on August 31, 2011
We stayed for 2 nights in this hotel, having found it on the internet. We booked directly with the hotel and chose it mainly due to its location - right next to the cathedral and central to most things we wanted to do.We were extremely impressed with the location. It is very central, next door to Bristol Cathedral, within easy walking distance of the historic waterfront, not far from the old town area of the city and close to lots of attractions such as SS Great Britain and At Bristol. We could not have been happier with where it was - close enough to walk to everywhere we wanted to go to.Our first impressions of the hotel were also very positive. It is a Victorian style building and interior and is very palatial in style. The public rooms are very imposing, grand and elegant. The reception area is all polished marble, gleaming brass and lots of mahogany. It feels calm, refined and elegant as soon as you step through the door.The reception staff were superb - they added to the feeling of calm, but were warm, friendly, efficient and always smiling and helpful. I would say this was the case for everyone at this hotel - even the cleaning ladies were exceptionally friendly and pleasant.It stated on our reservation that check-in was after 4pm. We arrived at midday and were allocated a room straightaway. My parents arrived at 10am the following day, and had exactly the same experience. You really get the feeling the customer is king here.There are 226 rooms in the hotel. Our room was on the 4th floor - room 1416. We were very pleased with the room - bright, airy and spotlessly clean. It was furnished in the same grand and regal style we saw downstairs. We had 2 huge and extremely comfortable double beds, mini-bar, ironing board and iron and everything else you could think of. The bathroom was lovely with a corner bath (minor complaint was it was a little small) and lots of white fluffy towels. The temperature in the room was just right too - not too hot.We did not eat in the hotel restaurant - the Palm Court restaurant did look extremely elegant and impressive, but we chose to explore Bristol instead. We ate in Bordeaux Quay, by the waterside on the first evening. This is about a 10 minute walk from the hotel, we sat outside and enjoyed a lovely meal. On our second evening we ate at the Spyglass BBQ. Again this is about a 10 minute walk in the other direction from the hotel. It is part boat, the food is simple but delicious and again I would recommend it here.Breakfast was not included in our room rate, it was expensive and as we are not big breakfast eaters, we decided to give it a miss. There is a Tesco store just across the road from the hotel, we bought croissants and pain au chocolats, fresh fruit and juice there and ate this in the room. This was ideal for our needs. There are also plenty of little places you can get breakfast nearby as well.The hotel has a Roman style leisure club with a swimming pool and jacuzzi. We used it both evenings of our stay. It is nice, but the pool was fairly busy both times we were there.We thoroughly enjoyed our stay at this hotel, the location is the big draw, but the hotel is lovely and the staff are excellent. We will be stopping off in Bristol next year again, and definitely plan to stay at the Marriott Royal again.
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