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Hilton Executive Lounges Being Phased Out?

Hilton Executive Lounges Being Phased Out?

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Old May 17, 18, 2:20 am
  #61  
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I too agree the US based lounges are the most pathetic. Seriously, chips, soda, and pretzels? Asian properties are the best WW IMO and I hope if there is a standard set that that is it.
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Old May 17, 18, 8:07 am
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Originally Posted by merle123 View Post
Others have likened the decline and elimination of lounges to declining comforts/services of airlines. IMHO both are manifestations of what I call the Walmartization of America. Generally speaking, Americans want the best of everything free and if free isn't possible, at the lowest possible price. So, if there are 2 Hiltons in the same market where one has a EL and one does not, would many of us pay extra for the one with the EL? No - we'll take it for free but not if we have to pay more for it.
In the case of Hilton, I've seen rates for "upgraded" rooms with access to the Executive Lounge at a higher price and on occasion have taken them up on the offer. Especially when traveling with my husband, it meant savings on breakfast, drinks and evening munchies for two people as well as a sane place to relax and maybe even a nice city view. I/we must not be the only people willing to pay extra for that or Hilton wouldn't offer it.

Still, if the "Executive Lounge" is a cramped, unattended room on a low floor with only chips, coffee and soda on offer, I'll pass.
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Old May 17, 18, 1:34 pm
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When the economy is doing fine, like it is, many businesses are finding that they don't have to give anything away as they are already busy. Especially not expensive snacks and alcohol that people will over consume. I know everyone is an expert on how businesses should be ran. If you feel there is a huge lack of service and freebies across the travel industry, by all means, start your own business, and fill that gap.
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Old May 17, 18, 1:52 pm
  #64  
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Originally Posted by evergrn View Post
I don't understand why so many haters of US lounges on this thread. What do you have to gain by demanding that EL's be closed? I doubt it's going to lower the rates or drive the management to enhance Diamond benefits in other ways. As it is, I feel like Diamonds get full (not continental) complimentary breakfast at probably ~half of all Hiltons/DT or more. And whether/not the Diamond gets free full breakfast downstairs does not seem to correlate with whether/not there's an EL there. PLEASE KEEP THE LOUNGES, AND OPEN MORE!
I wouldn't say I hate the lounges; more that the existence of ELs will adjust to the market for them, like any good and service. The thing is there's a lot of growth in the US towards limited service properties. That plus AirBnB indicates that it might not be something in demand for a bunch of folks, and hotel chains have to do cost/benefit analysis just like they do for room service.

Originally Posted by evergrn View Post
Quite frankly I'm getting tired of reading this argument. Diamond is not being given away. Aspire card is $450/year. Only way to make that really worthwhile is to stay at Hilton a lot. Last year (as a matched Diamond member who otherwise would've been Silver), I spent >$6000+tax on 25-30 nights as a leisure traveler. Even with that level of loyalty and spending, are you saying I shouldn't have a path to Diamond perks? Plus, US lounges are typically not overcrowded. I can't remember the last time I couldn't get a seat at a US EL. I don't know about Europe. But it's actually in Asia where I've most often encountered lack of seats.
If it wasn't worthwhile, Hilton wouldn't be signing credit card deals with Amex.

Originally Posted by Athena53 View Post
In the case of Hilton, I've seen rates for "upgraded" rooms with access to the Executive Lounge at a higher price and on occasion have taken them up on the offer. Especially when traveling with my husband, it meant savings on breakfast, drinks and evening munchies for two people as well as a sane place to relax and maybe even a nice city view. I/we must not be the only people willing to pay extra for that or Hilton wouldn't offer it.
There are also hotels like Embassy Suites, Homewood Suites, Andaz (for a non-Hilton example) and some Canopys that offer receptions/EL-ish benefits for ALL guests. So I freely grant there's a market for high touch kind of customer service in the hotel market. I just wonder if it will gravitate to boutique properties or high end ones as opposed to one size fits all in markets where it doesn't fit great. Less pretzels and coke bare minimum effort, but the ones that exist will be done well.
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Old May 17, 18, 2:27 pm
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Originally Posted by eponymous_coward View Post
I just wonder if it will gravitate to boutique properties
This just made me think of Kimpton and their nightly wine hours. This is a thing for them chainwide, and it gets a lot of buzz; pretty much an upmarket version of the ES manager's reception.
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Old May 17, 18, 6:16 pm
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I am at the Hilton San Francisco Union Square. I was told by an employee that their lounge closed about 2 years ago.

So even if it isn’t an official Hilton deal. Obvoiusly the owner/operators are seeing a better value by getting rid of them. Especially, domestic US hotels. This is all at the same time as Marriott is rolling out their M Club Lounges. I saw in one the other day, that’s a true lounge. It reminded me of an upscale airport lounge.
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Old May 17, 18, 6:38 pm
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Originally Posted by flyou10 View Post
I am at the Hilton San Francisco Union Square. I was told by an employee that their lounge closed about 2 years ago.

