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November 18, 2016 / oneworld82

A relaxing day at Marriott Doha

After clearing customs and immigration (and purchasing a visa on arrival right at passport control, using a credit card), I caught a taxi to the Marriott Doha, located not far from the airport. While I only had ~10 hours to spend in Doha, given the already over 38C temperature I decided to just relax waiting for my next flight.

I had a certificate valid at Cat 1-5 properties through their endless nights promo that is still running, and since this Marriott is surprisingly only a Cat 3 hotel, I decided to use it.

The lobby of the hotel is grand, with marble all over. It looks very stately. Check in was straightforward, and even though I was there before 8am I had no problem in getting a room.

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The hotel has two towers – the original building (with apparently older rooms but balconies) and the new one (with newer rooms but no balconies).

The room was large, with two twin beds and a good-size bathroom. There was a nice desk, snacks, a minibar, a safe, plenty of closet space. The bathtub was quite old – think your typical 3-star hotel bathtub in the US. Overall, no complaints at all, especially because the bed was very comfortable.

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The hotel features various restaurants – including a nice steakhouse – and hosts a very popular Friday brunch, were all the main restaurants come together and offer a vast, joint spread. As it was Friday, I got to take a look at it, and the quantity of food on offer looked huge (reminded me of the old Four Seasons brunch in Bangkok, to date the best brunch I have ever had).

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This Marriott has a nice spa, through which guests can get towels for the private beach and the pool. The beach is rather small and the water doesn’t look that great to swim in, but it’s very secluded and good for couples looking for some privacy. The pool deck, on the other hand, is big, with lots of chairs and open cabanas for those looking for some shade. The swimming pool itself is very big, divided in two sections – A shallow one and a deep one suitable for swimming. There is also a Jacuzzi.

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Now, I went to the pool at 9am thinking to be an early bird, but the deck was already half full when I got there and all the cabanas taken. That’s not too surprising given that the temperature was already in the 90s! I took one of the comfortable sunbeds, and read a bit of the book I am currently reading (and loving), “One Hundred Years of Solitude” by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. After a hour or so, though, the heat was becoming unbearable, and thankfully a couple left their cabana so that I could move in the shade. Once situated, I fell asleep quickly, and rested nicely for a couple of hours, before the heat became almost unbearable even in the shade!

After getting back to the room and shower, I managed to nap for a couple of hours before calling my family back home and start getting ready to head back to the airport.

Overall, this was a short yet very relaxing stay in Doha. While I still need to visit the Museum of Islamic Art, I know I will have plenty of chances to do so in the future; the heat in summer in this part of the World is just so intense that life bustles only at night – even more so on Fridays – hence lazing around the pool was likely the best idea.

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