Review: Grand Hyatt Shenzhen
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Review: Grand Hyatt Shenzhen
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Last November, I spent several nights at the Grand Hyatt Shenzhen and I returned to spend two more nights there in March of this year. Shenzhen is a surprisingly beautiful city and it's full of high-end shops, beautiful manicured plant-lined streets, and fun architecture that becomes a neon lover's dream each night. The Grand Hyatt Shenzhen is located about 5-10 minutes by taxi from the border with Hong Kong, so it's pretty conveniently located if arriving from the Hong Kong (HKG) airport. The Shenzhen airport (SZX) is about 45 minutes away with no traffic.
As with many hotels in China, the Grand Hyatt is attached to a mall (in this case, the MixC Shopping Center), which features all the luxury shopping you could ever want. The hotel is housed in a 38 story building and has 471 rooms and 8 restaurants, which offer a pretty good variety of foods.
Somewhat oddly, the lobby is located on the 33rd floor of the hotel, which is above all of the guest rooms. So upon arrival, you will get into an elevator to the 33rd floor and then will need to transfer to another elevator once in the lobby that will take you down to your room. The lobby itself is quite dramatic, with extremely high ceilings and floor to ceiling windows. Each time I arrived, my check in was processed quickly and my Diamond status was recognized. I always opt for the points rather than the amenity when traveling by myself as I spend most of the time in my room working or sleeping.
During my first stay last November, I had leftover suite upgrades that would go unused, so for fun, I applied one to that stay and was upgraded to a Grand Suite King. For my second stay in March, I had a Standard King room and I actually preferred it to the suite. More on that later.
The halls in the Grand Hyatt are extremely dark, which is something I honestly don't love when traveling alone, although the room numbers and doors are somewhat lit up. You will notice upon arrival that the entire hotel is accented with a reddish wood throughout, including the guest room doors, but the wood somehow lends an odd smell to the hotel hallways and rooms. It's nothing terrible, but it's noticeable and since the hotel is several years old now, it doesn't seem like it will be going away anytime soon.
As I mentioned, I preferred the Standard King room over the suite that I had on my first stay, although the layout of the Standard rooms is extremely odd, to say the least. I have never encountered this before, but upon walking into the room, you'll find yourself in the bathroom. No kidding. Immediately, you will see the shower right in front of you, which is centered in the bathroom and surrounded by glass (imagine if you forgot to lock the door and a housekeeper walked in while you were in the shower! omg, the horror!), then the toilet has a separate compartment on the left, and on the right is a closet area and the sink and minibar. The entire bathroom is covered in what I consider to be a hideous sort of green material (marble?), but it's still quite nice regardless. Amenities are June Jacobs, which actually smell really nice.
You'll proceed through the bathroom into the bedroom which is nicely appointed and looks like your standard hotel room (albeit a luxurious and modern one). There's a bed, a desk, and a chair with floor to ceiling windows and the room is nicely accented with wood and glass doors which can be closed all the way to separate the bathroom from the bedroom. As with many of the Hyatts in China, the window coverings are controlled by a switch next to the bed, which is always a nice touch.
Grand Suite King
As I mentioned, I preferred the standard room to the suite and that was mostly because I found the suite to be dark and really just too big and unnecessary for even two people. Upon walking into the room, you will enter a slight hallway with an entrance to a massive closet on your left. Proceeding through the hall, you'll enter the living room, which has a desk, a minibar, a couch, chairs, and the television as well as those floor to ceiling windows.
From the living room, you will see the sliding doors that go into the bedroom, which had a king bed, a television, and nightstands. What I didn't like was that there are no windows in the bedroom, so in order to have any windows, you'll have to have the doors open to the living room, which makes the bedroom very dark.
From the bedroom, you'll enter another very green bathroom with double sinks and a very large bath/shower area. The massive closet I mentioned also connects to the bathroom, so you can go in sort of a loop around the room, which is interesting.
Overall, I think the rooms are fine. I will admit that most of the decor is not quite my style, but the beds are comfortable and the rooms have everything you would need.
The Grand Club is located on the 25th floor and is actually quite large. As you walk in, you'll see the "reception" desk on your left and then the room opens up to the left. Ahead, you'll find the kitchen area where the food will be placed out at breakfast and during the evening happy hour. To the right and up some stairs is another seating area.
The evening happy hour spread runs from 5:30PM to 8:30PM and it's quite substantial. Most nights, I don't make it back in time to take advantage of it, but on the night I did, I was impressed. There were three bottles of white wine, three bottles of red wine, beer, liquor, and soft drinks available. Overall, the lounges in Asia are consistently better than in the US. The spreads are always bigger and liquor is completely free, whereas it's usually a cash bar in the US.
There were plenty of different types of snacks (both savory and sweet) and three items on the evening's hot menu that you could order with one of the club attendants. Overall, in a pinch, you could make a meal out of it, but I wouldn't recommend it (especially because there are so many actual restaurants in the hotel).
A continental breakfast is available from 6:30AM to 10:30AM Monday to Friday and from 6:30AM to 11:00AM on weekends and holidays. This Grand Hyatt is unique in that it allows Diamond guests the choice to eat breakfast in the lounge or in the Show Kitchen, which is located right below the lobby on the 32nd floor (more on the Show Kitchen in a bit).
I tried breakfast in the lounge on the morning of my first stay at the Grand Hyatt and I never returned. While the spread is fine, the Show Kitchen is the most massive breakfast buffet I have ever seen and it absolutely kills anything the Grand Club has to offer.
The Grand Club offers three "Asian Breakfast" items and three "Western Breakfast" items each morning as part of their hot menu. While I was there, the Asian options were: daily congee, soya milk hot Chinese doughnuts, and prawn wonton noodle soup. The Western options were: omelette any style, two eggs any style with tomato and potatoes, and French toast with whipped cream and berry compote. Not bad for a club breakfast, to be sure. There were also plenty of cereals, cheeses, meats, breads and pastries to choose from. As I said, the spread is really not bad at all.
The Show Kitchen
Now, I don't really have any photos of the Show Kitchen buffet and that is 100% because every time I go in there, I am so incredibly overwhelmed, I don't even know what to do with myself. Seriously, it's massive. It's spread across 4 different rooms, all of which are massive and open to the 33rd floor above, so the entire place is just incredible. Then, there are hundreds of options to choose from in each room. Omelettes, french toast, fried eggs, congee, stir fried noodles, smoothies, fruit, pastries, salads, a carving station, etc. I kid you not when I tell you it is completely insane. I honestly don't even know what half the items are, but I trust there is something for everyone. If you're a Diamond, just eat here. Really, don't even bother with the Grand Club.
Overall, the Grand Hyatt Shenzhen is a solid hotel choice. The location is pretty great in terms of having things nearby, there are plenty of dining options available, the rooms are comfortable (and memorable, given layout and material choices), and you have everything you need. The wood smell even goes away once you get used to it. ;)
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