Let me cut straight to the chase: to date, the JW Marriott Phu Quoc Emerald Bay Resort & Spa is my favorite resort I’ve ever stayed in. Nearly everything about the resort is perfect, and the few things that aren’t, are really not a big deal (and also could be very easily fixed).
First, Two Small Negatives
Since there were so few negatives to the stay, let’s start with those. The resort is huge, and there’s no resort map in the rooms. We didn’t learn until the last day of our stay that there was a whole other pool that we hadn’t even discovered yet! We did check it out, and it wasn’t our favorite so it was okay, but a resort map would have been really awesome.
The other negative is that while the resort offered cool classes (the whole resort is actually modeled after a mythical university named Lamarck University), the classes had very limited space and usually needed to be booked days in advance.
Now for the Good Stuff
Other than those two very small negatives, I have nothing but great things to say about the JW Marriott Phu Quoc.
Even the base level rooms are huge. We were upgraded to a room with a better view and a balcony, but it was still the smallest size room on the property. It basically felt like a small studio apartment (sans kitchen). The bed was big, fluffy, and comfortable. If the rest of the resort hadn’t been so amazing, I might not have wanted to leave the room at all.
Again, probably the best bathroom of any hotel I have ever stayed in. At first, we didn’t know for sure if we needed to draw the blinds in the bathroom in order to use it in privacy due to the large window, but the glass that goes through to the hallway was sufficiently blurred that we didn’t need to worry about it. I loved the large rain shower and I’m a huge sucker for baths (especially with amazing bath salts which were provided as an amenity). The bath amenities in general were some of the best I’ve ever been provided with at a hotel.
The Restaurants and Bars
There were a lot of different dining options at the resort. Prices were expensive for Vietnam, but reasonable for a resort. The Chemistry Bar was my favorite place to hang out – especially in the evening – and have a drink or two. We also ordered room service and had some seafood at the other restaurant during our stay. The oysters, while expensive, were divine.
There could be a whole post devoted just to the breakfast at the JW Marriott Phu Quoc. If you have Gold status or higher with Marriott, breakfast is included. In the week we were there, I didn’t even have a chance to try everything because it was just too much and too good. There were plenty of both Western and Vietnamese options, fresh fruit, sushi, and more! I could honestly go back just for the breakfast.
The service was very good. It’s not a small enough resort that all of the staff knows the name of each hotel guest, but the service was very good. My favorite part was that I got a cake for my birthday!
I was sick for a part of the stay (due to some street food I ate), and the hotel staff called to see if I was feeling better a couple of times, sent up ginger tea, and even sent me a get well soon cake (though I wasn’t quite in the mood to eat it).
Things to Do
There were plenty of things to do without even needing to leave the resort. Of course, you have all of the classes (assuming there’s space). In addition to the face mask making class, there were other fun ones like beer yoga, a couple of food preparation classes, mixology, and bike rides. There’s also a nightly shuttle to the night market in Phu Quoc, about 30 minutes away from the resort. If organized classes aren’t really your thing, you could play pool or use surf boards, stand up paddle boards, and boogie boards for no additional cost.
Of course, there’s also nothing wrong with just hanging out on one of the hammocks along the perfectly clean beach.
Or lounging at one of the beautiful pools.
If you want to pay with cash, the JW Marriott Phu Quoc isn’t cheap. The least expensive room during the time we were there (early December) cost about $400 per night. As of right now, this hotel is a Category 5 Marriott property, meaning that it costs 25,000 Marriott points per night to book — which is a killer deal! On March 6, 2018, Marriott is raising this hotel to a Category 6 property, so it will cost 30,000 points per night to book (honestly, still a great deal). This hotel can also be booked with Marriott Hotel + Air packages.
I absolutely loved this hotel, and I’m seriously considering booking another stay before it goes up from a Category 5 to a Category 6. The main problem is, I don’t have solid plans to be back in Asia in 2018 or early 2019. However, I’ll gladly book another stay here someday even at Category 6 prices.