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I had been wanting to check out this hotel for quite sometime, so after multiple cancellations due to border closures enforced by Queensland Govt, it was great to be finally here.

Location & Classification

W Brisbane is located at 81 North Quay in Brisbane CBD, a short 5 minutes walk to the Queen Street Mall, city’s premier retail and shopping precinct and about 25 minutes from the Airport. The dining hot spot of West End is just across the Brisbane River, some 20 minutes away.

The hotel is classified Category 5 with Cash prices starting at around $300. If you wish to redeem points, expect to pay anywhere between 30,000 to 40,000 Marriott Bonvoy points per night as shown in the table below.

Marriott Bonvoy Award Table
Marriott Bonvoy Award Table

For my trip, I decided to pay Cash as I was able to secure 2 nights for approx $450 and the visit coincided with Marriott’s Better Two-Gether promotion offering Double points and Double elite night credits.

Earning Marriott Points

Unlike places such as United States and Canada where Marriott offers its own credit cards to consumers, there are no cards in Australia which directly earn Marriott Bonvoy points. That said, Marriott is a partner of American Express – Membership Rewards Program.

If you own an American Express card, you have the option of transferring your Membership Rewards points to Marriott Bonvoy at 3:2, ie, 3 Membership Rewards points to 2 Marriott Bonvoy points. If you have the The American Express Platinum Edge Credit Card which earns 3 Membership Rewards points per $ on petrol station and supermarket spends, that is like earning 2 Marriott Bonvoy points per $ indirectly.

The transfer ratio is abysmal and there is much better value to be had by transferring your Membership Rewards points to it’s airline partners. But it’s an option nevertheless.

Outside of earning points through Marriott stays, there are couple of other options to get your hands over them in Australia. Check out the Marriott Bonvoy Program – Full Review for more on it.

Arrival & Check-in

I arrived at the hotel at about 2 pm. As you come in, there is a security desk on the street level to greet you. The lobby and reception area are actually located on Level 3 which you can get to either via the bank of lifts or a flight of stairs.

Street Lvl Lifts, W Brisbane
Street Level Lifts, W Brisbane

The lobby wears a glitzy look although the seating is somewhat limited.

Lobby, W Brisbane
Lobby, W Brisbane

Lobby, W Brisbane
Lobby, W Brisbane

Lobby Seating, W Brisbane
Lobby Seating, W Brisbane

Lobby Seating, W Brisbane
Lobby Seating, W Brisbane

Opposite the reception, there is some interesting art work which may not be to everybody’s liking, but is quintessential W.

Lobby Art work, W Brisbane
Lobby Art work, W Brisbane

While airy and well decked out, for a property of this size and standard, I thought the space was a tad underwhelming.

There are 3 check-in pods in the centre of the lobby and as there weren’t too many guests at the time, I was able to check in quickly.

Check-in Area, W Brisbane
Check-in Area, W Brisbane

As a Marriott Bonvoy Platinum elite, I was offered a choice of either 1,000 points or Breakfast as my welcome gift, I chose the latter. The property doesn’t have a lounge which leaves breakfast as the only valuable option.

One of the benefits granted to Platinum elites and above, is that they are eligible for room upgrades at check-in, these could be in the form of a more Premium Room or Standard Suite. Given my awful luck with scoring upgrades over the past year, I had applied 2 Suite Night Awards (SNA’s) for this stay which thankfully cleared. As a result, I was upgraded from the base level room to the standard suite, which at W Brisbane is the Fantastic Suite.

I gathered my bags and made my way to the lifts and on-to my room located on Level 20.

Fantastic Suite

As I pushed the door back, I was encapsulated by a whiff of W scent. It is an assault on your senses (in a good way) which is impossible to explain, you just have to experience it to make sense of it.

Anyhow, as you step-in, there is a powder room straight up.

Powder Room, Fantatic Suite - W Brisbane
Powder Room, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

Back out, you find yourself in a modern, spacious and light-filled living/entertaining space.

Living Room, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Living Room, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

Living Room, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Living Room, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

While most hotel rooms sell you a cookie-cutter bar fridge stuffed with couple of coke-cans and a bottle or two of beer as the standard offering, W Brisbane takes it to the next level.

Dubbed, W MixBar, the in-room bar features a wet bar complete with high-top table, proper bar-stools and a vast array of drinks.

