Residence Inn Manama Juffair, Bahrain– Hotel Review
Extended stay properties are becoming a huge attraction for business travelers who stay at their destinations for longer periods of time. Residence Inn by Marriott has capitalized on that business travel segment’s need in North America by offering spacious suites with separate living and sleeping areas and equipping them with kitchenettes. These types of properties offer guests many advantages, including the convenience of not having to bother calling the phone company, the electric company, and dealing with other issues that setting up a household normally requires.
Marriott has recently expanded this concept overseas with a handful of properties: Munich, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, and Trinidad among others. What sets these offshore properties apart is that they tend to be more luxurious and provide service levels higher than what U.S. travelers associate with the domestic Residence Inn brand .
Plans call for the expansion of Residence Inn, as well as the Marriott Executive Apartment concept, to markets where a need is perceived, particularly the Middle East, North Africa, and Asia. The Bahrain property, located in the Juffair district, and near the main financial quarter, is home to many Americans who are in the country for extended stays.
In an effort to make guests feel most welcome, staffers had taken the time to learn my name in advance (as they do for all guests, since the majority stays here for a week or sometimes as long as a year). They also strive to learn the guests’ favorite snacks, beverages, and other personal preferences .
The hotel offers suites with one, two, or three bedrooms, making them suitable for families. All units feature spacious living areas, dining rooms, and kitchenettes stocked with cooking accessories, dishware, cutlery, and placemats.
The 1,474-square-foot space was almost too much for a guest traveling alone, so I closed off one of the two bedrooms in the suite to lessen the load on the housekeeping staff. The master bedroom was furnished with a king bed while the other had two double beds. Both offered ample closet and storage space and individual bathrooms.
An alarm clock with iPhone charging capabilities was located bedside and an oversized armchair and ottoman were conveniently situated by windows providing panoramic cityscape views. Housekeeping service is daily, and the bed linens are changed twice a week.
The tiled bath featured a shower-tub combination and a robe, hair dryer, as well as a supply of toiletries were thoughtfully provided.
A sofa, long enough to nap on, graced the living room and two armchairs faced the large-screen TV (one of three in the suite). On the dining room table a tray of fresh fruit and Arabic dates awaited.
ROAD WARRIOR SUPPORT
Tucked into the corner of my suite was a spacious desk with business supplies including pens, paper clips, highlighters, and adhesive tape. Power outlets, conveniently located by the desk, were sufficient to charge both my iPhone and laptop simultaneously. I appreciated the complimentary wireless high speed Internet, which was just that: high speed.
A small business center on the lobby level provides a private meeting room but is mostly used for printing documents and accessing the Internet.
Residence Inn prides itself on being a business traveler’s hub, and the staff is at the ready as I found out in my interactions with them, which included printing documents and obtaining electrical adapters.
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