As they do every year, Starwood has just unveiled their annual hotel category adjustments. While the actual hotel categories stay the same, the categories that individual hotels are in can change. You can see a listing of hotels with category changes here.
I haven’t analyzed the changes too closely yet, but the chart is definitely worth looking at if you’re planning on a points redemption soon. The changes kick in on March 1, 2012, so in many cases it will make sense to make a booking now before costs go up. For hotels where costs go down, you can always rebook after March 1 once the prices have dropped. But from a quick look at the chart it’s clear that a lot more hotels are going up in price than down in price.
My next points redemption was going to be at the St. Regis Bangkok, though I’m shocked to see it went from a category 5 to category 6 hotel. Even on cash and points I thought the hotel was already overpriced as a category 5 given how cheap luxury hotels are in Bangkok, though as a category 6 it’s a total rip off. Revenue rates are rarely over $200USD per night, and now the hotel will cost 20,000+ points per night, or 8,000 points plus $150 when redeeming cash and points? You’ve gotta be kidding me…
I’m also going to Santiago in September, so am going to confirm my booking now for the W Santiago, which is going from a category 4 to category 5 hotel.
On the plus side, I see the Grosvenor House in Dubai, which I’ve wanted to visit, is going from a category 6 to category 5 hotel.
What do you guys thing about the annual adjustment? Positive? Negative? Indifferent?