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Loyalty Program News / Loyalty Programs / Viva Vegas / Hyatt Gold Passport / Starwood Preferred Guest / Hilton HHonors / Marriott Rewards / Fine Hotels and Resorts / → All Tags
If you're a frequent hotel guest, then you're probably a member of that hotel's loyalty program. Or you should be, so you can earn and use loyalty points at different hotels across the world.
While using a hotel's loyalty program is pretty straight-forward (find the hotel brand in whatever city you like and book), things work a little bit differently in Las Vegas which is dominated by massive hotel-casino resorts. In past years, you needed to be a member of a casino's players club program to earn rewards like upgrades, dinner comps and free rooms.
But that's no longer the case. Even first-time visitors to Vegas (affectionately called Vegas Virgins on our sister site, VegasChatter.com), can get a free room, a killer view, and more, all through their existing loyalty program membership.
See where your favorite hotel loyalty program can be used in Vegas below!
Starwood Hotels / Hotel Apps / Hotel News / Starwood Preferred Guest / Loyalty Program News / → All Tags
The new app, which was built from scratch to run on the iOS 7, was created in response to a massive increase in mobile traffic for Starwood, and launched simultaneously in Chinese.
The company has optimized more than 50,000 images of their properties for iPad retina display, with the result that scrolling through the app is just like flipping through your favorite glossy travel magazine, except that you can make a reservation without leaving the app -- and with just one click, if you've preloaded your information.
Hotel Loyalty Programs / Starwood Hotels / Marriott Hotels / Marriott Rewards / Starwood Preferred Guest / → All Tags
Marriott, Hilton, and Starwood Hotels have all made changes to their reward/loyalty programs as of late, and while there may be a silver lining here or there in terms of hotel participation and member benefits, the long and short of it is that your points won’t go as far. Here’s the down and dirty:
Citing pricing and popularity as the main motivations, Marriott rearranged its tier structure, moving 36% of its hotels into a higher point category while making only 1% less expensive. Marriott also created a new category for its 12 most popular properties, raising the cost of a night’s stay to 45,000 points from 40,000. These changes will go into effect on May 15th.
Changes are coming much earlier for Hilton on March 28th when it will add a 10th category for its top hotels and charge approximately 95,000 points per night. Stays during peak periods (i.e. the holidays) will see the harshest increases in point requirements, but Silver, Gold or Diamond elite status will enjoy a 5th night free when they book consecutive nights.
Hotel News / Starwood Preferred Guest / Hotel Loyalty Programs / Hotel Partnerships / Delta Airlines / → All Tags
A new partnership was announced this morning between Starwood and Delta Airlines, and it's a doozy. Starting March 1, SPG elite members will be eligible to earn one Starpoint for every dollar spent on a Delta flight—not to mention free checked bags, priority check-in, and priority boarding on eligible Delta flights for Platinum members.
And that's all in addition to the regular miles earned on flights. In other words, you're earning points before you even get to the hotel. Not a bad deal, eh?
Luckily, the partnership works both ways, so if you're a Delta Medallion member (which you actually have to be in order to participate in the program) who's staying at a Starwood hotel, then you automatically earn SkyMiles, as well as being entitled to late check-out and free WiFi (huzzah!).
The idea is to "provide elite members of both loyalty programs reciprocal benefits," and, as SPG Senior VP Chris Holdren states, "This partnership is the first of its kind. To have SPG Gold and Platinum members earning points on Delta flights is something that really hasn't been done before. You know that saying, 'A friend of yours is a friend of mine'? It kind of brings that idea to life."
For more info on Starwood's new "Crossover Rewards" partnership, read on!
Summer Road Trip Hotels / Sheraton Hotels / Nashville Hotels / Free WiFi / Starwood Preferred Guest / → All Tags
Ahhh...we all remember what it's like to be young and in love on a cross-country road-trip staying in a different hotel each night. Or maybe not. For those of you who never got the chance to drive across America after college, we've got a special Summer Road Trip series from Teddy Worcester, a recent Wheaton College grad who's making his way out to San Fran for a job in tech. Along the way, he's hitting up about six hotels and reporting back to us on each one. So grab your iced beverage of choice, settle into your lawn chair and let the sprinkler run.
After another 10 hours on the road filled with torrential downpours and hundreds of miles of Virginia and Tennessee farmland, we pulled into Nashville. We went directly to the Sheraton Downtown Hotel where we stayed for the night.
I had reserved the hotel weeks ago through my Starwood Preferred Guest account with the cash and points option, which set me back $45 and 2,800 Starwood points. The room regularly books for $179 ($208.80 total with tax).
Hotel Cars / W Hotels / Hotel Lobbies / Starwood Hotels / Starwood Preferred Guest / Loyalty Program News / Barcelona Hotels / Formula One Hotels / → All Tags
No, the W Barcelona hasn't turned into one of those European shopping malls with cars being raffled off by pretty women in tight dresses. The answer is pretty simple, actually: Starwood is gearing up to announce a new partnership to sponsor the Mercedes-Petronas Formula One team, and just in time for the press conference tomorrow, an actual formula one race car has been put on display in the lobby, for guests to admire.
