The Westin Houston, Memorial City
945 Gessner Road
Houston, Texas 77024
A few months ago, I took my grandparents to Houston because they hadn’t been there before. Throughout their 4 year stay in Texas they have visited Dallas, Austin (they live here), San Antonio, and many other smaller places, but never Houston. I took this as an opportunity to take them somewhere for the weekend because it was their anniversary, and also to gain some well needed elite qualifying nights for my road to Platinum Status with Starwood. I booked 2 deluxe rooms, one for my sister and I, and one for my grandparents for a rate of $103 using a 40% off SPG promotion (This hotel normally goes for over $200).
Upon reaching the hotel, we found the check In to be extremely quick with there being absolutely no line at the counter. The lady at the counter was extremely helpful and offered us an upgrade to the Club Deluxe Room on the 17th floor. She also gave us a choice of a Gold welcome gift, which is either a bottle of wine, or 250 SPG points. The hotel offers free internet for guests.
I was happy to note that the hotel was directly connected to the Memorial City Mall via an indoor skybridge, which made it much easier to get to since I hate parking the car in the sun and walking in the heat to get to the mall entrance.
The upgrades landed us unlimited access to the Westin Club Lounge on the same floor and some additional perks such as free bottles of water. I don’t know about any of you, but I drink at least 3 bottles a day during the Texas summer and I was happy that I didn’t have to lug an entire pack of bottled water in the car with me. The lounge offered around the clock soft drinks (Diet Coke, Coke, Water, Sprite etc.) as well as some snacks such as pretzels, and chips. I was particularly fond of the Pretzel M&Ms, after all who can go wrong with M&Ms? Luckily I did resist the temptation to have any 🙂 Unfortunately for readers, we don’t drink so I wasn’t able to see what was offered during the Happy Hour at the lounge.
The room itself was one of the cleanest rooms I have ever seen at any Westin worldwide, and trust me I have stayed at quite a few of those. Probably has something to do with the fact that the hotel is relatively new at only about a year. I was a little disappointed that only one of us got the upgrade to the larger room (my grandparents), but at least someone did. Overall, there was not a single problem with the rooms. The Heavenly beds, which I consider one of my favorite hotel beds, felt absolutely new compared to some other Westins such as the Westin Denver Downtown where the beds were all worn out for some reason.
After we arrived at our rooms, we got some water and unloaded our baggage and left to go check out the rest of the hotel. We walked over to the Memorial City Mall, where there was a nice ice skating rink open to the public, as well as a nice array of shops such as Macys, Nordstroms, Dillards, as well as some designer shops. The only thing it was lacking was a Tesla dealership, I saw at the Galleria. And yes to all car fans like myself, I got into the new Tesla Model S, which released last Thursday. Call me insane, but that definitely made my trip worth it! (I will talk about it later).
One of the neat things about Memorial City was the fact that it had one of the first electric car charging stations along I-10. TX Drivers who frequented this interstate, were one of the first to be able to recharge their car for 30 mins and get up to 150 mile range. Kind of an unusual fact for the ‘Oil/Energy Capital of the World.’
The rooftop lounge, spa, and gym were all quite nice as they boasted great views of the Houston skyline and the wonderfully light polluted highway of Houston.
My grandfather and I went to the gym and got ourselves a workout on one of the bikes. The gym was standard fare with Westins, though a bit larger and with some newer equipment.
The gym had some added bonuses such as free headsets, and loaner sneakers.
After the quick workout we hit the showers and bed for some well needed R&R. The bathrooms were well designed and featured stand in showers in the deluxe king room, and a regular tub in the club double room (our room). The shower as usual featured the Westin double ‘Heavenly’ shower head and the Westin White Tea and Aloe Soaps, Shampoos, and Amenities. Call me crazy, but I think Westin offers the best scented soaps in any hotel. I just love the smell and I usually find myself tossing more than a couple into my bags everyday, hoping room service will bring more 🙂
The next morning we headed to the Club Lounge adjacent to our rooms for breakfast. I would say the breakfast here was sub-par and below average. The only offerings were croissants, muffins, bread, fruits, and cereal.
The juices were average at best with them offering orange juice, which was not freshly squeezed and not from any usual brand (overall it didn’t taste too good). The silliest part about the place was that they had maple syrup without pancakes or waffles, and cream cheese without bagels. That just kept me scratching my head.
Breakfast cereal/oatmeal choice was rather poor considering the fact that they didn’t carry any of my favorites. If you ask me this was rather a cheap selection of cereals, but I guess that’s what you get for free lounge access.
Although, I sometimes frequent hotel restaurants because I’m too tired, on site restaurants are way too expensive . In this case it would be rather foolish to have more than one meal at the hotel restaurant if any. Here are some of the great nearby restaurants, which you can access via the Sky Bridge to the mall: California Pizza Kitchen, Cheesecake Factory, Panera Bread, Berryhill Baja Grill & Cantina.
Would I return to this hotel? Yes absolutely, considering the price I got on the room and the location. Would I pay for club lounge access? No, unless you drink tons of Diet Coke. The hotel itself is in a great central location, and attached to a wonderful mall, which will not make people miss the Galleria. Combined with the number of points I have got from this hotel and the value, I would say it is definitely the nicest property in the SPG Network in Houston.