Following back-to-back flights with Turkish Airlines from Seattle, and a lengthy layover at the Turkish Airlines Business Lounge Istanbul, we landed in Kathmandu.
In anticipation of the exhaustion that’d undoubtedly follow two long-haul flights, we decided to seek a bit more comfort as we started our journey in Nepal, prompting us to book a room at the Kathmandu Marriott Hotel.
In This Post
- King Club Room with Mountain View
- Executive Lounge
- Other Facilities
Kathmandu Marriott Hotel – Booking
Cash rates at the Kathmandu Marriott Hotel tend to hover between $175–250 (USD) for most of the year. From November–June, expect prices to be at the higher end of the range.
When it comes to redeeming Marriott Bonvoy points, the cost ranges between 25,000 and 35,000 points. It tends to fall at the lower end of this range for most of the year, spiking to the upper end during peak trekking seasons.
We value Marriott Bonvoy points at 0.6 cents per point (USD). You should be able to get above this value from a redemption for most of the year, and there’s a case to be made for using a Free Night Award during peak trekking season, as you’d net a good return.
Kathmandu Marriott Hotel – Location
The Kathmandu Marriott Hotel is located just outside the main tourist area, Thamel, but close enough to be in the heart of the city.
You can easily walk to Thamel from the hotel in around 15 minutes, or it’s an easy five-minute ride by car.
Pashupatinath Temple is less than 10 minutes by car, pending traffic, or around 40 minutes away by foot.
It’s a similar distance by car and foot to Durbar Square, one of the city’s main tourist attractions.
Within the area immediately surrounding the hotel, you’ll find plenty of options for shopping and dining; however, Thamel is where most tourists spend the majority of their time in Kathmandu.
The airport is around 10 minutes away from the hotel without traffic, or around half an hour if you get caught in a jam.
Kathmandu Marriott Hotel – Check-in
We touched down in the early morning hours, and were warmly welcomed by our trekking outfitter Thakur Raj Pandey – a face I happily recognized from a 2008 stay when I last visited the country – and his driver.
As we were whisked away from the airport through the city’s bustling streets, we soon found ourselves standing before the Kathmandu Marriott Hotel. This property opened its doors in 2019 in the historic capital city of Nepal, marking the debut of the flagship brand in the country.
As we pulled up to the hotel, it struck me how much this building stands out compared to most buildings in central Kathmandu. It presented a much more modern counterpoint to the traditional buildings around it.
The hotel’s entrance is dominated by a large, circular bowl with a rustic metal finish. Nestled within the vessel is a beautiful display of orange flowers, arranged to form a distinct “M” shape signifying the Marriott brand.
Flanking the entrance on both sides are imposing dark grey walls, lending a sleek and polished feel. A glass doorway stretches from floor to ceiling cleverly filters natural light into the hotel lobby.
Upon entering the lobby, we were immediately drawn to a stunning, colourful mural that towers majestically beside the check-in desk.
The Nepalese artwork was captivating, and it held my gaze for several minutes as I took in the intricate details. Indeed, it became a point of recurring interest throughout our stay, drawing our attention each time we passed through.
The lobby features contemporary décor, with its mix of wood, colourful fabrics, and sleek furniture that complements the mural nicely, offering an overall calming ambiance.
The check-in desks are positioned to the right side, elongated with a rich, dark wood finish on their fronts and a lighter marble top.
Above each desk, vertical panels with a mix of wooden textures and vibrant, multicoloured stripes run from the floor to the ceiling. These panels serve as a stylish backdrop for the check-in area with hints of traditional Nepalese elements.
To the left, a seating area features a selection of sofas and chairs with a neutral grey tone, punctuated by cushions in contrasting shades of red and beige. Some are positioned facing each other, while others are more standalone.
The hospitality was as warm as the décor, with the staff offering a refreshing welcome drink in the form of a vibrant pink juice.
Given the early hour of our arrival, it was no surprise to find that our room was not yet ready. However, the staff graciously offered us access to the Executive Lounge. Here, we could unwind, have lunch, and relax – a gesture that we deeply appreciated, particularly after our travels.
We also opted to spend a little time acquainting ourselves with the area, and took a leisurely stroll around the neighbourhood in search of our first taste of momos, traditional Nepalese dumplings. When we returned, we were pleased to find everything in perfect order and our room was ready.
Upon check-in, the associate pulled up my booking and confirmed my upgrade to a King Club Room with Mountain View. They acknowledged my Marriott Platinum Elite status, and offered me a choice of welcome benefits.
For beverages, you can opt for a bucket of beer, a bottle of wine (either red or white), or a bottle of sparkling wine. When it comes to snacks, the options include a yak cheese platter complemented by nuts and relish, gud pak, which are sweet delicacies from Nepal, and Timur pralines, which are contemporary bites flavoured with local spices. As an alternative to these offerings, you can choose 1,000 bonus points.
I opted for the bottle of sparkling wine and the yak cheese platter this time around.
We then navigated through the hotel to the elevator lobby, ultimately making our way to Room 1017, located on the 10th floor.
