As a former SPG loyalist I’m not at all happy with Marriott’s takeover of Starwood. One of the things that irks me about Marriott is how inconsistent they are.
For example, Platinum members don’t receive complimentary breakfast at EDITION or Ritz-Carlton. Actually understanding the welcome amenities at various hotel brands requires a degree.
Furthermore, Marriott just isn’t as good as Starwood was when it comes to honoring elite benefits, plain and simple. In the past it was fairly easy for Marriott to do so, given that they didn’t promise a whole lot. But now that they’re promising more (suite upgrades, late check-out, etc.), this has proved to be a challenge for the brand.
When Starwood hotels didn’t comply with rules, Starwood was good at holding them accountable. That’s something that Marriott has struggled with.
There are a countless number of hotels just doing whatever the heck they want, with no real punishment from Marriott… here’s the latest case of that.
When you go to a hotel’s booking page on marriott.com, you’ll often see that they list “notices.” This typically includes things like the hotel being under construction, a pool being temporarily closed, etc.
The JW Marriott Guanacaste Resort & Spa has such a notice, but that’s not what it lists. Instead it says:
Please note – Marriott Rewards upgrades based on availability at check-in. Upgrades are granted to next room category not to suite.
Marriott’s terms explicitly state that upgrades are to be to the best available room, including standard suites, subject to availability.
Does this hotel care? Nope, apparently not.
In fairness, there have always been hotels that play games with upgrades. I guess I sort of appreciate how transparent this hotel is about not upgrading, so that I can just avoid the hotel altogether?
(Tip of the hat to joseror)