Marriott and Starwood Hotels have finally completed the merger and the question that has been on everyone’s mind, What will happen to my points? has been answered for the time being. Marriott Rewards and Starwood Preferred Guest members can now link both accounts, move points around as they wish, and match their status.
By linking accounts members can now book reward stays across over 5,700 properties worldwide. While we know that between the two chains the Marriott brand had over 4,500 properties as compared to 1,300 hotels in Starwood’s portfolio, what may be interesting to note is the fact that this merger has opened redemption opportunity for Marriott Rewards members to some destinations that does not have Marriott presence yet.
So, here are 10 exquisite destinations for Marriott Rewards to plan your next redemption courtesy Starwood:
- Bhutan: Known as the Land of the Thunder Dragon, the kingdom of Bhutan has spectacular mountain terrain, varied flora and fauna and some ancient Buddhist monasteries to explore.
- Le Meridien, Paro River Front : Cat 5 (16,000 Starpoints per night)
- Le Meridien, Thimpu: Cat 5 (16,000 Starpoints per night)
2. Fiji Islands: Fiji is located in the South Pacific consists of 332 islands out which only 106 in inhabited.
- Sheraton Resort & Spa, Tokoriki Island – Mamanuca Islands: Cat 5 – 16,000 Starpoints per night
- Sheraton Denarau Villas – Nadi: Cat 6 – 20,000 Starpoints per night
- Sheraton Fiji Resort – Nadi: Cat 4 – 12,000 Starpoints per night
- The Westin Denarau Island Resort & Spa, Fiji – Nadi: Cat 4 – 12,000 Starpoints per night
3. Cambodia: Housing the 500-acre Temple Complex Angkor Wat, Cambodia is a small country with a large bout of history. Away from the temples, much of the country is not touched by tourism and largely unexplored.
- Le Meridien Angkor: Cat 2, 3,000 Starpoints per night
4. French Polynesia: This little hamlet of islands in the midst of the Pacific is famous for its beaches, sunsets, and turquoise waters with a diverse marine life. If you book the Le Meridian and the St. Regis, Bora Bora under Starwood’s Paradise is Closer promotion you could get a 35% off on redemption.
- Le Meridian Bora Bora: Cat 6 – 20,000 Starpoints per night
- The St. Regis Bora Bora Resort: Cat 7 – 30,000 Starpoints per night
- Le Meridien – Tahiti: Cat 5 – 20,000 Starpoints per night
5. Samoa Island: Created by volcanic explosions, Samoa has to offer intense natural beauty – all iridescent seas, jade jungles and crystal waterfalls.
- Sheraton Samoa Aggie Grey’s Hotel & Bungalows: Cat 3 – 7,000 Starpoints per night
6. Maldives: When I think about Maldives, all the colours in my mind go electric blue. Pristine beaches, stunning snorkelling spots and five-star resorts lure thousands of visitors to the Maldives every year. As a Marriott Rewards member you can also redeem at the W, Maldives at 35% off until February, 2017. You just need a Starwood Preferred Guest Account.
- W Retreat & Spa – Maldives: Limited Particpation in Starwood redemption program
- Sheraton Maldives Full Moon Resort & Spa: Cat 6 – 20,000 Starpoints per night
- St. Regis Maldives – Tentatively opening September 2016
7. Morocco: An hour’s ride on the ferry from Spain. With a traditional culture, Morocco is fascinating for most people.
- Sheraton Casablanca Hotel & Towers: Cat 3, 7,000 Starpoints per night
- Le Meridien Hotel N’FIS: Cat 1 – 2,000 Starpoints
8. Seychelles: Seychelles off East Africa is home to some of the world’s most beautiful beaches in the world. Seychelles is one of the few islands where hawksbill turtles come ashore in broad daylight to lay their eggs.
- Le Meridien Fisherman’s Cove Mahe: Cat 5 – 12,000 Starpoints per night
9. Argentina: Studded with outstanding natural beauty, Argentina is vast and varied. The Sheraton Iguazu has a pick of the views, and being located right in the Parque Nacional, it offers stunning views of the falls.
- Sheraton Cordoba Hotel – Cordoba : Cat 2 – 3,000 Starpoints per night
- Sheraton Iguazu Resort & Spa – Iguazu : Cat 5 – 12,000 Starpoints per night
- Sheraton Mendoza Hotel – Mendoza : Cat 3 – 7,000 Starpoints per night
10. Iceland: Do I need to say anything? It is the edge of the Artic Circle, afterall.
- Adventure Hotel, Nesjavellir, a Member of Design Hotels – Cat 6 : 20,000 Starpoints per night
- 101 Hotel, Reykjavik, a Member of Design Hotels – Cat 6 : 20,000 Starpoints per night
So, while the world is celebrating that Starwood members did not get the short end of the stick, here is how Starwood is going to be able to bring Marriott Reward members a great opportunity for using their points they did not have so far. Remember, Marriott Rewards Points can be transferred to SPG in a ratio of 3 MR points = 1 Starwood point after linking your accounts. And when you book 5 nights redemption, the 5th night comes free.
I’m curious to hear your views on which other new opportunities opened up for Marriott Rewards members now.
(All pictures courtesy Starwood)