“You are definitely not Marriott!” An old guy defiantly complains to the poor bar tender, who didn’t know how to handle it or seem to know anything. As I also stood at the bar, which doubled as a check in desk, I smiled pondering at his comment. After staying at numerous Moxy Hotels and even staying back to back at the chain this whole week in different cities, I mused to what I actually thought about this brand.
Moxy Hotels is Marriott International’s millennial-focused brand that debuted in September 2014 with the opening of the Moxy Milan. Being born a couple of years before the millennial milestone kicked in, this hotel shouldn’t be for me. However lucky for me I’m a young at heart, open minded soul, albeit with some salt and pepper in my hair. I could just about cope with the exuberance of youth these hotels shoves in my face as soon as I walk in.
With their locations, in Europe at least, within close proximity to airports or train stations, it’s clear their target, aspired guests are hip trendy travellers. With its 24 hours bar and selection of snacks and drinks, large open public lobby stacked with trendy decor, differing chairs and sofa designs, it’s extremely inviting to spend most of your time socialising or relaxing in this heart. There are power points everywhere making it easy to sit with your laptop working alone or collaboratively. Funky upbeat music playing in the background provides just the perfect amount of white noise without being distracting. Board games, table football, books casually placed around the place allows for some casual fun downtime.
Sleep is for Wimps
It makes sense then that the focus was here rather than the bedrooms which does lack some amenities usually expected. They are compact with an even more compact bathroom. No desk further proves that you should be downstairs. Pretty basic toiletries of soap and hair body shower cream combo. The shower though is awesome. Love the showers. Hot and powerful. Exactly what is needed before and after travelling. The rooms are relatively quiet unless someone is running down the hall screaming with joy. Which is what the Kodak photos in the elevators would imply. The bed itself, fairly stiff, no luxurious soft duvet here I’m afraid. Yet not uncomfortable to enable one not to get a good nights sleep. For sure there is no iron in the room however there is an ironing room on each floor. This is a great idea. A cool big iron to quickly iron your shirt before a meeting or day out. Never had to wait either. Unfortunately no cupboards to hang up your clothes. Instead there is just a picture of an attractive young model on the wall where a couple of hangers are swaying on their lonesome.
Attractive and young is certainly a theme here with the whole appearance and staff themselves. All the staff are naturally millennials themselves and mostly pleasant to the eye. However it doesn’t forgive the lack of competence the staff seem to have in all the Moxy Hotels I’ve stayed in. It’s extremely clear these guys simply do not know how to offer a service that you usually get from a hotel. A hotel is supposed to make and do everything for you, you are not just paying for the room but the whole service. When asking for a coffee for example, the response should not be, go and get it yourself at the self service machine. Especially after waiting endlessly at the bar to order with no organisation or clue who is doing what. Speaking of the bar, the quality of the food was not to my liking. Not saying everyone will dislike, just my personal taste of not into microwaved food that much. Which I think they kind of missed a beat here. Considering a lot of the the locations are near or on airports, there’s little else around to eat, or you just don’t want to go out when you just arrived or close to departing for flights. Would it be that costly or difficult to add freshly cooked food to the offerings. Also don’t get me started on the coffee.
You’re Not Marriott
However all that said, I will continue book one or two night stays here. The reason being is that none of the negative points really matter to me. When you really think about it, the basics pretty much are covered. Outside of that though it’s been the moments this hotel has given me which far outweigh the bad. It’s where I taught my son how to play chess, it’s where I’ve done some great writing, it’s where I’ve had some amazing conversations, it’s where I’ve had time to just reflect, it’s where my creative block got unblocked, it’s where I finally came up with the name of my book… I could go on. In addition to the convenience for travelling, these moments and convenience has, from a financial perspective, been relatively inexpensive too.
Yes maybe that guy was right, not a usual Marriott, but it’s not trying to be. It’s meant to tap into the travellers who stay at hostels but want something a little more and not break the bank doing it. It’s a hotel of triggering experiences, whilst it’s convenience accentuates your freedom. Peace&Love.