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Hotel Review: Courtyard by Marriot Oxford City Centre, Oxford

By Cynthia Lawrence on 24th September 2020

Oxfordshire is known for rich history, great academia and of course its famous Oxford University. It is also home to literary giants such as authors, JRR Tolkien of The Lord Of The Rings, and Lewis Carroll who wrote the classic tale, Alice in Wonderland. With a beautiful landscape, stunning architecture and Olde Ye pubs, Oxford is fast becoming a popular city for a staycation this year.

Hidden amongst the quaint and traditional sits the modern and chic Courtyard Marriot Oxford Hotel. Its striking juxtaposition opposite the historical Oxford Castle and Prison adds a touch of luxury to the national heritage landscape. Just under an hour from London Paddington, the hotel is a brisk five-minute walk from Oxford City train station. The ideal location for those who want to drop their belongings off and explore the city.

The hotel

The lobby seating area is stylish with sleek furnishings

A touch of modern luxe in an old city, the Courtyard Marriot Oxford is unassuming and tucked away from the hustle and bustle of the town centre. Welcoming staff usher you into the contemporary lobby, and while it is quite compact, it’s light and warm.

Having only been opened for a year, it shows in the modern interior and finish that still has a polished ‘newness’ about it. The seating area is stylish with sleek furnishings, and the hotel offers a convenient business workspace and intimate conference room. It even has a handy convenience store if you wish to buy any locally produced food and drink. The lush, rooftop terrace offers stunning views of Oxford Castle and surrounding areas, which are perfect for those summer evenings.

Rooms

Rooms and suites combine chic interiors with functionality

The hotel has 150 rooms that range from King guest rooms to Superior and Junior Suite, which is ideal for large families. All rooms retain their contemporary décor, with amenities including, complimentary Wi-Fi, Chromecast-enabled televisions, and in-room tea/coffee making facilities. My guest room was bright and airy, overlooking stunning castle views.

The room itself had modern touches, with details such as, hidden storage and convenient, night reading lamps tucked into the headboard. Another nice touch was the champagne ice bucket and sweet treats laid out for my arrival! The ensuite shower/bathroom was spacious, although it doesn’t come with a bathtub for those who want to soak and relax in. However, it does come with luxury toiletries and big fluffy white towels.

Food

The Kitchen and Bar Restaurant offers a menu featuring English favourites with a modern twist

Due to Covid-19 restrictions, guests have to currently pre-order their meals and breakfast before dining in the stylish Kitchen and Bar Restaurant. The menu is a modern day twist on English favourites, which also takes advantage of the locally-farmed produce. For starters, I had a grilled prawn and chorizo dish to whet the appetite, followed by the steak, homemade chips and vegetables main course. Not leaving out desserts, I opted for the tasty blueberry cheesecake. While it may not be gourmet-style cooking, the menu does focus more on substance.

To do

Oxford is one of the UK’s most historic and fascinating cities to visit

The Oxford Castle and Prison is literally a stones throw away from the hotel and a great historical landmark to visit. Dubbed the ‘City of Dreaming Spires’, Oxford is also home to some impressive architecture that has been delicately restored. Despite the rainy weather, I jumped on a City Tour Bus to take in the marvels of Oxford and listen to its history via an audio commentary. You can hop off and hop on wherever you like or take the walking tours available.

If you prefer outdoor activities, punting is a popular activity, or you can visit the botanical gardens and landscaped parks. The Courtyard Marriot is also walking distance to various traditional pubs and museums. Just remember to book online in advance if you want to see a specific exhibition. If you fancy a bit of retail therapy, the renovated, Westgate Shopping Centre is only a few minutes away from the hotel, and there is also an outdoor market.

In a nutshell

The Courtyard Marriot Oxford hotel is an ideal retreat for a weekend break or family staycation. Located in the perfect spot, the Courtyard Marriot Hotel is close to both historical landmarks and the modern city centre. With plenty of things to do for all the family, this really gives you the best of both worlds in style.

Factbox

Guest rooms at the Courtyard Marriot Oxford can be booked from £110 per night. There are also staycation packages available from £150 for two people.

Note about Covid-19: Bear in mind that some hotel facilities or services may not be available to guests for a period of time.

Address: 15 Paradise Street, Oxford, 0X1 1LD,
Phone:  +44 1865 306900
Website: marriott.co.uk

Photography courtesy of Courtyard Oxford City Centre