You Get What You Pay For: A Review of the Four Points By Sheraton Doha

READ MORE FROM THIS TRIP

Introduction: From Cold To Hot and Checking The #1 Country Off of My Bucketlist 
• Review: Plaza Premium Lounge (Toronto Airport)
• Review: Air France / KLM Lounge (Toronto Airport)
• Review: Air France A350 (Business Class); Toronto – Paris
• Review: Air France A320 (Business Class); Paris – Stockholm
• Review: The Generator Hostel (Stockholm)

• Review: Norrsken Lounge (Stockholm Arlanda)
• Review: Menzies Executive Lounge (Stockholm Arlanda)
• Review: American Express Lounge by Pontus (Stockholm Arlanda)
• Review: Stockholm Arlanda Lounge (Stockholm Arlanda)
• Review: Qatar Airways A350-1000 “QSuites” (Business Class)
• Review: Four Points By Sheraton Doha

It’s no secret, Doha is one of my favorite cities in the world. Any time I have the opportunity insert Doha into the equation, either, as my final destination or via connection, I do it!

It also helps that Qatar Airways has my favorite business class product (at least at the moment).

Another great aspect about Doha is they have A LOT of luxury hotels that are fairly affordable. I’ve stayed in various hotels throughout the city but I have a particular favorite (more on that soon).

This trip, however, I would be branching out from my favorite and staying at the Four Points by Sheraton Doha.

BACKGROUND

Marriott opened the Four Points by Sheraton Doha in October 2019, marking the brand’s debut in Qatar. The hotel was formerly the Amari hotel – a Thai-based hotel and resort chain operating a network of mid to upscale properties throughout Asia and The Middle East.

Typically, for a nice luxury hotel, I redeem points. I prefer spending a few thousand points on a hotel room rather than $1000. However, Four Points hotels are far from qualifying as “luxury” and again, Doha is affordable so I decided to pay for my room.

The room cost me $84 per night (inclusive of taxes). I thought it was a steal because it was formerly an Amari Hotel and had just opened roughly a month ago. That’s sound logic, right?

FOUR POINTS BY SHERATON REVIEW

Let me once again say that I didn’t book the Four Points because I thought it was necessarily the best option, but rather because I wanted to try something new. Additionally, Msheireb station (the central station for the new Doha metro system) is located directly across the street and I wanted to try that as well.

Note: Doha will be hosting the FIFA World Cup in 2022. Given the gravity of hosting such a major event, the city has massive construction projects taking place simultaneously (e.g. streets, buildings, stadiums, an entire metro system, etc.)

The drive from the airport to the hotel takes about 20 minutes. I rented a car because I would be moving around quite a bit but an uber from the airport to the hotel would’ve costs ~QAR27 (~$7USD) one-way.

The Four Points is a pretty big hotel, and from the outside looks like a three-star hotel…okay but not particularly impressive.

Marriotts website makes the hotel look amazing. For example, I had booked the “Classic Guest Room, 1 King Bed, City View.” Although the website says “photo coming soon” for that particular guest room, they do have a photo of the “Classic Guest Room, 2 twin/single bed(s), City View.”

Classic Guest Room, 2 twin/single bed(s), City View

It’s worth mentioning that I have Platinum status with Marriott and one of the perks of having Platinum status is complimentary upgrades including to suites (based on availability). So far I’ve been upgraded 21 out of 22 stays this year.

Understanding that, I assumed two things:
1) “worst” case scenario… replace the two twin beds in the photo above with a king bed and that will be my room or…
2) I will be upgraded to a Business Suite (photo below) that has a king bed and 2 bathrooms

Photo Credit: marriott.com

LOBBY AREA

When I walked through the metal detector into the lobby, I was immediately greeted by the concierge who directed me to the reception desk which was located to the right. Once there, I was helped pretty quickly.

I said that I wanted to check-in and provided my credit card and passport.

The associate thanked me for my loyalty to Marriott, and began typing on her computer.

I took a look around the lobby as the attendant did not appear interested in small talk.

The hotel was in good condition but was oddly quiet.

Directly in front of the reception desk was a sitting area but no one was sitting there.

Within a couple of minutes she picked up the phone, dialed a number, and began speaking softly in Filipino. I recognized the language because I have spent a lot of time in the Philippines. When she was done with the phone conversation, this is how our conversation “progressed”…

“Is everything ok?”
“Yes sir.”
“Were you speaking Tagalog (an indigenous language that A LOT of people speak in the Philippines)?”
Sir, please wait here!”
“Okayyyy…is everything ok?”

…and she disappeared into the backroom.

After waiting for roughly 10 minutes, I noticed there was not a single person in the lobby. Everyone had disappeared!

So I returned to the main entrance and took a photo of the atrium and stairs leading up to the Musheireb Restaurant (on the 2nd floor).

RESTAURANT

I walked up to the restaurant, but I did not see one person eating or anyone in the kitchen.

So, I returned to the lobby. To the left of the lobby was a small cafe but again…no one was there.

At this point, I began feeling uncomfortable and returned to my chair at the reception desk.

All of a sudden, a woman descends the lobby stairs and offers me a cold beverage. I asked her what kind of drink it was but she just smiled and did not reply.

I then asked if she could find someone for me as I had been sitting in the lobby by myself for nearly 15 minutes. Again, she smiled, did not reply, and walked back to the stairs.

Note: At this point I felt like I was in a horror movie so I did not drink any of the drink just in case you’re wondering.

