Marriott Rewards Category Changes — The Nitty Gritty

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The latest Marriott Rewards Category Changes that come into effect on March 24, aren’t nearly as infuriating as the latest IHG stunt, but if you primarily travel in the U.S., you will be upset. of course, 62% of the hotels will remain in Cat. 1-4, but you can stay assured that you won’t find most of the hotels you really want to go to in one of these categories. That’s a big disparity, but we can also see an interesting trend. First time in the last several years, I see hotels going down in major U.S. and international cities, and some of the changes are intriguing, to say the least. So not a zero sum. but not nearly as terrible as the IHG atrocity (yeah, you can tell, I’m not over that yet).

Here is from the horse’s mouth:

82% of the properties remain unchanged.
62% of the properties will remain in Categories 1-4.
18% of the hotels are changing. Of those changing, 30% are decreasing by one category and 70% are increasing by one category.

Marriott Rewards Category Changes

Marriott Rewards Hotel Categories: Award Chart

Category 1 7,500

Redeem 4 Nights; Your 5th Night i FREE!

Category 2 10,000
Category 3 15,000
Category 4 20,000
Category 5 25,000
Category 6 30,000
Category 7 35,000
Category 8 40,000
Category 9 45,000

The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Tiers: Award Chart

Tier 1 30,000

Redeem 4 Nights; Your 5th Night is FREE!

Tier 2 40,000
Tier 3 50,000
Tier 4 60,000
Tier 5 70,000

Methodology and the warning: The properties that have made into this list are either the ones that I think would be interesting to most people (in major cities or at the major tourist attractions) or cheap limited-service hotels that are located near  major cities or tourist attractions. The list below couldn’t be more subjective. These are the places that I personally find interesting, which doesn’t mean that you would share my assessments. You will find that I highly value limited-service properties like Fairfield and Courtyard hotels (when I can get them on the cheap), which is something that many fellow travelers won’t tolerate. 🙂 In addition, I’m mostly an international traveler, and I’m sure I’ve missed more than a couple of U.S. gems in places I’m no familiar with.

Oh, and I didn’t count airport hotels, although in some locales staying at an airport hotel can make perfect sense.

Marriott Rewards Category Changes: Notable Increases

North America

  • Courtyard Boston Cambridge 7 to 8
  • Courtyard Charleston Historic District 7 to 8
  • Courtyard Charleston Historic District 7 to 8
  • Courtyard Chicago Arlington Heights/South 1 to 2
  • Courtyard Chicago Arlington Heights/South 1 to 2
  • Courtyard Los Angeles Downtown 6 to 7
  • Courtyard Los Angeles LAX/El Segundo 5 to 6
  • Courtyard Los Angeles Pasadena/Old Town 6 to 7
  • Courtyard Los Angeles Torrance/South Bay 4 to 5
  • Courtyard New Orleans Metairie 4 to 5
  • Courtyard Orlando Downtown 3 to4
  • Courtyard Orlando Lake Buena Vista at Vista Centre 3 to 4
  • Courtyard San Diego Oceanside 4 to 5
  • Courtyard San Diego Solana Beach/Del Mar 5 to 6
  • Courtyard St. Petersburg Downtown 4 to 5

Fairfield

  • Fairfield Inn & Suites Orlando Lake Buena Vista/Walt Disney World 4 to 5
  • Fairfield Inn Boston Cambridge 7 to 8
  • Fairfield Inn Chicago Gurnee 2 to 3
  • Fairfield Inn Chicago Lombard 1 to 2
  • Fairfield Inn Chicago Naperville 1 to 2
  • Fairfield Inn Orlando at SeaWorld(R) 5 to 6
  • Fairfield Inn Orlando Lake Buena Vista in the Marriott Village 4 to 5
  • Fairfield Inn Palm Beach 5 to 6
  • Fairfield Inn Seattle Bremerton 2 to 3
  • Palm Beach Gardens Marriott 5 to 6
Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott Chicago Lombard

Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott Chicago Lombard by: DiscoverDuPage

Marriott/Others

  • Hotel Lusso, Autograph Collection 5 to 6
  • Indianapolis Marriott East 4 to 5
  • Long Beach Marriott 5 to 6
  • Memphis Marriott East 4 to 5
  • San Diego Marriott Hotel & Marina 7 to 8
  • Seattle Marriott Bellevue 6 to 7
  • Mexico City Marriott Reforma Hotel 4 to 5
Mariott Rewards Category Changes

Marriott Rewards Category Changes: San Diego Marriott Hotel & Marina by: Port of San Diego

