was honestly impressed with it. I hate to say it, but I took comfort in using the seat due to the low temperature in the bathroom.
Premier Marina Bay View Suite - Marina Bay view from the bathroom
Lastly, the views afforded by this suite are simply fantastic. Knowing that you are paying extra just for the views, the Premier Marina Bay View Suite does not disappoint. From the living room, you face Raffles Hotel and Swissotel the Stamford. It is also a great place to catch the sunset. Using our iPhones, we managed to capture a blurry photo of the sunset. However, the live experience of seeing the sunset was wonderful. From the bedroom, it was even better. Not only do you get the same views as the living room, you also get to see the Central Business District. This is because the suite is located at the corner, and hence you get the best of both worlds. We really enjoyed this amazing Marina Bay view, and I always look at the skyscrapers in awe. We were also quite happy to see the setting up of the grandstands during our stay, as it was near the F1 period. Cool stuff! And if you thought this was it, you are wrong! The bathroom also has the Marina Bay view, and it is quite amazing that you can admire the skyscrapers while brushing your teeth. I contemplated turning the blinds to catch the view while using the bathroom but ultimately decided not to. The missus was relatively relieved with my decision. If you are going to stay in the Premier Suite anyway, we definitely recommend paying a little more for the view!
Premier Marina Bay View Suite - Marina Bay view from the bedroom
Premier Marina Bay View Suite - Yet another Marina Bay view from the bedroom
JW Marriott Hotel Singapore South Beach’s executive lounge is located on the second floor, right above the lobby.
To get to the lounge, you will need to walk across a bridge, which gives you great views of the complex, before arriving at the entrance.
Executive Lounge - Walkway to/from the Executive Lounge
The first thing we noticed was the casual vibes the lounge possesses. What we mean is how you feel very “chilled-out” whenever you are dining or relaxing in this lounge. The decor certainly played a part, and the furniture has a very “fun” feel to it. It looks like JW Marriott is going out to promote this as a cool fun hotel that suits millennials.
The lounge is open between 6am and 12 midnight daily, and has 3 services. Breakfast is served between 6am and 10.30am, while afternoon tea is served from 2.30pm to 5pm. What is so special about JW Marriott is its evening service. While the evening Hors d’oeuvres is between 5.30pm and 7.30pm, the evening cocktails is from 5.30pm until 9.30pm. That’s right! Moving towards a different direction from its competitors, JW provides complimentary alcoholic drinks for 4 hours every evening! This means that you can get some light snacks and a drink before dinner, head out, and still be back for some sparkling wine! We know because we did just that!
Executive Lounge - We thought this was a pretty good pre-dinner meal
The food is pretty decent, with the standard western and eastern offerings for the 3 services. For western options, the lounge provides guests with choices like Madeleines, green tea tarts, cold cuts, and a variety of cheeses. Some nice choices that we enjoyed include the Cod Brandade and Roasted Beef Open Brioche. Obviously, we cannot miss the smoked salmon and they offer 2 types: the traditional and Thai-style. We did both and they were good. For those missing some Asian food, you need not fear. They have some good stuff, such as the chicken tikka, spring rolls, and… the “kong bak bao”! For those who do not know, the kong bak bao is essentially braised pork belly in a bun. It is high in calories, sinful, and definitely tasty. It is made on the spot for guests, where the server scoops like pieces of meat from a gigantic pot and put the pork belly in a bun. Delicious!
Executive Lounge - Braised pork belly in a bun
For breakfast, the options are also pretty good. Local breakfast fare like chicken curry, stir-fried vegetables and fried noodles are served. A live station serving noodles was also a great option, and vegetarians can make definitely enjoy this as well, with a variety of vegetables and mushrooms among the choices you can select before passing your bowl of ingredients to the server to be cooked.
Executive Lounge - Local options to satisfy the many locals in this hotel
Executive Lounge - Live station for freshly-cooked noodles
Those who simply need eggs and western choices will be pleased to find out that they serve a poached egg brioche. Freshly made and really popular, they get churned out in the kitchen and hits the breakfast spot for guests to savour. Conventional items like bacon, sausages, bread, and cereal are of course available, and good.
People with a sweet tooth will be satisfied with their muffins and donuts. While the choices are not plenty, they tasted good and we helped ourselves to a second serving. They even had local desserts, known as “kueh”, and they were delicious! Fruits, the most important dish of breakfast, were good too. We certainly enjoyed a nice ending to our breakfast, with berries, grapes, and dragon fruit.
Executive Lounge - Sandwiches and fresh fruits
All in all, it was a nice lounge to chill out and simply relax. Granted, it is not as posh as Pan Pacific Singapore’s Pacific Club Lounge, but this is definitely not the direction JW Marriott is headed to anyway. It is quite obvious they wanted this hotel to be a cool, funky hotel and they definitely hit the spot with this lounge!
Click here to find out more about JW Marriott Hotel Singapore South Beach and book a stay today!
Cost of Premier Marina Bay View Suite: S$581.44 a night - stayed over a weekend in September 2019
Published by Mario Ng
Mario enjoys travelling around the world but finds himself visiting the same cities again and again. At this rate, it is unlikely he will travel "around the world" any time soon. He also has a dream to spend one year catching all the Formula 1 races live.