After 6 days on the US East Coast where I stayed at JW Marriott Essex House – NYC, the next part of my travel took me to the City of Seattle on US North West. From Seattle-Tacoma (SEA) airport, I hopped on an Uber to downtown Seattle which brought me to Renaissance Seattle hotel.
Location & Classification
Renaissance Seattle hotel is located at the intersection of Madison Street & 6th Avenue in downtown Seattle. Your Uber or Lyft ride from the airport should get you here in about 30 minutes depending on traffic.
Pike Place Market, Seattle’s original farmers market and premier tourist attraction is about 10 minutes walking distance from the hotel.
Renaissance Seattle is a Category 6 property. If you are redeeming points, award night in a standard room will cost you between 40,000 – 60,000 Marriott Bonvoy points in 2022. At the time of my stay, cash prices were very low (about $125) and redeeming points was poor value. So, I just paid cash to earn bonus points and double elite night credits.
As I have written on many occasions, Marriott is transitioning to dynamic award pricing on 29th March 2022. Although Renaissance Seattle is not impacted by these changes in 2022 and award prices will remain in 40-60K points range, come January 2023 – the number of points required for a night will closely reflect the equivalent cash price.
We don’t yet know the formulae Marriott will be using to calculate the price, but it’s a given that redemptions are going to get pricier.
Arrival & Check-In
After a long flight from Newark (via San Francisco), I arrived at the hotel at around 7 pm on a cold and wet evening. There were a fair few people waiting in the check-in queue, so it was a while before I was attended to.
The library themed lobby wasn’t massive, but it did have these dark, floor-to-ceiling shelving units with books. There were few chairs to sit around, then there was a formal sitting area with more seating to the left of the reception.
Eventually, I was attended to by a friendly gentleman who advised me I had been upgraded to the King Club Room on Level 26. He recognised my Marriott Bonvoy Titanium status and thanked me for my loyalty. I was offered a choice of welcome gift, which was either 1,000 points or breakfast. I chose breakfast.
The property does have a Club lounge, but I was told it wasn’t currently operational due to Covid-19 🙄. As a result, Marriott elites were being served breakfast in the main restaurant which was a slight positive.
Given my past experiences at Marriott properties in US, before heading to my room, I inquired if there was bottled water in the room. In response, the staff handed me 2 bottles of water to take with me. I also checked whether the room was supplied with dental kit or room slippers, I was told it wasn’t but can be arranged and delivered to my room.
King Club Room
My King Club room was on Level 26, which also happened to be the Executive Floor for the property. For those not familiar, rooms on these floors are not very different to what you see on other floors, except that where possible, Marriott elites are sometimes bunched together on the floor. On occasions, I have also seen Club Lounges located on the floor. In pre-covid times, many hotels did provide some extra perks such as complimentary water, robes etc which seem to have disappeared over the last couple of years.
Anyhow, as you step into the room, the bathroom was to the left which was fairly basic. The toilet was in the centre with the vanity and the bath-cum-shower located on either side.
I am not a fan of bathrooms where you have to stand inside the tub to have a shower, but that’s what you had to do here if you wanted one. Then you had towels in the shelf below and a hair dryer next to it. Bath products and toiletries were from Aveda which is not a brand I know a great deal about.
Back out and into the main part of the room, there was a large King bed ensemble on the left. There were no bedsides, rather you had fixed stands on both sides of the bed.
Further down, you had a chair and foot stool upholstered in some kind of fabric. On the opposite side, there was a curved long table by the wall which could also be used as a work desk. There was a chair and a regular sized television on the other end of the table.
The best feature of the room was its large window which overlooked surrounding high-rises and the fast flowing traffic on I-5 below.
The in-room mini bar was located closer to the entrance. On top, there were 2 bottles of Fiji Water ($6 each), a coffee machine which seemed like it hadn’t been used in ages, an ice bucket and a box with sachets of tea and coffee. The bar fridge below was empty 🙄
Overall, this was a respectable room to spend a night or two. It had all the basics you expect in a room but not much more.
The property offers a modest amount of dining options which normally wouldn’t be a problem, thanks to its downtown location. However, the weather in Seattle at the time of my visit wasn’t really conducive for spending time outdoors which posed some issues.
Anyhow, the hotel’s main restaurant called The Fig & The Judge Restaurant is located on the mezzanine level and is open daily for breakfast between 6:30 am – 11 am. There is seating for singles, couple and families of all sizes.
On the first morning I took my seat on one of the tables with high top seating with Madison Street views.
In the past, guests have been offered a buffet style breakfast service, however, this was suspended due to Covid and replaced with a-la-carte offering which I personally prefer anyways. So that was good.
As soon as I took my seat, one of the staff came over and handed me a copy of the menu. He advised that as a Titanium elite, I was entitled to one main dish as well as juice and coffee per person. But since I was travelling alone, I could order 2 mains if I wanted 😉
I ordered water & apple juice to kick things off. For the breakfast, I went with Seattle Sunrise Breakfast option.
The fruit salad was average but the rest of the breakfast was delicious and filling. Coming at the backdrop of some very ordinary lounge breakfast at JW Marriott Essex House in preceding few days, I thoroughly savoured it.
On the second morning, I ordered the Dungeness Crab Benedict which was equally sumptuous.
I was presented with a check to sign at the conclusion of my breakfast on both mornings. Although Marriott picked up the tab for breakfast, regrettably, I forgot to add a little extra for the server which I only realised after checking out.
Not to make any excuses, but coming from Australia where tipping is hardly the norm the way it is in North America, I slipped up.
The other in-house dining option is the lobby bar named The 515 Bar & Lounge. At the time of my stay, it was open between 3:30 pm – 11 pm serving drinks and dinner.
I dropped-in on one of the evenings for a beer. Note that the 10-20% dining discount that is normally offered to Marriott elites isn’t available here. Best you could do is charge it to your room and earn a few points along the way.
As I mentioned earlier, the hotel has a Club lounge which is located on Level 28. It wasn’t operational at the time but I could still get in with my room key.
This was a really cool place as you can tell from the pictures below, and it’s a pity the hotel isn’t showing more urgency in reopening it.
One other amenity worth mentioning is The Fitness Centre. Located on Level 3, it is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and is stocked with LifeFitness equipment including cardio machines and free weights.
I did not get a chance to use the gym but went along twice hoping to take a few pictures. Unfortunately, there were too many people inside at the time so these are the only pictures I have.
I found Renaissance Seattle Hotel to be true to it’s mid-range standing in the Marriott group. There are no outrageous luxuries to be found here and the hotel to its credit does not promise anything remotely along those lines. That said, it is very reasonably priced, offers visitors to Seattle a central location, decent elite recognition to Marriott elites which is really all you could ask from a property in this price range.
If you plan to stay here and redeem points, I strongly recommend you check out the cash prices as that may provide better value. In any case, there is no need to rush and lock-in your redemptions by 29th March as the property will continue to be priced within it’s off-peak & peak range for the remainder of 2022.
To sum up, I was satisfied with my stay at the property and will be happy to consider it again for any future trips to Seattle.
Have you stayed at Renaissance Seattle Hotel? Leave a comment below.