Grand Lisboa : The MacauTripping Review 2016
Inside The Lotus Egg
A series of giant doors, manned by orange suited security guards, welcome guests from the plaza to the Grand Lisboa's lobby. The scale of the lobby is grand in height, made grander by glass baubles hanging from the ceiling around a series of circular back-lit panels. The effect is one of being underwater or in a giant bubble chamber, sort of like the "fizzy lifting drink" scene in Willy Wonka and The Chocolate Factory.
To the left of the doors is the entrance to the casino - a sextuple-decker sandwich of gambling whose main ingredients are baccarat, baccarat and baccarat with a sprinkle of slot machines and a dash of blackjack. VIP casino areas emblazoned with important sounding names surround the main casino floors on all levels. These VIP lounges reserved for casino junket operators and the players they have brought to Macau. It appears that the casino entrance is being renovated - the property opened in late-2007.
To the right is the hotel reception desk - a half dozen or so circular desks tucked under a massive crystal light fixture and wall of mirrors. I arrived at the reception desk and was greeted warmly by a receptionist. A bellboy arrived instantly and stood at the ready behind me. The receptionist took my passport and my credit card, charging it one night's equivalent room rate as a deposit.
Grand Lisboa generally prices its hotel rooms at a 15% premium over neighboring properties, including Wynn Macau. The hotel room rates quoted on Grand Lisboa's website never change. Most travel retailers were quoting similar rates - $279USD/night (~$2000HKD). After studiously checking rates multiple times per day via the Kayak iOS app, I jumped on a sale price offered within the app by Hotels.com - $179USD/night (~$1300HKD) plus tax... a great rate. There are no resort fees at Macau hotels.
After completing the check in process, the receptionist handed me my passport, credit card and keys to the hotel. The bellboy - dressed in traditional European grand hotel bellboy uniform - took my luggage and walked me through the lobby that led to the hotel elevators.
This second lobby isn't filled with standard hotel comforts - comfy couches, lobby bar, a coffee stand or gift shop - instead they prominently display antiquities from Stanley Ho's collection. Spread throughout the lobby are museum cases filled with ancient jade and ivory carvings, roped off displays containing urns, vases, sculptures, furniture and dioramas.
As fascinating as this stuff may be, it feels completely out of place in this context of a modern, bustling hotel lobby.
A dramatic chandelier sits atop a small water feature that contains lotus flowers and scary sculptures of bird of prey.
The lobby also features the next iteration of the Lisboa concept - the Grand Lisboa Palace - which is currently under construction on Cotai.
I'd rather have a place to get a cup of coffee, a cocktail or a place to relax while waiting to meet someone. These chairs ain't for chilling.
The lobby also features a hall mark of classic hotel design... the grand stair case. It was roped off.