The guest room hallways are adorned in deep browns and subtle beiges, with intricate wooden textures embued on the walls. In contrast to these understated hues, a plush carpet with blue and red patterns provides a playful touch underfoot.
Kathmandu Marriott Hotel – King Club Room with Mountain View
Entering the King Club Room with Mountain View, the bathroom seamlessly integrates with the bedroom. The room offers warm, ambient light, presenting a minimalist yet inviting setting.
Despite the clouds obscuring the mountains, the expansive window provides a sweeping view of the city. Notably, in Kathmandu, you’re almost guaranteed a mountain view from just about any room.
A generously sized bed, adorned with crisp white linens, stands in the centre of the room. The adjacent wall displays an evocative mural, capturing a traditional scene.
Adjacent, a cozy seating area consisting of an upholstered daybed is situated near a window with a small side table. On the other side of the table is banquette seating, with a larger table for doing work or dining.
Opposite from the bed, there’s a large wall with a subtle striped texture that houses a recessed, flat-screen TV.
On the right of the TV is a well-organized minibar area. This features a sleek wooden counter with a Nespresso coffee maker, a kettle, and water bottles, arranged on top.
Beneath the counter, there are drawers for storage, and the mini-fridge with a variety of beverages and snacks.
Turning towards the bathroom, it’s a modern, well-appointed space. Immediately catching the eye are illuminated vertical mirrors flanking a central mirror, casting a soft glow across the bathroom.
The bathroom is predominantly textured tile patterns in neutral tones. Against this backdrop sits the vanity, featuring a sleek, rectangular white sink mounted on a dark marble countertop, adding a touch of minimalistic class.
There’s a spacious glass-enclosed shower area, equipped with a large overhead shower head and recessed shelves.
Next to this sits a wall-hung toilet with a bidet hose, offering both visual appeal and space efficiency.
Lastly, the room boasts a deep bathtub, bordered by a ledge and equipped with a versatile hand-held shower attachment.
I found the King Club Room with Mountain View to be minimalist in design but cozy, blending modern with little touches of local flavour. You’ll certainly have everything you need at hand, from a comfy day bed as you stare out the window, to a spacious bathroom, and quiet views of a bustling city below.
The room overall served as a comfortable, quiet space for us, providing the perfect atmosphere to rest after long flights and ready ourselves for our upcoming trek.
I spent a lot of time gazing out the window, completely fascinated by the daily hustle and bustle in the streets below.
Kathmandu Marriott Hotel – Breakfast
As a Platinum member, I had the choice of enjoying breakfast in the Executive Lounge or in the main restaurant, Thamel Kitchen.
My decision eventually swayed towards the latter, a choice prompted by a quick glance the morning of our arrival, as Thamel Kitchen appeared to have a wonderful selection of items and some enticing aromas.
The area surrounding the restaurant buzzed with activity. It seemed people were either gearing up for an adventure in the mountains, or winding down from one just completed. This constant movement contributed to a pleasant atmosphere that I didn’t want to miss.
Stepping into the restaurant, wood and stone finishes and well-lit overhead lights cast a soft glow throughout the space, creating a cozy and intimate setting.
As you move further into the dining area, there are intricately carved wooden pillars and dark polished wooden tables mixed with light-toned upholstered chairs.
Throughout the space, glass partitions with wooden frames divide the area, and in the periphery, a nicely arranged counter subtly holds the buffet spread.
The breakfast selection is notably broad, offering an impressive selection of local dishes, a solid lineup of Western staples, and additional international cuisines. There’s also a made-to-order noodle station, which is always a hit in my books.
Among the hot items available are warm cinnamon rolls, vegetable broth soup, and traditional congee. I was drawn to some of the local items, and had some nice chats with the chefs on each trip up to the buffet.
The selection also featured Western staples such as chicken sausage, herb-roasted potatoes, and cheese-stuffed tomatoes. Classic breakfast items like pork sausage and bacon were additionally available.
Other available dishes were fried rice, kung pao tofu, baked beans, and sautéed vegetables.
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The cold buffet section presented a selection of candies laid out nicely in jars, freshly-baked croissants, pancakes, and waffles.
A notable inclusion was a cheese platter, complemented with fresh fruits like oranges, kiwis, and grapes.
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The buffet also featured a range of pastries, such as muffins, donuts, and cake slices. For a healthier alternative, there was a yogurt station with fresh fruit toppings.
When it comes to beverages, you can help yourself to some masala chai, or a coffee from an automatic machine.
Considering the energy we’d need for our forthcoming trek, we took full advantage and delved into the buffet, which turned out to be quite a memorable breakfast.
Kathmandu Marriott Hotel – Executive Lounge
The Executive Lounge is located on the hotel’s top floor, and is available to guests with Platinum status and above, as well as guests booked on Club-level floors.
The lounge has plenty of natural light flowing in and great views, which I loved. I was also impressed by the detailed wooden carving in the room. It’s rich, traditional, and befitting of Kathmandu.
The old, detailed design tells a story of history and culture, making the room feel more special.
