Ritz-Carlton Reserve Joins Marriott Bonvoy

Ritz-Carlton Reserve Joins Marriott Bonvoy

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This is exciting — Ritz Carlton Reserve is joining Marriott Bonvoy, meaning that members will be able to earn & redeem points, as well as take advantage of elite perks, for stays at these properties.

What is Ritz-Carlton Reserve?

For those not familiar, Ritz-Carlton Reserve is a collection of a handful of spectacular resorts. What’s the difference between Ritz-Carlton Reserve properties and standard Ritz-Carlton resorts?

Ritz-Carlton Reserve properties have anywhere from 50 to 115 rooms, so they’re truly intimate properties with personalized service. Meanwhile some of Ritz-Carlton’s resorts are basically luxury factories, many with 300+ rooms. So the properties are in completely different leagues, and will offer a vastly different experience than what you’d find at your average Ritz-Carlton.

Currently Ritz-Carlton Reserve has five locations:

  • Dorado Beach is a 115-room Ritz-Carlton Reserve property in Dorado, Puerto Rico
  • Higashiyama is a 50-room room Ritz-Carlton Reserve property in Niseko, Japan
  • Mandapa is a 60-room Ritz-Carlton Reserve property in Bali, Indonesia
  • Phulay Bay is a 54-room Ritz-Carlton Reserve property in Krabi, Thailand
  • Zadun is a 115-room Ritz-Carlton Reserve property in Los Cabos, Mexico

I’ve reviewed Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve (in Puerto Rico) and Zadun, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve (in Los Cabos), so check out those reviews. Both hotels were amazing.

Zadun, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve

Ritz-Carlton Reserve joins Marriott Bonvoy

While Ritz-Carlton Reserve belongs to Marriott, the brand hasn’t at all participated in Marriott Bonvoy up until now. That’s to say that you couldn’t earn or redeem points, or take advantage of elite perks, for stays at Ritz-Carlton Reserve properties. That’s finally changing, and I’d consider that to be exciting.

As of today (April 14, 2022), Ritz-Carlton Reserve belongs to Marriott Bonvoy. Let’s go over the details of what you can expect.

Earn points at Ritz-Carlton Reserve properties

Marriott Bonvoy members will earn points at Ritz-Carlton Reserve properties at the same rate they would at other Marriott properties:

  • Earn 10x points per dollar spent at Ritz-Carlton Reserve properties
  • Receive elite points bonuses of 10-75%, depending on your status
  • If you’re paying with a Marriott co-branded credit card, you’ll earn bonus points for Marriott spending

Members will also earn one elite night for every night stayed, and those nights will also count toward lifetime status.

Redeem points at Ritz-Carlton Reserve properties

It’s now also possible to redeem points for stays at Ritz-Carlton Reserve properties. Marriott Bonvoy recently eliminated award charts, though we’re told to expect that Ritz-Carlton Reserve properties will cost 80,000 to 240,000 points per night at launch. For context, I’ve historically valued Bonvoy points at ~0.7 cents each.

Marriott Bonvoy’s fifth night free feature also applies at Ritz-Carlton Reserve properties. Cash + Points bookings will also be possible, though I find that these typically aren’t a great value.

Elite benefits at Ritz-Carlton Reserve properties

Marriott Bonvoy members can take advantage of select elite benefits at Ritz-Carlton Reserve properties. Below is a chart showing what members can expect.

A few specific things to note:

  • Not surprisingly, elite members don’t receive complimentary breakfast, just as is the case with Ritz-Carlton properties
  • There’s not even any sort of a room upgrade perk for elite members
  • It’s unique that Ambassador members receive a $150 resort credit at Ritz-Carlton Reserve properties, as that’s the first time we’ve seen a perk like that
Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve

Where’s the value in Ritz-Carlton Reserve joining Marriott Bonvoy?

Seeing Ritz-Carlton Reserve join Marriott Bonvoy is exciting in general. I guess there are a couple of ways to look at it.

On the redemption side, I don’t think the value here will be that huge:

  • I’d expect that award pricing will closely reflect paid rates, and there probably won’t be too much outsized value to be had
  • At the same time, if you have a lot of points, this is an opportunity to redeem points at what are now Marriott Bonvoy’s most luxurious properties
  • The fact that there’s no breakfast or room upgrades will take some value out of this for elite members

Personally I think this is more exciting on the points earning side:

  • You’re going to get the best value by booking through the Marriott STARS program, offering perks like free breakfast, a $100 resort credit, a room upgrade, and more
  • I view the Marriott Bonvoy points you can earn here as the equivalent of a discount in terms of how much a stay is costing you; for example, as a Bonvoy Titanium member paying with a co-branded credit card, I’d now earn 23x Bonvoy points per dollar spent, which is significant
  • Then there’s the general value of being able to earn elite nights, spending toward Ambassador, etc., for Ritz-Carlton Reserve stays
Zadun, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve

Bottom line

Marriott Bonvoy has added Ritz-Carlton Reserve as a participating brand, which is exciting. This is without a doubt Marriott Bonvoy’s most luxurious brand, and these properties are incredible.

