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Impresario vs Virtuoso vs AMEX vs...

Impresario vs Virtuoso vs AMEX vs...

Old Jan 1, 20, 12:40 pm
  #1  
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Impresario vs Virtuoso vs AMEX vs...

I noticed DavidO mention Hilton's Impresario program in the thread of Tokyo hotels and was curious but found very little information about it online compared to readily available information about Hyatt Prive or Marriott STARS as examples.

Apologies if there is already a good thread about these types of programs in general but I got to thinking is there a good breakdown of these programs and if booking through one has some particular advantage over another?

For example, I was under the impression that FSPP trumps Virtouso benefits for Four Seasons, Prive over Virtouso for Hyatt, STARS and holding Marriott Bonvoy elite status would be better than benefits with AMEX FHR, etc.

Specific to the Hilton properties does Impresario trump Hilton Diamond status alone at a Conrad or WA or can the two benefits be combined?
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Old Jan 1, 20, 3:59 pm
  #2  
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Generally you should be able to add your Hilton membership to a Impresario/Virtuoso/etc booking so you'd still have status recognized. I had Diamond benefits stack with Virtuoso when I stayed at WA La Quinta for example.

Re what trumps what, generally I'd always try and book a client on the hotels on program rate if possible. Sometimes benefits aren't like for like, but a phone call can sort that out. Amex FHR comes into its own with the 4th night free which would be better value that a lot of own hotel programs, I just call the sales team though and they'll generally be open to giving me the same offer.
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Old Jan 2, 20, 9:45 pm
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Originally Posted by Fly_IAD View Post
I noticed DavidO mention Hilton's Impresario program in the thread of Tokyo hotels and was curious but found very little information about it online compared to readily available information about Hyatt Prive or Marriott STARS as examples.

Apologies if there is already a good thread about these types of programs in general but I got to thinking is there a good breakdown of these programs and if booking through one has some particular advantage over another?

For example, I was under the impression that FSPP trumps Virtouso benefits for Four Seasons, Prive over Virtouso for Hyatt, STARS and holding Marriott Bonvoy elite status would be better than benefits with AMEX FHR, etc.

Specific to the Hilton properties does Impresario trump Hilton Diamond status alone at a Conrad or WA or can the two benefits be combined?
Hi - typically with Impresario, you are getting your Diamond Benefits (except sometimes Diamond is only continental breakfast depending on the property where Impresario is always full breakfast). So with Impresario, while you'll still get your diamond benefits, typically the Impresario benefits will trump the Diamond benefits as they are better. Hope that makes sense.
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Old Jan 3, 20, 9:35 am
  #4  
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Impresario has a flexible $100 credit (vs. Virtuoso which is designated either for F&B or Spa, depending on the hotel).

You can always input a hotel frequent guest number in a Virtuoso or other preferred partner booking, and you'll get the benefits of your status (although perks don't "double up"). On the other hand, you won't get credit at some hotel chains for a wholesaler booking (i.e., a reservation made through a wholesaler like Expedia, Classic Vacations, etc.). I believe Marriott is one of those...


Originally Posted by Fly_IAD View Post
I noticed DavidO mention Hilton's Impresario program in the thread of Tokyo hotels and was curious but found very little information about it online compared to readily available information about Hyatt Prive or Marriott STARS as examples.

Apologies if there is already a good thread about these types of programs in general but I got to thinking is there a good breakdown of these programs and if booking through one has some particular advantage over another?

For example, I was under the impression that FSPP trumps Virtouso benefits for Four Seasons, Prive over Virtouso for Hyatt, STARS and holding Marriott Bonvoy elite status would be better than benefits with AMEX FHR, etc.

Specific to the Hilton properties does Impresario trump Hilton Diamond status alone at a Conrad or WA or can the two benefits be combined?
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Old Jan 3, 20, 3:24 pm
  #5  
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Thank you all - this is helpful to know. Essentially if your paying vs using points as payment it seems to make very little sense (at least to me) to try and obtain a hotel status (in the same way I have wondered about the point of airline status if only flying up front) I wonder if this knowledge has trickled down to many customers who do in fact pay standard rate vs pay with points at hotels within the STAR, Prive or Impresario programs. I found very little discussion on the Hilton forum as an example.
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Old Jan 3, 20, 10:39 pm
  #6  
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Remember that STARS removed the upgrade benefit in 2019 so in reality Virtuoso and AMEX FHR trump Mariott at its own program.

In fact, I booked the StR SIN with my Virtuoso agent and since they improved their website the rate stated it was an instant upgrade at booking and confirmed immediately. I still use my agent, but sometimes I want to secure a rate so email him afterwards with special requests etc.
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Old Jan 4, 20, 9:18 am
  #7  
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In fact, due to the outcry from STARS agents, the upgrade amenity was quickly added back. STARS agents are MILUX's top sellers, and their clients will always have priority for upgrades. Here are the STARS amenities per the agent-facing STARS website:




Originally Posted by m0hamed View Post
Remember that STARS removed the upgrade benefit in 2019 so in reality Virtuoso and AMEX FHR trump Mariott at its own program.
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Old Jan 4, 20, 5:12 pm
  #8  
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Originally Posted by DavidO View Post
In fact, due to the outcry from STARS agents, the upgrade amenity was quickly added back. STARS agents are MILUX's top sellers, and their clients will always have priority for upgrades. Here are the STARS amenities per the agent-facing STARS website:

Good to know. In this instance the upgrade at booking still trumps (for me).
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Old Jan 5, 20, 6:46 pm
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Thanks DavidO this is helpful! In terms of STARS priority for upgrade would that be higher than say a Bonvoy Platinum, Titanium, etc ?

Switching gears, and appreciate you cannot post the publicly available benefits of FSPP but my impression (and I guess maybe I'm not paying that close attention on some of my bookings) is that they are the same as Virtuoso save for the upgrade priority?

Originally Posted by DavidO View Post
In fact, due to the outcry from STARS agents, the upgrade amenity was quickly added back. STARS agents are MILUX's top sellers, and their clients will always have priority for upgrades. Here are the STARS amenities per the agent-facing STARS website:

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Old Jan 5, 20, 7:00 pm
  #10  
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I donít know whether a Bonvoy elite member or a STARS booking would get the upgrade. I suspect it varies by property, and I find that relationships trump everything else in this business.

FSPP bookings do get upgrade priority over Virtuoso and FHR.

I can talk in vague generalities about FSPP amenities. Imagine the typical set of Virtuoso or FHR amenities. FSPP gets a full breakfast including buffets and room service, and the use of the hotel credit is determined by each hotel, whether itís F&B, Spa, or other resort activities.
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Old Jan 5, 20, 7:23 pm
  #11  
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Originally Posted by DavidO View Post
... and I find that relationships trump everything else in this business.
This ^^^ on the both the guest and TA side.
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