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Durham Marriott City Center in Durham, NC

Durham Marriott City Center in Durham, NC

Specialties

Only Hotel located in the Heart of Downtown Durham. Walking Distance to entertainment, shopping, and dining options.

Complimentary wireless high speed internet access, upgraded furnishings, bedding, and plasma HDTV.

Complimentary shuttle service within a five mile radius.

 

Company Info:

Rating: 3.25

Address: 201 Foster Street, Durham, NC, 27701
  • Mon: Open 24 hours
  • Tue: Open 24 hours
  • Wed: Open 24 hours
  • Thu: Open 24 hours
  • Fri: Open 24 hours
  • Sat: Open 24 hours
  • Sun: Open 24 hours

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Comments (32):

1. Conspicuous C.
I guess if you have business in downtown Durham you might stay here.  But it's a dump of a Marriott property.  Parking is in public lots across the street.  Cranky front desk staff.  Nothing nearby.

I would prefer to stay in one of the extended stay places in RTP over this.  Durham is not a place you want to stay.

25/05/06 | Link | Rating: 2.0
2. Brandon H.
Nice hotel, nothing super-fancy, but it's one of the better Marriott's I've stayed at. The staff is very helpful. Check-in isn't till 4:00PM but I arrived around 11AM due to an early flight and I was able to check in just fine. Free Wi-Fi and the flat-panel TV's area a bonus, and the surrounding area provides plenty options for dining and nightlife within walking distance. The parking situation is interesting, but really is not a problem. The small lot is directly across from the curb-side entrance, and if that's full there's a larger lot right behind it (you will need you room card to go through the gate). The in-hotel bar is nice, not usually very busy and the bartenders are friendly. My only complaint (which I don't think is the hotel's faults) is their vending machines. Every vending machine on every floor was sold out of just about every option, including water. They do have a convenience "market" by the front desk that sells snacks and drinks, which are obviously marked up a bit. I would happily stay here again, and recommend the hotel to others.

04/05/09 | Link | Rating: 4.0
3. Christopher h.
If you really must visit Durham then stay here- best place aside from the Duke university resort. If you like a cool room ask for a room on the second floor- the higher floor rooms in this hotel are not cold enough for me- 2nd floor rocks the ice cube!

06/06/09 | Link | Rating: 3.0
4. Peter K.
The rooms here are good. Parking is ok too. No free,easy-access private lot, but the public lot's across the street were easy enough to park in. This place lacks a pool. The breakfast buffet was sub-par. My omelet was good, but the fruit was still frozen and the bacon was cold.
I disagree with Jerry J about there being nothing around. We walked a few blocks to Brightleaf Square and had an excellent, cheap meal at Satisfaction Restaurant (see my review on this place).

This place was a good value for us considering that we got it super cheap on Priceline.

12/10/07 | Link | Rating: 3.0
5. john h.
I should have known there would be a problem when I tried to book the room by calling the number on their website for the front desk of the hotel - but no one answered for five minutes.

we had a lot of bags, and no one was waiting at the door of the hotel to valet our car or take our bags despite us arriving at a reasonable hour of 9pm on a Wed.

self-parking is not allowed until after check-in, and even worse, the lot is two blocks away outdoors.  the check-in lady was less than helpful in describing how to get to the lot, and to say we didn't appreciate having to lug our bags over those two blocks in the cold and rain is an understatement.

our room was freezing when we got in - the air conditioning was turned on at the end of december.  the pillows were either much too hard or much too soft.  and the alarm clock had been inexplicably set to a 6am alarm.  cell phone reception is impossible for most major carriers.

The hot water in both the shower and sink took on average three minutes to kick in over each of the four days we were there.  that is so unacceptable that it should require a warning to guests in advance but of course there was no such heads-up.

during out entire time there, not a single staff person spoke to us or greeted us or showed any friendly tendencies whatsoever.  whenever we walked by the concierge's desk or the fronk desk, staff would rarely but occasionally look up at us but never did we even get a smile.  I felt like I was a leper despite being a well-dressed businessman on a vacation with my wife.  Once I asked the front desk if I could borrow an umbrella and was told "nope" with a look like I was asking for a kidney.

the bad service was symbolized by the dirty dishes that were left by the door to our room for our entire stay by whomever had been in our room before us.

my mother always taught me to never say something critical without something positive, so I will say that the bartender was pleasant, the rooms were stylish, and the housecleaning staff did a nice job making our room clean.  but this hotel thinks it can charge big city rates for a small town hotel that doesn't want to even try to get the easy things right.

