Wednesday, July 7, 2010

SYD - Marriott Hotel

Sydney Marriott
36 College Street
Sydney, New South Wales 2010 Australia
Phone: 61 2 9361 8400
Fax: 61 2 9361 8599

Trip Report and Hotel Review - Sydney Marriott

Note: there is another Marriott in Sydney, the Sydney Harbour Marriott Hotel at Circular Quay.

I have stayed at this hotel before (in 2001) and not much has changed. The rooms are nice, clean but still a bit outdated. However, the promotional rate online was too low to pass up for this hotel (about $100USD a night). Plus this hotel is pretty central to everything in Sydney. 

The hotel sits near the intersection of College and Oxford streets and is right across the street from Hyde Park in the CBD. The hotel is a basic Marriott design, nice lobby - with a bar and restaurant. There are 241 rooms plus 13 suites.

I was in Room 9001 - which is on the non-view side and a bit smaller than the other rooms on the floor. It looked like the X001 - X003 rooms are the smallest, plus you can see into the room from the far side of nearby Elevator waiting area.

The rooms are typical of Sydney hotel rooms: very basic bed, couch+table, Flat Screen TV, desk, in room safe and a small but handy kitchenette area.

The bathrooms are very large with a huge tub/shower area.

The room service was very speedy and had a decent selection of food. My only issue was the internet was still pretty costly ($24.95AUD per 24 hours) and the wireless connection was hopeless around 5pm-7pm each night -- maybe too many users?

As mentioned there is a kticheenette in the room -- but no laundry machine (unlike the Medina or Meriton Serviced Apartments). After a week long trip, its nice to be able to wash some clothes for the return journey.

Rooms on the 9th floor have a decent view -- even though my room was not on the Park. The windows do open so you can get some fresh air if needed.

Not a bad place -- but there are some better options in Sydney if you are staying for more than 4 nights. The hotel is also due for some updating on room decor, but otherwise its clean and friendly.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Old Terminal C in SJC closes

Well its out with the old and in with the new at San Jose International Airport this week.

Gone is the old Terminal C (built in the 1960's) and IN is the new, fancy, probably overbuilt terminal B.  Terminal C was from a different era -- here is what I remember from it over the past 30 years, most of these have been shut down or are long gone -- replaced by "improvements":

- Super close-in short term parking (literally across the road from the terminal)
- Walkable Rental Car location next to Baggage claim (no buses, long "tram" rides)
- A real open-air Observation Deck
- Ticket counters located directly infront of bag holding areas (no long bag belts carrying your bags for miles)
- And course the open-air walk out to the plane 

Anyway, I know post-9/11 "security" and traffic growth changed the Airport facilities model forever. I just wish some of these airport managers would take into account some simple requirements for new improvements -- keep it simple and conveinent for travelers and airlines.

Some video from CBS5:

Photo of America West 737-100 (!) at SJC during the late 1980's

Airstairs used to board a Morris Air 737-300 at SJC