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NY Times article about Marriott-Starwood merger's effect on frequent travelers

NY Times article about Marriott-Starwood merger's effect on frequent travelers

 
Old Dec 10, 17, 3:11 pm
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NY Times article about Marriott-Starwood merger's effect on frequent travelers

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/09/b...y-program.html

Lots of interesting stuff here. I'm quoted near the end of the article.

Bruce
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Old Dec 10, 17, 3:25 pm
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Homewood?

Funny that the author mentions Homewood as a Marriott brand (as you all know, it belongs to Hilton). I'm supposing he meant to say Residence Inn instead.
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Old Dec 10, 17, 3:42 pm
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Wow, I missed that error! Too many words!

Bruce
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Old Dec 10, 17, 6:15 pm
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So Mr. Lieber is a SPG-aphile. And rambles and rambles and rambles and rambles....

Reminds me of the grumbles and complaints pervasive on the SPG forum and their complaints that MR properties aren't SPG properties when they wander over here.

David
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Old Dec 10, 17, 10:22 pm
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Originally Posted by DELee View Post
So Mr. Lieber is a SPG-aphile. And rambles and rambles and rambles and rambles....

Reminds me of the grumbles and complaints pervasive on the SPG forum and their complaints that MR properties aren't SPG properties when they wander over here.

David
I skimmed the article before I read your post and I reached the same conclusion. It's mostly from an SPG perspective, not from a Marriott Rewards perspective.
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Old Dec 10, 17, 11:04 pm
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Originally Posted by markko View Post
Funny that the author mentions Homewood as a Marriott brand (as you all know, it belongs to Hilton). I'm supposing he meant to say Residence Inn instead.
I noticed the same thing. You can go to Marriott's website, scroll to the bottom, and see all the brands. What else is the NYT missing
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Old Dec 11, 17, 11:22 am
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tl;dr version: author digs SPG, worries that Marriott will tinker and lose the "cool" factor of SPG when the programs merge. Author tried to use Pittsburgh's somewhat-grungy-looking YMCA hotel and Airbnb to make a point, but I'm not sure what the point was.
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Old Dec 11, 17, 12:36 pm
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I thought the article was pretty on point, and I'm a legacy Marriott guy.

That being said, he hit the points ... SPG has some cool properties but doesn't cover a lot of real estate. Frankly, not every place has a market for cool properties ... not to knock PIT!

And, I agree that designing a program that retains the SPG customers is important and difficult.
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Old Dec 11, 17, 12:58 pm
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The Renaissance *looks* cool. I've stayed in Pittsburgh (downtown) one night, at a really good SHS next to PNC Park, and once by PIT in a dumpy Four Points for which I redeemed points.

PIT seems to have a coolness factor to it...and some decent hotels.
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Old Dec 11, 17, 5:21 pm
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The article has been corrected
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Old Dec 11, 17, 6:34 pm
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Originally Posted by markko View Post
Funny that the author mentions Homewood as a Marriott brand (as you all know, it belongs to Hilton). I'm supposing he meant to say Residence Inn instead.
Originally Posted by JHake10 View Post
The article has been corrected
So how was it corrected? Did they just delete that, or change it to something else? I see the correction notice at the bottom, but I'm not sure exactly where within the article that mistake was, so I'm not sure what's there now.
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Old Dec 11, 17, 6:39 pm
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What is cool about SPG hotels? They generally seem exactly the same as Marriott hotels to me. But the author is right to be concerned, of course the revised MR program is going to be worse than either of the current programs today.
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Old Dec 11, 17, 7:33 pm
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Originally Posted by sdsearch View Post
So how was it corrected? Did they just delete that, or change it to something else? I see the correction notice at the bottom, but I'm not sure exactly where within the article that mistake was, so I'm not sure what's there now.
There was a sentence mentioning some brands and Homewood was listed. The reference to Homewood was removed with no other brand added.

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Old Dec 11, 17, 8:10 pm
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Originally Posted by travelinmanS View Post
What is cool about SPG hotels? They generally seem exactly the same as Marriott hotels to me. But the author is right to be concerned, of course the revised MR program is going to be worse than either of the current programs today.
I think the coolness shows at the resort level. As far as the other brands, they're not much different, and I'd take a Marriott over a Sheraton about 80% of the time. Sheraton = Marriott, Westin = Marquis, etc. Maybe those aren't exactly the right matches but the idea is right.

I don't think anyone is leaving because of the brands or properties though, as the author seems to imply may happen. Marriott customers got some nice resorts in the deal and SPG customers now have a decent hotel where they get benefits and earn points pretty much anywhere they want to go in the US and many international locations. But as you said, if the new Rewards program is devalued, Hilton better be ready to handle the influx.
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Old Dec 11, 17, 9:49 pm
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Originally Posted by travelinmanS View Post
What is cool about SPG hotels? They generally seem exactly the same as Marriott hotels to me. But the author is right to be concerned, of course the revised MR program is going to be worse than either of the current programs today.
I had the same question when I read the article. I typically stay at JW in Asia, but have stayed at Sheraton and some other SPG hotels. Nothing cool about any of those.
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