Staying With Kimpton This Winter? Don’t Forget The Secret Social Password

Filed Under: Hotels, IHG Rewards

IHG initially announced that they were purchasing Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants back in 2014, but up until this year the brands continued to operate separately. Earlier this year the Kimpton Karma Rewards program was integrated into the IHG Rewards Club program.

Understandably, many people were concerned that IHG’s takeover of Kimpton would mean that the brand would lose what makes it special. Kimpton has always been known for how well they take care of their guests, and that even though they had several dozen hotels, their properties always felt boutique.

The good news is that for the most part I think Kimptons haven’t changed too much, and now it’s nice to see the return of a very cool Kimpton feature. For years Kimpton has seasonally had a “secret social password” that you can provide at check-in to get a special surprise. This password was typically available through social media channels, so it was a way for Kimpton to engage with guests in a different way.

Kimpton had a social password this summer, and now they have one for winter. For stays through February 17, 2019, Kimpton’s secret social password is “chilled to perfection.”

So just mention that at check-in at any Kimpton property and you’ll get a special surprise, which could include something like a free upgrade, free breakfast, free parking, or something along those lines.

I’ve been impressed by how generous Kimpton has been with this promotion, since they typically provide something of real value. It’s not like they give you a 19 cent branded koozie.

So hopefully some of you can take advantage of this. Earlier in the year we saw lots of promotions to get IHG members to stay at Kimpton properties, so hopefully we see more of those over the coming months as well.

If you’ve had any experiences with Kimpton’s social password, please share what you were given!

  1. This summer in San Diego I was upgraded twice, one level for being Platinum, one for the secret password. Giant corner 1.5 bath suite!

  2. This whole Secret Social Password is just a gimmick for a failed chain and a merger that does not make any sense! Why not just offer a written benefits for IHG elites, participate in the Ambassador program, or offer tangible benefits to both such as waived enormous parking fees.

    I don’t get what the brouhaha is all about with the merger of the Kimpton Hotels into the IHG program. Not what we are used to for hotel stays. Cash rates $300+ and up with mediocre accommodation and hardly any benefits. I am truly trying to understand why the huge excitement about the Kimpton. Despite of the welcome gifts and upgrades, I remain blasé by this chain.

  3. Got a less than 19 cent jar of “hot cocoa powder” when we checked in at the Kimpton in Philly last winter so… wholly unimpressive so far.

    Similarly, got a drink ticket at the Kimpton Amsterdam last year. Slightly better than the chocolate powder but definitely not a room upgrade, free parking, or free breakfast this post is touting. More accurate is YMWV.

  4. @Kalboz You nailed it! I recently stayed at a Kimpton with Sprie- Ambassador and almost 100 nights this year. I did get an upgrade witch is more then I can say for any IC hotel (I won’t ramble on about that here) but what really bothered me was the attitude of the Kimpton employees. For example: I asked a housekeeper if I could get some towels and he asked me what room are you in? I replied with my room number, he said “Thats not my room!” I was perplexed and said its ok you can give me towels, he reluctantly obliged obviously annoyed that I would bother him. I asked the hostess in the restaurant for a coffee refill and she responded “Your server will be with you shortly” as she proceed to go back the the desk and stare into space while I waited another 10min for my waiter to be available. On a separate occasion I asked another server if she could get our bill and she replied “I’ll get your server” this is just a few of the examples of how it seems they don’t want to provide excellent service and I feel they want to do the bare minimum. I also feel they are always trying to overcharge for everything like they make you pay a like a resort fee but they call it an “Amenity Fee” its typically between $15-$20 per night and they justify it because they give out “free” coffee, tea and wine (only for certain VERY limited hours) if you don’t drink and plan to stay at the Kimpton be prepared to pay $15-$20 for your morning coffee and the privilege that you can contribute to alcoholism in America. They also nickel and dime you wherever possible, like offering you a breakfast included rate but making you pay for your beverage, charging you $1.50 for a piece of lettuce on a sandwich or $1.50 for a side of mayo. However you can get them to be helpful if you talk to managers, typically managers are empowered to resolve problems and I was able to take my concerns to managers in the past and I was happy with the resolutions but I just don’t know how excited I am to stay at Kimpton in the future because I really don’t feel the hospitality, I feel like I’m being victimized. But I keep going back for some reason 🙁 I really don’t know why lol But I agree with Kalboz I feel they are being “gimmicky” and in reality you are getting less then you are paying for.

  5. Used the password a bunch before the merger in Seattle/Portland usually got free continental breakfast (or a $10 x2) credit toward a cooked breakfast for each morning of our stay. Once in AZ we got free rental movie and popcorn (which they delivered to our room). The most valuable reward was in Seattle and it was free parking for our whole stay ($35/night at the time).

