A Tale of Three Marriotts: Washington DC, Boston and Philadelphia

By @ 12/28/17 in Boston, Gay travel, Hotels, Marriott, Philadelphia, Travel, Washington
This year, our northeast corridor tour from DC to Boston landed us in three of the best convention Marriott Hotels

Marriott Hotels in Washington DC, Boston Philadelphia

Marriott Hotels

Now that Marriott International encompasses 30 brands, many travelers are realizing for the first time that Marriott Hotels are no longer the big beige box next to the convention center. Indeed, some of the most exciting innovation in hospitality was already coming from Marriott before the Starwood merger. Moxy and Edition are as hip as hotels get – even the newest generation Courtyard properties are nothing like your old Regional Sales Manager’s Courtyard (check out Abu Dhabi or Tokyo Station).

And then there are still the big beige boxes next to the convention center. Sometimes they’re unavoidable. When we’re working or presenting at a conference, convenience is the greatest luxury, and that often lands us at a convention hotel. This year, our northeast corridor tour from DC to Boston landed us in three of those. Guess what? They’re not so beige anymore.

Marriott Marquis Washington DC

This year, our northeast corridor tour from DC to Boston landed us in three of the best convention Marriott HotelsNot just next to the convention center, this Marriott is actually connected to it via an underground passageway – super convenient when you’re dragging your display to the convention floor. But the moment you enter the lobby, it’s clear this is a modern, cool space. There’s a lively energy about the place with its soaring atrium and sculpture. The rooms are spacious, bright and contemporary in natural colors, and the fitness center is large and well-equipped. Best of all, the M Club Lounge is open 24/7, with free access for Marriott Rewards Gold and Platinum members. Most Marriott lounges close on the weekends; but this one stays open, with breakfast every morning, and a candy bar during the day, where you can fill little Chinese takeout containers with snacks to keep you going.

Courtyard Philadelphia Downtown

This year, our northeast corridor tour from DC to Boston landed us in three of the best convention Marriott HotelsAlthough Courtyard has roots in suburban, office park locations, this was the first urban Courtyard, housed in an historic building just three blocks from the convention center (and the Reading Terminal Market). The ground floor is landmark protected, but head up to your room and a design surprise awaits. Decked out in masculine colors (dark blue, dark grey), and filled with design flourishes typical of a boutique hotel, the rooms are comfortable and whimsical — a modern interpretation of Colonial elegance. Combined with excellent service and an ideal downtown location, it’s a great choice even without the convention center proximity.

Boston Marriott Copley Place

This year, our northeast corridor tour from DC to Boston landed us in three of the best convention Marriott HotelsCopley Place isn’t the convention center, but it is the heart of Boston, and this hotel is a behemoth in the center of it all, with 1,097 rooms and 47 suites. Remember that classic Marriott décor from the 90’s? Stepping into our room at the Marriott Copley Place brought it back in all its glory. On closer inspection, it’s been updated, with some mid-century modern touches, and… it looks brand new – the hotel is impeccably maintained. Even more gratifying, you’ll find some really smart innovation under that harvest gold veneer. Smart elevators request your floor number before you get in, maximizing transit speed for everyone. Our stay here was our first encounter with Marriott’s “Fresh Bites” room service menu. Gone are the fancy roll-in tray and exorbitant service charges. Fresh, local and packaged to go, Fresh Bites are priced more like the corner deli, and delivered to your room for $5, or picked up at the bar for free. Finally, in-room dining that’s affordable for travelers without expense accounts. And after indulging in a lobster roll, there’s a big indoor pool, jacuzzi and large fitness center to work it off.

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