W MixBar, Fantastic Suite, W Brisbane
W MixBar, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

W MixBar, Fantastic Suite, W Brisbane
W MixBar, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

W MixBar, Fantastic Suite, W Brisbane
W MixBar, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

Every taste from whisky to vodka and most things in-between is catered.

W Mixbar Drinks, Fantastic Suite, W Brisbane
W Mixbar Drinks, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

W MixBar, Fantastic Suite, W Brisbane
Martini anyone? 😉

There were some over-priced munchies to go-along.

Munchies, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Munchies, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

To the left and along the wall, there was a long table hosting a Nespresso coffee-maker and a basic work desk.

Nespresso coffee-maker, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Long Table, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

Coffee-maker, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Nespresso coffee-maker, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

The coffee tabs and provisions for making tea and instant coffee were inside the pull-out drawer.

Tea & Coffee supplies, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Tea & Coffee supplies, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

Further down and near the window, you had the sitting area. It featured a couple of long, curvy sofas loaded with several bright and colourful cushions.

Sitting Area, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Sitting Area, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

Sofa, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Sofa, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

Sofa, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Sofa, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

There was a welcome amenity of donuts and a solitary strawberry, accompanied with a welcome note on the boomerang shaped centre table.

In-room welcome amenity, W Brisbane
In-room welcome amenity, W Brisbane

The floor-to-ceiling window ran the breadth of the room and had expansive views of the Brisbane river, The Wheel of Brisbane and the bridge connecting CBD to the South Bank.

Fantastic Suite Views, W Brisbane
Fantastic Suite Views, W Brisbane

Fantastic Suite Views, W Brisbane
Fantastic Suite Views, W Brisbane

Rounding off this section was a large, flat screen TV on the adjacent wall.

TV, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
TV, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

A large sliding door next to the TV separates living room from the bedroom.

Sliding Door between Living and Bedroom, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Sliding Door between Living and Bedroom, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

Bedroom access, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Bedroom access, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

The room itself is bright, spacious and wears a funky W look. A large king bed forms the centrepiece and is flanked on either side by round, two-tier bedside tables.

Bedroom, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Bedroom, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

King size bed, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
King bed, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

There are two sets of pendant lights, one on each end of the bed adding to the dramatic affect.

Pendant Lights, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Pendant Lights, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

Then you have a small sitting area by the window furnished with a sofa and a padded chair. The bedroom also hosts a second, wall-mounted flat screen TV.

Bedroom Seating, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Bedroom Seating, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

Bedroom TV, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Bedroom TV, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

The large window accords impressive views of the river and criss-crossing motorway underneath.

Bedroom View, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Bedroom View, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

There is a suitcase rack/storage on the other side of the bed. Underneath, you will find multiple drawers, one holding the electronic safe and others filled with rather mundane items such as laundry bags and shoe-shining kit.

Storage/Suitcase rack, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Storage/Suitcase rack, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

Safe, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Safe, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

Shoe-shine kit & laundry bags, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Sundry items, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

A narrow pathway from the bedroom leads to the ensuite bathroom. It features a sleek hot-tub in the centre, a massive double shower with 2 sets of hand-held and monsoon rain shower-heads each, suspended from the ceiling.

Bath-tub, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Bath-tub, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

Shower, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Shower, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

Shower, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Shower, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

The water temperature and pressure was consistently strong which made showering a pleasure. Bath amenities were from bliss and of high quality.

Bath Amenities, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Bath Amenities, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

Diagonally opposite from the shower, you had the vanity with double washing sinks laid over a marble counter-top.

Bathroom, Fantastic Suite - W Brisbane
Vanity Unit, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

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Washing sink, Fantastic Suite – W Brisbane

There was some storage in the shelf below, it contained a hair-dryer, a dental kit and all sorts of personal hygiene items.

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All in all, the bathroom was well stocked and I couldn’t think of anything it lacked.

Dining

W Brisbane is home to 3 restaurants/bar. First up, you have the all-day dining venue called three blue ducks located on Level 3.

three blue ducks, W Brisbane
three blue ducks, W Brisbane

The venue takes up a good one-quarter of the floor space and offers indoor/outdoor dining. There is plenty of seating for all group sizes.

three blue ducks, W Brisbane
Seating, three blue ducks – W Brisbane

Seating, three blue ducks - W Brisbane
Seating, three blue ducks – W Brisbane

Outdoor seating, three blue ducks - W Brisbane
Outdoor seating, three blue ducks – W Brisbane

This is also where they serve breakfast each morning from 7-10 am. As is the norm these days, self-serve buffet has been dis-continued and replaced with a la carte dining.

