Review: Mandarin Oriental Taipei

Introduction
Cathay Pacific The Pier Business Lounge Hong Kong
Cathay Pacific 400 777-200 Business Class Hong Kong to Taipei
Mandarin Oriental Taipei
Cathay Pacific Lounge Taipei
Cathay Pacific 409 A350-900 Business Class Taipei to Hong Kong


We got to the Mandarin Oriental after dinnertime, which is located pretty close to the city center. We chose the Mandarin Oriental as part of the Cathay Pacific “Book Together and Save” package, which brought down the total price, as each room can go as high as 2500 HKD at this hotel. The exterior of the hotel is rather grand and classic, what I’d normally expect from a Mandarin Oriental.

IMG_0424Mandarin Oriental Taipei Exterior

The hotel has a large driveway, with a fountain in the middle. It’s pretty grand, to the point where it’s almost gaudy.

IMG_0260Mandarin Oriental Taipei Entrance

The lobby has a little “entryway” – I didn’t explore what was on the right due to time issues, so turned left into the lobby.

IMG_0262Mandarin Oriental Taipei Lobby Entryway

The lobby is grand, and the ceilings are really high. That said, the entire lobby is pretty small, and consists of a few seats, surrounded by a concierge and reception desk.

IMG_0263Mandarin Oriental Taipei Lobby

IMG_0264Mandarin Oriental Taipei Lobby

IMG_0265Mandarin Oriental Taipei Lobby

The design of the lobby felt really classic without being shabby, which is a balance I normally find tough to strike.

IMG_0266Mandarin Oriental Taipei Lobby

IMG_0267Mandarin Oriental Taipei Lobby

The friendly concierge assigned us rooms 1525 and 1526, of which 1525 had twin beds. We went over to the lift lobby, which was nicely appointed, once again, but I couldn’t help feeling like the lobby felt very “white”.

IMG_0272Mandarin Oriental Taipei Lift Lobby

Our rooms were situated on the 15th floor, which is the top floor below the “club” area of the hotel. I quite like the hotel’s hallways – they’re well designed, feel like a high-end Chinese (not especially Taiwanese, but still) restaurant in Hong Kong and had amazing finishes.

IMG_0273Mandarin Oriental Taipei Hallways

IMG_0274Mandarin Oriental Taipei Hallways

IMG_0276Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Twin Entrance

Our room was located a distance from the lift lobby. The finishes extend to the door signage, which is gold plated.

IMG_0275Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Twin Door Signage

The hotel footprint is rather large, arranged in an S shape, with our hotel near the end of one of the sides.

IMG_0281
Mandarin Oriental Taipei Floorplan

Mandarin Oriental Taipei
Check-in: Friday, June 24, 2016
Room Type: Deluxe Twin
Room Number: 1525
Stay duration: 2 nights
Check-out: Sunday, June 26, 2016

The room featured a zigzag entryway which turned left into the bathroom and right into the walk-in closet.

IMG_0277Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Twin Entryway

The room was extremely large for an entry level room. Here’s the entryway itself – to the right before the curve was my mother and sister’s room.

IMG_0278Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Twin Entryway

IMG_0280Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Twin Entrance to Bathroom

It even had a chair, which you don’t commonly find outside actual room “spaces”. To the left here was the door outside and to the interconnecting room.

IMG_0290Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Twin Entryway

If you’re wondering, here’s what the whole entryway looks like (huge, I know…)

IMG_0314Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Twin Entryway

The walk-in closet was large, and featured a chair and a makeup mirror, as well as a safe.

IMG_0289Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Twin Walk-in Closet

IMG_0291Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Twin Walk-in Closet

There was, obviously, a space to put clothes, as well as a luggage. They were both large.

IMG_0292Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Twin Walk-in Closet

The room itself was large, even by Asian standards. It featured two really comfortable beds, a chaise longue, a desk and chair facing away from the room (which I generally love), and a flatscreen TV.

IMG_0417Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room

When turned down, the decorative touches were removed from the bed, which is sensible, so they don’t end up getting thrown on the floor over and over again. Let me reiterate – the beds are really comfortable. They can compare with Westin/Sheraton’s beds, which is saying a lot.

IMG_0294Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room

Note the slippers below…I don’t recall taking a picture of them, but they were really comfortable.

IMG_0295Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room Bedroom/Beside Table

IMG_0297Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room Bed

The blackout shades and lights were all electronically controlled at a panel by each side of the bed.

IMG_0296Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room Control Panels

IMG_0296Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room Control Panels

There was also a chair (apart from the chaise longue) by the side of the room, which was awesome – there were so many places to lounge without actually sleeping.

IMG_0299Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room Chair

IMG_0301Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room Chair

The TV was something we never used, but it was playing cheesy music when we first entered the room, which we promptly switched off.

IMG_0300Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room Flatscreen TV

While I appreciate a “conventional” desk for working, I didn’t mind the elliptical table either. The chair was also ergonomic.

IMG_0305Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room Desk

Furthermore, there were universal power ports all around the room, including beside the bed, which I always appreciate…

IMG_0307Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room Power Ports

…but the real set (including USB ports and all that) was by the desk, which also featured HDMI cables, as well as everything you could possibly need.

