Eight months ago when I didn’t even know for sure if the Park Hyatt St. Kitts would even open its doors in time I made a reservation there. This is the Hyatt luxury brand’s first foray into the Caribbean. And it’s been delayed interminably.
When the project was first announced in 2009 it was supposed to open in 2013. That got pushed back.. to 2015.. and to 2016.. and to earlier in 2017. They even started taking reservations but didn’t open in time to meet those. The property finally opened its doors to guests last month.
This 126 room property is a category 7 property. That means it costs 30,000 Hyatt points per night for a free room; 48,000 points per night for a suite (minimum 3 night stay); and 15,000 points and $300 for cash and points.
Confirmed suite upgrades can book into your choice of 3 different room types: Park Suite King (pool view), Seaview suite and the Beachside suite.
There’s one important hitch about the property — and since I had my ‘concierge’ book it via e-mail I didn’t know about it prior to making the reservation. The hotel has a 90 day cancellation policy.
I understand 7-day policies at resorts, and even 30 day policies at small properties in remote parts of the world. If you take up inventory they may have difficulty reselling it should you cancel. But I never expected it — let alone three months’ — at a hotel with over 100 rooms in the Caribbean.
I checked the details of my booking and found the cancel policy when I realized I might have to cancel. I didn’t want to cancel, mind you, but less than two months out I realized there was some possibility I wouldn’t be able to make the trip for some health issues (not my own). I wanted to know what my ‘drop date date’ would be, was it a week out? two weeks out?
That’s when I learned about the 90 day rule. Fortunately the hotel was willing to waive this, perhaps they wanted their confirmed suite back or they realized how silly it is.
Nonetheless I wanted to make sure everyone was aware of this that’s considering booking this property. Even using points — versus a prepaid rate — locks you in. In fact it’s worse than that, because when you don’t show up on a points booking Hyatt has you on the hook for an undisclosed amount of cash, rather than merely forfeiting the points.
If you’re considering booking here, the hotel’s policies mean that your plans need to be really, really firm. Does a hotel’s cancellation policy affect how willing you are to stay there?