W Taipei Review (Spectacular King Room w/Taipei 101 View) [2019]

Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities. 

Taipei is a fascinating city and I stopped there on a recent round the world trip and wanted to make sure I’d be staying at a quality property with a convenient location. The W Taipei seemed to fit that bill and so I decided to book a four night stay at the property. In this review, I’ll cover the room I stayed in (Spectacular King Room) and the hotel along with many of its amenities like the dining, spa, gym, and pool. 


Booking the W Taipei

I chose to book this one with cash and a four night stay came out to $1,147 USD so $286 per night (plus about $40 in fees per night) which wasn’t that bad. With all combined room charges, I ended up earning a total of 22,321 Marriott points on this stay.

I value Marriott points at about .8 cents per point, so it was like getting $179 back, plus I earned 3X on the purchase with the Chase Sapphire Reserve. If you want to stay here on points, rooms go for 50,000 Bonvoy points per night.  


W Taipei location overview  

The W Taipei has a fantastic location in the heart of Taipei (Xinyi District) and that’s one of the major benefits of this hotel. It’s located right at the Taipei City Hall Station (市政府) right along the blue Bannan Line for the Metro. You can tell from the Metro map below just how close the W Taipei is to the station. 

The W Taipei.
Taipei City Hall Station 市政府.
Taipei metro Bannan Line.

I found the Taipei metro very easy to navigate and so if you want to venture out to check out places like the night markets or other neighborhoods, the W Taipei is a great launching point for exploring the city. 

The view from Elephant Mountain.

But there’s also tons of places to check out within walking distance of the hotel. Taipei 101 is only a 10 minute walk away from the hotel and there’s also a large shopping mall next door to the hotel. Just a block or two from the hotel, you can find a Din Tai Fung location (famous soup dumplings) and many other shops and restaurants serving up Taiwanese favorites like mango shaved ice, bubble tea, etc. 

Din Tai Fung soup dumplings.
Shaved ice at Ice Monster, near the W Taipei. 

Getting to the W Taipei

I arrived at TPE after flying in from IAH on EVA business class on the 777. It was a great flight and I arranged for a pick-up from the airport via the W’s limousine service. I generally take taxis or Ubers from airports when I have a lot of luggage but to kick off big trips, I like to go with limo service like when we were picked up in a Rolls Royce in Hong Kong (for free). It just gives you a little something extra to look forward to. 

When I arrived at the airport, there was a sign with my name on it and I was promptly greeted. 

Welcome signs from the W Taipei.

The agent had a special iced coffee/milk tea drink for me and happily offered it to me but I had to break it to him that I don’t consume caffeine and he ended up throwing it out. I felt pretty bad but there really wasn’t any alternative. Anyway, the agent didn’t care and he was genuinely intrigued about how I go through a day/life without caffeine. 

I then made my way to the BMW and got inside while they loaded my bags for me. The BMW came loaded with chargers and snacks and even had wifi — it was truly a luxurious pick-up. The total cost for the transport was $95 USD and it took 38 minutes to get to the hotel from the airport. 

W Taipei limousine service.

It was a scenic yet rainy drive to the hotel. Since I visited during monsoon season, wet skies were going to be the recurring theme throughout my visit. 

When it comes to iconic structures — especially skyscrapers — I always look forward to when I can get that “first glance.” I can still vividly recall those moments for places like the Golden Gate Bridge, Empire State Building, Sydney Opera House, and now I certainly won’t forget my first views of Taipei 101 as we approached the city — it’s such an impressive piece of architecture.  

The first glimpse of Taipei 101.

Check-in 

When we arrived at the hotel, I was taken directly to my room and did not have to check-in at the check-in desk. I initially booked a Wonderful King Room and was upgraded to a Spectacular King Room with Taipei 101 view. I’m Marriott Titanium, so it was a little disappointing not to get bumped to a suite but it was still a great view from the 23rd floor.   

The hotel has two lobbies. There’s a floor-level lobby where you can get help with things like booking taxis and it’s a spectacle. 

W Taipei ground level lobby.

Then there’s the main lobby on the 10th floor where you’ll usually check-in and check-out. This is where you’ll find the concierge and the elevators to the rooms up above. This is also where the breakfast buffet is located at as well as the pool and Woobar. 

10th floor lobby.
10th floor lobby.

The Spectacular King Room

The Spectacular King Room was bright and spacious with floor to ceiling windows and orange accents in that typical modern decor you’d expect at a W. 

W Taipei Spectacular King Room with Taipei 101 View.

Even though I wasn’t bumped up to a suite, the room still felt very open with plenty of space, a feeling aided by the low profile furniture.  

W Taipei Spectacular King Room with Taipei 101 View.

The first thing that caught my eye upon entering the room was the magnificent Taipei 101.

The view from the 23rd floor.
Taipei 101.

