Everyone is opting for a staycation now-a-days and why wouldn’t they. Seriously, it’s the best thing to do and especially so when you do not have time to plan a holiday. I’m all for staycations as that means I don’t have to go through the stress of planning a holiday while managing my increasingly hectic work schedule. Plus, getting those leaves approved? Don’t even get me started on that. That’s when a staycation comes like a breath of fresh air.. All you have to do is check yourself into a hotel and let the hotel take care of the rest for you. It just does not get simpler than this.
In a bustling city like Mumbai, staycations are becoming increasingly popular and hotels in the city have wised up to this need and have plenty of bespoke experiences on offer. One such experience that I wished to indulge in was a weekend at the JW Marriott Mumbai Juhu.
The hotel certainly has everything going for it and the number one reason would be the locality. Situated on Juhu’s waterfront with easy access to everything, the JW Marriott Mumbai Juhu vowed me with its gorgeous ocean and sunset views. I was looking for a place to spend a weekend of romance and relaxation with my better half and the hotel ticked all our checkboxes for this.
Armed with an overnight bag in tow, my husband and I checked in on a hot Saturday afternoon. Our first glimpse of the sea was from the lobby itself. A lobby of grandeur proportions where through the glass windows one could see the beautifully landscaped garden, lotus pond and the sea beyond. Set amidst this garden was a huge infinity pool and a smaller saltwater pool. The setting reminded me much of a Japanese zen garden with its bougainvillea, arches and pagodas. Infact, this alone gave the place a resort-like feel more than a city hotel.
We checked into the Royal Lotus Suite, a room where luxury meets elegance meets gorgeous views. As soon as I stepped in, the first thing that caught my attention were the floor to ceiling windows that opened out to a gorgeous vista of the landscaped resort grounds, pool and the beach. After spending a good minute or two taking in the view, I pulled myself away from the window to explore our suite.
The 861 sq. ft. suite comprised a living room with study, a master bedroom with en-suite bath, and a guest bathroom. Done up tastefully in earthy tones with a pop of color in the form of cushions and paintings, it evoked a sense of royal elegance. And aptly named so for its view of the Lotus pond below and the understated luxury manifested in the furnishings and decor.
The living room came with a plush white leather sofa with colored cushions, a study table, LED TV, mini bar, a wardrobe and an attached guest bathroom.
The bedroom had a king-sized bed, a sofa, LED TV and like the living room it had floor to ceiling windows that opened out to the same view. Custom duvets and crisp linens ensured us a good night’s sleep.
The marble bathroom came with an enclosed glass rain shower, a bathtub and a toilet cubicle. Kitted with bath products from Aromatherapy, dental and shaving kit, hair dryer, bath salts and even a weighing scale, it had everything we required for our grooming needs.
That evening, we witnessed what we were after – the sun painting the sky bright orange and yellow! My husband and I took in this mesmerizing view from our living room and watched together as the sun began her descent into the Arabian waters. The colors in the sky came alive like bright colors on a canvas and enveloped our room in a warm glow. It was a romantic moment indeed!
“There’s something about a sunset that makes one feel romantic…. and JW Marriott Mumbai Juhu creates this magical setting for you.”
As much as we did not want to leave our cozy suite, we made our way to their newest restaurant Dashanzi to have a sundowner. Now I’ve always been a fan of Dashanzi, one for its sea-facing alfresco area and two, for its great Asian inspired food. We chose to sit in the alfresco area and ordered ourselves a sundowner to match the perfect sunset. The sky was still a golden yellow despite having set and as you can see from the pic below – our sundowner was a perfect match!
“This specialty house cocktail was a mix of gin, honey and basil. Much like the sun it warmed our soul.”
I absolutely loved the sushi at Dashanzi! Always have…always will! This time around too, Chef did not disappoint and brought us a platter of assorted seafood, chicken and veg sushi. We particularly loved the crab spider roll and spicy tuna roll.
Upon our server’s recommendation, we also ordered the braised pork belly. This was melt in your mouth goodness of slightly sweet pork belly served with crispy Mantou buns. Tip: place the pork between the bun to sample the full flavor.
And to wrap up our gastronomic experience, we ordered the Dry Garden dessert. A chocolate mousse infused with orange liqueur. Full points for the presentation as the bowl sat on a bed of shavings with dry ice hidden beneath it. The fog effect added a nice visual touch.
JW Marriott Mumbai Juhu is famous for the Sunday brunch and we put that to the test the next day. I’ve gotta say, their brunch was one of the more elaborate brunches I’ve attended in all of Mumbai. The variety of food left us spoilt for choice. I had a tough time deciding between the live counters – grilled meats and seafood, steaks, sushi, pasta, rotis… you name it! I finally decided to sample bite-sized portions of all and ended up with a plateful of everything, well almost. Every bite was scrumptious and I had to restrain myself from serving more.
“I highly recommend the Sunday brunch at Lotus Cafe as it’s a great place to chill out and enjoy lunch without rushing.”
It did not help that I was seated right next to the dessert counter and my eyes kept drifting that way all through my lunch. It was a massive spread of sugar and spice and all things nice. From tarts, truffles, cakes, meringues, mousse, ice cream, and waffles; it was a dessert lover’s paradise.
I have to give credit to the entire staff at JW Marriott Mumbai as the service was truly outstanding. They always greeted us with a courteous ‘Namaste’ and kept checking in on our every need and comfort. It’s really hard to do so especially when you have so many guests but they somehow handled everything with minimal stress and gave everyone due respect and attention. On that note, a note of congratulations is in order, for the hotel also completes 15 glorious years this year. It is truly the quality and service that keeps a place like this running.
And finally, our goal to have a romantic staycation would not have been complete without a spa experience. Quan Spa at JW Marriott Mumbai Juhu is an award-winning spa and you should definitely indulge in a relaxation treatment here. The products used are all organic from the Aromatherapy range. We opted for the 60 minute ‘Aromatherapy relaxation massage’ which like all other treatments started out with a refreshing ginger-lemon-honey drink followed by the filling up of a consultation form. Unfortunately, since there were no couple massage rooms available we were led into separate rooms but that did not dampen our experience.
Ethel, my therapist began my treatment with a foot soak while she explained the kind of massage I was going to get. The treatment itself was a mix of deep tissue and relaxation massage strokes with essential oils of rosemary and eucalyptus from their “Breathe” muscle relief range. By the end of it, I emerged feeling lighter and relaxed. My husband echoed my sentiments.
I highly recommend a staycation here if you want to rediscover the magic of your love. Viewing the sunset from your room makes for a very memorable experience indeed. Crack open a bottle of wine in your room or have a sundowner at either Dashanzi or by the pool or any of the other vantage points in the hotel, all of which offer a gorgeous view of the golden sky. Trust me, there is something magical about a sunset and the best way to experience this is at JW Marriott Mumbai Juhu for the marvelous setting it creates for you.
The price for a one night stay in a Royal Lotus Suite starts from INR 30000++ for two adults.
A 60 minute Aromatherapy massage costs INR 5000++
Sunday brunch per person with alcohol INR 4451 and without alcohol INR 2945
Where: JW Marriott Mumbai
Juhu Tara Road, Mumbai, Maharashtra 400049
Phone: 022 6693 3000
Note– The critic was invited by the JW Marriott Mumbai Juhu. But all the opinions expressed herewith are her own.