In the middle of bustling Al Dafna, lies the truly special Marriott Marquis City Center Doha Hotel – the perfect destination whether you’re here for a stopover, a weekend escape or an extended stay.
In this case, it was a self-pampering escapade at Marriott Marquis City Center Doha Hotel that began at Saray Spa and ended with a scrumptious, authentic Italian lunch at Cucina.
The pampering began at the Arabian Saray Spa, which in the tradition of the Carvanserai, brings you a host of sumptuous treatments which allow you to experience restoration, renewal and transformation with nine treatment rooms, tranquil relaxation areas, steam room and sauna.
I was booked in for an Arabian Coffee Awakener Envelopment, which is a one-hour body scrub session to exfoliate and rejuvenate the skin. First changing into the usual spa attire, a robe and cotton slippers, I followed Thai masseuse Mena into a lantern-lit hallway, leading to a spacious warm, dim-lit room. There, I was first seated with my feet gently placed into a bowl of water, scrubbed with sea salt and then laid on the bed. The scrubbing began, first with the back then the front. I specifically asked for a strong pressure, especially on my back, which Mena perfectly accommodated. Within seconds, the room was full of the wonderful aroma of coffee.
Once the body scrubbing was complete, I was taken for a quick warm shower and then back to the bed for the most-exciting part of the session – Envelopment. I was first covered with Dead Sea mud, placed in a cocoon by multiple layers of plastic wrap and cloth, and finally locked in by the massage mattress, only leaving the head out. Then Mena began to firmly massage my shoulders, neck and head. Enveloped for at least 15 minutes, I was comfortably laying down, listening to the calming music and even falling asleep while feeling my body and skin soothingly warming up, sweating and revitalising.
Once I was removed from my cocoon, an immediate feeling of vitality awakened me. Still covered with mud, I was taken for the second and final shower. Once dry, feeling my skin, it felt soft and smooth like that of a newborn. Still smelling of coffee, my skin was glowing. To top off the unforgettable body rejuvenation experience, I was served with an exceptional, original Saray Spa tea, consisting of strong flavours of ginger, lemongrass and cinnamon.
From the Arabian Saray Spa, I teleported to little Italy at warm and cosy restaurant Cucina, serving fresh and flavoursome Italian favourites, from a selection of Le Bruschetta and Anti-Pasti to Prime Piatti and La Pizerria with an authentic décor that will transport you to Italy.
Personally welcomed by Chef Trovato Claudio, I was seated on a table overlooking the open-plan kitchen. Chef Claudio delivered his sumptuous platters of food with tastes of the 20 regions of Italy, all in the heart of Doha.
My meal began with a satisfying selection of appetisers, including Arancini (Fontina cheese, spinach and mushrooms, seafood), Parmigiana (layered and baked aubergine, mozzarella, Parmigiano, tomato sauce, basil), Carpaccio di manzo (thinly sliced beef, rocket leaves, Parmigiano, Cipriani sauce), and Carpaccio di polpo (thinly sliced octopus, red and white cabbage, citrus and mint dressing). The starters continued with Rucola e Parmigiano (rocket leaves, Parmigiano, cherry tomatoes), Insalata di mare (warm seafood salad with capers, garlic, herbs dressing). Then it was pasta galore with Agnolotti di carne (pasta stuffed with beef Bolognese, spicy meat balls, tomato sauce), Ravioli spinaci e ricotta (spinach and ricotta ravioli, mushroom sauce), Gnocchi alla Sorrentina (potato gnocchi, tomato sauce, burrata cheese, basil), and Conchiglie al pesto e gamberi (shell pasta, pesto sauce, sautéed shrimps). Yet more main course were to come from Salmone (pan seared salmon with baby potatoes, asparagus) to Polpette Di Carne (sweet and sour meatballs). And last but not least, for dessert, we were served with a platter of delicious homemade desserts – Macedonia (Italian marinated fruit salad) to Profiteroles (vanilla cream chocolate sauce).
Everything at Cucina is homemade, and vegetarian/vegan or gluten-free diners will be more than amply catered for as well.
Marriott Marquis City Center Doha Hotel is also home to an array of well-known, distinctive dining options – Crossroads Kitchen, a modern urban restaurant, which is undergoing renewal and will reopen this Autumn; Champions, Doha’s award-winning sports bar and restaurant; Aziza, a fine dining Lebanese cuisine with a seafood fusion twist; Glo, with its chic décor and striking bar; Ipanema, an authentic Brazilian Churrascaria with a Rodizio style of service; New York Steakhouse, a true American steakhouse; and more.
Why Marriott Marquis Doha?
Marriott Marquis City Center Doha Hotel is one the best hotels in Qatar. In addition to their warm hospitality and impeccable award-winning service, its location is exceptional. The hotel is directly connected to City Center-Doha, one of the country’s most popular shopping malls, as well as the Doha Exhibition and Convention Center (DECC) and the DECC Metro Station. Nearby popular attractions include the Doha Corniche, The Gate Mall, The Pearl-Qatar, Katara Cultural Village, Lusail City and more. In addition, Marriott Marquis City Center Doha Hotel has one of the most breathtaking views of the sea and the Doha skyline.
For more information or reservations, call 4419 5000 or visit the Marriott Marquis City Center Doha Hotel website
Book your appointment for an Arabian Coffee Awakener Envelopment for QAR625 or any other body treatments, massages or facials, and call 4419 6090or email [email protected].
Author: Ola Diab
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