There’s a positive update for Marriott Bonvoy elite members at the newly opened St. Regis Chicago…
In this post:
St. Regis Chicago will offer elites breakfast
The St. Regis Chicago just opened as of last week, and it’s a property that many Marriott Bonvoy loyalists have been excited about. Unfortunately some of that excitement was diminished by the property’s disregard for elite members.
Marriott Bonvoy Platinum, Titanium, and Ambassador members, are entitled to their choice of 1,000 bonus points or complimentary continental breakfast when staying at St. Regis properties, per Marriott Bonvoy’s published breakfast benefits.
Well, for whatever reason, this hotel decided it didn’t want to offer breakfast to elite members, so it made up its own rules. It claimed that the hotel’s restaurant was run by a third party, and therefore breakfast wasn’t an option. That’s not how that works, though:
- There are plenty of St. Regis properties with restaurants run by third parties, and they still offer breakfast
- There’s no exclusion in the Marriott Bonvoy terms & conditions that allows these types of games
There’s a positive update, after quite a bit of backlash. The hotel will now be doing what it should have done all along, and will honor Bonvoy breakfast perks for elite members. I’m going to go ahead and guess the hotel won’t be particularly generous with this benefit, but that’s better than nothing.
A couple of thoughts about this situation
I’m happy to see this resolved, though I have a couple of thoughts.
First of all, what was the hotel thinking when it tried to implement this policy? Obviously hotels are individually owned, and a lot of owners are greedy, and not aligned with the overall mission of the hotel group. But the whole point of having Marriott manage properties is that the company is supposed to ensure that brand standards are met.
How exactly did the meeting go when they just decided they weren’t going to offer breakfast to elite members?
“Hey, so what are we thinking in terms of breakfast for Bonvoy elites?”
“Meh, let’s just not do that.”
“What do you mean?”
“Let’s just claim the restaurant is run by a third party, and therefore isn’t eligible for that benefit.”
Were there then just crickets in the room? Everyone went along with that?
Similarly, I’m amazed how several people in the comments section basically argued that there was nothing wrong with what the St. Regis was doing, and that if you’re spending $800 per night, you can also afford to pay for breakfast.
If I’m understanding this correctly, the argument is essentially that “hey, you’re rich, you can afford to not get what you paid for.” That’s an interesting perspective. I think maybe St. Regis properties should just stop offering in-room coffee machines, towels, and toiletries. Rich people can afford to bring those themselves, right?
That of course doesn’t even address the fact that many people splurge on a trip for a special occasion, might be redeeming points, etc.
The St. Regis Chicago has backtracked on its no breakfast policy, which is good news. I’m happy this happened quickly, before another St. Regis got any ideas about a cost cutting initiative. The fact that this hotel tried to play this game makes me less enthusiastic about staying here in general.
What do you make of the St. Regis Chicago backtracking?