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Gold: can I really not get access to the lounge?

Gold: can I really not get access to the lounge?

Old Nov 2, 12, 9:32 pm
  #1  
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Gold: can I really not get access to the lounge?

I'm staying in the Hilton Sandton for the third time in 4 weeks.
First time I came, I had no status with HHonors and they gave me a great room in the first floor, fully renovated, corner room, silent, great.

The next time I came (I was Gold by then) they 'upgraded' me to a much worse, old, weared, smaller room on the executive floor.

So this time, I though I would decline the executive floor room, and stick with the inferior room which is actually better. They told me if I did that, I would not be allowed into the lounge.

I insisted, it does not make sense to 'upgrade' me to a worse room.

What are the options, as a Gold, in this case? Can I ask for access to the lounge regardless of which floor I am staying? Can I ask something else if I decline the supposed 'upgrade' which is not?
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Old Nov 2, 12, 10:10 pm
  #2  
 
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Originally Posted by josep View Post
Can I ask for access to the lounge regardless of which floor I am staying?
You can ask; but they are right, HHonors Gold only gets lounge access if on the exec lounge floor.
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Old Nov 2, 12, 11:23 pm
  #3  
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Just for fun, lets see what the program terms say

‡ Executive Floor Lounge Access Policy: The following policy applies at all Conrad® Hotels & Resorts, Hilton Hotels & Resorts, and DoubleTree by Hilton™ hotels with Executive Floor Lounges. Executive Floor Lounges are available only at select properties.

• If you are an HHonors guest with Gold status, you and up to one additional registered guest in the same room will be granted complimentary access to the Executive Floor Lounge only if you receive a room upgrade to the Executive Floor or an upgrade to a room type that confers Executive Floor Lounge access benefits.
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Old Nov 2, 12, 11:33 pm
  #4  
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Originally Posted by cordelli View Post
Just for fun, lets see what the program terms say

‡ Executive Floor Lounge Access Policy: The following policy applies at all Conrad® Hotels & Resorts, Hilton Hotels & Resorts, and DoubleTree by Hilton™ hotels with Executive Floor Lounges. Executive Floor Lounges are available only at select properties.

• If you are an HHonors guest with Gold status, you and up to one additional registered guest in the same room will be granted complimentary access to the Executive Floor Lounge only if you receive a room upgrade to the Executive Floor or an upgrade to a room type that confers Executive Floor Lounge access benefits.
how and when you get the Executive Floor upgrade? at check in or have to call the hotel first and ask?

lounge access for gold member means free drinks and snacks each day?
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Old Nov 3, 12, 8:54 am
  #5  
 
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Originally Posted by emptiness View Post
how and when you get the Executive Floor upgrade? at check in or have to call the hotel first and ask?

lounge access for gold member means free drinks and snacks each day?
You are NOT guaranteed an Executive upgrade, whether you call ahead or ask or not. As with all upgrades, it is based on availability. Those who pay for the Executive room get it before complimentary Diamond who gets it before Gold. Also the Gold upgrade is NOT the Executive room. It is only an upgrade from your booked room which may include an enhanced room which MAY BE an Executive room but more frequently a corner room, room on higher level, room with a view, room with bathrobe & slippers, etc. The chance of getting a ER as a Gold has greatly diminished nowadays.

Diamonds get EL access regardless of ER upgrade. Golds ONLY get EL access if they have an ER.

Since the new upgrade rules have been in place, I've noticed that the my upgrades (as Diamond) have diminished. I actually got more suites before they became an official benefit and much better rooms. Recently (past 9 months), most hotels are sticking to the letter of the policy and giving me a one level upgrade (if at all) or an enhanced room, even when the hotel was not very busy and even at hotels I visit 2-3 times (3-7 days per stay) per year for the past 6 yrs. When I asked, I was told that the rooms were taken by ppl who had booked the rooms and other Diamond who arrived before me and so were upgraded before me. As a Diamond, I still got EL access.

I think as a Gold, you should NOT count on getting a ER and EL access if you have booked the lowest level room.

EL quality varies from place to place and continent to continent. The European and Asian EL seems to be far superior to the US ELs IME. The US rarely have any alcohol. The couple that did were fee-based. Snacks also vary. Overseas, usually hot hors-d'oevres; US: bar counter food (nuts, pretzels, chips, etc).

As been stated multiple times in this forum, if you REALLY want an ER (and EL access), BOOK IT!

Last edited by travelinfoo; Nov 3, 12 at 8:59 am
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Old Nov 3, 12, 9:12 am
  #6  
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Originally Posted by cordelli View Post
Just for fun, lets see what the program terms say
Cordelli, you could have a keyboard macro for that statement. It's a suitable reply for many, many threads started in this forum.
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Old Nov 3, 12, 1:28 pm
  #7  
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Originally Posted by josep View Post
The next time I came (I was Gold by then) they 'upgraded' me to a much worse, old, weared, smaller room on the executive floor.
I have never been in a Hilton where the executive rooms were smaller or more poorly located than a standard room. Occasionally, there is a standard room with a better view than the best view from an executive room, but the executive rooms are typically as large or larger, on higher floors. If you received a larger non-executive room, it was almost certainly not a standard room but an upgrade to a plus category of non-executive room.