    This summer we used it in NY and the staff said we were the first to do so. They brought out a small prize wheel which I spun and got 2 free cocktails at the restaurant bar, which would have been $40 if we had paid for them.

  6. Last time we stayed for 2 nights at a Kimpton in Seattle we told them the secret password and also they knew it was my birthday. We ended up getting free parking both days (and that’s over $100 as parking in Seattle DT is hugely expensive.) We also got a bottle of wine and an appetizer brought to our room. And they had another promotion running there which gave us $20 off the restaurant and that’s in addition to the normal Kimpton $10 raid the bar credit which we also used in the restaurant. The Vintage went way beyond what we got the time before at another Kimpton in Seattle when we also knew the secret password….I don’t recall we got anything that time although we did like the hotel staff.

  7. @Apple, thank you for your input. But I did talk to a manager or managers and that left a bad taste in my mouth because we travel for fun and enjoyment and not for complaining regardless of how legit the complaints were.

    True, fantastic treatment we received by the managers at the Kimpton Everly Hotel ($300+ plus tax per night) who we emailed in advance about our special occasion. Highlight of our stay including but not limited to the following:

    – Room upgrade to top floor (16th) with amazing views facing the Hollywood sign.
    – Further upgraded for the second night to their Argyle Suite on the 7th floor also facing the Hollywood sign.
    – Roll-away provided for the stay at the suite and bedding for the 2nd child on the sofa without charges. No nickle and dime-ing, a 5-star trait.
    – Sparkling wine (Kenwood Yulupa Cuvée Brut), Bottle of Acqua Panna, and cookies & berries, as a welcome amenity for our special occasion.
    – 1 PM late checkout
    – Wine hour 5-6 PM offering white, red, and rose wine. 1st day the bartender acted as if he was annoyed when I asked for a glass of wine. On the 2nd day, as soon as I approached the bar area, an elegant Asian lady explained to me the various wines included in the happy hour (white, red, and rose) and she served me with a smile.
    – Excellent location with walking distance to the Metro, Pantages Theater, and short drive to many architectural masterpieces by Frank Lloyd Wright and to Griffith Park.

    Also, I am sorry to report that we had some issues but they were not a big deal really but for a $300/night rate, you’d expect better:

    – Check in at FD, the agent although very nice did not explain or even offer the $10 “Raid the Bar” Platinum benefit. Were not offered or given bottled drinking water either. When we requested late checkout during checkin, the FD said the best she could do is 1 PM and yet she did not notate the account. She also said to check with the FD on checkout day to get a later check out. When we requested again on the morning of departure, 2 FD associates said 12:30 PM!!! They said that you were fully booked and yet you were still selling rooms online. Finally allowed a 1 PM checkout. I found your FD associates at the this property to be some of the least flexible hotel employees ever and I do 70-100 nights a year in hotels. Not well trained on the benefits of the IHG program either.
    – Rooms were basic and bare! No coffee machine (I enjoy instant coffee), supplies to make coffee, coffee cups or mugs, no microwave oven. Requested by email but never receive it. On Sunday morning again I requested some items including a coffee mug and it took 45 minutes to deliver the items. Room service brought me a coffee mug but no teaspoon to stir my coffee. We travel with a well stocked cooler and had our instant coffee and creamer. Next time will bring our own spoon! 😉
    – Called Jean Q restaurant at least 10 times for dinner on Saturday nigh to no answer. Finally called the FD who put me on hold. I hanged up only to be called by a manager 15 minutes later. I told him I needed to order dinner from Jean Q (steak $48) and that they were not answering their phone. He said no problem and that he will have them reach out to me – this was around 8 PM. Past 9 PM, they did not call me. I went downstairs only to find the doors locked. Really, Saturday night closed at 9 PM? Walked out to the Shake Shack nearby and had a very satisfying meal.
    – Astronomical Jean Q and room service prices – example: 2 eggs only any style for $18+. Nearby Denny’s All American gets you 3 eggs, bacon, and hash all for around $12. I am cognizant that their kitchen is not Denny’s. We are not cheap, we pay our way, and occasionally splurge, but there has to be a value and enjoyment and not just spend for the sake of spending.
    – $45+tax parking fee per night!

    At ICH properties, as Platinum Ambassador, we book the cheapest rate and pay for suite upgrade to include access to Club IC. The final rate is comparable to that of the Kimpton but with breakfast and happy hour included at Club IC. No need for secret word or any other gimmick!

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