The good news is that the associate returned a few minutes later (with the keys in hand). Again, I asked…
“is everything ok?”
“Yes, sir.”
“Quick question…are there…any…upgrades available?”
“Your room is on the 9th floor.”
“Uhhhh…ooook…thank you…”

You may remember from my previous post that I had stayed up all night enjoying THE BEST FLIGHT EVER. Despite it being nearly 8AM, I was ready to get a few hours of shut-eye so I just went to my room.

9th floor? One floor below the Penthouse? Perhaps I did get upgraded?

When the elevator doors opened on the 9th floor, I noticed the hallway had shades to block out the intense desert sun.

My room was located to the left and on the other side of a solid (and heavy) metal fire door.

The hallway walls were lined with dark wood giving it an upscale feeling, though it was pretty clear there’s some TLC missing.

ROOMS

My room (912) was located second from the end.

The second I opened the door I was hit with what I can only describe as “stagnant air.” The air conditioner was not running and nothing was operational without the key card being placed in the electricity card slot behind the door.

After I placed the key in the slot, the lights came on and I saw this on the wall above it…

I’m not sure what it was but again, I was too tired to return to the lobby and request a new room.

The entrance was basic.

The room had a very comfortable Sheraton brand standard bed, which was the highlight of the room. The mattress and sheets were exactly the same as you’d find at any U.S. Sheraton property.

However, there was a BIG problem!! The curtains did not reach the floor on the other side of the room.

In fact, the curtains did not reach the floor next to the two lounge chairs either. Perhaps, I should’ve slept in the hallway with the blackout shades?

Anyway, I opened the curtain to see my view…

Yes, the window is extremely dirty but that’s expected in the desert.

I ended up stacking the decorative pillows on the floor and using the chairs to pin the pillows against the window and block the light. Otherwise, I would not have been able to get any sleep.

Across from the bed was the desk with a chair and a large mirror.

The desk featured quite a bit of information about their spa services. I was also happy that the outlet was configured for US electric plugs because I had forgotten my adapters (rookie mistake).

But I also noticed where there was a little wear and tear on this room…

BATHROOM

The bathroom was back near the entrance.

I appreciated that they had two bottles of complimentary water as the desert has a tendency to dehydrate you fast.

In the bathroom, there was a toilet, a bidet, a set of double sinks, and an extremely large walk-in shower.

Everything was reasonably clean, and toiletries were in dispensers, as is the norm at Four Points properties.

However, I noticed there was some plastic-bubble-wrap-type-coating on the bathroom sink. It reminded me of the plastic my grandmother used to have on her couches…but worse (if that is possible).

Across from the bathroom was a closet, which is also where the safe was located. I don’t often use hotel safes, but this was one of those instances where I considered it. Should I come up missing, my family would at least know I was in the room at some point.

On the other side of the closet was a robe, an iron, and an ironing board.

AMENITIES

At this point I decided that since there was so much information on their spa services, I would go visit.

I took the elevator to the PH level. There was an attendant desk directly in front of me but again…no one was there.

A cell phone was located on the desk so I decided to wait until someone returned. Well, after 10 minutes of waiting, I decided to take myself on a self-guided tour.

I walked through the glass door and into the gym. The lights were off and no one was in there.

I walked into the whirlpool area. The lights were very dim and no one was in there.

I went to the sauna room. Ironically, there was a sign that read “Please do not enter. Guest treatment is on progress.” However, the door was slightly open and again…no one was in there.

I walked out to the rooftop pool. It was broken into 3 sections – a shallow wading pool, a deeper section, and a whirl pool.

At the far end of the pool was a lounge area. It was decorated nicely and had great views of the Doha skyline.

I decided it was time to return to my room and get some rest.

When I returned to my room, I attempted to set the alarm clock and noticed that the clock beside the bed displayed EVERYTHING incorrectly. It was nearly 10AM (not 6:50AM), was not Monday, not July, and not the 16th.

FINAL STAMP

I was suffering from a serious case of jet lag and surprisingly had slept from 10AM to 10PM that night. I briefly woke up, looked at my phone clock (not the hotel clock), rolled over and slept until 6AM the next morning.

Interestingly, when I came down to the lobby to check out the next morning, there was no one at the desk or in the lobby. I waited about 10 minutes, checked out on the Marriott app (on my phone) and left the building.

So let’s recap…

THE BAD:
– if driving, difficult to find the hotel entrance because of construction
– reception desk attendant “disappeared” for 15+ minutes
– odd “reception drink” experience
– no one in lobby
– no one in restaurant
– no one in the cafe
– all hotel staff “disappeared”
– no guests on my floor
– goop on my wall
– wallpaper needs some TLC
– curtains don’t reach the floor
– Grandma’s plastic is covering the bathroom sink
– no one in the spa
– no one in the fitness area/pool
– no one to check me out

THE GOOD:
– I was able to get a good night of sleep because the bed was comfortable and no one was around.

Ultimately, it was a…”unique”…hotel stay. This is the first time I’ve ever stayed in a hotel and did not see or hear a single person between check-in and checkout. I mean…imagine that! I checked out and did not see a single soul at breakfast or in the lobby.

Sidenote: Apparently, I was the only one staying in this hotel. Why wasn’t I upgraded?

Anyway, the hotel was a great price but I’m not sure I would stay here again simply because I know what Doha has to offer in terms of hotels.

In fact, I moved from this hotel to one of my personal favorites in the whole world. Stay tuned for my next installment.

Has anyone stayed at the Four Points Sheraton Doha? What was your experience?

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