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Review: Delta St. John’s Ricky January 2, 2020

Review: Delta St. John’s

I had originally booked the Sheraton Newfoundland Hotel for my two nights in St. John’s, although I was then persuaded to change to the Delta St. John’s after connecting with a few local readers. 

In This Post

Delta St. John’s – Location & Arrival

Supposedly, the Delta is a little newer and nicer, and while I had at first been attracted by the Sheraton’s proximity to Signal Hill, I was told that the Delta would be a better base since it was much more central.

I therefore adjusted my reservations about two days beforehand, booking the Delta for the lowest rate of $144/night – better value, in my books, than redeeming 25,000 points per night for the Category 4 property – and taking the chance to chat with the front desk and ask for an upgrade to one of the hotel’s suites as well. 

I was met at St. John’s International Airport by a very generous Prince of Travel reader, Eric, who offered to drive me into town. The airport is only about 20 minutes away from the city, so it was a quick drive, but I still had the chance to go over a few of the hottest manufactured spending methods with Eric as a gesture of my thanks 😉

The Delta is located at the southern end of the city centre, within a five-minute walk from the shops and restaurants on the city’s arterial Queens Road. The hotel’s exterior looked pretty worn-out, with the “E” on the Delta sign was in dire need of replacement.

Delta St. John’s – Exterior

Delta St. John’s – Exterior

Delta St. John’s – Entrance

Delta St. John’s – Entrance

Compared to the exterior, the hotel lobby was much more put-together. While there wasn’t really a design aesthetic to speak of (the entire hotel looked pretty much on par with a mid-level hotel you’d find in any North American city, and I’d say that’s pretty standard for the Delta brand), everything at least looked clean and tidy.

Delta St. John’s – Lobby lounge

Delta St. John’s – Lobby lounge

Delta St. John’s – Front desks

Delta St. John’s – Front desks

Delta St. John’s – Check-in

There was no queue at check-in, so I was helped immediately. After some friendly small-talk about how long I was in town for and whether it was my first time in St. John’s, the associate informed me that I had been upgraded to a Whirlpool Suite for my two nights as a Titanium Elite member. 

He also mentioned that while I’d normally only be entitled to breakfast in the Club Lounge as per Marriott Bonvoy rules, he’d also throw in some breakfast vouchers for me on this particular stay, since the hotel was hosting a conference this weekend and the Club Lounge may be very busy in the mornings as a result.

I greatly appreciated that gesture, and I must say that I consistently found the front desk staffers to be extremely friendly and hospitable throughout my stay. Whether it was providing recommendations for things to do in town, calling me a cab and conveying my specific requests, or simply flashing a smile and waving hi as I made my way in and out of the lobby, I enjoyed every interaction with them.

I took my keys to the room and made my way up to the 9th floor, via the set of elevators on the far side of the lobby. The Delta St. John’s is a rather large property, so in addition to this set of elevators, there’s also another set located after a long hallway from here. 

Delta St. John’s – Lobby lounge & elevators

Delta St. John’s – Lobby lounge & elevators

The guest room hallways felt a bit sterile, and looked almost exactly like the hallways at the Delta Montreal, the only other Delta property I had stayed at until this point.

Delta St. John’s – Hallway

Delta St. John’s – Hallway

Delta St. John’s – Room 944

Delta St. John’s – Room 944

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite

My Whirlpool Suite was rather impressive, at least in terms of the size. The initial hallway leads to a living area, which features a large desk, a dining area at the far side of the room, and two individual chairs.

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite living area

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite living area

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite living area

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite living area

While the room was very spacious, the arrangement of the furniture felt a little confusing to me – I haven’t been in many hotel suites where there are only two chairs for sitting, rather than a full sofa. 

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite desk

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite desk

You’ll find a small pantry in the corner of the living room – this might be what’s getting in the way of putting a full sofa in here, I guess. The pantry has a sink and microwave, so it’s already more useful than the vast majority of hotel pantries.

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite pantry

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite pantry

From the living room, a set of sliding doors leads you to the master bedroom. The king-sized bed met all my needs during the stay, and I also appreciated the artwork of a quintessential Newfoundland fishing harbour up top, as well as the fact that the bedside tables were generously equipped with power and USB outlets.

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite bedroom

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite bedroom

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite king bed

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite king bed

There’s another television, chair, and small table on the far side of the bedroom. I must say, as nice as it is to have all this space to myself, many of the suite’s additional features were perhaps lost on me as a solo traveller, which is how things usually are on my solo trips.

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite bedroom sitting area

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite bedroom sitting area

Turning back, we find ourselves face-to-face with the whirlpool that gives this suite its name.

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite bedroom

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite bedroom

Unfortunately, the whirlpool looked way less luxurious than I had imagined – the floor tiles around it could certainly use a good scrub, and I’m also not sure why there were mirrors against both sides of the whirlpool, giving the whole thing a kaleidoscopic vibe.

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite whirlpool

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite whirlpool

While I did intend to take a soak in the whirlpool during my stay, I simply got too busy in the end and never got around to doing it. Based on visuals alone, however, I’d have to say that the Delta may want to stick to more traditional bathroom designs – it certainly can’t pull off the “bathtub in a bedroom” thing quite as well as, say, the W Dubai The Palm.

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite whirlpool

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite whirlpool

The bathroom itself was more than sufficient from a functional point of view. It’s connected on both sides to the foyer and the bedroom, and includes a sink, toilet, and shower. While the shower was definitely on the small side thanks to its raised platform, its water pressure was an excellent blast.

