With my travel done for 2015, I took a look at my hotel stays for the year. I think I’d like to be home more.
I requalified for the top top tier hotel statuses that I care about, Hyatt Diamond and Starwood Preferred Guest Platinum. I requalified with Starwood at over 50 nights, which means I earned 10 suite night awards.
I don’t value the extra Starpoints or 24 hour check-in benefit enough to push myself to 75 nights with Starwood, and I value my Hyatt status too much to hit 100 nights with Starwood for my own Ambassador. I do have the equivalent from Hyatt, a Private Line Agent, grandfathered in from back when any Diamond could request one.
Here’s my hotel nights broken down by chain for the year. This includes ‘non-qualifying’ nights. For instance, Hyatt Gold Passport reward nights do not count as elite qualifying and I spent 3 nights on points at the Park Hyatt Sydney and 5 nights on points at the Park Hyatt Maldives.
View from my room at the Park Hyatt Sydney
Water Villa at the Park Hyatt Hadahaa Maldives
Similarly, I spent a night at an IHG hotel speaking at a conference that posted as non-qualifying because the room was part of a master billing arrangement.
I logged 137 hotel nights in 2016. That’s more than I’d like, though more than enough to retain Starwood Platinum and Hyatt Diamond.
As I’ve written Hilton is my ‘backup chain’ because they have the easiest to earn mid-tier status. I was actually a Hilton Diamond this year via a targeted promotion (a large portion of American AAdvantage Executive Platinum members were given Hilton Diamond).
I received my first-ever Hilton suite upgrade at the Hilton Colombo
I earned Marriott Silver in 2014 with 13 nights, but only spent 1 night with Marriott in 2015. Even with their ‘rollover nights’ I won’t retain any kind of status with Marriott. Of course United mid-tier elites get free Marriott Gold status which is great, they can make Marriott their ‘backup chain’ in lieu of Hilton.
One night at the Battle House Renaissance in Mobile, Alabama
At some level I’m grateful for the Marriott-Starwood merger. I’ll worry less about requalifying as a Starwood Platinum, splitting the bulk of my stays evenly between Starwood and Hyatt.
My handful of stays outside of big chains were among the most interesting. In Logan, Utah I discovered what could be the most lucrative earning structure of a hotel rewards program. I returned to the clean and comfortable albeit Spartan Premier Inn attached to the Abu Dhabi airport. And I spent a night at the lovely Washington Duke Inn, invited to campus by a law school class.
Washington Duke Inn, Duke University