Starwood Preferred Guest recently published its annual changes to hotel award night categories that went into effect on March 4, 2008. Most hotels that are changing categories will be moving up one level but of the 233 changes that were made, 14 hotels will be moving down a category or two and will require fewer points for stays. The Sheraton Orlando and Four Points by Sheraton Orlando Studio City are now category two hotels instead of category three and The Sheraton South Padre Island Beach Hotel & Condominiums and Four Points by Sheraton Historic Savannah now require 3,000 fewer points as category three hotels (from category four).
Stays at the Le Meridien at Beverly Hills doubled in points when the hotel jumped to a category six (20,000 to 25,000 points) from a 10,000-point category four hotel. And if you have plans to stay during peak season at the Hotel Prince de Galles — Paris Champs Elysees, be prepared to spend an additional 10,000 points now that it’s a category seven hotel during peak travel periods. Le Meridien Bora Bora and St. Regis Grand Hotel, Rome have also moved into category seven during peak season and will require additional points.
While Preferred Guest members weren’t pleased by the announcement, they appreciated that Starwood gave 18-day advance notice so members could book hotels at the lower redemption rates. And FlyerTalk member/View from the Wing blogger Gary Leff reminds us, “the thing to remember about all of these programs is that amazing values are not sustainable over time. Take advantage of them while you can.” You can view all of the changes at http://www.insideflyer.com/link/?859