I know hotels, like Bo knows baseball. Over the course of two years, I traveled an average of 15-20 nights per month and spent those nights on the road in various hotel chains. For the most part, I tried to stay at the same hotel for each visit to the same city, in an effort to keep a little continuity in my travels. My frequent trips helped me accumulate a lot of rewards points. (one of the few perks to living out of a suitcase)
So this summer, when my husband and I had the opportunity to get away from the kids for the weekend, we dipped into my Marriott Rewards points for a three night stay at the JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country Resort & Spa. While I was looking forward to our trip, the first one in over four years for just the two of us, I was sad to spend the points I’d saved for my dream trip to Hawaii.
As we were planning our quick getaway we debated whether to spend our first night at the resort, knowing we wouldn’t check in until after 8PM. We talked about maybe staying somewhere nearby and paying cash to save our points, but since we were planning to be at SeaWorld early the next morning with a full day, I didn’t want to deal with the hassle of changing hotels.
It was more like 10 PM by the time we arrived at the front desk to check-in. There was a small problem with our reservation and the clerk informed us we’d have a room with two double beds for the first night and king room for the following two nights. I explained to him we had a busy day planned on Friday and this was our first trip EVER away from the kids and we’d prefer one room for the duration as well as a king bed if possible. Zach, the young clerk, was so apologetic, friendly and determined to make our stay memorable that within minutes I forgot all about my disappearing points.
Zach found us a room, although it was on the first floor and we’d requested a high floor to enjoy the views. However, he’d given us a hospitality suite, which was quite larger, equipped with a kitchen which had a full size sink, microwave and refrigerator, a patio twice the size of a regular room, etc. It was an accessible room and had a Murphy bed, but Zach took the time to explain everything to us in detail to make sure this would be alright and there’d be no surprises.
Afterwards, he went through a quick review of the property, describing the amenities like the 6 acres of pools, slides and lazy river, the multiple restaurants, everything from casual poolside dining to a sports bar and the Lantana Spa, etc. As he was getting our keys, a gentleman that was in line behind us that had checked in, stopped and added a few quick dining tips. A little later we learned he was one of the property developers and stayed at the hotel frequently. Wrapping up our check-in Zach said he’d like for our stay to be very enjoyable and to make up for any issues with checking-in, he was giving us a spa credit! Wow, we were shocked and thrilled at his generous gesture.
My hubby went outside to park our car and I walked to our room with our bags and David, our charming bellman. This young man is possibly one of the most enthusiastic employees I’ve ever met at a hotel/resort. David gave me a tour of the room while he raved about working for Marriott and his favorite places to eat and things to do on site! During our chat he asked questions about our trip and it felt like I was chatting with a friend. Several times he told us if we weren’t having fun to let someone know and they’d resolve it!
We walked out on the patio and he warned about the wildlife, including snakes (YIKES) that sometimes wander onto the walking paths. We could see the water slides from the patio and David bragged about how much fun the slides and pool are, and without fighting the long lines often found at waterparks.
David stayed and chatted with me until my hubby returned, on his way out he noticed we might need more pillows. Twenty minutes later he knocked on our door with extras. What a nice touch!
We were gone most of Friday and Saturday visiting SeaWorld and Schlitterbahn. With spare time on Sunday after check out, we headed to the pool area. After two days at the theme parks, surrounded by families, we were really missing our kids. I wanted to enjoy the little time we had left, so we went over to the adult only infinity pool and I finally relaxed. Poolside service was amazing, our server, Cara, recommended the Malibu bucket, which was powerful and delicious. Looking out onto the golf course while sipping my drink, I wanted to pause the day and enjoy the beautiful view.
Sadly, time raced ahead and a few hours later we had to hit the road and return to Houston and reality. We should have allowed more time to enjoy the resort and participate in some of the activities like the Segway tours, one of the guided trail rides or the first class Lantana spa.
The location and secluded setting of this Hill Country resort, surrounded by trees, flowers and wildlife is gorgeous. There were times when I felt like we’d left Texas and were on a real vacation. Since our trip in June, I’ve dreamed of returning with the kids for a relaxing, fun weekend without leaving the resort. Oh, I’ve also told all my girlfriends that its on our short list for a girls weekend getaway! I had them at 26,000 square foot spa! I can’t wait to return with my family or friends and use my spa credit.
I’m not easily impressed, but we were blown away by the exceptional customer service at the JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country Resort & Spa! From the moment we arrived at the resort everyone was so helpful and friendly. Zach and David especially made us feel like we received treatment reserved for celebrities and VIPs. It was very refreshing to see such a large resort emphasize the personal touch!
This is NOT a sponsored post. All opinions are 100% my own. Please note the resort was unaware I’m a writer for a travel blog and I did not receive any discounts or special treatment of any kind for this review.