We're used to just seeing cool art, a cocktail bar, and maybe some of that weird signature W grass in lobbies. But a race car? That'll do nicely!
Hotel Loyalty Programs / Loyalty Program News / Starwood Hotels / Starwood Preferred Guest / Starwood Ambassadors / Hotel Restaurants / Hotel Bars / → All Tags
Starwood just launched a brand new culinary program for SPG members that provides discounts at over 500 restaurants, bars and cafes, as well as other perks like online cooking classes taught by Starwood chefs. Just in time for the launch, Starwood built a brand new SPG Restaurants & Bars website, on which guests can type in the name of the city they're traveling to and find out what discounts they're eligible for.
But, as with any major points program, not all hotels are created equal. So we did a little digging to find out just which cities are offering the biggest bang for your buck.
Click below to find out which ones top our list!
Hotel Amenities / Hotel Dessert / Hotel Freebies / Starwood Hotels / Starwood Preferred Guest / Hotel Loyalty Programs / Starwood Ambassadors / → All Tags
On the sidelines, if you've checked into a Starwood property over the past few weeks, you will have received a token of the brand's
appreciation burning desire to make you, too, a member of the SPG ambassadors program. At Aloft, for example, all guests are receiving little purple foil-wrapped chocolate bars. Bearing the slogan, "Being an SPG member has never been sweeter," the yummy snack directs you to Starwood's website to learn more about the program.
Knowing how much of a weakness everyone (including us) has for chocolate, we're guessing they've been successful in, at the least, catching people's attention.
Hotel Club Lounges / Hotel Deals / Starwood Preferred Guest / Hotel Loyalty Programs / Loyalty Program News / Starwood Hotels / Sheraton Hotels / Manhattan Hotels / Killer Views / Hotel WiFI / Photo Gallery / → All Tags
120 Sheraton Club Lounges around the world got an upgrade this year, and we just happened to have caught a glimpse of the one in Times Square yesterday during one of our routine Manhattan hotel inspection rounds (we don't actually do those, but it sure sounds fun, doesn't it?).
The VIP lounges are only accessible to SPG members, but regular civilians who want to cough up an extra $50-$150 (depending on the season) can also experience the lofty life too.
In the mornings, fruits, cereals and other breakfast items remain laid out until 11am; while in the evenings, dessert is brought up, hors d'oeuvres are served, a bar opens, and guests are invited to linger as long as they like. You see, at Sheraton, the Club Lounge is open 24/7—no weekday closings, no curfew. And because the facility is always available, they've made the new design super user-friendly with individual TV screens, plenty of power outlets all over the place, and of course, killer views everywhere you turn.
Click below to see our photo gallery!
Hotel Loyalty Programs / Loyalty Program News / Starwood Hotels / Starwood Preferred Guest / Starwood Ambassadors / Hotel News / → All Tags
Remember two years ago when we first got wind of this super-secret Starwood Ambassadors program? Well, it turns out the program is now going public.
Today Starwood unveiled a couple of big changes to their Starwood Preferred Guest loyalty program starting on March 1st which includes personal ambassadors for SPG members who have spent 100 nights annually in Starwood hotels.
Starwood’s ambassadors work one-on-one with guests to understand their preferences and what matters to them on each trip to deliver a customized experience on property. Ambassadors also provide services beyond the hotel and are even empowered to assist guests when they’re not traveling
SPG also introduced a new loyalty tier for the devoted SPGers--SPG Lifetime which gives guests who stay 250 total nights and who have maintained their elite status for five years (consecutive or not), a lifetime of SPG Gold status. Members who tally up 500 stays and who have maintained their elite status for ten years (consecutive or not), will become SPG Platinum for life.
No good deed goes unpunished? Singer Gavin DeGraw was maliciously beaten by some "thugs" and then bizarrely struck by a taxi, although not seriously, after he left a bar on the Lower East Side the other night with some friends.
The NY Post reports that he was taken to Bellevue Hospital where he has been hospitalized with a broken nose and cuts on his face. Whoa. Talk about a rough night.
Just days before on Friday, he was giving private piano lessons to two young girls as part of Starwood Preferred Guest's partnership with Live Nation where SPG members can trade in their points for once-in-a-lifetime music experiences.
So remember the other week when we told you that Starwood Preferred Guest was linking up with Foursquare for a new Starpoints promotion? We've been down on Foursquare for a while since the benefits weren't outweighing the annoying sign-in/find places/check-in hassle. But this new promotion is totes legit. And it kinda made us like Foursquare again.
We had a confirmed reservation at the Element Las Vegas over the weekend and once we got there, we signed into Foursquare and sure enough, we got 250 Starpoints just for checking in. (We also got a message from one of our Foursquare friends saying, "You're baaaack!") Sadly, we didn't unlock the Free Resort Night Award but 250 Starpoints is good enough.