Starwood Preferred Guest Posts

Hotel Review: The Westin San Francisco Airport

I've had an unofficial boycott of Starwood hotels for the better part of 10 years.  I felt I was unfairly denied a wheelbarrow full of Starpoints after a lengthy stay at a Starwood property in India in 2005, and so as soon as my former employer added other chains to the "approved provider" ...

Review: Al Maha Resort, Dubai Desert Reserve

The Al Maha Resort in the Dubai Desert Reserve is most definitely like an oasis in the desert.  I spent a ton of SPG points for our stay here, but I have no regrets, this place is really unique, and a luxurious spot in the middle of the desert.
Dubai Desert Reserve
We had ...

Review: Westin Singapore ~ Sea View Suite

We arrived in Singapore late on a Friday night. Despite being fairly well rested from our Korean Air flights, by the time we got to the hotel, it was midnight.
Our taxi pulled up to the Westin, and the entrance was typical Westin fashion: classy and minimal. I was surprised, however, that ...

Starwood Bidding War Begins

Breaking news this morning -- Starwood has accepted a bid of $78 cash per share by Chinese investor group Anbang, throwing a wrench into the Marriott - Starwood merger.
How could this be? Wasn't a contract with Marriott already signed?
Yes, Marriott and Starwood had signed ...
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Have you had the Westin Experience?

Westin hotels seem to employ an "Experience Specialist" at most of their properties.  I've had a few stays at Westin hotels the last few months, and wanted to share some of these experiences.  It has mostly been positive, but not always.

Westin Los Angeles Airport.  Photo ...

A Few More Flights to Go After a Year on the Road.

As 2015 is winding down, in this post I'm revisiting my year and what is to come.  I'll have a more complete summary of my 2015 travels later.  

Jacksonville may not be an exciting destination, but the sunrises along the beach were great. 
I wrote this a ...

Review: The Le Meridien Dubai Hotel and Conference Center

Among many luxurious hotels in Dubai, for my first extended visit to Dubai, I stayed at the Le Meridien Dubai and enjoyed my experience a lot.  This hotel has been under the Le Meridien flag for some time, but only in the last 18 months or so have they been a participant in the SPG ...

A Road Warrior's Tour of Inepitude, and Why I am Still Mostly Happy

Everyone hates flight delays.  How about a delay that was about 4 times the planned flight length?  To make it worse, the flight ultimately got cancelled.  
Sorry for the poor photo editing skills...but it fit my mood, and it's better to laugh than cry
While I ...

Matthew is Wrong - Hyatt Buying Starwood Is a Benefit to Customers

Earlier today I posted about Hyatt potentially buying Starwood hotels as reported by CNBC. Then Matthew from Live and Let's Fly here on Upgrd wrote this post.
There were of course some valid points:
"Northwest and Delta merged, and we lost a great Northwest loyalty program and ...

Why I Am Opposed to Hyatt - Starwood Merger

Let's be clear -- when was the last time a merger was actually beneficial to customers on the loyalty front? Northwest and Delta merged, and we lost a great Northwest loyalty program and website. The new carrier took the worst elements of both programs and benefits continue to erode. United ...
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BREAKING - CNBC Reports Hyatt in Advance Talks to Buy Starwood Hotels

Heard on CNBC this morning, Hyatt is the latest to signal interest in Starwood Hotels.  Just yesterday the Wall Street Journal reported that three Chinese firms had expressed interest in Starwood who has been openly for sale for several months.  
Starwood parted with their CEO almost ...

$50 after 3 stays at SPG Four Points, Elements, & Alofts Hotels

Starwood Hotels are enticing SPG guest reward members to stay at their lower end hotels by offering them a $50 gift card after just three stays! The current promotion is open to US and Canadian residence and rewards guests after their third stay at any Aloft, Element, or Four Point branded hotel ...

W Bangkok - Oh no, I'm the Old Guy

I Am Way Too Old For This...
Among premium international hotel chains, a new trend for hotels is to tailor to the younger, cooler generation.  Brands like W Hotels from SPG (Aloft is their junior brand), Andaz from Hyatt, or Autograph from Marriott speak in a vernacular that is casual with ...
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Hotel Review: The Westin Portland Harborview

Located in downtown Portland, the Westin is one of two Starwood properties in the State of Maine. On a recent trip to Midcoast Maine, I had an extra night before flying back to Kansas City, so I booked a Cash & Points stay at the Westin Portland Harborview.

The property is less ...

Using SPG Keyless for the First Time (Video)

I was in Portland this past week for OSCON, and I stayed at the Aloft Portland Airport at Cascade Station. As my stay approached, I got an e-mail from Starwood, letting me know that my upcoming stay was eligible for SPG Keyless Entry.

Neat! SPG Keyless allows you to use your smartphone to ...

Free Sheraton Weekend Stays with Every 5 Paid Nights!

SPG is letting you earn free weekend nights by staying at Sheraton Hotels now through September 30, 2015 when you enroll in the hotel's newest promotion. The caveat is that the free nights are earned by staying at Sheraton hotels and are only good for weekend nights at Sheraton hotels. However the ...

The Sheraton Lima Stinks

(This is the continuation of a mistake prone journey that begin with a great hotel stay and went downhill quickly following.  If you haven't read the rest, I suggest you start from the beginning.)
I should clarify from my title for those that might misunderstand what I am staying.  I ...

The Significance of American Airlines' Starwood Transfer Bonus

As the mantra goes, miles and points are a depreciating asset and are better burned than stored for future use. American Airlines is offering a generous 20% transfer bonus on points from Starwood Preferred Guest. Essentially, that means instead of 25,000 AA miles for 20,000 Starpoints, through ...