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Marriott/Ritz-Carlton Rewards and STARS amenities

Marriott/Ritz-Carlton Rewards and STARS amenities

Old Apr 13, 16, 3:43 pm
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Marriott/Ritz-Carlton Rewards and STARS amenities

Ritz-Carlton today launched the Marriott Rewards and Ritz-Carlton Rewards Member-Only rate program, offering discounted rates for members of their Rewards loyalty program.


(1) What is the impact of this on getting amenities with Ritz-Carlton stays?

STARS amenities will apply to Member-Only bookings.

Virtuoso or other consortial amenities will NOT be applicable.


(2) Should you book a Virtuoso or Members-Only rate?

Take a look at the "extra amenity" being offered by going to virtuoso.com/hotels and taking a look at the amenity list for your desired hotel. The extra amenity is typically worth $100, so you will need to evaluate that versus the Members-Only discount.

Assuming you're interested in the extra amenity and your booking is less than $1000, it's worthwhile to book the Virtuoso rate.

If your booking is more than $1000, it may be worthwhile booking the Members-Only rate with STARS amenities.


(3) What are the STARS amenities?

Continental breakfast for two daily - more extensive offerings at select hotels - on bookings made at the published rate (including Members-Only).
Complimentary Internet
Customized welcome amenity or service


(4) What about upgrades?

Upgrades are a Virtuoso amenity but not (technically) a STARS amenity. However, it may be possible for a STARS agent to get you upgraded anyway.


(5) What about FHR amenities and Members Only rates?

Fine Hotels and Resorts are apparently left out of this new program.


(6) Anything else to know?

(a) Your Rewards Membership number will have to be in the booking, and the last name must match.

(b) Your STARS TA will have to input the specific STARS rate code.
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Old Apr 13, 16, 5:27 pm
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Thanks DAvid! Any word on whether Hyatt or SPG will do something similar?

Thanks
Fdw
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Old Apr 13, 16, 5:29 pm
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Originally Posted by FlyingDoctorwu View Post
Thanks DAvid! Any word on whether Hyatt or SPG will do something similar?

Thanks
Fdw
Nothing in the pipeline today, but I wouldn't be surprised if they go this route within the next few years.
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Old Apr 13, 16, 6:40 pm
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Hyatt has done a beta-test of a Hyatt Horizons amenity program ... and Starwood has its Luxury Privileges amenity program ... but those of these are Virtuoso-equivalent amenity programs. I have no idea what their future plans are.

STARS is not primarily an amenity program it's termed a "recognition" program, the idea that STARS guests receive an addition level of recognition at a Ritz-Carlton. So STARS is not equal to Virtuoso, but STARS + Reward Member rates may trump Virtuoso for larger bookings.

Originally Posted by FlyingDoctorwu View Post
Thanks DAvid! Any word on whether Hyatt or SPG will do something similar?
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Old Apr 13, 16, 8:13 pm
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Based on their break-even estimate, it sounds like the STARS discount will be 10%. Autoclub and senior rates often match that (at least at other chains) so STARS doesn't sound very impressive at most any rate level. Complimentary internet, I already get through Marriott Plat.
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Old Apr 13, 16, 8:35 pm
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Does this apply to Mandapa? From what I can tell on the website (aka doing a dummy booking), the answer is no?
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Old Apr 13, 16, 8:48 pm
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Originally Posted by RichardInSF View Post
Based on their break-even estimate, it sounds like the STARS discount will be 10%. Autoclub and senior rates often match that (at least at other chains) so STARS doesn't sound very impressive at most any rate level. Complimentary internet, I already get through Marriott Plat.
But you get free breakfast for two with STARS but not with AAA or AARP.
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Old Apr 13, 16, 8:49 pm
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Originally Posted by callmedtop View Post
Does this apply to Mandapa? From what I can tell on the website (aka doing a dummy booking), the answer is no?
Not all RC's will necessarily participate, and probably not any of the RC Reserve properties. Mandapa is giving Virtuoso-like amenities through STARS, even though they haven't yet been accepted into Virtuoso: breakfast, $100 resort credit, upgrade, free internet.
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Old Apr 14, 16, 9:02 am
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some actual Virtuoso vs. Rewards pricing

The special Sabre code has been enabled, allowing me to compare Virtuoso and Rewards Member rates.