I travel often, and am a top level member of Hilton Honors and Starwood Rewards, but this experience has convinced me to stay away from Marriotts in the future.

02/01/10 | Link | Rating: 1.0
6. Dee W.
I attended a formal here and it was mediocre.  The staff didn't seem terribly friendly or accomodating to their needs and demanded that we be out by a certain time or threatened to slap on a hefty fine.

Food was mediocre, setup was decent - parking was tough to find and staff wasn't helpful.

24/03/07 | Link | Rating: 3.0
7. Andrew R.
Maybe Marriott has invested in improvements since the other reviews, or maybe they just caught them on a bad day; my wife and I were totally happy with our 3 nights at this hotel.  

The desk staff and every other employee we interacted with was very courteous and helpful.  It's true that the parking lot is across the street, but it's free and it was nice to walk at least a little outside after spending so much time indoors; we didn't mind the parking at all.

We didn't have time to go exploring right around the hotel, but we drove by what looked like plenty to keep yourself occupied, and if not, it's a short drive to everything in the city (this is Durham we're talking about, not LA).

They were more than helpful with me getting a late checkout.  The computer system automatically charges you if you stay passed a certain time, which she explained.  She also let me know that she could put the latest possible time for late check out so as not to charge me, and also that it wouldn't be a big deal if I came down a little after that.  

After checking out, I still had some work to do before my wife was done with her meetings, so the staff let me into the business center where I worked until the end of the day.

The rooms themselves were very clean, tasteful, attractive, and in working order.

Bottom line: unless you're really trying to save a few dollars by going somewhere else, this place is fine.  I'd definitely stay here again.

23/11/08 | Link | Rating: 4.0
8. Rebecca U.
Failed to meet expectations. Most hotels have bad soap but it's at least hypoallergenic, theirs gave me a rash. "High speed Internet" went from very poor to completely disconnected within 10 minutes of using it. It didn't come back up. Pillows were super smashed and unfluffable, nothing like a sore neck in the morning. Bed was nice, room was clean, staff was polite, amenities were severely lacking for what one expects from a $130 a night room. Should have gone elsewhere.

16/01/12 | Link | Rating: 1.0
9. Zeke A.
I don't think I'll ever be coming back to Durham any time soon, but this hotel was okay.  I came for my cousin's wedding.

Restaurant service is slow and the wait staff is hit or miss. The front desk staff was friendly for the most part. Some of the employees were abrasive, while others definitely had Southern charm. The shuttle drivers were really nice. The bar staff consistently delivered good service and drinks of course!

As for the room - it was comfy. Nothing out of the ordinary. Clean and everything worked properly. Typical, normal Marriott. The area around the hotel is dead if you ask me.

If I had something to do in Durham again, then I would probably stay here, if not I'd head somewhere else like Raleigh or Chapel Hill.

07/01/10 | Link | Rating: 3.0
10. Michael G.
I mean, when it comes to hotels, a Marriott is a Marriott is a Marriott. This was the full ordeal kind, not a Courtyard or anything, and it was nice. Was only here for a couple of nights, but it was clean, nice eating area with a bar, food was decent, overpriced as usual, but it sufficed. Was here on business so slept, hung out, did some things, that was it.

Durham, not great, but we found some places to grab some food and relax without feeling as if our lives were being threatened. It's a cab ride away from Duke, but if you rent a car, it probably takes about 10 minutes. If you're purpose is to visit Duke, go to a game there or your reason is in someway affiliated with the Blue Devils, this hotel serves its purpose.

