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A Marriott Staycation to Reinvigorate Creativity

Updated: Jun 28, 2022

JW Marriott Edmonton ICE District Experience & Review


In this post...



Tosin Odugbemi jumping on a bed with her hands in the air.

As the pandemic has continued to persist, working from home has morphed from being a novelty to being mundane. The sameness in our currently restricted existence can negatively impact our creativity. On top of this, we are under more stress than usual right now --from financial worries to worries about our loved ones' health. Our brains are wired to be more reactionary under pressure, which can take a toll on creativity. In our decision-making, for example, we’re likely to limit our thinking to binary choices.

Creativity is often enhanced when we're exposed to new situations. With this knowledge, I decided that there was no better way to reinvigorate my creativity than alter the space that I was in and get out of the mundane for a weekend. I partnered with my local JW Marriott hotel, a space designed to let you focus on feeling whole – present in mind, nourished in body, and revitalized in spirit. During my stay, I was able to de-stress and rejuvenate, resetting my creative mind.

A pair of hands holding a pencil overtop of scattered books and paper.

(This post is in partnership with JW Marriott. All of the written opinions are genuinely my own.)

The luxurious hotel rests in the heart of downtown Edmonton, within a thriving entertainment district. I arrived at the hotel on Friday evening at the main entrance containing a passenger drop-off area, valet, and taxi stand. The location was well illuminated and organized. The staff was attentive and kind. I dropped off my vehicle at the valet and proceeded to the check-in desk. Upon entering the hotel, I was kindly greeted by several staff members and by a wonderfully grand lobby. The check-in process was smooth, and The concierge well explained the hotel amenities included in my booking. A porter assisted me in bringing my luggage up to my deluxe room on the 19th floor.

A pair of legs resting on a railing overlooking the city.

The first thing I noticed upon entering my personal weekend haven was the dreamy view of the downtown skyline. The interior decor of the room embraces woodgrain materiality and a royal blue colour scheme. With gold hardware detailing and contemporary furniture, a definite aura of luxury and sophistication runs throughout the hotel. The king bed felt like a cloud, and I enjoyed a lazy night of television in bed with the company of the room service I ordered.

A black and white photo of a small pizza delivered on a tray via room service.

The bathroom is well-appointed with a rain shower and blissful products from Aromatherapy Associates. Part of the wall that separates the bedroom and the washroom can open up, giving the option for an uninterrupted flow of open space throughout the room.

A bottle of lotion in a marble bathroom.
A white marble shower.

The following day, I headed to Archetype, a state-of-the-art gym connected to the hotel. The elaborate gym spans across an entire floor. It has several studios, a boxing room, a spinning room, and a host of cardiovascular and weight training equipment. Because it was early on a Saturday morning, I enjoyed having the entirety of the space to myself as I completed a workout.

A woman wearing a mask taking a selfie in a hotel gym.

After the training, I visited the executive lounge on the 22nd floor of the hotel for some complimentary breakfast. The space was peaceful, the server was friendly, and the food was delicious.

Tosin Odugbemi lounging in a leather chair and looking at the camera.

After completing a photoshoot (a little pocket of work amid my relaxation), I headed to the spa for a 50-minute massage. My experience at the spa was absolutely delightful. I was welcomed warmly by the front desk staff and showed to a locker where a clean robe and slippers had been prepared for me. The masseuse was phenomenal. After my massage, I spent some time relaxing and enjoying tea in the lounge, easing back into regular life.

A small massage room with a massage table and purple lighting.
A lounge area with fuzzy chairs and a marble table.

On Saturday night, I enjoyed dinner at Braven restaurant with a friend. We tested much of their drink menu, from rose-infused cocktails to classic sangrias. Every drink we tried was tasty, and the food matched that same excellence. The restaurant's ambiance was lively and hip. Spatially, the beautiful mixing of orange furnishing, green backsplashes, and golden decor contributed to the uniquely modern space. We were sat in a cozy booth, separated from our neighbours with a sheet of clear acrylic, providing safety without destroying connectedness amongst restaurant guests.

A hotel restaurant with an open concept kitchen visible from the dining area.
An overhead photo of a steak with fries, broccoli, and a potato.

After our dining experience, we went up to the 22nd-floor lounge. There is a bartender on staff who serves drinks paid for on-site or billed to your room during the evening. We indulged in a final drink as some complimentary canapés and chatted with the friendly and hospitable servers.

A lounge area as seen through an open and modern bookshelf filled with vases and plants.

I enjoyed a leisurely Sunday morning, a final meal in the lounge, and a late check-out. A porter came to my room to collect my luggage and loaded it directly into my car when I was ready to leave in the early afternoon.

A hotel lobby with many chairs and various seating. The hotel is done up in a black and white colour palette, heavily featuring marble accents.

My weekend at the JW Marriott Edmonton ICE District was a dream. I looked forward to another stay the next time I need a local weekend retreat. With the hotel's proximity to downtown Edmonton, this is the perfect haven for you to spend time exploring the city, attend a sports game at Rogers Place, or enjoy gazing at city lights at night.

Our creativity will wane unless we make conscious efforts to counter our current situation's narrowing and anxiety. Your creativity shouldn’t be something you forfeit at a time when you need it most. Treating yourself to a staycation might be the reset you need.

XO, T.

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