Marriott Minsk Review (August 2019)
The Marriott Minsk is an imposing structure located about 3 miles away from the city center. While this sounds quite far it's located along a beautiful lake with a bike path and running trail that leads right into the city center. The property overlooks the river with some rather stunning views. I arrived a little early and it took a while for the agent to confirm my reservation and find a room that was available (to an extent this was my fault but that is another story) - I was 'parked' in the 'Executive Lounge' for two hours. The lounge had decent 'snack' spread even at these hours. I liked the nuts offered quite a bit! The room looked rather nice when I first got there. It had some design flaws like an overly, heavy bathroom door that was very easy to hurt your feet at or the overly soft mattress which was just annoying. It was modern and somewhat clean though. However the air conditioning would not work. I suspected it is due to the bulky balcony door that would not open or close. I called down and even 30 minutes later nobody had come by to check it out. I left for the long workout and came back two hours later. It was still 100 degrees plus in the room and the balcony would not open either (I think it would not open at all since I never saw anyone on the balcony ever). I got dressed and walked down to get another room. The front desk agent would have none of it and told me that I just 'used the wrong AC settings' - I mentioned that I called and asked before I left twice to have someone check it out (I'm pretty sure I can set an AC). He was not impressed and told me in stern terms to go back o the Executive Lounge and wait again before a new room is ready. Once that happened I asked if that new room was actually cooling down and he just told me that it would take some time and there is 'no way for him to check' if an AC works. Oh man. Luckily that new room had a worked AC - it was way too loud though and there was no option to reduce the fan speed. My pet peeve again! Anyways the Internet would be very stable at 20 Mbit and the room was indeed quiet (as I wanted). However some guests seemed to have a habit of arriving late and opening and closing the doors a number of times. Not ideal. I had dinner at ProSushi next door which isn't cheap but had very good sushi on offer (the 'restaurant' looks more like a gym shower though). The bar downstairs has good coffee and craft beer for fair prices. I loved the running trail and beautiful outdoors at the hotel - that was a huge pro for staying at the hotel. In sum, the staff was a huge letdown and could have handled the mechanical issues in a heartbeat instead of making me angry. They run a hotel and not a Gulag - seemingly nobody told them that. If it works the hotel is beautiful and in a serene location (and just a 10 minute Uber ride to the city center). Rates are often under $100 and this is why it is worth trying it out - especially in summer with the beautiful outdoors.