If it's for something else, well it still meets all the criteria of a good "home away from home" for a few nights. It's attached to a convention center so I'm sure there are a lot of big events/meetings that take place and if you're coming here for that purpose, I don't see why you'd be disappointed. Nicer inside than it looks outside.

p.s. For some reason, CBS didn't work on our TV. Didn't care so I didn't ask for it to be fixed, but that was odd.

18/01/10 | Link | Rating: 4.0
11. lynn s.
Parking is not convenient.  First room key they gave me upon check in, I went to open the room and someone else's stuff was in the room.  I am just glad the person was not in the room.  Had to drag all my stuff back down to the desk and get a new room.  the next day I had to go back to the front desk because my key card stopped opening the door.  

The staff was friendly, the valet staff was wonderful.  The hotel was clean.  The room was comfortable.  The downtown location is good for walking around town.

19/10/10 | Link | Rating: 3.0
12. Wendy V.
Clean and quiet! Nice hotel and excellent room service!

31/07/12 | Link | Rating: 4.0
13. Len P.
I love this Marriott. Is it the nicest one ever? No. In the area? Close to it. Is downtown Durham hopping and fun? Not really... but it's getting better, you can walk (or stumble) to some fantastic restaurants from this hotel, the rooms are always clean, the staff is very friendly and it's also a short walk to the Amtrak station. Honestly, I think this place is fantastic... the perfect nexus of price and ease for the area.

03/05/12 | Link | Rating: 4.0
14. Annabel S.
Quiet, complimentary parking but free valet if you are a female traveling alone and arrive at night.  This Marriott is small but comfortable.  The room service was fast and tasty.  Quick drive to the Duke Campus so convenient as well.

05/11/12 | Link | Rating: 4.0
15. Adam B.
This is really your only choice directly in downtown Durham, so it's a good thing this is a solid, competent lodging. The free parking and reasonably-priced food and bar add extra value. The location is also prime, adjoining the Carolina Theatre and the Durham Convention Center and just a 5-minute walk from the Durham Performing Arts Center.

Service was a little perfunctory at check-in and from room service, but it was efficient. The bar staff is very friendly.

The rooms appear to have been recently renovated [in a gold and raspberry color scheme] and are surprisingly nice with attractive touches and a comfortable bed. The bathrooms are smallish and standard-issue Marriott, but otherwise room space and furnishings are good quality. Request a corner room, which has windows on two sides for lots of light.

The fitness center has a pretty good selection of equipment. The atrium lobby is a little '80s-looking, but spacious and comfortable. If you stay here, you must try the restaurant Revolution, just a two-minute walk from the hotel and absolutely wonderful. The sleek design and creative menu make it one of the very best restaurants in Durham, and it won't break the bank, either.

16/12/09 | Link | Rating: 4.0
16. Faith D.
Nice Marriott...until the loud dance troupes moved in surrounding our room. Our first night was uninterrupted and the room was quiet. Housekeeping brought us a mini fridge on request and without an added charge. Internet was wireless and free in the room. Bed was comfy and cozy.  

Second night, no sleep. We called the front desk all night in hopes the dancers would be tamed. In the morning, we spoke with management who tried very hard to make up for the lousy night of dancers practicing routines for a competition. The staff were friendly and helpful.

The breakfast buffet was fully stocked with fresh fruit and a variety of hot items.

This hotel is located downtown and a variety of quality restaurants are within walking distance. If you have a car, you can park for free in a designated Marriott lot across the street.

The hotel has been renovated so it's nice, but you can tell by the structure that it is an old building. All-in-all I like Marriotts...I just don't like those dancers. Marriott, if you are listening, put special groups together on the bottom floor because I know I was not the only hotel guest that was unhappy.

05/03/10 | Link | Rating: 3.0
17. Jeff S.
I've stayed here a few times, a few times for the LGBT Pride festival in the area and most recently for my cousin's wedding.  

It's a nice hotel with the usual amenities.  The restaurant and bar are in the middle of the lobby which seemed awkward but I wasn't there for that.

Parking for the hotel is in a lot (not a deck) across the street and it's very limited.  

The rooms are comfortable but I think the entire Marriott chain is overpriced.  If it weren't for group rates, I'd bypass it altogether.

