When you pull up to the Oakland Marriott City Center, it’s obvious the hotel is proud of the locale it calls home. Colorful window art pays homage to the landmarks and attractions of a city that’s spent a great deal of time in the shadow of its well-known neighbor, San Francisco. But it’s not until you get inside and into your room, that you realize the hotel has a serious crush on its hometown.
Part of the Oakland Convention Center, the Oakland Marriott City Center boasts 500 rooms and 21 floors. Though it serves a large number of business travelers, the property is also popular with pleasure travelers, and thanks to a $22 million renovation, it’s loaded with local inspiration and amenities everyone will appreciate.
The accommodations are contemporary, but the first thing I noticed when I got inside my room on the 17th floor was all the natural light that flooded in thanks to the large fixed window. When I pulled the sheers, the view came into focus. The Port of Oakland, the San Francisco Skyline, the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge and the Golden Gate Bridge all squeezed their way into the frame. When I turned to actually look at the room, Oakland’s skyline was still front in center, compliments of the bold art print above the bed.
And then there’s the television. Flat screens are a given these days, but at 55 inches, the mounted HD LED television is one of the largest I’ve come across in a hotel room.
Need to plug in? Pick a spot, any spot in the room, and you can do it with ease. My room offered a dozen electrical outlets and eight USB ports within easy eyesight, and I suspect if I had actually spent some time looking around, I would have found more, but there was no need.
The hotel is within walking distance of dozens of bars and restaurants, but onsite Iron & Oak, serves breakfast, lunch and dinner.
For an additional $30 to $50 per night, guests can upgrade and receive access to the M Club. Along with free continental breakfast, there are evening snacks, drinks and an honor bar. (Entry is complimentary for Marriott Rewards® Gold and Platinum Elite members.)
The outdoor, heated swimming pool is a nice perk, especially for traveling families. The fitness center is spacious and modern, with free weights and cardio equipment. Earphones and fresh fruit are provided to help guests power through their workouts.
All Marriott Rewards members receive free Internet access.
Valet parking is available for an additional fee and is impressively quick when you use the text retrieval option. When you need your car, simply send a text and you’ll receive a response stating how quickly you need to make your way to the valet. My wait time was never more than 12 minutes.
Less than 10 miles from the Oakland International Airport and about a 15 minute BART train ride into San Francisco, the Oakland Marriott City Center is near just about everywhere a guest would want to go. Chinatown is just across the street. Waterfront Jack London Square is about a 10 minute walk. And Old Oakland, home to great shops and restaurants, is just steps outside the door.
Review and photos by Dana Rebmann. Her stay was hosted by the Oakland Marriott City Center Hotel, but as always her thoughts and opinions are her own.