Renaissance

  • Renaissance Boston Hotel & Spa at Patriot Place 8 to 9
  • Renaissance Fort Lauderdale Hotel at Port Everglades 6 to 7
  • Residence Inn Boston Franklin 5 to 6
  • Residence Inn Boston Needham Heights 6 to 7
  • Residence Inn Chicago Wilmette 4 to 5
  • Residence Inn Indianapolis Downtown on the Canal 5 to 6
  • Residence Inn Long Beach 4 to 5
  • Residence Inn Miami Aventura Mall 6 to 7
  • Residence Inn New Orleans Metairie 4 to 5
  • Residence Inn Newark Elizabeth/Liberty International Airport 3 to 4
  • Residence Inn Orlando East/UCF 2 to 3
  • Residence Inn Philadelphia Willow Grove 1 to 2
  • Residence Inn San Diego La Jolla 5 to 6

SpringHill Suites

  • SpringHill Suites Miami Arts/Health District 5 to 6
  • SpringHill Suites Orlando Altamonte Springs/Mailtand 2 to 3
  • SpringHill Suites San Diego Oceanside/Downtown 5 to 6

The Ritz-Carlton

  • The Ritz-Carlton, Denver 2 to 3
  • The Ritz-Carlton, Montreal 3 to 4

TownePlace

  • TownePlace Suites Boston North Shore/Danvers 3 to 4
  • TownePlace Suites Boston Tewksbury/Andover 1 to 2
  • TownePlace Suites Chicago Lombard 1 to 2
  • TownePlace Suites Dallas Bedford 1 to 2
  • TownePlace Suites Denver Downtown 4 to 5
  • TownePlace Suites Fort Lauderdale West 3 to 4
  • TownePlace Suites Fort Lauderdale Weston 2 to 3
  • TownePlace Suites Houston The Woodlands 2 to 3
  • TownePlace Suites Houston West 1 to 2
  • TownePlace Suites Los Angeles LAX/Manhattan Beach 4 to 5
  • TownePlace Suites New Orleans Metairie 2 to 3
  • TownePlace Suites San Diego Vista 4 to 5
  • TownePlace Suites St. Petersburg Clearwater 2 to 3
  • TownePlace Suites Virginia Beach 2 to 3

China

  • Renaissance Chengdu Hotel 2 to 3
  • Renaissance Shanghai Zhongshan Park Hotel 2 to 3

Renaissance Shanghai Zhongshan By: Jos Dielis

Egypt

  • Cairo Marriott Hotel & Omar Khayyam Casino 2 to 3
  • JW Marriott Hotel Cairo 3 to 4

India

  • Renaissance Mumbai Hotel & Convention Centre 2 to 3

Italy

  • Boscolo Milano, Autograph Collection 7 to 8

Japan

  • Osaka Marriott Miyako Hotel 6 to 7
  • Renaissance Okinawa Resort 6to 7
  • The Ritz-Carlton, Kyoto 4 to 5

UK

  • London Marriott Hotel Kensington 7 to 8
  • London Marriott Hotel Regents Park 7 to 8

Marriott Rewards Category Changes: Notable Reductions

USA

  • AC Hotel Miami Beach 8 to 7
  • Atlanta Marriott Marquis 6 to 5
  • Baltimore Marriott Inner Harbor at Camden Yards 7 to 6
  • Baltimore Marriott Waterfront 8 to 7
  • Anaheim at Disneyland Resort 7 to 6
  • Courtyard Baltimore Hunt Valley 3 to 2
  • Courtyard Boston Downtown/Tremont 8 to 7
  • Courtyard by Marriott Kailua-Kona 7 to 6
  • Courtyard Philadelphia Langhorne 4 to 3
  • Courtyard Philadelphia Montgomeryville 3 to 2
  • Courtyard San Diego Central 6 to 5
  • Fairfield Inn and Suites Carlsbad 4 to 3
  • Philadelphia Marriott Downtown 8 to 7
  • Residence Inn Chicago Lombard 3 to 2
  • Residence Inn Harrisburg Hershey 4 to 3
  • Residence Inn Miami Beach South Beach 8 to 7
  • Residence Inn Philadelphia Montgomeryville 3 to 2
  • Residence Inn Washington, DC/Vermont Avenue 7 to 6
  • SpringHill Suites Anchorage University Lake 7 to 6
  • TownePlace Suites Carlsbad 4 to 3
  • TownePlace Suites Jacksonville 2 to 1
  • TownePlace Suites Philadelphia Horsham 2 to 1
Mariott Rewards Category Changes

Marriott Rewards Category Changes: Baltimore Marriott Waterfront Hotel

Canada

  • Courtyard Toronto Markham 3 to 2
  • Delta Toronto 7 to 6
  • Delta Toronto East 4 to 3
  • Renaissance Toronto Hotel Downtown 7 to 6
  • Residence Inn Toronto Markham 4 to 3
  • The Rosseau, A JW Marriott Resort & Spa 8 to 7
  • Toronto Marriott Bloor Yorkville Hotel 7 to 6