It truly is one of the most striking skyscrapers I’ve ever seen and for a while it was the tallest building in the world until the Burj Khalifa came around. I didn’t go inside it due to the never ending monsoons but I’d love to catch it on a clear day. 

The view at night.
Taipei 101 at night.

You can enjoy the view from the chaise lounge chair that’s along the window or relax in the seat (that sinks pretty far down so be prepared). 

Spectacular King Room.
W Taipei Spectacular King Room with Taipei 101 View.

The king-sized bed was large, soft, and comfortable and came with comfy pillows. No complaints about sleep. 

W Taipei Wonderful King Room with Taipei 101 View.

On the right side of the bed was a small table with the phone, alarm clock, note pad, mints, and a little device to play ambient music, which was pretty cool. Behind the table is where you can find the panel of light controls for the bathroom, bedroom (reading lights), and also the controls for the shades. 

On the left side of the bed were more light controls, outlets (universal), USB power port, and it’s where they kept the water bottles. By the way, they did a great job of keeping me stocked with complimentary water bottles. I believe I was allocated a certain amount per day in addition to what they started me with but in reality they just gave me these whenever I wanted them. 

At the front of the room, there’s a desk area with a phone, stationary, lamp and the room service menus. This is also where the mini-fridge and TV are located. 

Spectacular King Room work station.

Beside the desk area is the in-room bar area. 

They gifted me with welcoming macaroons in “W formation” which were very tasty. 

There’s a closet where you can find storage for your bags and drawers for your garments. There’s also an iron and iron board. This closet can also be accessed via the bathroom, which I thought was interesting. 

The bathroom features were another major highlight for the room. It’s a cool looking bathroom that’s very open. There’s a decorative ladder you can hang towels on, a robe, vanity mirror, and even a shower bench stool. 

W Taipei bathroom.

I liked the look of the orange ambient lighting but I’m not sure how much I cared for the neon translucent partition. This look is found throughout the hotel and I just didn’t care for it for whatever reason.  

W Taipei bathroom.

The sink area looks pretty cool but there’s not a lot of practical counter space at the height that you need it at which is a little bit annoying. 

W Taipei bathroom.
W Taipei bathroom.
W Taipei bathroom.

Right beside the sink, you can find water bottles and glasses, hand towels, and amenities like Bliss body butter. Inside the drawer, you’ll find things like dental kits and other items you might need like a blow dryer and vanity kit. There’s also a jewelry holder. 

Amenities.

There’s both a bath and a shower, but I fell in love with the shower.

W Taipei shower.
W Taipei shower.

It has two shower heads, including one waterfall shower head. But this isn’t any ordinary waterfall shower head. This thing is powerful and it actually feels like you’re under a real waterfall as the water beats down on your shoulders (in a mostly euphoric way). 10/10 shower experience.  

W Taipei waterfall shower.

The shower is very open to the rest of the room and you can see through the orange translucent walls and out to the view of Taipei 101. 

If you’d like privacy you can pull the sliding doors shut to the bathroom (there are two different sets of sliding doors). You won’t be able to create a complete seal but you’ll have privacy as you can tell below. 

The toilet is impressive as well. It’s located in its own little room and it’s one of the most impressive smart toilets I’ve seen. The seat will automatically popup when you approach it and there’s many different types of controls to clean and dry yourself. Also, I’m pretty sure the seat is heated. 

Spectacular room toilet.
Spectacular room toilet.
Spectacular room toilet.

W Taipei dining (breakfast) 

I only chose to eat breakfast at the W Taipei and I have to say that it’s an impressive spread that should leave you satisfied, especially since it is offered for free to certain Marriott elites. You can find the breakfast buffet at “The Kitchen Table” on the 10th floor. 

The Kitchen Table.

There’s a lot of seating but this place did get busy during breakfast. I made sure to arrive right at opening (6:30am) so crowds weren’t an issue but when I checked on it a couple of hours after opening, it was a packed house, so I’d advise to plan your breakfast for as early as possible. 

The Kitchen Table.
The Kitchen Table.
The Kitchen Table.

You’ll find a nice selection of both Western and Asian dishes to choose from. I stuck with the Western dishes and they were mostly high quality. 

The bread and pastry section is solid and everything is well-labeled. 

The pancakes were okay but they use some weird syrup. I wasn’t able to figure out what the taste was but it wasn’t a normal maple syrup at all. 

The hash browns were amazing and fresh. 

They also had a lot of sausage and bacon to choose from. I wasn’t in love with the sausage so I stuck with the bacon which was pretty good. 

The W also has an omelette station where you can select all of the ingredients you’d like. The omelettes are a little small (at least compared to what I make at home), so if you like to start your day off with a lot of protein, you might need an additional omelette or extra protein in it. 

You can also find fruits, nuts, and cheeses, along with many different types of juices and yogurts. 

There’s even an ice cream stand complete with cones and toppings. 

