Westin Xi'an- a review
Located in the newer part of the ancient Chinese city of Xi’an, around 4km from the city centre the spanking new Westin Xi’an is designed by Neri & Hu Design and looks more like a cross between an art gallery and a luxury 5-star hotel. It’s the third Starwoods property in Xi’an, and quite perhaps the most fashionable one too. It’s setting could not be any better as it is placed just a few minutes’ walk away from the 1360 year old Big Wild Goose Pagoda, one of the city’s must see attractions. Transport is easy with only around an hour’s drive from the main Xi’an Xianyang International Airport, which is about 40km away.
The reason why I referred to it as an art gallery is because it looks and feels exactly like that. That’s maybe because why the owners have also built a museum, the first of its kind in the world for Westin. The Xi’an Qujiang Museum of Fine Arts is dedicated to showcase the historical significance of the city of Xi’an, and a tribute to the people of the city. So actually, it’s a bit of a double bill for those coming to reside at the Westin Xi’an. Because the property comprises of a 5-star hotel, adjacent museum, and a shopping centre, so therefore you can easily go sightseeing, go for a relaxing massage at the Heavenly Spa by Westin and indulgence yourself with fine cuisine. To really explore and make the most of the hotel it would take, I guess a few days and not just a one-night stopover.
The Westin Xi’an has arrived to redefine the mid-priced luxury hotel market that is booming in China these days, the sort normal people can afford. Mmm … they've got the smell right (wood smoke and a hint of designer aftershave that fans of Dior would love). There is more.
The adventure commences at the lobby, which itself is a serious work of contemporary art. The enormous colourful display is presented in various neon of red, green, blue, and yellow depending on the time of the day (or night). Then the rooms are to follow. Each one of the 329 tastefully designed guestrooms and suites has the trademark Westin Heavenly bed where you can sleep like there is no tomorrow, encompass soothing tones, and each room features a flat screen LCD television, rainforest shower, extra-large cupboards with stylish sliding doors, and wireless internet.
The rooms are well placed inside the sides of a maze like rectangular wall with a large roof that provides natural sunlight. In the middle of the open hall on the ground floor is a large black horse with a large lampshade on his head. This is the area where room guests can explore and rediscover their culinary tastes, and have a meal any time of the day. With three different dining venues to choose from, the Seasonal Tastes is the place to have breakfast or lunch. However, it is not as romantic as the ‘Mai’, a fabulous Japanese restaurant that provides the finest of contemporary cuisine from the land of the rising sun. Their teppanyaki and sashimi stations get booked quickly. So therefore, book in advance to avoid disappointment.
Overall it’s the kind of place that can inevitably uplift your senses after a long days walking, and sightseeing, which you will end up doing in Xi’an as this is a touristy city. At which point it may be a good idea to treat yourself or your loved one to a selection of the treatments available at the signature Heavenly Spa by Westin. Unwind, close your eyes, relax, and just forget about the troubles of the day by pampering yourself with some Chinese inspired philosophy. The staff seemed to come across as being very caring and tentative in providing the best service they could. Featuring ten private ‘spa within a spa’ treatment rooms that are replete with a personalised service including a bath and changing areas, as well as the signature Heavenly Spa massage beds and a luxurious infinity tub. It’s worth giving the Rollers sage 90-minute signature treatment at a go. Its best preferred to have the treatment after a long day. The healing properties of the semi-precious stones that are rolled over your back in a connective flowing manner assist in the blood flow and making you feel refreshed. It was so good that it made me go to sleep.
As the hotel is located on the edge of the city, and within the Qu Jiang high tech industrial zone, it is well worth noting that there is a huge demand for Meetings, Incentives, Conferencing, and Exhibitions (MICE), and the exact reason why the hotel has over 3,300 meters of space just for that. Wedding, MICE, and corporate functions, you name it they are all in demand. Xi’an’s elite are out to spend.
Whatever your desires or reasons, the Westin Xi’an is at least another reason for visiting this part of this ancient city. Forget the old-fashioned old unsophisticated hotel, not even the most luxurious hotel in the city can compete with this.
Art Museum of Xi'an Qu Jiang
Located within the building compounds of the Westin Xi’an hotel in the ancient Chinese city of Xi’an, the Xian Qu Jiang Art Museum is a magnificent showcasing of over 2,000 Chinese antiques and artefacts.
Open to the public, and the hotel guests, the museum’s exceptional art and antiquities spans over 7,000 square meters and boasts three special exhibition halls. Works on display include 80 mural paintings from over 15 provinces, which depicts China’s history through different dynasties, as well as a loan exhibition from the Nanjing Museum of Ming and Qing Dynasty Porcelain. Other fascinating highlights include the world’s only gold suit of armour, and a highly rare stone Buddha head which measures nearly one meter high and dates to the Northern Qi Dynasty. It’s not as vibrant as one would hope to be. But in saying that this is a new museum and so with time it will hopefully a beehive for budding tourists. It’s something extra to add to your travel itinerary when coming to Xi’an.
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