Just keep in mind that redemption rates at these properties are going to be high (reflecting the cost of a stay in cash), and elite benefits limited (there are no upgrades or free breakfast). I think the best value here is for those who were going to stay at Ritz-Carlton Reserve properties anyway, since you can now get rewarded significantly for these stays.

What do you make of Ritz-Carlton Reserve joining Marriott Bonvoy?

Conversations (13)
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  1. Merry Chris Moss Guest

    If I had to guess, breakfast is included for everyone at these properties, even though the cash rates I checked stated breakfast was included but the points reservations did not. But I have no proof so want others to chime in from experience using points at these places, or other sources.

  2. iamhere Guest

    1. You do not list all of the reserve properties.
    2. This has to do with the relationship between Reserve and Marriott. Nothing more than that.
    3. "Not surprisingly, elite members don’t receive complimentary breakfast, just as is the case with Ritz-Carlton properties" - Not necessarily. It depends on the property.

    1. Super Member

      1. The Ritz-Carlton Reserve website suggests Ben listed all of the properties. Maybe instead of stating a negative you can add to the conversation by saying which one(s) he left out?
      2. Yes? Not sure what you're trying to say here. Don't know how Ben suggested otherwise.
      3. Once again, instead of smugly correcting Ben with no proof, why don't you state which properties do give elite members complimentary breakfast. I'm sure readers...

      1. The Ritz-Carlton Reserve website suggests Ben listed all of the properties. Maybe instead of stating a negative you can add to the conversation by saying which one(s) he left out?
      2. Yes? Not sure what you're trying to say here. Don't know how Ben suggested otherwise.
      3. Once again, instead of smugly correcting Ben with no proof, why don't you state which properties do give elite members complimentary breakfast. I'm sure readers will greatly appreciate that, as we are all interested in maximizing our return on points by reading this blog.

  3. Steve Guest

    Having read the review of the Dorado Beach resort I changed my vacation plans and stayed at the hotel. It was fantastic. And to now receive Bonvoy points it will my next stay even bettrt

  4. Eric Guest

    Thoughts on if we will have to cancel and rebook an existing Reservation in order to be eligible for points?

    Prices have gone up slightly from when I booked a few weeks ago for July timeframe at Zadun, but if I have to rebook maybe that is best to guarantee the 200k plus points that it likely will end up adding up to.

    1. Eric Guest

      I checked Bonvoy Terms and Conditions and there seems to be no mention of how previous reservations will be handled.

  5. Ken Guest

    Redeem side actually seems to have some value during peak times, if you're really committed to going during those times. For example, Zadun will give you a partial ocean view room with a plunge pool between christmas and new years for 200k points per night, so 800k for 5 nights with the free night, apparently without any taxes or fees. That's a lot to be sure, but cash rates (incl taxes and fees) for the...

    Redeem side actually seems to have some value during peak times, if you're really committed to going during those times. For example, Zadun will give you a partial ocean view room with a plunge pool between christmas and new years for 200k points per night, so 800k for 5 nights with the free night, apparently without any taxes or fees. That's a lot to be sure, but cash rates (incl taxes and fees) for the same room are over $4000/night, so over $20k for a 5 night stay. That's ~2.5c/pt. Unfortunately off peak times are much less value- ~70% cheaper in cash while only 15-25% cheaper in points.

  6. Jimmy’s Travel Report Gold

    The earn side is a big deal. We do a couple splurge trips a year, and now that this will count toward ambassador status we’ll put these RC Reserves on the list.

  7. AA70 Member

    Can you please finish your Europe trip reprt?

    1. AA70 Member

      report*

      and maybe a comment editing function :)

  8. Ray Guest

    The one in Bali is fantasballs. Almost makes me want to go back to Bali. Almost.

  9. FNT Delta Diamond Guest

    I never thought I would see the day when IHG has a unified loyalty program with better portfolio-wide benefits than Marriott. By my reckoning, Marriott now has six tracks within Bonvoy elite benefits: Legacy Marriott properties, legacy Starwood properties, resort-designated properties, all-inclusive properties, Vistiana timeshares, and now Ritz-Carlton Reserve. This is beyond confusing. It is a case study in how not to market a brand.

    Who would spend 240,000 points per night at a property?

    I never thought I would see the day when IHG has a unified loyalty program with better portfolio-wide benefits than Marriott. By my reckoning, Marriott now has six tracks within Bonvoy elite benefits: Legacy Marriott properties, legacy Starwood properties, resort-designated properties, all-inclusive properties, Vistiana timeshares, and now Ritz-Carlton Reserve. This is beyond confusing. It is a case study in how not to market a brand.

    Who would spend 240,000 points per night at a property?

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Super Member

1. The Ritz-Carlton Reserve website suggests Ben listed all of the properties. Maybe instead of stating a negative you can add to the conversation by saying which one(s) he left out? 2. Yes? Not sure what you're trying to say here. Don't know how Ben suggested otherwise. 3. Once again, instead of smugly correcting Ben with no proof, why don't you state which properties do give elite members complimentary breakfast. I'm sure readers will greatly appreciate that, as we are all interested in maximizing our return on points by reading this blog.

1
Steve Guest

Having read the review of the Dorado Beach resort I changed my vacation plans and stayed at the hotel. It was fantastic. And to now receive Bonvoy points it will my next stay even bettrt

1
ryan Guest

paging elon :)

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