So even if it isnít an official Hilton deal. Obvoiusly the owner/operators are seeing a better value by getting rid of them. Especially, domestic US hotels. This is all at the same time as Marriott is rolling out their M Club Lounges. I saw in one the other day, thatís a true lounge. It reminded me of an upscale airport lounge.
Calling BS on this one. Was there in September 2017. Used the Lounge...it was open, functioning and an above average Lounge.
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Old May 17, 18, 6:49 pm
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Originally Posted by BlueZebra View Post
Calling BS on this one. Was there in September 2017. Used the Lounge...it was open, functioning and an above average Lounge.

Um, ok? So since I am sitting in the hotel right now, I just text the virtual concierge... no lounge. No lounge on the map, no lounge showing on my digital key.
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Old May 17, 18, 7:48 pm
  #69  
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club lounges are such a big deal in asia that Four Seasons has them at almost all of their asian city hotels..

this kind of thing (just one example) is hugely dependent on owners, contrary to many FTer perceptions

hmm
Originally Posted by jamesteroh View Post
California:Hilton SF-Union Square (on O'Farrell)-Lounge permentantly closed
Last edited by jamesteroh; May 7, 11
Originally Posted by Tami A Miller View Post
SFO Hilton Financial District DOES have an Executive Lounge but the one in Union Square does not.
was this thread referring to hilton hotels & resorts brand ?
hotel counts for that brand >
owned managed franchised
_ 66 178 U.S.
1 25 17 americas (excluding U.S.)
53 48 40 europe
5 43 2 middle east & africa
7 83 7 asia pacific
U.S. managed - average room count
733 - hilton hotels & resorts
454 - waldorf
surprisingly high to me

Last edited by Kagehitokiri; May 17, 18 at 9:16 pm
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Old May 17, 18, 9:11 pm
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Originally Posted by BlueZebra View Post
Calling BS on this one. Was there in September 2017. Used the Lounge...it was open, functioning and an above average Lounge.
The lounge in the Hilton SF Union Square had been closed for around 7 years when I was last there in December 2015. I had been staying there annually for a conference since around 2005. It used to be a terrific lounge on the top floor with a beautiful view of the city. It appears that there is a bar/lounge open again on the top floor ("Cityscape", according to a web page I found), but I don't think it's an executive lounge.
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Old May 17, 18, 10:23 pm
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Originally Posted by milesmilesmiles View Post


You can add the Capitol Hilton in DC to list of bottom tier lounges. Most of the time it is a complete zoo.
yep, Capitol Hilton sells rates w/ lounge access for $10 extra, and the lounge has no windows...but its open for breakfast and evening snacks 7 days per week! hard to hate that. anyone know of other lounges w/ food on Friday & Saturday nights?
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Old May 18, 18, 4:55 am
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Originally Posted by BlueZebra View Post
Calling BS on this one. Was there in September 2017. Used the Lounge...it was open, functioning and an above average Lounge.
Nope...this property hasnít had a lounge for many years.
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Old May 18, 18, 7:01 am
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My error. I was referring to Hilton SF Financial District. My apologies....
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Old May 18, 18, 7:48 pm
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Originally Posted by eponymous_coward View Post
I wouldn't say I hate the lounges; more that the existence of ELs will adjust to the market for them, like any good and service. The thing is there's a lot of growth in the US towards limited service properties. That plus AirBnB indicates that it might not be something in demand for a bunch of folks, and hotel chains have to do cost/benefit analysis just like they do for room service.
Yes, of course it's all business so the hotel industry will do what makes sense business-wise.
But their decisions will also be influenced to some extent by customer feedbacks. And to read all these comments here minimizing Hilton EL is frustrating, because they do nothing to motivate Hilton (and its franchisees) to open new properties with EL or try to keep open existing EL's. N.American properties will never elevate their EL quality to match Asia's, no matter how much we critique them. If anything, these types of comments will help fuel EL phase-out. EL's in N.America are good enough as they are, at least the ones I've been to.
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Old May 19, 18, 12:29 pm
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Originally Posted by evergrn View Post
Yes, of course it's all business so the hotel industry will do what makes sense business-wise.
But their decisions will also be influenced to some extent by customer feedbacks. And to read all these comments here minimizing Hilton EL is frustrating, because they do nothing to motivate Hilton (and its franchisees) to open new properties with EL or try to keep open existing EL's. N.American properties will never elevate their EL quality to match Asia's, no matter how much we critique them. If anything, these types of comments will help fuel EL phase-out. EL's in N.America are good enough as they are, at least the ones I've been to.
Our "minimizing" comments are borne out of frustration at being screwed over by certain properties and getting nowhere via complaint channels. Tourism in America means paying good money for cheap-cheap-cheap quality*, which bleeds into the EL product. Lazily chunked "scrambled" (powdered) eggs, flavorless melon, a few sad bananas, and a broken Nespresso is the "executive" breakfast in a metro-area business property. The "lounge" is all too often a converted junior suite, or if you're lucky, two whole standard rooms with the wall knocked down. I am looking at you, Hilton LAX and Mission Valley.

While I don't expect the lounges to go to Asian standards anytime soon (although if service industry wages remain this depressed for long enough, who knows once the labor becomes relatively cheap...), I am not going to lobby for a crappy product's preservation. Enforcing a minimum standard would be nice, in addition to giving elites (golds and diamonds or just diamonds, take your pick) the option to dine in the main restaurant. I'll take a guaranteed seat in the main restaurant rather than endure an overcrowded "lounge."
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