I put a lot of weight towards breakfast for hotels and in this case the W Taipei passed with flying colors. It’s not the very best breakfast I’ve had for a hotel of this caliber but it’s solid enough that I looked forward to it each morning and was able to start off my day with a solid meal. 


W Taipei WOOBAR 

I didn’t hang out at the Woobar but it’s a nice looking bar and lounge area worth checking out that I’m sure serves up some worthy cocktails. Don’t forget to ask about the happy hour when you arrive. 

W Taipei WOOBAR.
W Taipei WOOBAR.
W Taipei WOOBAR.
W Taipei WOOBAR.
W Taipei WOOBAR.
W Taipei WOOBAR.
W Taipei WOOBAR.

There’s also a restaurant called Yen on the 31st floor that you’ll need to make reservations for. I initially made reservations for it but ended up cancelling due to severe jet lag, so I can’t report on it. To read more about the dining options at the hotel click here


W Taipei Spa 

I’m still relatively new to spas but I decided to try out the spa during my stay with a 60-minute massage (SK Detox QI Ritual). The spa is located on the same floor as the gym and after calling in to schedule a message, I was told to arrive 15 minutes prior to the scheduled massage. 

W Taipei Spa.
W Taipei Spa.
W Taipei Spa.
W Taipei Spa.

I showed up on time and after filling out a short form and picking my massage, I was given a refreshing drink and towel. 

W Taipei Spa welcome drink.

I was then taken to the locker room and explained how it would work. They give you a wristband that opens up a locker and they require you to shower and then change into a robe and some disposable underwear (basically a see-through speedo). I’d never had to wear anything like that in a spa so it was a little odd but I didn’t feel the need to protest.

The 60-minute back massage I got was great though and they did a superb job of making sure I was completely comfortable with things like the room temperature, body position, and massage strokes. Too many spas just assume you’ll adapt to the room instead of the other way around, so I appreciated that extra level of attention.    

W Taipei Spa massage room.

I came out of the massage room feeling uber-relaxed and was served another refreshing beverage (in a very interesting dish). I was then told I could shower up and then use the jacuzzi to relax. I was going to give that a try but there were already a couple of guys chilling in the jacuzzi in the buff. I’m all about expanding my comfort zone, but I opted to not jump in because I wasn’t quite feeling it (plus I was fading fast from the relaxation + jet lag). 

Overall, I thought the spa experience was on point in terms of the facilities, service, and the actual massage treatment. For $125, I didn’t think it was a bad deal at all.    


W Taipei Fit (Gym)

The gym at the W Taipei is solid. It’s very spacious and it has a lot of options to choose from when it comes to cardio equipment, free weights, and machines. 

Many of the cardio machines line the windows so you can enjoy a bit of a view while you workout. 

The equipment had screens on them but the picture quality was pretty bad and they seemed a bit dated, though the equipment seemed to be working just fine. There were also a couple of TVs in the gym to keep you occupied. 

I really liked how you had views pretty much everywhere you looked in the gym and that there was plenty of space between the equipment. 

The only shortcoming of the gym is that they didn’t have water bottles. Instead, you had to fill up disposable cups, which didn’t fit in the drink holders of the cardio machines. 

The gym also has space for special classes that you can inquire about. 

The views probably would have been better without all the rain but the photo below can give you an idea of what to expect. You are basically perched a couple of stories above the pool area.  

The gym serves up protein shakes and I gave it a shot after my workout. They only were serving vanilla so I tried that one out but it wasn’t that great to be honest, especially not for the price. 

Overall, the W Taipei has a very solid gym with plenty of space and quality equipment. They gym was almost entirely empty during my workout and even though it was rainy outside, it was still nice having some views during the workout. 


W Taipei Wet Deck (Pool)

The hotel has a beautiful pool area but unfortunately I wasn’t able to truly experience it. Anytime I ventured out to check it out, it started to rain and so I never saw the pool in all its glory. But it’s a pretty impressive sight as you can tell from the photos below. 

W Taipei Pool.
W Taipei Pool.
W Taipei Pool.

There are also some interesting sculptures at the end of the pool. 

W Taipei Pool.
W Taipei Pool.
W Taipei Pool.

W Taipei service 

The service throughout my stay was about as good as I could ask for. They were extremely friendly and warm, attentive, super quick to assist with any type of requests, and they were just all-around impressive. As far as service went, it truly felt like a five-star experience. 

The only complaint would be that sometimes they wouldn’t answer the phone when I called down but they would usually pick up when I called back down after a minute or two. 


Final word 

Overall, the W Taipei is an impressive hotel with a lot of different strengths: 

  • Convenient location 
  • Quality facilities (spa, gym, and pool)
  • Great views from the rooms and facilities
  • Great bathroom features 
  • Solid breakfast
  • Consistently top-notch service

I would not hesitate to return or to recommend the hotel to anybody staying in Taipei. 

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