Posts Tagged With: Starwood

Lodging Review: Westin Snowmass (and part 1 of the luggage saga)

You know that saying “Man Plans, God Laughs”? Yeah, that kinda described the first couple of days of my recent ski trip, the first night of which was at the Westin Snowmass.

I had a Saturday-Saturday ski trip planned with my ski club at Snowmass, one of the four Aspen-area resorts that can all be skied using a single lift ticket. It was time to replace my skis so I wanted to demo a few different pair while finding the ones that worked best for me. As I planned this trip I decided I didn’t want to miss a day skiing with my friends, so I’d go a day early and demo several pair before they arrived.

So it was on a Friday in February I left Memphis, enjoyed my leisurely 3-hour connection in Houston and landed on-time at the Vail/Eagle County Airport (EGE). [I had decided against flying in to the more convenient Aspen Airport (ASE) based on my experience last year.] And I had no bags. Neither one of them. The helpful baggage agent found that the bags had made it to Houston and were in the process of being rerouted (and I could see the same info on the app). Since mine was the only Houston-Vail flight of the day, we both assumed they were going to Denver, which had a couple more flights into Vail later that day. She said they’d deliver them to me that evening. So I hopped in my rental car and headed to Snowmass.

As a side note, I had planned to use the Colorado Mountain Express shuttle to/from the airport but my flight out of EGE was around 7:30 AM and CME didn’t have a shuttle leaving the Aspen area that early. An Uber or taxi would have been around $200 so when I found a rental car for $280 that price was as cheap or only a little more expensive than the CME shuttle + Uber combined and I’d have the Independence of having a car if I needed it so it seemed the better option.

It was sunny on my drive to Aspen and it was late afternoon by the time I arrived at the Westin Snowmass. The valet greeted me promptly and I decided to just let him handle the car since I’d only be there one night. Of course since I had no luggage, all he had to deal with was the car.

Westin Snowmass Main Entrance (on the day I checked out)

The front desk is just inside the door and to the right. The lobby is fairly large as there’s a lounging area with après-ski hot beverages available to guests and the bar is off to the right beyond the front desk.

Westin Snowmass Front Desk

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The associate who checked me in was efficient and friendly. She recognized my SPG Gold status and asked if I’d prefer 500 points or a coupon for an adult beverage. Naturally, I took the points. I said I only needed one key but she said she’d give me two as the room had a slot where the card needed to be entered for the power to work. I appreciated that since it meant I wouldn’t have to use a card of my own for that purpose. I was given the keys to room 598 and pointed to the elevator which were not far away.

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Categories: Hotel, Lodging Review, Starwood | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Earn 2x Starpoints in Early 2017

Earn 2x Starpoints on your first three stays at ANY hotel in the SPG program from January 16 through April 15, 2017.

Once you register you’ll get a special offer tailored just to you.

As you can see, mine was to earn an additional 10,000 Starpoints.  This would be a fantastic offer if I had planned paid stays for the first few months of 2017.  Unfortunately I doubt I’ll be able to take advantage of this offer.

What was your special offer?

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Bonus Starpoints for SPG Amex Cardholders

Today I received an interesting email from Starwood.  By enrolling in their latest promotion I can earn 5,000 bonus Starpoints if I spend $5000 on my SPG American Express between now and the end of the year.  This is a no-brainer for me.  I make sure I put enough spend on my SPG card each year to maintain Gold status with them so I should easily reach this goal by the end of the year, even with time off for vacation and holidays.

Here is the email I received:

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Categories: American Express, Credit Cards, SPG Amex, Starwood | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Marriott-Starwood Merger Complete, Link Accounts Now

Late Thursday evening the merger of Marriott and Starwood cleared its last hurdle with Chinese regulators granting approval.  Other bloggers have already covered this in great detail so I’ll just provide the links here:

One Mile At A Time

Frequent Miler

Immediately after the approval it was announced that Marriott/Ritz-Carlton and Starwood accounts could be be linked.  There are a few execeptions but, in general, if you had a higher status in one program than the other, you’ll now have that higher status in both programs.

My experience linking accounts

I received emails from both Marriott and Starwood, each providing links that began on their site.  The Starwood email looked like this:

And the Marriott email looked like this:

I clicked on the link from the Marriott email and was directed to a webpage where I could select any of the three impacted programs: Ritz-Carlton, Marriott and Starwood.  I chose the Marriott link and was directed to a special login on their site.  Once that was accomplished a pop-up box notified me I’d be transferred to the Starwood site.  From there I entered my credentials on the Starwood site and at that point my accounts were linked.

I received the following email as confirmation:

I found it interesting that even though I initiated the process from the Marriott site, the email I received was from Starwood and included my SPG number.  Don’t know if there’s anything to read into that or not or if it’s simply because the SPG site was the final step in the process and therefore was the one to send out the email.

Update: Overnight I received an email from Marriott confirming my accounts were linked.

Before the linking I had Silver status with Marriott and Gold status with Starwood.  Once the linking was complete I noticed my Marriott status had changed to Gold as well.  I’m hoping that means we can get free breakfast at a Marriott stay I have coming up next month!

The linking procedure couldn’t be easier…as long as you can remember your passwords.  There’s no reason not to do it now and, believe me, the IT departments would much prefer you make the links yourself than depend on their software!

Categories: Marriott, Starwood | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Starwood and Uber Team Up!

2015-02-26 SPG Uber PromoPer the Starwood website:

Now you can earn 1 Starpoint for every U.S. dollar you spend with Uber®, and earn even more Starpoints® during your stays with SPG®. Just sign in and link your SPG and Uber accounts — then sit back and watch your earning accelerate.

There’s a link on the Starwood site to connect your SPG account and your Uber account. Very simple, very easy!  Then you must complete one stay at a Starwood property this year.  After that, you’ll earn SPG points each time you catch a ride with Uber.

If you’re using Uber while staying at a Starwood property you’ll get bonus points: 1 bonus point for us “preferred” (regular) members, 2 bonus points for Gold & Platinum members and if you’re a Platinum member with 75 nights you’ll get 3 bonus points. Note that once you spend $10,000 on Uber rides you’re no longer eligible to earn base or bonus Starpoints.

If you don’t yet have an Uber account, now is a great time to sign up for one. If you use my link you’ll get your first ride for free and I’ll get an Uber credit.  Uber is great for times when you need a ride but don’t want to rent a car.  I’ve used them for airport transfers and it was so nice not to have to worry about paying – or even tipping – the driver because it was all automatically billed to my credit card.

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Two Terrific Promos

A couple of hotel chains are kicking off the new year by offering brand new promotions!

2015-01-05 SPG Double Play promo

Starwood (SPG)

The SPG Double Play promo allows you to earn double Starpoints on stays of two or more eligible nights as well as 1,000 bonus Starpoints for every five nights, up to a max of 4,000 bonus Starpoints. You must register by March 31, 2015 and the promo runs January 5 through April 15, 2015.

2015-01-05 Club Carlson Promo

Club Carlson

Club Carlson is offering a targeted promo with early access to their Extend Your Stay, Earn 30K offer. If you register by January 12, you’ll get an additional 10,000 bonus points after your first Eligible Stay of two nights or more between January 12 and March 29, 2015.

You must register for the promotion using the link sent your email address.

As always, it’s free to register for both of these promotions, so it only makes sense to sign up even if you don’t currently have plans to stay with either of these chains. You never know when your plans might change and if you register now you won’t miss out!

Categories: Club Carlson, Hotel, Starwood | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

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