06/06/11 | Link | Rating: 3.0
18. Alex O.
It's just fine.

27/07/12 | Link | Rating: 3.0
19. Don T.
Good location,  overall nice place,  housekeeping was very late in making up my room, concierge room is closed on weekends

03/10/13 | Link | Rating: 3.0
20. Elizabeth F.
Nice hotel with a big comfy bed and free wi-fi and free parking.  If you are traveling alone, the hotel will also provide you with free valet parking.  A very nice touch!  They also provide rooms at the government rate (with iD)

My meeting was held at the Durham Convention Center which is attached to the Marriott.  So in all this was very convenient.

11/03/12 | Link | Rating: 4.0
21. Elizabeth N.
Pros:
- Great location - you are close to good places to eat
- Free valet parking for women - I have never seen a hotel do this but I love it
- Clean rooms
- Cheap room service

Cons:
- Rooms are small
- Front desk are not the most knowledgable.  Two separate times I asked about extending my stay and they say they are sold out but I am always able to go online and book a room
- lacks southern charm you might expect

13/03/13 | Link | Rating: 3.0
22. Mike K.
This hotel is not fancy.  It's a Marriott.  But what it does have going for it is that the staff are helpful and it's right in the middle of downtown Durham, which, these days, is a good thing.

We stayed there recently for a wedding and the related events.  Since we requested a quiet room, they put us at the very end of the hallway.  The room was pretty much what you would expect from a chain hotel except that since we were on the end of the floor, we had windows on two sides of the room.  Since Durham is a fairly low-lying town, we had the most incredible panoramic view of both the downtown area and the surrounding landscape.

The other great thing about our stay was that when we walked out of the hotel lobby so many places - Pizzeria Toro, Rue Cler, Alley 26, Blue Cafe, Scratch, Dame's Chicken & Waffles, Toast, art galleries, etc. - were just steps away.  You could occupy yourself for a couple days with just the stuff within walking distances of this hotel.

So, the lesson here is enjoy what surrounds the hotel and do your best to get a corner room.

22/06/13 | Link | Rating: 4.0
23. Candy J.
Very helpful and nice staff.
Nice room and clean.
The most comfortable bed we slept on during our trip to Virginia Beach. I would stay here again.

30/06/14 | Link | Rating: 5.0
24. Naomi K.
Super convenient to the downtown Durham. Where else can you stay where you can walk to Rue Cler for beignets in the morning, or stumble back from quality cocktails at Alley, or store your leftovers pizza of Toro's or hang your cigar smoke jacket from whiskey's, or... the options are endless. Plus if you feel in the mood, you can work out at the Y all day and get your bball game on.
Parking's a bit of a hassle though, cause that lot across the street obviously doesn't really accommodate everyone.

20/03/13 | Link | Rating: 4.0
25. Brittany J.
My boyfriend and I are from Florida, and we always stay at Marriotts when traveling. We were a little concerned when we arrived at night, just based on the area, but the hotel inside was beautiful and clean. The breakfast was awesome - REAL fresh fruit!  As a vegetarian, it's nice to have decent fruits and oatmeal to choose from intend of the usual breakfast meat platters and carb-loaded pancakes. Would definitely stay here again!
Oh, and the only reason I didn't give it 5 stars is because there's NO POOL!  This Florida girl needed some pool time and was pretty disappointed they didn't have one. Great gym though!

16/02/14 | Link | Rating: 4.0
26. Maureen C.
They have good tp in the rooms.

16/07/14 | Link | Rating: 3.0
27. Rachel A.
Not all Marriotts are created equal. If comparing to the Marriott in Richmond, VA, Durham wins hands down.

First of all, free internet. I hate paying $15 to get connected.

Second, a Belgium waffle maker in the concierge lounge during breakfast. I had two servings.

Third, close proximity to Duke University, Brightleaf Square, and American Tobacco Historic District. Beer, food, shopping, and how awesome would it be to attend a Duke basketball game!

The lobby is nice complete with a shoe shiner. Everything else, is no frills. I got a corner room which was supposed to be the nicer room but when I pulled back the shades all I saw was a dilapidated street and the building of the Herald Sun Papers. I quickly covered my windows.

