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Hotel Review: W Hong Kong

by on April 12, 2012 · 20 comments

in Hotel Reviews, Starwood

This is an installment in my March 2012 Asia Trip Series which includes: A Birthday Present To Myself: Business Class on the World’s Longest Flight for $2.50, Help Me Plan My Asia Trip Starting With Singapore, Flight Review: Singapore Airlines All Business Class Flight From Newark To Singapore, Hotel Review: Intercontinental Singapore, Video Trip Report: Singapore, Hotel Review: Le Meridien Bangkok Avantec Suite, Video Trip Report: Bangkok, Hotel Review: Le Meridien Angkor, Video Trip Report: Siem Reap, Hotel Review: Intercontinental Phnom Penh, Video Trip Report: Phnom Penh and the Khmer Rouge Killing Fields, Hotel Review: W Hong Kong.

For the final leg of my Southeast Asia itinerary, I decided to spend the weekend in Hong Kong, where I stayed at the W in Kowloon.

I had reserved a non-smoking, city view “Wonderful Room” with a king-size bed for two nights at a rate of about $280. The hotel is 20,000 points for a free-night redemption, and there was no Cash & Points option available, so I paid instead since most of the other nice hotels were around the same price point. The Wonderful Room is the hotel’s standard room category. It is over 400 square feet (a premium in space-conscious Hong Kong!) with a king-size W Signature Bed, a 42-inch plasma flat-screen TV, DVD/CD player, iPod dock, and a big bathroom with a rainforest shower, a separate bathtub (with its own little plasma TV on the wall, and Bliss spa products.

The W "Cool Corner Room" I was upgraded to--at least the second one didn't reek of smoke!

When I got to the hotel, I was told at reception that the only available upgrade was to a Cool Corner Room, one category higher. The catch? It was a smoking room. Against my better judgment, I decided to take it, and as soon as I got to the room itself, I realized my mistake–the stench was horrendous and had seeped into everything. I sent out a couple Tweets asking readers what they thought I should do as well as voicing my displeasure with the reek of the room, and in the meantime, I called back down to the desk to see if I could either change back to a Wonderful Room or if there was any chance of finding a Cool Corner room on a non-smoking floor. Lo and behold, in the 10 minutes since I’d gotten up to the room , they had somehow managed to find a Cool Corner Room on a non-smoking floor for me.

The view from my bathroom of the tunnel from Kowloon to Central.

The Cool Corner Room was indeed cool, with views of other Kowloon skyscrapers from the main room and the tunnel under Victoria Harbour from the bathroom. It wasn’t too much larger than the Wonderful Room, maybe 50 square feet, but it did have a little sitting area by the window and more of a work desk area, and all the same amenities. All in all, it was very…W-ish, with dark wood furniture, creamy/taupey fabrics and upholstery, and dim lighting, but I enjoyed my two nights there.

The hotel is actually in Kowloon rather than Central, but I actually liked the area a lot, it was right near the harbor, there was plenty of shopping and restaurants nearby, and it only took 15 minutes to get to Central in the evenings via the tunnel/metro, so I thought it was in a good spot.

To be honest, my Hong Kong weekend was a whirlwind, so I didn’t spend much time in the hotel and check out the amenities like the pool (which I hear is pretty chic), but overall I had a very nice stay and the staff was more than helpful in guiding me around and making reservations when needed.

Meanwhile, to all you non-smokers out there- what would you have done in my upgrade situation? Take my poll!

Would you take an upgrade if the only one available was a smoking room?

View Results

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  • Yi

    W Hongkong is the first SPG hotel I stayed back in 2010. What I don’t like is its location, where you cannot find traditional Chinese food after 11:00pm.

  • Rich A

    Most of the smoke smell can be negated if the room and drapes are well sprayed with deodorant. It’s the smell on the carpet and drapes and not smoke in the air that’s the problem. I’ve experienced this several times and if done right by housekeeping, it works!

  • http://infamousdx.com infamousdx

    Even my friends that smoke said they wouldn’t take a smoking room! LOL

  • PJ

    I am most interest in knowing which agent or through what connection can you get those two nights for $280 look at the points requriement there : 20K whopping points

  • Carberrie

    You have to stay there again and do what you need to get into a suite… Their suites are seriously WOW! Go back and experience them! Plus, at least look at the pool which is so amazing!!!

  • MYRflyer

    Just searched there friends & family site, found rate for sun/mon night in june as low as 209.00 a night.

  • http://twitter.com/jamucsb Jamison

    Brian, did the W Hong Kong end your streak of suite upgrades w/ SPG?

  • http://twitter.com/jamucsb Jamison

    corporate discount a.k.a SET code

  • RMerc

    I would seriously like to know how to book your rate at the W myself, considering that the BAR is 3200 HKD + the 10% tax = $450 USD per night.

    it is an awesome hotel and the in-house food is nice. The other thing I really like is going down to the train station and checking into the Delta while doing a bag drop and then a 20 minute Airport express.

  • MSPtoANYWARE

    Appreciate the review and HECK NO I wouldn’t stay in a smoking room!

  • RakSiam

    I read that as $280 per night

  • http://twitter.com/merictaser meric taser

    I stayed at W Hong Kong last October for 2 nights… it was my last leg of SE asia trip.. the hotels were pretty price and W was actually around $ 380 / night. I did SPG50 of the rack rate and ended up paying $ 250 + taxes.

    when I asked for an upgrade being a spg preferred plus member, I got a higher floor room facing the harbor. I enjoyed my short stay.

  • http://www.clarkecomputer.com/ Charles Clarke

    @Rich A – The problem with that is that then the room has that ugly chemical deodorant smell. It also gets into the bedspread and onto the surfaces of the room.

    @infamousdx – I think I’ve been assigned a “non-smoking room” after your friends have been there. If they are heavy smokers, then even if they don’t smoke in the room, each breath spreads it. I’m usually had good luck at being moved though. And avoid the hotel in the future if they aren’t accommodating.

  • zam

    TPG – Did the hotel smell? Stayed at the Hyatt a few weeks ago and the smell was awful!

  • http://www.theworldofdeej.com The World of Deej

    Another awesome hotel!

  • RMerc

    I was there again last week. you were on the 16th or 17th floor (from the tunnel angle) – i had the same room on the 18th. though it’s about the longest walk from the elevator, it’s extremely quiet too. I am at 40 nights for the year. I also visited the W Seoul and was very impressed too.

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