The first Marriott-branded hotel in the UAE capital – with Marriott Executive Apartments (MEA) attached – opens for business today.
The corporate-focussed Marriott Hotel Downtown Abu Dhabi, located on the corner of a busy junction by Al Wahda Mall, has a strong emphasis on MICE with its 21 meeting rooms and two ballrooms.
Beyond the lobby (one counter for Elite/mobile check in) is a linear passage with room lifts to the left and public areas to the right. Complementing the main 522sqm Grand Ballroom (Basement 2) is a 300sqm ballroom on Level 2, which is accompanied by attractive natural light-filled meeting rooms and sofa seating in break-out areas. ‘Meetings Imagined’ provides tailor-made meets for strategic, brainstorming and social purposes.
The 315 rooms comprise Deluxe Double (139), Superior King (96), Executive (48), Junior Suites (17), Executive one-bed suites (12), two Presidential Suites and one Royal Suite. Business travellers should warm to the fabulous TV connectivity and versatile power points.
General Manager David Lance said it is introducing mobile chat through the Marriott app so guests can live chat with their hosts in the hotel.
The F&B has some Marriott staples with JW Steakhouse (small, with leather chairs and open kitchen, featuring dry-aged salt-and-seaweed steaks), Velocity (two floors, with two enormous screens complemented by 37 TVs), 180-seat Kuzbara (round-the-clock dining), Central Grounds lobby lounge (Great Room concept, a work-come-leisure space) and 24-hour dining. Another familiar brand is the Saray Spa (opening around a month later, although gym is open day one) and a restaurant on the top 25th floor (with rooftop pool and pool bar) will open in winter.
The MEA, targeting executives on business for 30 days or more, is sharply designed with 64 fully equipped apartments (16 one- and three-bed apartments, and 32 two-beds). Residents can access their own gym, pool and lounge.
Staff span 52 nationalities and matched to specific positions to serve different markets. “Everyone has the hard product, but we have the technology and software behind it,” said Lance. “It will come down to the people, and we have a good team of people with experience from within and outside the GCC.”
The top-end property complements Courtyard World Trade Center Abu Dhabi which opened in January 2015.