Editors' Note: This property was formerly Le Meridien Hotel.
Ann Arbor, Michigan
May 19, 2004
LOBBY / CONSTRUCTION STATUS
The lobby of the hotel is a little bit odd in its layout– I imagine that Marriott might have configured the facility a little differently had they not inherited it from Le Meridien. That said, I think Marriott did a nice job with the limited lobby space. Previous posters have mentioned extensive renovations in the lobby – these seem to have been completed. That said, the Concierge Lounge was not completed as of our arrival date.
According to the website, the hotel has two common room types – luxury rooms at 338 square feet, and deluxe corner rooms at 443 square feet. We had reserved a deluxe room, and were given one on the 18th floor. In my opinion, the configuration of the room was a little bit odd and didn’t really give one an impression that the room was particularly spacious, but once again, this was something Marriott inherited. All in all, I felt the rooms were nice, and the bed very comfortable, but the fit and finish seemed more "nice Marriott" than "JW" to me. The only true downside – the water pressure left something to be desired. . . on two occasions, it was reduced to a trickle.
We had three dining experiences in the hotel – one snack at the lobby bar, which was good (although the lobby bar was pretty devoid of atmosphere), and two breakfasts in Midi, the hotel restaurant. I thought the breakfasts at Midi were fantastic – the room has great atmosphere, the service was great, and the buffet was extensive, delicious, and well beyond "the usual breakfast spread." My partner was interested in ordering off the menu, and the staff was fine with accommodating his needs.
All in all, it was an enjoyable stay. I’d probably return to the Renaissance Arts next time I'm in town as I like the area and atmosphere a little more, but the JW is certainly a fine hotel.
From journal A weekend in New Orleans