Here are quotes for a one night stay at RC San Francisco on 15MAY.


2 VIRTUOSO 499.00USD GUAR /C-2D C
TTL TAX 81.09
APPROX. TOTAL PRICE 580.09 USD
INCLUDES TAXES AND SURCHARGES
VIRTUOSO, CONTINENTAL BREAKFAST FOR 2 GUESTS DAILY, INTERNET,
SEE RATE RULES, GUEST ROOM, 1 KING

17 REWARDS MEMBER RETAIL 489.00USD GUAR /C-2D C
TTL TAX 79.46
APPROX. TOTAL PRICE 568.46 USD
INCLUDES TAXES AND SURCHARGES
REWARDS MEMBER RATE, GUEST ROOM, 1 KING



5 VIRTUOSO 539.00USD GUAR /C-2D C
TTL TAX 87.59
APPROX. TOTAL PRICE 626.59 USD
INCLUDES TAXES AND SURCHARGES
VIRTUOSO, CONTINENTAL BREAKFAST FOR 2 GUESTS DAILY, INTERNET,
SEE RATE RULES, GUEST ROOM, 2 QUEEN

18 REWARDS MEMBER RETAIL 528.00USD GUAR /C-2D C
TTL TAX 85.80
APPROX. TOTAL PRICE 613.80 USD
INCLUDES TAXES AND SURCHARGES
REWARDS MEMBER RATE, GUEST ROOM, 2 QUEEN



4 VIRTUOSO 619.00USD GUAR /C-2D C
TTL TAX 100.59
APPROX. TOTAL PRICE 719.59 USD
INCLUDES TAXES AND SURCHARGES
VIRTUOSO, CONTINENTAL BREAKFAST FOR 2 GUESTS DAILY, INTERNET,
SEE RATE RULES, 1 BEDROOM SUITE, 1 KING

19 REWARDS MEMBER RETAIL 607.00USD GUAR /C-2D C
TTL TAX 98.64
APPROX. TOTAL PRICE 705.64 USD
INCLUDES TAXES AND SURCHARGES
REWARDS MEMBER RATE, 1 BEDROOM SUITE, 1 KING


Observations:

(1) The Rewards Member savings are not significant enough to make up for the lost Virtuoso "extra amenity."

(2) Not all room categories are listed with Rewards Members rates (including Club).

(3) AAA rates are just a bit lower ($474 for a Guest Room King), but the $15 savings do not make up for the lost STARS breakfast amenity.

(4) Looks like Virtuoso would be the better value except for an exceptionally long stay.
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Old Apr 14, 16, 9:09 am
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Thanks for pulling the rates, and agreed DavidO, that program doesn't seem impressive at all unless the property isn't participating in Virtuoso or FHR.
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Old Apr 14, 16, 4:43 pm
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However, top Marriott status gives breakfast (at least on weekdays) and free high speed internet, right, so for elites it's a matter of comparing the value of the special extra amenities to the additional cost over a AAA rate if I understand right.
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Old Apr 14, 16, 9:42 pm
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Originally Posted by MSPeconomist View Post
However, top Marriott status gives breakfast (at least on weekdays) and free high speed internet, right, so for elites it's a matter of comparing the value of the special extra amenities to the additional cost over a AAA rate if I understand right.
Marriott Platinums do not get breakfast at R-C or Edition properties, unfortunately, with a small number of exceptions (typically Asian properties, IIRC).
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Old Apr 15, 16, 3:02 am
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Another chance could be at some properties a best rate claim. Safes 25% on the lower rate.
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Old Apr 15, 16, 10:02 am
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any thoughts on opportunity for upgrade with either? One better than other?
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Old Oct 28, 19, 7:49 am
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Are these only available through travel agents? or can anyone with an IATA number access these rates? Can they be booked on brand websites like marriott.com?
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