Note: This is an overdue post since we stayed here in August. I got caught up with a lot of things and since then, we had stayed in several more hotels (more reviews to come).

We were in Miri for the Merdeka break and what finer way to spend the hols than exploring hotels (at least for a hotel-loving family like ours)?

Our first stop was no other than the most renowned resort in town, Miri Marriott Resort & Spa. It is located along the coastal road and is really easy to find. Just the thought of chilling by the pool with sea breeze in my face made me so keen to pick this hotel. 

Checking in was quite smooth and the reception staff were courteous but for an established resort like Marriott, I felt that they were missing the genuine friendliness and warmth such as that I received when we were staying at Westin KL. I also got a tad annoyed when the hotel wifi was not immediately activated as per what the reception staff promised. I had to go to the counter again to check why I was asked to pay for in-room wifi when the staff earlier mentioned it was without charges.

Secondly, although I requested for a room nearer to the lobby, we were somehow given a farther room which involved a long corridor walk and staircase, all in all was quite inconvenient for family with small children. However I tried to understand that maybe due to peak season, the hotel couldn't accommodate all requests.

Anyway, these are how the hotel room looks like:

Old decor, but still comfortable enough for us
We got two queen beds as per request since I also invited my sister to stay with us.

From another angle

The foyer

The bathroom, also in need of refurbishment
Aromatherapy toiletries
The bathroom has a bathtub to the delight of the young ones
If you are feeling peckish but too lazy to step out of the room (think of long walkway to the lobby and restaurant!), you can still munch on the snacks provided in the room (not complimentary though):

The beverages below are complimentary, but the snacks on the top shelf are not
There was a time when you have to request for iron and ironing board every time you want to use it, but nowadays each room comes with these facilities:

Bathrobe, iron & ironing board
There is also a veranda outside the room with a wooden table and beach chairs. However my sister warned me of the sandflies so we daren't sit outside or leave the sliding door open. Besides the weather was too hot so we preferred the air-conditioned room.

Lounge rattan chair (inside) and wooden beach chair (outside at the balcony)
I'm so used to staying in modern hotels in Kuala Lumpur, where the management gives a facelift to the hotel rooms every 4 to 5 years (or so it seems), that I couldn't help but feel that the hotels in East Malaysia are rather shabby looking. You would know what I mean by just looking at the beds.

The decor needs refurbishment!
But I guess they don't feel the need to refurbish because it is still the top choice among travellers to Miri (business / leisure travellers) so why fix it when it ain't broken, right?

Regardless, we really enjoyed our stay at Miri Marriott. The kids were absolutely delighted with the swimming pool (the kids' pool is large enough for everyone) and they even inflate a giant water slide which even the adults joined in the fun! Too bad I forgot to snap a photo of the slide!

Large pool for both kids and adult
As for me and my sister, we tried out the Mandara Spa menu (we opted for their facial) which my sister said, is the best and most painless facial she had ever had! If I wanted to stay here again, it is definitely because of the spa *wink*

Another thing worth mentioning is the breakfast. Marriott is known for their delicious and wide selection of breakfast menu, and Miri Marriott is no exception. Maybe the next time we are here, I will do a special review of their breakfast service.

My verdict - Overall, still not a disappointing place to stay because of what the resort could offer to young family like ours. Maybe if they upgrade their rooms, I would have more favourable review for this resort.