I’ve been a SPG Member for years, love my Gold Status, and remain loyal because of that status. That’s the thing about status though, you’re either trying to make status, get higher status or keep status, which means, you sometimes find yourself in a meh hotel or multi-segment flight all in the name of status.
So when Marriott acquired Starwood recently, it meant all of us status seeking suckers got really excited about, well, Status. Now, I have twice as many options to choose from and a Gold Member at all Starwood and Marriott properties.
In general I’ve been really satisfied with Sheraton Hotels, a Starwood property. I know when I stay at a Sheraton that the fitness center will be acceptable and room service available. Room service is actually a big deal for me. I’m especially rushed on the mornings when I’m traveling. I don’t have time to find a healthy breakfast, and I like to eat shortly after my workout. Also, I don’t always know what the day is going to bring in terms of healthy options, so it’s important to me to start the day with a nutritious breakfast. To me, having the ability to choose an egg white omelette or oatmeal for breakfast is equally as important as a decent fitness center.
I’ve stayed at the Sheraton in Bellevue a couple of times, but it’s not one of their better hotels. So, when I had to book a hotel for partner meetings in Seattle and Bellevue, I looked at my new Marriott options and chose the Seattle Marriott Bellevue. I was very pleased. The hotel is beautifully redesigned with a luxurious feel for an affordable price point at right around $200/night.
(Note: This is November in Washington and not peak travel season. Prices may vary significantly in the summer months.)
My flight left Portland Thursday morning at 8 am, and I was supposed to have meetings back to back in Seattle/Bellevue through happy hour. When happy hour was cancelled I was excited to get out of drinks and into a gym. I was going to go to the nearby 24 Hour Fitness, but I stopped to check out the fitness center at the hotel on the way out. I wanted to preview my gym conditions for the next day. I was so pleasantly surprised that I stayed and worked out there instead of 24 Hour. The fitness center at Seattle Marriott Bellevue is spacious, quiet and clean. It had everything I needed for a great workout: cardio equipment, free weights, stability balls, etc. What you don’t see in the picture is row of cardio equipment and more weight machines behind me.
After my workout I grabbed a green apple, compliments of the fitness center, and went up to my room to work. Out of laziness and an overflowing inbox I decided to eat at the hotel restaurant. This isn’t typically the best option when trying to eat clean, but in a pinch I can usually find a decent salad. I was excited to find this Tofu Brown Rice Bowl with Kale and Roasted Vegetables. They used a little more oil than I would have, but the portion was small, but filling, and full of veggies. Tasty too!
Unfortunately, breakfast wasn’t as good. My one critique of Marriott, and this goes for most of the their hotels, is that their room service menu and delivery is lacking. They don’t have a lot of healthy options and the food is delivered in a paper bag with plastic containers and utensils. It feels like cheap, continental food.
I had forgotten this when I ordered my rolled oats Friday morning. According to the menu the oats came with Blackberries. I was frustrated to see giant glob of blackberry jam on top of the oatmeal instead of fresh berries. That screams added SUGAR!! So, I mixed in a small portion of the blackberry jam for flavor, ate about half of the oats and made a mental note to bring my own breakfast the next time I stay at a Marriott.
I want to share a little fit travel tip. Anyone who exercises while traveling knows how badly sweaty gym clothes can contaminate your luggage, along with its contents. I have unpacked cold, wet, stinky gym clothes more than I would like and struggled with keeping my luggage smelling fresh instead of like a locker room. This may seem simple, but I always pack my dirty gym clothes in the plastic laundry bag provided by the hotel.I realize this is not the intended use of the laundry bag, but it will save you from a smelly unpacking session later! When I get home I take the bag straight to the laundry room and dump the gym clothes into the laundry basket. My luggage and unworn clothes remain clean.
I have two workouts to share with you from my Seattle/Bellevue trip since I was able to sneak in a Thursday workout. As always, you can do both of these at most hotel gyms.
Anther tip, if you don’t know the exercise by name search for it on Google, BodyBuilding.com or YouTube. You can almost always find a description with pictures and/or videos of the exercise.
Thanks for visiting!