Chengdu‘s latest five-star hotel is a cocoon of comfort and luxury in the pulsing heart of this rapidly-expanding city. Expect contemporary glitz combined with subtle Chinese touches, business and family-friendly facilities – executive lounge, indoor swimming pool, serene spa – as well as the warmest of welcomes.
The hotel is located in the centre of Chengdu around the corner from Tianfu Square, once the site of the Imperial Palace, now home to an enormous statue of Chairman Mao and an elaborate twice-daily sound, light and water show (catch it at noon and dusk). You’ll also find a metro station on the doorstep, as well as an abundance of shops, restaurants and nightlife. The journey from the airport is around 45 minutes by car, while The Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding is a 30-minute drive away (make sure to always have addresses written down in Chinese with you).
Address: 19 Dong Yu Jei, LuoMaShi, Jinjiang Qu, Sichuan Sheng, 610020 China.
Style & character
This skyscraper hotel is all big city glitz on the outside and cool calm interiors. Expect swathes of cream and grey marble, dark woods and delicate crystal chandeliers brushed with auspicious shades of gold and traditional Chinese motifs. All very tasteful, if not terribly exciting.
Service & facilities
Chengdu is known for being one of China’s friendliest cities and that was certainly reflected in the hotel’s exceptionally helpful staff, many of whom were proficient in English (not always a given in China). This is a large hotel with facilities to match, including an attractive swimming pool with a steam room, sauna and hot tub, a 24-hour fitness centre and serene spa offering a large menu of wellness and beauty treatments.
The JW Marriott has 345 tranquil, smoky-hued rooms, all of which feel extremely spacious and expertly put-together – sockets and USB ports beside the large comfortable beds, easy-to-operate mood lighting, curtains that blackout every bit of light and decent hairdryers positioned next to mirrors –I couldn’t come up with a single bugbear. The large marble bathrooms, complete with Japanese ‘smart’ toilets, egg-shaped tubs and lush Aromatherapy Associates amenities, add a welcome touch of glam. It’s worth splashing out a bit more for one of the rambling Premier Studio rooms with come with wraparound views of Tianfu Square and access to the excellent executive lounge.
Food & drink
The JW’s signature restaurant Man Ho dishes up delightful Cantonese and Sichuanese food – think delicate fish maw soup, spicy wok-fried tiger prawns, honey-glazed barbecue pork. Aside from Man Ho, there are three other drinking and dining options: Table café and bakery for a java jolt; The Lounge where you’ll find an afternoon tea service and evening cocktails, and The Table, which serves an extensive breakfast buffet, including dim sum, congee and sushi, alongside fruit smoothies, omelettes and waffles.
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