Expansive windows show off the city, while small details, like the sculptures and patterned carpet, give the room personality and a classy feel.
The seating arrangements include comfortable sofas and dining tables, which can accommodate groups of two, four, or more.
In the back of the lounge, you’ll also find a meeting space.
There’s also a business centre equipped with a desk, computer, and seating, for those who wish to catch up on work, check emails, or other tasks.
Upon arrival, we headed straight for an early lunch, and enjoyed a dhosa, a popular South Indian dish. Seated by the windows, we gazed out over the captivating city.
Later on, we dropped in during the evening for some hors d’oeuvres and a drink.
The assortment presented was diverse, featuring an array of salads, vegetables, and a dedicated cheese section complemented by fruits. Additionally, there were four hot dishes, each drawing inspiration from local cuisine.
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In the beverage section, guests could help themselves to coffee, tea, bottled water, and assorted snacks. A distinct bar area was set up, offering a selection of spirits and mixers, designed for a self-service cocktail experience.
Overall, the spread was quaint yet satisfying – nothing was overly extravagant, but it was certainly ample as a meal substitute. The staff added to the experience, being exceptionally kind, attentive, and helpful, a detail that stood out prominently.
Additionally, the hotel offers a breakfast spread, which is much less elaborate than that of the main restaurant.
The Executive Lounge is a great addition to the hotel, and an attractive draw for anyone with access who may be looking for a bit of elevated amenities at a hotel.
Kathmandu Marriott Hotel – Other Facilities
On the main floor of the hotel, you’ll find the Kathmandu Baking Company, a pastry shop situated close to the check-in desks and next to Thamel Kitchen.
This inviting spot boasts a range of treats from artisan bread to pastries. During our visit, we were greeted by a stunning selection of sweets on display, all of which looked quite tempting.
The café’s seating area is diverse, featuring high-top tables, dining tables, and cozy armchairs, all set against a vibrant red-orange wall adorned with a detailed tapestry. Above the counter, the elongated wooden shelves brim with ornate items and an assortment of spirits, inevitably drawing your gaze upward.
Unfortunately, Raksi Music Bar was closed during our stay, but we had the opportunity to capture a few photographs. The interior is highlighted by wooden seating, sleek design elements, dark wood panels, and an eye-catching red illuminated sign marking the bar’s locale.
This bar is a popular gathering spot for its live musical performances and inventive cocktails. Its appeal is further enhanced by a waterfall terrace.
Adjacent to the hotel’s pool lies Tahina Terrace, the property’s al fresco dining option. This outdoor space specializes in Mediterranean cuisine, cocktails, and home-infused gins, all served in an open-air setting.
Another notable mention is Edamame, a venue that puts a contemporary twist on Asian culinary traditions. Regrettably, I didn’t take note of this restaurant during my visit.
For families, the hotel features a well-appointed Family Centre. There’s a bright red slide plunging into a colourful ball pit, various play tents, and an array of toys. There’s also a dedicated children’s table for an assortment of activities, be it crafting, drawing, or colouring.
While the infinity pool is relatively compact, it compensates with a charming terrace, consistently buzzing with life whenever I passed by. Along its right side, a procession of stone statues, akin to mythical guardians or lions, stand along the pool’s edge.
This pool is framed by a wooden deck that grants uninterrupted views of the surrounding city and mountains. Accentuating the space, you’ll find spots of greenery provided by potted plants and trees.
Within the Kathmandu Marriott Hotel, the M Wellness Spa offers treatments from 10am to 10pm daily. The spa has designated zones for males and females, each with a jacuzzi and steam room. Though I didn’t indulge this time around, the spa exuded a serene vibe, likely keeping busy pampering adventurers returning from mountainous excursions.
As for the fitness centre, it presented a decent size and a respectable amount of equipment, although I didn’t have the chance to test it out on this trip.
The cardio section is outfitted with treadmills, set apart by wooden partitions and enhanced with cool, ambient lighting for a pleasant workout environment. There’s a well-stocked weight training zone, complete with weight racks, dumbbells, and bench press equipment. For convenience, there’s a dedicated space for hydration and towels, as well as several storage cubbies.
The Kathmandu Marriott Hotel serves as a great spot in the city if you’re looking for something more familiar and upscale. The comfort of the hotel was the perfect preamble to my adventures, and a soothing place to crash after our long journey to Nepal.
Situated just outside the lively heart of Thamel, it was the perfect retreat away from the city’s hustle, offering peace and quiet, as well as easy access when we wanted to explore.
Waking up to the diverse breakfast spread was a delight, setting the right tone for the day ahead. I particularly enjoyed the hotel’s Executive Lounge, a space that exudes elegance and tranquility, ideal for both relaxation and catching up on work.
For anyone flying into Nepal or winding down from the awe-inspiring treks this beautiful country offers, I’d certainly recommend splurging here.
What’s more, every staff member I encountered was nothing short of wonderful, going above and beyond to make my stay very pleasant. Their kindness, professionalism, and attention to detail didn’t go unnoticed.