Review: The Westin Grand Munich, Germany.
Our visit to Munich happened to be timed with Oktoberfest; a period when the hotels fill up and room rates can get surprisingly expensive. A sample of room rates around Munich had prices around 400€ during the famous fall beer festival. We ended up getting outsized value by using annual certificates from American Express cards to stay for free during Oktoberfest at the Westin Grand Munich.
This post is one chapter on our trip to Malta, Italy and Germany. This trip was enhanced through Marriott Bonvoy Elite Status and credited to Alaska Mileage Plan and Air Canada’s Aeroplan. For more information on how this trip was booked, please see our trip introduction here. For other parts of the trip, please see this index.
Read More from This Trip
- Trip Introduction: Valetta Gozo – Malta, Venice – Italy, and Oktoberfest Munich – Germany via Air France Business Class
- Air France Business Class: Vancouver – Paris
- Air France Business Lounge: Paris Charles de Gaulle Terminal 2F
- Air France Business Class: Paris – Munich
- Lufthansa Airlines: Munich – Malta
- The Westin Dragonara Resort, Malta
- Boating to Gozo and a last look at the Azure Window, Malta
- Swimming on the Island of Comino and Exploring the Coastal Caves of Malta
- Wandering in the Walled City of Valetta, Malta
- Lufthansa Airlines: Malta – Frankfurt
- Lufthansa Airlines: Frankfurt – Venice
- The Westin Regina Europa, Venice, Italy
- Getting Lost in the Streets of Venice, Italy
- Is a Gondola Ride through the Canals of Venice worth it?
- Air Dolomiti: Venice – Munich
- The Westin Grand Munich, Germany
- Drinking at the Beer Garden at Hofbrahaus, Oktoberfest, Munich, Germany
- Taking in BMW World and the Alstat, Munich, Germany
- Air France / KLM Business Lounge, Munich Terminal One
- Air France Business Class: Munich – Paris
- Air France Business Lounge: Paris Charles de Gaulle Terminal 2E – Concourse L
- Air France Business Class: Paris – Vancouver
Review: The Westin Grand Munich, Germany.
Booking the Hotel:
When I happened to book this trip, I had some how forgotten that it was Oktoberfest. When I checked the prices of hotels, the room rates in Munich were pretty steep. Rooms at the central properties near the Hauptbhanhof in Munich were nearing 400€ ($464 USD) a night. I decided that the way around this was to use Starwood Preferred Guest (now Marriott Bonvoy) points for the Munich hotel room as we both had two free weekend nights awards from two separate credit cards from meeting a minimum spend threshold on our Canadian Starwood Preferred Guest American Express.
The Aloft Munich near the Hautbahnhoff had a sneaky 3 night minimum stay requirement (despite the programs’ no blackout dates on rewards rooms) so we couldn’t go in there for a two night stay. The Le Meridien Munich was showing as completely full, so we opted for the Westin Grand Munich which seemed to be the best choice over the Four Points properties that I have to frequent for work on a regular basis.
The hotel is now in the Marriott Bonvoy loyalty program as a Category 5 hotel. Rooms are available for between a low of 30,000 to a high of 40,000 points per night with a standard rate of 35,000 points per night. The Category 5 hotels are typically available with the annual free night certificates that accompany many Marriott Bonvoy American Express cards.
If you value Marriott Bonvoy points at $0.005 a point like I do, you’d be better off redeeming points if your paid rate was more expensive than $175 USD or 150€ a night. There are quite a few Marriott Properties in Munich at the Category 5 level, including the Aloft Munich so you can have a choice of properties with this one among them. If you’re looking for something a little more upscale, the Le Meridien Munich is also another great choice as a Category 6 hotel.
Given that the room rates during Oktoberfest were expensive, it was an easy decision to use points / certificates with the Starwood Preferred Guest / Marriott Bonvoy American Express credit card for our stay at The Westin Grand Munich.
Getting to the Westin Grand Munich:
Arabellastraße 6, 81925 München, Germany
Coming off our Air Domolti Venice – Munich flight, we took the S8 train from Munich airport, switching to the local U4 and arrived door to door 1 hr and 45 minutes door. It was not the best transfer performance, today and we should have probably taken a car from the airport instead.
The Westin Grand Munich is located in a mostly office park type of environment. It is a short train ride from the Alstat and all the major tourist attractions in Munich.
The hotel is a bit of a seventies-esque type structure with little visual appeal. MrsWT73 decided to model out front.
The only minus about the location of this property was the slightly inconvenient location that had the hotel a few stops out of the downtown core on the S train. It’s also not super convenient to get to and from the Munich airport. Our taxi out of the Westin Grand Munich on our early morning from the hotel to Munich International Airport on the day of our departure was a 65€ sting. If you’re looking for a more convenient hotel to the city center, the Aloft Munich or the Le Meridien Munich is directly across the street from the Munich Hautbahnof train station, making for easier connections.
Checking into the Westin Grand Munich:
This was the first hotel that I have been to that offers a giant pretzel from a rack at the front desk to guests that are checking in. On arrival, we were given a SPG Platinum suite upgrade at the front counter as part of our elite benefits to be upgraded to best available room. We were on back to back reservations in my name and MrsWT73’s name (only SPG Gold) but despite a little “Tetris” at the front desk, there were unable to keep us in the suite both nights. They were very accommodating to have us in the room immediately next to ours on the second night.
The Room: A Junior Suite
Our room was assigned as a Junior Suite # 1803 was actually designed as two standard rooms that had been converted into a suite. Passing through to each area was through the a-joining door. Instead of a bed in the other second room, there was lounger sofa bed. The room was nicely situated on the corner of the building, so the room had nice light throughout the living side.
There was a standard bathroom in the main room containing the bedroom.
The Living Room:
Over next door in the joining suite… … with an easy pass through.
The Suite Living Space was reasonably spacious for an older hotel.
Consistent with the room starting life as another bedroom, there was a second full bathroom in the living area of the suite.
It was a comfortable way to have two nights and actually a very separate space between the areas as MrsWT73 took to arranging her packing for the homeward trip and I didn’t see her for the rest of the evening.
The Westin Executive Lounge:
We ended up taking dinner in the lounge on our second night there. The hotel was kind enough to allow us both the lounge access as a Platinum, even though the booking was under my wife’s name (SPG gold).
At the time of writing, the lounge was a sectioned off area of the main restaurant on the ground floor. The lounge offering was a generous spread and I was quite impressed with the quantity and quality of food.
There were lots of food available, both hot and cold.
Heaps of food here – you could feed a small village. You get the idea.
There were wines and beers available, although there no spirits available (or obviously available).
Our Stay at the Westin Grand Munich:
The Westin Grand Munich was a comfortable but not ideally situated place to stay for our trip. Being a free stay, it was more than adequate for our needs and we’d easily return if we had business in the area. The service levels were also strong and they went out of their way to accommodate us. The Executive Lounge was a welcome inclusion and we even used it as a light dinner on one stay. Overall, we had a good visit to this hotel and would happily stay again if we had business in the area.