The concierge lounge is small but has everything you need from a computer desktop and printer to a television and well rounded breakfast. There was fruit, oatmeal, juice, coffee, waffles, bacon, eggs, sausage, and pastries. While this may sound like a standard breakfast buffet, it was more varied and tastier than the breakfast in Richmond, VA.

My visit was short but enough to scope out the grounds and get a feel of the surroundings. I wasn't too impressed with the hotel but it is one of the better Marriotts. I'd give it a 3.5 (round to 4). The breakfast, wifi, and comfy bed are their strong points.

24/01/14 | Link | Rating: 4.0
28. Ellen C.
This is the worst marriott I've stayed at and I should've checked the yelp reviews before booking. I'm paying $190 (including taxes) for a one night stay, and there's no bottled water in the room, all their vending machines are out of order (I checked 4 floors). So I trudged to the lobby to buy some water from the front desk. She's too lazy to grab it for me so points me to the snack room, which I find 2 small bottles of water that's enough for a 2 yr old.

Why is everything here so inconvenient?  How do you not have bottled water?  So basic.

Would not stay here again. Marriott San Francisco was so much better managed and well kept.

03/04/14 | Link | Rating: 2.0
29. Christina L.
This place is located right in the heart of downtown Durham, making it a convenient landmark. It is also the location of the Convention Center, where NC Comicon recently took place - aka tons of people walking around in comic character costumes.

Large place but rooms are still your typical Marriott rooms. Again, low-flow shower heads, sigh. No fan and no towel rack in the bathroom - WHY???!! Hair dryer has no "cool" temperature option. The only place you can open up your luggage is on top of your bed, so if you've got multiple people in a double, you better take turns. Asked for feather-free pillows because I absolutely cannot sleep on those ridiculously soft pillows. The room came with 3 pillows, ranging in firmness. I felt like Goldilocks. They gave me one incredibly limp pillow that folded on its own when I lifted it up, a semi-firm/semi-soft pillow, and a firm pillow. Seriously??

This room had a couple outlets at the lamp beside the double beds - yes! Bed is firm, but blankets are very thin, especially considering that it's almost winter. But plenty of towels are provided. Oh, and spotted a bug in the corner of the ceiling - ugh.

20/11/13 | Link | Rating: 3.0
30. Mike I.
Really horrible experience here. Stayed here for a wedding, and called ahead of time to request early check-in.  Not only was I told that early check-in was not possible, but the hotel actually wouldn't even let us check in one time, saying they were still cleaning the rooms.  Check-in time is 3pm, our wedding shuttle left at 5pm and our room STILL wasn't ready. It was almost comical. They offered to give us a free pass to the YMCA so that we could take a shower. I can't make this up.  Then the semi-rude woman at the front desk told us that we could only check in if we accepted a room with 2 full beds vs. the room that we had booked (king bed). We had to leave our bags at the front desk and have them put in our room when it was finally available around 7pm.

I stay in hotels 2-4 nights per week for business & I've never experienced anything like this.

28/02/15 | Link | Rating: 1.0
31. Navin K.
I always stay at this hotel when in Durham for business. Even if it wasn't company approved, the location and value are hard to beat. They have clean rooms, a serviceable gym and business center, and a good restaurant on the premises for breakfast or dinner if you are too lazy to walk 5 minutes to sample many of the excellent eating options Durham has to offer.

My primary beef with this facility is that it doesn't display the hustle and attention to detail that today's business traveler demands. On my most recent trip, I almost missed my early morning return flight to the Bay Area because they put me down for a cab ride at 5:45 am instead of 4:45 am - this happened even though I stopped by the front desk the evening before and asked them to double check that they had the time down right.

This has nothing to do with character or politeness. Everyone I've encountered has impeccable manners and is the epitome of southern charm. But they need to go that extra step or they'll quickly get leapfrogged by someone that does.

14/03/15 | Link | Rating: 3.0
32. Dip P.
Great hotel and great customer service!  Kevin at the front desk really saved my week!  I could have been sleeping on the streets otherwise!

01/12/14 | Link | Rating: 5.0