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite bathroom

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite bathroom

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite bathroom

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite bathroom

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite shower

Delta St. John’s – Whirlpool Suite shower

My overall impressions of the room were quite mixed. I appreciated the generous square footage, although the room definitely felt past its prime; even though some of the furniture items were more modern, it felt like those items were simply placed in the room on their own, rather than being incorporated into the overall design as part of any unified refurbishment effort. 

It’s my understanding that the Delta St. John’s does have some newer rooms that have more recently undergone renovations, but that this simply wasn’t one of them, so I probably should’ve done some further research and requested one of those suites instead.

Delta St. John’s – Club Lounge

I paid a few visits to the Delta’s Club Lounge, and overall I didn’t find it to be very busy at all, contrary to what the front desk associate had been saying. It was your standard chain hotel’s Club Lounge offering: a few scattered seating zones, a bar, a buffet area, a computer workstation, and nothing more. 

Delta St. John’s – Club Lounge

Delta St. John’s – Club Lounge

Delta St. John’s – Club Lounge seating area

Delta St. John’s – Club Lounge seating area

Delta St. John’s – Club Lounge computer workstation

Delta St. John’s – Club Lounge computer workstation

I still decided to use my breakfast vouchers to eat in the restaurant, though, so I only briefly checked out the Club Lounge’s breakfast spread, which was limited to a handful of hot items, cereal, toast, and cold cuts.

The Club Lounge also has an evening spread as well, although I didn’t get a chance to drop by during the evening hours during this stay.

Delta St. John’s – Breakfast & Dining

One of the hotel’s highlights is the Pinnacle Restaurant & Lounge, where I enjoyed breakfast both days and also grabbed a late-night snack of clam chowder on both evenings.

Delta St. John’s – Pinnacle Restaurant

Delta St. John’s – Pinnacle Restaurant

I liked that there were a variety of seating types here at Pinnacle, including high-top seats, booths, and regular four-person seats. 

Delta St. John’s – Pinnacle Restaurant seating

Delta St. John’s – Pinnacle Restaurant seating

The breakfast vouchers here at the Delta St. John’s entitles you to either your selection from the buffet or one of the à la carte breakfast items. My very friendly server wholeheartedly recommended the buffet, so that’s what I decided to eat on both mornings. 

In addition to the same items as what you’d find in the Club Lounge, the breakfast also featured oatmeal, waffles, roasted tomatoes, breakfast sandwiches, and a much wider selection of pastries and cold cuts. Everything certainly looked more appetizing than what was found upstairs, and tasted pretty good as well. Throw in the coffee that my server would top-up regularly for me, and I was a happy camper on both mornings.

I also enjoyed the delicious clam chowder here at the Pinnacle Restaurant on both evenings, although it certainly wasn’t cheap at $15 for the bowl.

Delta St. John’s – Pinnacle Restaurant clam chowder

Delta St. John’s – Pinnacle Restaurant clam chowder

Delta St. John’s – Other Facilities

Finally, I also paid a visit to the hotel’s fitness facilities, which were more well-equipped than I was expecting. The pool and gym are accessed via the secondary bank of elevators, located deeper within the property past a long set of hallways from the main elevators.

Delta St. John’s – Fitness centre

Delta St. John’s – Fitness centre

The treadmills and other cardio equipment are housed within a small fitness room, while the weight machines and free weights are found in a much more spacious exercise area one level below.

Delta St. John’s – Fitness centre cardio room

Delta St. John’s – Fitness centre cardio room

Delta St. John’s – Fitness centre weights room

Delta St. John’s – Fitness centre weights room

There’s a squash court on the lower level as well, which was pretty impressive.

Delta St. John’s – Fitness centre squash court

Delta St. John’s – Fitness centre squash court

I didn’t get a chance to take a proper look at the indoor pool, but I managed to snap a picture in passing. Like many other parts of the Delta, the pool’s surroundings felt quite sterile to me, and I’m not sure how much fun it would be to spend time down here.

Delta St. John’s – Indoor pool

Delta St. John’s – Indoor pool

On the day of my departure, I was helped by yet another very friendly associate upon checkout, who proactively offered to email me my folio without my needing to ask.

Then, in the last of many acts of hospitality on the hotel’s part, the concierge seamlessly arranged a taxi to bring me first to the adorable Quidi Vidi fishing harbour, before continuing back to the airport for my flight back to Montreal.

Conclusion

The Delta is known as one of the nicer accommodation options in St. John’s, and I indeed found myself mostly satisfied with this stay. While I did think that the hotel could be doing more to make its public and private spaces feel more comfortable, I was impressed by the friendliness of the hotel’s staff and how well I was looked after as an elite member.

Next time in St. John’s, I might feel inclined to take the advice of some of my readers and set aside my Marriott points and nights to try out one of the city’s local boutique hotels, but I must admit there’s a fair chance that I’ll end up back at the Delta again.

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2 Comments
  1. Avatar
    Justin

    Hard to disagree with your assessment of the Delta, Ricky. Next time you’re in town, I’d highly recommend ditching Marriott and staying at the JAG Hotel instead. It’s central, has an appealing theme based on rock and roll, and there’s a nice cocktail bar off the lobby. While it isn’t part of an international brand, you’ll still earn Aeroplan miles and, even more importantly, I think you’ll enjoy your stay a lot more.

    Also: not sure if you noticed, but Quidi Vidi Village – which you visited on your way back to the airport – is the same place as the "quintessential Newfoundland fishing harbour" that was depicted above your bed at the Delta. It is indeed picturesque and I’m glad you were able to check it out before you left.

    1. Avatar
      Ricky

      Thanks for the recommendation Justin, the JAG Hotel came up a few times in my recommendations and I may well give it a try next time.

      I did suspect that was Quidi Vidi! I’m glad I got to take a little detour out there, but next time I’ll definitely look to have lunch on the harbour (it wasn’t open on this occasion) and check out the Quidi Vidi brewery as well.

Ricky

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