Westin Diplomat Leaving Starwood October 30, 2014

One of Starwood’s great South Florida hotel options has long been the Westin Diplomat Resort & Spa, located in Hollywood, Florida. With nearly 1,000 rooms it’s a massive hotel, and the great thing is that they have a ton of suites, which means that historically Platinum suite upgrades were plentiful.

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It’s not the most luxurious hotel in the world — certainly not in the same league as the St. Regis Bal Harbour located down the road — but the prices are usually reasonable and it’s on a nice stretch of beach.

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Unfortunately per a notice posted on the hotel’s website, it looks like the Westin Diplomat will be leaving Starwood as of October 30, 2014:

The Westin Diplomat Resort & Spa, Hollywood, Florida will be leaving the Starwood system on October 30, 2014.  Reservations for dates on or after October 30, 2014, will not be eligible for Starwood Preferred Guest membership benefits, award redemption or accrual.

The investment company purchasing it seems to have big plans for the property. Per the Miami Herald:

Thayer, based in Annapolis, Maryland, has paid $460 million to buy the 1,000 room, beachfront hotel from United Association, a 370,000-member plumbers and pipefitters union based in Annapolis.

In addition to the hotel, with spa and tennis courts on nearly 10 acres at 3555 S. Ocean Dr. in Hollywood, Thayer also bought a neighboring 18-hole golf course for $20 million, and paid $55.5 million for several adjacent parcels at 3451-3690 S. Ocean Dr.,

Thayer made the deal through three affiliates, Diplomat Hotel Owner LLC, Diplomat Golf Course Venture LLC and Diplomat Landings Owner LLC, according to a deed recorded Thursday in Broward County, the Daily Business Review said. In total, Thayer paid $535.5 million to Diplomat Companies Limited Partner, linked to the plumbers’ trade union.

Rumor has it the hotel will be rebranded as a Hilton. Wonder what they’ll do with all those suites, given that they don’t like upgrading elite members. 😉

(Tip of the hat to Loyalty Traveler)

Comments

  1. I have stayed here multiple times. Nice rooms but checking in is a real pain even for a SPG Platinum. Always got upgraded and liked the rooms.

  2. @steve, @lucky:

    W Fort Lauderdale is tolerable and they do a good job of upgrading Platinums. I’m not big on the poolside party scene, but many guests forget that there’s a second pool that is peaceful and offers free cabanas on the west side of the hotel with intercoastal waterway views. I’ve consistently received upgrades, most recently to a “Sensational Ocean Front Suite” with huge balcony but most often I’ve requested upgrades to their residences with full kitchen and laundry which were granted.

    Next year the Conrad Fort Lauderdale will be open and that should be a good option. It’s being converted from the failed Trump condo hotel project which was built during the financial crisis and never opened. That also means that a one-mile strip of Fort Lauderdale’s beach front will be great for mattress runs for SPG (W, Westin, Sheraton locations) or Hilton (Conrad, Hilton, Doubletree locations).

    If you stay at the W, Steak 954 offers a decent brunch and is bookable for points on Open Table. Next door in the Hilton is great new restaurant called “Surf, Sun, Sand” which is good for lunch or dinner and also on Open Table. There’s also a Truluck’s in the Galleria Mall which is a 5 min drive from the W and has a happy hour with half-price cocktails and apps plus a piano singer.

  3. I can’t get past the part that the hotel was owned by a branch of a union. I’m not sure when it happened, but unions are all about the $$$ and not about the common worker that they “represent”. Sad…….

  4. I’ve stayed at the Diplomat dozens of times (sometimes once a month for certain stretches). Very sad. Always got a suite, like the lounge, and the beach 🙁

  5. Awww.. thanks!
    Do a post on what are some of the best hotels with upgrade options for the major programs. That should give us something to save those points for!

  6. @John – I saw the W, I’m not a big fan of them in general, and not terribly good for me+DW+5 month old baby.
    The Conrad doesn’t open until 2015, which doesn’t help me 11/1/14.

  7. Got screwed – have had a reservation with points for months. Going on a cruise- not renting a car and needed something closer to port. What is Starwoods brainy answer? Well sir – you can pay for the room $229 a night or move to the luxurious Sheraton Fort Lauderdale. Are you serious? Did you really just say that with a straight face? So you want me to take what should have been a beach front hotel with points and stay at a less than stellar hotel at the airport?
    Honestly – I have always remained loyal to Starwood – nice to see that this is their big solution. The friggen Sheraton.

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