If you have a Marriott Rewards Membership (again, it’s completely free to sign-up) and never realized that your past stays in Marriott hotel brands has redemption value then it’s time to revisit your account membership.
If you have a Ritz Carlton Rewards membership you should be automatically enrolled in both and would benefit from both programs interchangeably.Marriott brands includes JW Marriott, Ritz Carlton, EDITION, Courtyard, AC Hotels, Autograph Collection Hotels and many more (as listed below)…
If you go online at marriott.com and log into your account you can search and book your stays using money or points, the booking system is pretty straightforward as it will tell you how much points are required for your stay and you also have the option to combine using cash + points or purchase top-up points if you don’t have sufficient points to cover your stay.
The easiest way to earn Marriott points is of course to stay at any of the Marriott Brand Hotels where you can earn 10 Marriott Reward points per dollar spent on all qualifying charges.
Other ways to earn points are:
– Co-branded credit card with Visa (currently offers 80,000 bonus points at sign-up) and earn points through everyday purchases
– Travel Partners: for example, earn 500 points on car rental with Hertz
– Airline Partners: at the moment Marriott is running a promotion with Etihad where you can get 1,000 bonus points when staying at Mariott in South Africa and 500 bonus points when you stay in Marriott in the Middle East including 3 nights for the price of 2, complimentary breakfast and free dining for kids under 12.
More details of this promo visit: Etihad Guest Promo and Marriott Deals with Etihad Marriott runs various promotions through out the year that is worth checking out – if you are a member you should be getting email alerts on new travel & promotion deals.
Visit Marriott’s official site on how to Earn Marriott Points – Travel Partners
Booking The London EDITION Hotel
The London EDITION is definitely the most stylish out of all the Marriott hotels in London that it made me drool over the hotel photos when making this reservation.When booking for an award night through Marriott’s website you will see Marriott hotels are grouped into ‘Categories’ or ‘Tiers’ depending on the brand, location and type.
In this case, The London EDITION is a Tier 3 property and it cost 50,000 points per night.
The beauty is Marriott will give the 5th night free for all award nights which means we only need to pay for 4 nights = 200,000 points to stay for 5 nights – with no additional taxes.
On the dates we stayed it would have cost us close to USD 500 per night if we were to pay with cash, which means USD 2,500 for a mere 5 nights.
Last November (2015) we also redeemed Marriott Rewards points to stay for 2 nights (90,000 points) at the London Marriott Hotel Grosvenor Square and the hotel room quality + service was nothing but ordinary – it wasn’t worth the points to top it off we also had to pay an additional GBP 70 / USD 95 for taxes (they call this the cash rate) – but I guess it still beats paying GBP 400 / USD 525 per night.
Too bad The London EDITION was not available for award night redemption on the dates we went last year….We actually needed to stay for 6 nights on this trip, but we decided we wanted to stay around Notting Hill area on our last night in London so we ended up paying for a smaller hotel close to Hyde Park – because unfortunately we were still traveling on a budget =)
Reward Tiers Chart – There are some dates when Marriott would apply the PointSavers Reward instead of the Hotel Reward Rate
Marriott Hotel Brands outside of London
Reward Categories Chart – There are some dates when Marriott would apply the PointSavers Reward instead of the Hotel Reward Rate
How did we earn the Marriott Points in the first place?
Luckily my husband who travels for work regularly has been staying in a Marriott hotel over the past year and he has earned well over 300,000 points in less than 12 months. So yes we have the upper hand in terms of Marriott points, but it is still feasible to earn fair amount of points even if you don’t stay as much as he does. Plus you don’t always have to redeem for a Tier 3 hotel.
The Points Guy made a great list of 9 Marriott Properties in the World That Make Awesome Award Redemption, where you can redeem hotel stays at Marriott Hotel Brands for as low as 7,500 points per night.
Other ways to use Marriott Points is to convert them into airlines miles, which is not always the best case because unlike Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) program where the transfer ratio is 1:1, with Marriott it’s mostly 3:1 or 2:1 (you’d lose 30% – 50% points at conversion) although it is not exactly the same for every airline.
In general, I find SPG to be a more valuable hotel rewards program than Marriott because you are able to redeem award nights in a 5-star hotel for as low as 12,000 points and of course the transfer ratio to airline miles that is 1:1 – pretty hard to beat for a hotel reward program. In my past blogpost, I also wrote about How Becoming an SPG Member Can Be Worthwhile Doesn’t Matter Where You Live.
Since Marriott and SPG will soon become one entity, it is still uncertain how the loyalty program will be affected.Complete list of Marriott’s airline partners (click image to enlarge / link to Marriott):
Erin El Issa from Nerd Wallet also wrote a great Basic Guide to Marriott Points including how to earn and use the points.
Staying at The London EDITION
Our flight touched down in London at around 8 AM on a Monday, we took the Heathrow Express train to Paddington Station and continued with an Uber to the hotel in Fitzrovia/Soho area – right off Oxford St – which was only about a 10-minute ride from Paddington Station.
Entering the hotel lobby, boy am I glad I chose the right hotel – the lobby was so chic I felt like I should have put on more make-up and wore high-heels. The London EDITION opened in 2013, a luxury boutique hotel collection by Ian Schrager (founder of Studio 54) in collaboration with Marriott Hotels.
The EDITION hotels has other locations in Istanbul, Miami Beach, New York and opening soon in Sanya, China this year. If you check out the EDITION hotels website, they are growing quite aggressively until 2019 with new locations opening in Shanghai, Barcelona, Reykjavik, West Hollywood, Bali, Singapore and Dubai.
We arrived at the hotel at around 10 AM to check-in and the front desk informed us that our room will not be ready until 12pm which was a bit of a let down because we were all sleep-deprived after flying in from New York with a jet-lagged toddler who was still in LA timezone. The staff were very apologetic and offered us complimentary coffee and beverages while we waited at the lobby.
The hotel lobby has a bar that gets jam-packed in the late afternoon until late at night (every single day) – it’s one of the go-to bars for after-work, a hip meeting venue and it has been said to be a great place for celebrity-spotting. I wouldn’t be too surprised because seeing the people who hung out at the lobby, it felt like we never really left LA – majority of them could pass on as models and actors.
The Guest Room
The guest room was not particularly big at only 22 sqm / 237 sqft. The next level up would be a Deluxe Room 28 sqm / 301 sqft – with the same exact design. The wooden panels, floor to ceiling white curtains, warm tone colors and all the amenities were all impressive and they have successfully created an incredibly cozy ambience. The room design kind of reminds us of 1 Hotel South Beach in Miami that has the same ‘snug’ feel and details in the guest rooms.
- iPod Dock / Phone Charger
- Complimentary bottled water refilled twice a day, we were provided 4 to 5 new bottles daily. Trust me when I say not every nice hotel offers this – so bonus points from us.
Knowing we will be staying with a child – The hotel provided extra bath amenities especially for kids. Nice touch!
The service was definitely exceptional, having well-groomed and attractive staff at the front desk certainly helped brighten people’s day.
Every single staff from the housekeepers, bellboys, concierge to reception were very attentive and genuinely friendly. If they see a guest who (even slightly) looks like they need help, the staff would attend to their needs immediately.
We never really had to wait for any service except when our room was not ready at check-in, which I’m sure was out of their control.
How would I rate this hotel?
Would we stay here again? In a heartbeat.