IMG_0313Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room

By the beside, as well as the light an curtain controls, there was also complimentary water, which I found a nice touch.

IMG_0306Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room Bedside Table

The minibar was situated behind the desk, and was paid, unlike what the package promised (the package also promised free WiFi, which I’ll get to later). It was definitely extensive, though, and featured Kettle Chips, local snacks, and liquor as well as your normal selection of minibar drinks.

IMG_0309Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room Minibar

IMG_0310Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room Minibar

IMG_0311Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room Minibar

IMG_0312Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room Minibar

This picture really puts into perspective how large the room is…

IMG_0316Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room

The views were of central Taipei with the Taipei 101 in the background. They weren’t especially panoramic or anything, but still nice.

IMG_0425Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room View

IMG_0418Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room View

The best part of the room had to be the bathroom, which was large, and really beautiful. It featured double sinks, an enclosed toilet, and a separate bathtub and shower.

IMG_0282Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room Bathroom

IMG_0283Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room Bathroom

IMG_0288Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room Bathroom Toilet

The tub was enclosed with the shower, so you won’t be able to take a bath when your travel partner’s showering, for example. Not many people I know of do that anyway, so it’s fine.

IMG_0286Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room Bathroom Tub

The walk-in shower was massive, and featured three different shower heads. Even the shower controls were placed in a way that you wouldn’t get wet when turning on the shower.

IMG_0285Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room  Bathroom Walk-in Shower

There was even enough spae to sit, which I can’t say about most walk-in showers out there.

IMG_0284Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room Bathroom Walk-in Shower

The bathroom featured Diptyque amenities, which were great.

IMG_0287Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room Diptyque Amenities

I found it really funny that there was a “privacy” button in the enclosed toilet, which we didn’t use. I wonder what they’d be doing that required extra privacy in the toilet (in case a locked door and an extra door wasn’t enough)?

IMG_0426Mandarin Oriental Taipei Deluxe Room Bathroom Privacy Button

Overall, I found the room extremely well appointed and well worth the price premium. However, it’s worth noting that the WiFi wasn’t free – I think it cost 400 TWD per night (there were other packages, but I forgot to screenshot the package details). Once we paid for it, though (for six devices), it was ultra fast.

Breakfast was at the hotel’s restaurant, Café Un Deux Trois (a really stupid name in my opinion, but oh well), and required quite a long wait every morning due to it being a rather small space.

IMG_0322Mandarin Oriental Taipei Café Un Deux Trois

IMG_0321Mandarin Oriental Taipei Café Un Deux Trois

IMG_0320Mandarin Oriental Taipei Café Un Deux Trois

IMG_0319Mandarin Oriental Taipei Café Un Deux Trois

The restaurant spread was extensive, featuring various Chinese and Western items that changed every day. Most of them tasted good, while a few items (such as the bacon) were just dry and burnt.

IMG_0351Mandarin Oriental Taipei Café Un Deux Trois Breakfast Spread

IMG_0350Mandarin Oriental Taipei Café Un Deux Trois Breakfast Spread

IMG_0349Mandarin Oriental Taipei Café Un Deux Trois Breakfast Spread

IMG_0348Mandarin Oriental Taipei Café Un Deux Trois Breakfast Spread

IMG_0347Mandarin Oriental Taipei Café Un Deux Trois Breakfast Spread

IMG_0346Mandarin Oriental Taipei Café Un Deux Trois Breakfast Spread

IMG_0345Mandarin Oriental Taipei Café Un Deux Trois Breakfast Spread

IMG_0344Mandarin Oriental Taipei Café Un Deux Trois Breakfast Spread

IMG_0343Mandarin Oriental Taipei Café Un Deux Trois Breakfast Spread

IMG_0342Mandarin Oriental Taipei Café Un Deux Trois Breakfast Spread

There was also a table menu.


Mandarin Oriental Taipei Café Un Deux Trois Breakfast Menu

I had the waffles one morning and french toast the second, both of which were really good.

IMG_0352Mandarin Oriental Taipei Café Un Deux Trois Breakfast Brussel(s) Style Waffles

IMG_0427Mandarin Oriental Taipei Café Un Deux Trois Breakfast French Toast

It’s worth noting that table service at the restaurant was pretty good. It wasn’t spectacular or everything, but it’s hard enough to be attentive and friendly to a packed breakfast dining room every morning.

In terms of the hotel’s facilities, the only facility I visited was the gym, which was well appointed, featuring multiple machines and weights, as well as a lot of other equipment.

image1Mandarin Oriental Taipei Spa Entrance

image2Mandarin Oriental Taipei Gym

image3Mandarin Oriental Taipei Gym

Service at the hotel was also rather good – nothing to write home about but certainly above your average Taiwan hotel.

Bottom Line: The Mandarin Oriental Taipei

I found the Mandarin Oriental Taipei beautiful, with awesome rooms, good (paid) WiFi, good food and good service. Ultimately there were some miscommunications of what we were entitled to, which I blame on the package and not the hotel.

I’d return in a heartbeat, though obviously for cheaper rates and more reviewing variety I’d choose a different hotel in Taipei next time, such as the Le Méridien or the W.

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