Warning Platinum Members
I am a Marriott Platinum member and had a very bad experience at the JW Marriott - Rio. I stayed 10 nights and have never had such poor treatment at the Marriott - Rio. They let unsupervised kids (no parental or other supervision) in the Executive Lounge and these children took over the two computers in the lounge for very extended periods of time. This Marriott had no regard for Platinum members and it was clearly evidenced in their treatment of not only me but other Platinum members....Please be aware!!!
I recently took advantage of the Air+Hotel points offer at the JW Marriott in Rio and had an absolutely great experience. I called Marriott reservations ahead of time to let them know we would be arriving early (around 10am) and asked for an early check-in. Upon arrival we were directed to the 9th floor for check-in as I am a Platinum member. There we had a dedicated desk employee who helped us with everything we needed at check in. She let us know that an upgrade wasn't possible today, however they would inform us if one became available during the week (no ocean view for us). We were informed that a room wasn't availabe, however we could hang out in the Executive Lounge (I think its supposed to be for Platinum members only - I'll explain later). After an hour of enjoying the view, eating some snacks and trying out some strange local drinks, we asked about the status of our room, and they said it might be another hour or so. About 5 minutes later, the desk employee came by and told us our room was ready and off we went. The room was a bit smaller than expected, but everything else about the room was great.
The room wasn't exactly the reason why we came to Rio so we quickly got in our bathing suits and enjoyed the beach. Later in the day, we mentioned to the FD on the 9th floor that we wanted to go somewhere nice for dinner as it was my girlfriends birthday. They recommended a great Brazilian steakhouse which we booked with the concierge. After booking, we returned to our room and found cake, a bottle of wine, and a card for my girlfriend. It was a great touch and completely unexpected. Please take into account that I normally stay at Fairfields and Courtyards to accrue all of my points during business travel so I am easily amused.
The rest of the stay was amazing and the staff was extremely helpful in every way shape and form. Rooftop pool and fitness center were great. Three complaints which were not that big:
1. Executive Lounge was definitely not limited to only Platinum guests. It didn't bother me but I spoke to some other travelers that said they had paid extra to obtain access to it. This may have been where Jasper saw all the kids running around.
2. Not Marriott's fault but.... the gas-line which powers the water heaters had some issues and we didn't have hot water for around 24 hours. We were comp-ed with free drinks at the bar.
3. If you don't want to pay double for taxi's tell the guys out front you want to use a yellow cab
Hope this is helpful