Grand Hyatt Taipei
BACKGROUND With 853 rooms and suites, the Grand Hyatt Taipei is currently the largest hotel in Taiwan. It was one of the first major international brands to open in the Taiwanese capital back in 1990.
WHERE IS IT? In the commercial Xinyi district, directly adjacent to Taipei 101, the Taipei International Convention Centre and the Taipei World Trade Centre. There’s easy access to the MRT at Taipei 101/World Trade Center Station on the red Xinyi line, and the airport is around 40 minutes away – the hotel offers a limousine transfer service in a wifi-enabled BMW with a choice of music and information via a tablet.
WHAT’S IT LIKE? The exterior is rather imposing and monolithic, but the entrance lobby is magnificent, with ornate chandeliers, bubbling water fountains adorned with fresh flowers and a three-storey glass atrium that allows light to pour in. The space was bustling with people – unsurprising given the 99 per cent occupancy rate during our stay.
THE ROOM The entrance to my Grand Executive View suite was possibly my favourite part: you’re greeted by a tranquil Japanese aesthetic comprising light-wood floors and walls, dark-wood panelling, an orchid on the hallstand and a brushstroke painting.
The living room and dining area is extremely luxurious and inviting – the overall feel is very residential, with homey knick-knacks such as artwork, magazines and books, and a Nespresso machine and good coffee and tea selection. The views from my suite encompassed a panorama stretching from Taipei 101 to the Sun Yat Sen Museum and unfinished Taipei Dome.
The circular dining table, rather than traditional work desk, is intentionally designed to offer business travellers a more comfortable in-room dining experience, but there’s still a helpful pull-out panel with two universal sockets, USB and other ports, plus a bag of cables (though wifi was fast and easy to use).
Having a separate bedroom and unobtrusive dressing room area really makes your stay feel infinitely more homelike. A comfortable bed and excellent blackout blinds easily controlled via a bedside master panel were plus points, but a small gripe was the faint sound of the traffic lights beeping on rotation every minute or so.
The marble-ensconced main bathroom has a freestanding bathtub, glass-partitioned smart toilet and shower sections, and floor-to-ceiling windows on two sides. It felt a little exposed, but automatic blinds are available for privacy.
RESTAURANTS AND BARS There are 11 F&B outlets in the hotel. Highlights include the Japanese buffet at Irodori – an extremely popular lunch option for guests and locals alike; Bel-Air, the elegant fine-dining steak restaurant, whose beautiful, transporting interior boasts private alcoves and a water feature element; and Yun Jin, offering a mix of Chinese cuisine, with local Taiwanese specialities and popular Sichuan options.
Café offers a fantastic international buffet spread – but be warned, with 99 per cent occupancy comes a snaking line to be seated at peak times. Ziga Zaga is the Italian eatery and nightclub, a lively spot for drinks in the evening with a life band and cocktail list. Booking at all restaurants is recommended.
MEETING FACILITIES Club lounge access is afforded to all room categories from floor 20 and above, plus all suites. It’s a large venue with comfortable seating options. The breakfast buffet, though smaller than Café, is perfectly adequate (and far less crowded), with hot options and an egg station, fruit, breads and juices. The hotel offers 13 function rooms and a grand ballroom for about 600 people in a banquet setting.
LEISURE FACILITIES Club Oasis on the fifth floor features two 24-hour gyms and exercise studios, the Oasis Spa (professional treatments although I was slightly disappointed to see the treatment rooms were simply repurposed guestrooms), and an outdoor heated pool surrounded by a spacious deck and palm trees.
VERDICT It was a pleasure staying at the Grand Hyatt Taipei, with thoughtfully designed accommodation, premium facilities and an excellent location. If anything this hotel is too good, attracting sky-high occupancy that can cause some congestion at meal times.
The entrance lobby is magnificent, with ornate chandeliers, bubbling water fountains and a three-storey glass atrium that allows light to pour in
PRICE Internet rates for a Grand Executive View suite in mid-June start from NT$22,754 (US$746) including tax and surcharges
CONTACT 2 Songshou Road, Taipei 11051, Taiwan; tel +886 2 2720 1234; taipei.grand.hyatt.com