This article mentions that the JW Marriott brand is rated number one in its segment. And as an aside the article reports that amenities, like Internet usage, are being comped as hotels struggle to keep customers.
"Charges for amenities, particularly Internet usage, in the upper upscale tier that generally are included in rates in the lower tiers long have been a sore spot for buyers. At The Masters Program in Washington, D.C., in February, David Marriott, Marriott's Eastern region vice president of market management, said the eventual removal of Internet fees is likely, though full-service hotels will only reluctantly turn away a revenue stream"
So perhaps one day this charge will be eliminated--here's hoping it is.
Interesting commentary. David Marriott's thought about "revenue stream" is a euphemism for RevPar or Revenue Per Available Room, one of Marriott's KPIs or Key Performance Indicators. The "reluctance to shed a revenue stream" suggests archaic thinking about who the customer is.
Marriott's focus on business travellers was once the cornerstone of Courtyard, "The Hotel Designed for Business Travelers". Loyal Elites have moved up to JW's. To stay "on top" demands fresh thinking.
Free internet is a 'nice-to-have'. The new Eilte business traveller has adopted the convenience of broadband. Blackberry and iPhone have created a new mobile market* for business and hospitality services. Look there, Marriott for new revenue.
I suggested some years ago that Marriott offer business floors in their larger hotels. The would include a full service business center on site (even the floor), fax and computers in every room, free calls, free printing, etc. I got a nice letter back and nothing was done to implement the idea.
As a differentiator Marriott could still be the first to bring this to market, even in a beta mode in key markets, and see if the traveler would pay an addiitonal fee for services on site, much like the charge for Concierge Floors.
Yes, we have our alternate means of getting emails, but they are cumbersome. Why not have Marriott provide the business traveler with business amenities? Would be something I'd favor.
"Just a question regarding JW Marriotts. What differentiates a JW Marriott from one of the other full service Marriotts? At one point I saw a breakdown of the amenities that a JW offers that are unique to a JW, but I can't seem to find it."
You may find an overview of the Marriott brands here.
"I believe that one was the concierge is open 7 days a week. Does someone know if that is true and what the other differences are?"
Good question. The information is not readily available at Marriott.com, but I would like to know the answer, too.