Sometimes in life we have to make choices - the choice is not necessarily "all of the above". At checkin, you can ask about other possible upgrades, and pick what is most important to you.
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Old Nov 3, 12, 3:44 pm
  #8  
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Originally Posted by gemac View Post
I have never been in a Hilton where the executive rooms were smaller or more poorly located than a standard room. Occasionally, there is a standard room with a better view than the best view from an executive room, but the executive rooms are typically as large or larger, on higher floors. If you received a larger non-executive room, it was almost certainly not a standard room but an upgrade to a plus category of non-executive room.
Hilton Sandton. I can assure you, I've been here 3 times now in the last month and the non-executive floor rooms are better:
The first time I had no status: great corner room, totally renovated (in the first floor, that's the catch)

Second time: Gold already. Executive floor 'upgrade'. The room was smaller and specially, older. Not renovated. Ok though.

Third time: Executive floor upgrade. Same room style than second time: old, weary. By the elevator. Couldn't sleep between 3:30 and 5:30 because of noise. I asked for a change this morning. They got me a room on the second floor, same size, much better, renovated, better lighting... Same style than first time.
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Old Nov 3, 12, 3:58 pm
  #9  
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It happens at hotels. Not every room is ideal for every guest and what's available depends on who else has booked what. If you've got a favorite room, call the property directly and ask to book that room if it's available. Pay the rate for the room.
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Old Nov 3, 12, 4:17 pm
  #10  
 
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You might try setting your myway option to select the free Conti breakfast. The hotel may then prefer to give you lounge access rather than a meal chit.
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Old Nov 3, 12, 6:54 pm
  #11  
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Originally Posted by travelinfoo View Post
You are NOT guaranteed an Executive upgrade, whether you call ahead or ask or not. As with all upgrades, it is based on availability. Those who pay for the Executive room get it before complimentary Diamond who gets it before Gold. Also the Gold upgrade is NOT the Executive room. It is only an upgrade from your booked room which may include an enhanced room which MAY BE an Executive room but more frequently a corner room, room on higher level, room with a view, room with bathrobe & slippers, etc. The chance of getting a ER as a Gold has greatly diminished nowadays.

Diamonds get EL access regardless of ER upgrade. Golds ONLY get EL access if they have an ER.

Since the new upgrade rules have been in place, I've noticed that the my upgrades (as Diamond) have diminished. I actually got more suites before they became an official benefit and much better rooms. Recently (past 9 months), most hotels are sticking to the letter of the policy and giving me a one level upgrade (if at all) or an enhanced room, even when the hotel was not very busy and even at hotels I visit 2-3 times (3-7 days per stay) per year for the past 6 yrs. When I asked, I was told that the rooms were taken by ppl who had booked the rooms and other Diamond who arrived before me and so were upgraded before me. As a Diamond, I still got EL access.

I think as a Gold, you should NOT count on getting a ER and EL access if you have booked the lowest level room.

EL quality varies from place to place and continent to continent. The European and Asian EL seems to be far superior to the US ELs IME. The US rarely have any alcohol. The couple that did were fee-based. Snacks also vary. Overseas, usually hot hors-d'oevres; US: bar counter food (nuts, pretzels, chips, etc).

As been stated multiple times in this forum, if you REALLY want an ER (and EL access), BOOK IT!
ok so executive lounge is actually like a dining hall for gold,diamond and exec paid members? lets say if i am gold member and get exec room upgrade i get to eat breakfast at exec lounge? It doesn't mean free drinks and refreshments everyday right?
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Old Nov 3, 12, 10:23 pm
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Originally Posted by emptiness View Post
ok so executive lounge is actually like a dining hall for gold,diamond and exec paid members? lets say if i am gold member and get exec room upgrade i get to eat breakfast at exec lounge? It doesn't mean free drinks and refreshments everyday right?
Some EL's are not available on weekends, but otherwise yes, you can get a continental breakfast in the lounge each morning and snacks in the evening. Water and soft drinks are included, but beer, wine and alchohol is billed to your room.

As a HH gold, I cannot recall a time that I wasn't granted EL access, whether my room was on an exec level or not.
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Old Nov 3, 12, 11:20 pm
  #13  
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rooms assigned with exec lounge access mean both brekkie in the AM and snacks/wine/beer, etc in the evening with cold drinks/coffee throughout the day.............

Originally Posted by emptiness View Post
ok so executive lounge is actually like a dining hall for gold,diamond and exec paid members? lets say if i am gold member and get exec room upgrade i get to eat breakfast at exec lounge? It doesn't mean free drinks and refreshments everyday right?
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Old Nov 4, 12, 1:40 am
  #14  
 
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Originally Posted by emptiness View Post
how and when you get the Executive Floor upgrade? at check in or have to call the hotel first and ask?

lounge access for gold member means free drinks and snacks each day?
None of the US lounges i have been at have free alcohol. If you want free alcohol in the US stay at ES for the managers reception A lot of international lounges do have free alcohol.

Lounge access is suppose to be only for people on the exec level and diamonds. Some US properties will give lounge access, such as the Palmer House in Chicago and there is a Hilton in Orlando that will give access to golds. The Washington and Atlanta Hiltons only give lounge access if you are on the exec level or a diamond and a lot of international properties are now enforcing the rules.

There is no guarantee that you will be on the exec level if you dont have a room booked on that level.
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Old Nov 4, 12, 10:42 am
  #15  
 
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Originally Posted by mrjay View Post
You might try setting your myway option to select the free Conti breakfast. The hotel may then prefer to give you lounge access rather than a meal chit.
The only way a gold is SUPPOSE to get upgraded to the exec room is if his my way choice is set to that. Upgrade and cont. breakfast are one choice and points the other. If a gold gets upgraded to the Exec Level then they get lounge access in lieu of breakfast. If they dont get an upgrade or a non-exec upgrade, then its free continential breakfast. If they select extra points, no upgrade, no breakfast and no lounge access (unless an exec level room was booked)
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