Breakfast Menu, W Brisbane
Breakfast Menu, W Brisbane

Upon arrival, I was asked to check in with the QR code, following which the server escorted me to a waiting table.

Once seated, a menu was produced (see above) and you could order anything off it. There were no restrictions as such, so if you were particularly peckish.. you could order multiple Mains, which is exactly what I did on my 1st morning.

My brekky at W Brisbane
My breakfast – W Brisbane

Breakfast - W Brisbane
My breakfast – W Brisbane

Next day, I ordered avocado & poached eggs on toast and thoroughly enjoyed the fare on both mornings.

My breakfast - W Brisbane
My breakfast – W Brisbane

Living Room Bar is the property’s lounge/watering hole. It serves as a lounge during the day doling out cups of hot chino’s and high-tea. Come night time though, it transforms into a lively eating/drinking venue.

Living Room Bar, W Brisbane
Living Room Bar, W Brisbane

Living Room Bar, W Brisbane
Living Room Bar, W Brisbane

As the hotel does not have an Executive Lounge, Marriott Bonvoy Platinum, Titanium & Ambassador elites are offered complimentary Drinks & Nibbles at Living Room Bar each evening between 6-8 pm.

Marriott elite benefits
Elite members are well looked after at W Brisbane

I partook in the proceedings on one evening and absolutely savoured the offerings.

Drinks & Nibbles at Living Room Bar, W Brisbane
Cocktails & canapes at Living Room Bar, W Brisbane

Lastly, there is Wet Deck on Level 4, the hotel’s rooftop bar and restaurant serving handcrafted cocktails & modern Australian cuisine.

Wet Deck, W Brisbane
Wet Deck, W Brisbane

Wet Deck, W Brisbane
Wet Deck, W Brisbane

Wet Deck, W Brisbane
Wet Deck, W Brisbane

They are open for lunch and dinner 7 days a week. I dropped in one afternoon and ordered some spicy hokkien noodles, washed down with a glass of cold one. It was alright.

Wet Deck, W Brisbane
Wet Deck, W Brisbane

Other Amenities

The hotel’s in-house gym called FIT is on Level 6 and open 24/7. For a hotel gym, it is well equipped offering plenty of cardio and weight training equipment’s.

FIT, W Brisbane
FIT, W Brisbane

FIT, W Brisbane
Gym, W Brisbane

There are free weights for those wanting an intense work-out and plentiful supply of towels.

FIT, W Brisbane
Gym, W Brisbane

FIT, W Brisbane
Gym, W Brisbane

The hotel pool, dubbed WET is a heated outdoor pool located on Level 4. At 25 metres, it is long enough to swim laps. Towels are provided.

Pool, W Brisbane
Pool, W Brisbane

Pool, W Brisbane
Pool, W Brisbane

There are some basic outdoor furniture and loungers on the deck to while away the hours sipping martinis.

Poolside Furniture, W Brisbane
Poolside Furniture, W Brisbane

The property also houses a spa called Away. It is open Thu-Mon 11am – 5pm. Personally, I am not much into spa’s and can’t remember the last time I stepped inside one.

One of the treatment on the menu, Detox – Energy Remedy takes 90 minutes and is priced at $240. If interested, you can check out the full spa menu over here.

My Take

W Brisbane is a wonderful addition to Marriott’s portfolio in Australia. At Category 5, it fully justifies its place in the middle of Marriott’s award table. The decision on whether you should pay cash or redeem points however, is not an easy one to make.

At $300 a night, it is pricey enough to suggest redeeming points might be the way to go. However, standard award pricing of 35,000 points per night, which I value at approx $280 ($0.008c per point) means the equation is far from clear-cut, particularly when you factor-in points and elite night credits you earn for paid stays.

From it’s central location to in-house dining and luxurious suites, the property leaves a lasting impression in the minds of it’s guests. I truly enjoyed my time at W Brisbane and can not wait to come back again, hopefully for a much longer stay 😉

Have you stayed at W Brisbane? Leave a comment below.

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