I stay in Houston often, and as I continue to expand my footprint, I try new properties whenever I can. On this trip, business took me to the Woodlands where I tried out a Starwood property and secured an upgrade to a suite because of my status.
The Woodlands is a suburban/commercial area north of Houston proper. Major companies, mostly in the oil and gas space find themselves among engineering, construction and healthcare firms. True to form, the area is heavily wooded, a refreshing change of pace from the concrete jungle the rest of the sprawling metropolis has to offer. The Westin is located in the heart of the commercial development with excellent parking, lots of restaurants and in close proximity to major businesses, for whom its guests are likely there to meet. I have stayed in the Woodlands once before and on that occasion, I was in the Hyatt Centric.
2 Waterway Square Pl, The Woodlands, TX 77380
+1 (281) 419-4300
Odds and Ends
I checked in late and out early but there were a couple of small quirks I noticed. The Starbucks, rest assured, was a full Starbucks with one key exception – no mobile ordering. I know that seems like a minor issue, but the coffee shop had a long line the morning of my departure with minimal staff working. On another visit I took the picture below, but trust and believe it was slammed on the morning I needed to get out quickly and mobile ordering could have solved that problem for me.
Also, I have seen this at a couple of hotels now and I am sure there is a very good reason for it… but I can’t get one from hotel staff and it makes no sense to me.
As you might have guessed, I had the suite 1203, but that didn’t make the directional list. I quickly looked to the right and saw that 1204 was the next room, with another room on the opposite side of the building some 10′ away and opposite 1206, it seemed unlikely to be to the right side. I cruised over to the left only to find a string of Presidential suites (they said as much on the door) but no 1203. I returned to my right and found the room nearly opposite 1208, illogically. The room location itself wasn’t illogical, it was the lack of mention on the signage.
As I have been keeping track of upgrades this year, I was not upgraded prior to my arrival but once I asked at checkin, it was provided for me with pleasure. The agent was genuinely happy to get me into a nicer room and I was pleased with the result.
Into the suite, I was instantly greeted by a nice half bathroom to my right, a simple guest bathroom for those visiting the room. This is one of my favorite features. Whether it’s a co-worker, family or friend, everyone feels more comfortable when they don’t have to enter your personal space to use the loo.
Utilizing an alcove left following the bathroom but before the living room opened up, another sink, coffee machine and a mini fridge underneath in the cabinet. The living room itself was huge. It featured its own television, lighting, large couch and coffee table. The entire suite featured a window shading system that allowed all, some or none of the light into the room. Around the suite there was tasteful, yet simple artwork placed on the walls which made it feel more like a home than a hotel room – even if it wasn’t your home.
A king-sized bed with ample electrical outlets on either side greeted me just beyond the living room. The simple designer lamps demonstrated a level of thoughtfulness that went into the suite. USB charging points at the bedside reduced the number of plugs I needed to utilize to charge my devices.
The desk blended into the top of a dresser and the storage point for the ice bucket and glasses. There was so much workspace that I couldn’t imagine someone who could fill it all for a trip. More charging outlets in clever spaces at the desk made it easy to work without an adapter, though I always bring it anyway.
The bathroom was the star of the suite. The vanity with high visibility illumination behind the mirror was helpful but not special. The shower, however, was rather spacious and included a large bench. This wasn’t a little ledge to help my wife shave her legs, this was a stone slab large enough to be seated on and it made me look for a steam function on the shower to no avail. There was a rain shower overhead and wand for those that prefer a traditional sprayer.
The large soaking tub was deep and a little tough to get in and out of. For the first time in years, I took a bath. My bones were just tired and the tub looked unused and brand new. If I am going to take a bath in a hotel room (very rare) it will never be in one with a shower over the top. It was a serviceable experience, but clearly there for appearances, not function. The toilet was set back in a separate closed-door water closet, another favorite feature.
Will I Be Back?
If business brings me back to the Woodlands, this hotel is a no-brainer. I had great customer service, the property outside of the suite was excellent. The suite was more than I could reasonably have expected and the price for my early week stay was around $200.
Have you stayed in this property? Do you have a preferred hotel in the Woodlands that beats this one hands down?