Austria

  • Courtyard Vienna Schoenbrunn 4 to 3

Brazil

  • JW Marriott Hotel Rio de Janeiro 9 to 8
  • Renaissance Sao Paulo Hotel 7 to 6
  • Spa do Vinho Hotel & Spa, Autograph Collection 4 to 3

China

  • Beijing Marriott Hotel City Wall 4 to 3
  • Courtyard Hong Kong 7 to 6
  • JW Marriott Hotel Beijing 5 to 4
  • JW Marriott Hotel Shanghai at Tomorrow Square 7 to 6
  • Renaissance Beijing Capital Hotel 4 to 3
  • Renaissance Shanghai Pudong Hotel 3 to 2
  • Shanghai Marriott Hotel City Center 5 to 4
  • Shanghai Marriott Hotel Parkview 3 to 2

Colombia

  • Bogota Marriott Hotel 5 to 4
  • Hotel Calle 72 Autograph Collection 5 to 4

France

  • AC Hotel Paris Porte Maillot 8 to 7
  • Boscolo Exedra Nice, Autograph Collection 9 to 8
  • Courtyard by Marriott Boulogne 7 ti 6
  • Renaissance Paris Hippodrome de St. Cloud Hotel 7 to 6
  • Renaissance Paris Hotel La Defense 7 to 6
  • Renaissance Paris Hotel Le Parc Trocadero 9 to 8

Hotel Boscolo_Exedra Nice

Germany

  • Courtyard Wiesbaden-Nordenstadt 3 to 2
  • Renaissance Duesseldorf Hotel 5 to 4

Indonesia

  • Courtyard Bali Seminyak 5 to 4
  • The Ritz-Carlton, Jakarta Pacific Place 2 to 1
Mariott Rewards Category Changes

Marriott Rewards Category Changes: Ritz Carlton, Jakarta, soon to be Cat 1 by: Mighty Travels

Malaysia

  • JW Marriott  Hotel Kuala Lumpur 5 to 4

Mexico

  • JW Marriott Hotel Mexico City 7 to 6

Panama

  • Courtyard Panama City Metro Mall 3 to 2

Russia

  • Courtyard Moscow City Center 6 to 5
  • Courtyard Paveletskaya 4 to 3
  • Moscow Marriott Grand Hotel 6 to 5
  • Moscow Marriott Hotel Novy Arbat 7 to 6
  • Moscow Marriott Royal Aurora Hotel 7 to 6
  • Moscow Marriott Tverskaya Hotel 7 to 6
  • Renaissance Moscow Hotel Monarch Centre 5 to 4
  • Courtyard St. Petersburg Center West Pushkin 3 to 2
  • Renaissance St. Petersburg Baltic Hotel 7 to 6

Korea

  • Courtyard Seoul Times Square 5 to 4

Spain

  • AC Hotel Barcelona Forum 7 to 6

Sweden

  • Renaissance Malmo Hotel 6 to 5

Switzerland

  • Courtyard Basel 4 to 3
  • Renaissance Zurich Tower Hotel 7 to 6

Turkey

  • AC Hotel Istanbul Macka 6 to 5
  • Renaissance Istanbul Bosphorus Hotel 7 to 6
  • Renaissance Polat Istanbul Hotel 6 to 5

UAE

  • The Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi Resort & Spa 2 to 1
Mariott Rewards Category Changes

Marriott Rewards Category Changes: Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi by: Anoop S

A Few Pointers

There are some logical reductions in the list, but like I said in the intro, this is the first major devaluation that gave something back in popular tourist Let’s see.

  • Two mid-range Miami South Beach hotels (AC and Residence Inn) reduced from outrageously ridiculous Cat. 9 to less ridiculous Cat. 8. Although, yeah, still ridiculous.
  • A few Marriotts are going down one category in downtown Atlanta, Baltimore, and Philly.
  • JW Marriott in Copacabana in Rio is finally going down from Cat 9 to 8: my goodness, what took them so long?
  • Plenty of Parisian hotels went down in points. Granted, not the best hotels, but still nice!
  • The Ritz in Abu Dhabi is an amazing and extraordinary property by all accounts. I could see myself relaxing there for 30,000 points, when I connect in Abu Dhabi in October, but, unfortunately, I won’t have time.
  • There is nothing wrong with out of town Courtyards, Fairfields, or TownePlace Suites as long as you can snag them cheaply and rent a car. They are usually nicely appointed hotels with pools and free breakfast, and screw that room service anyway.
  • It would be a good time to visit Moscow and St. Petersburg, it seems. Things haven’t been this cheap for a long, long time.

Any other thoughts on sweet spots? Please share with the class. 🙂

Top Photo by: Prayitno

DiscoverDuPage

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2 Responses to Marriott Rewards Category Changes — The Nitty Gritty

  1. […] Lazy Traveler writes about the nitty gritty Marriott changes. Definitely never […]

  2. […] continues. Details here  Book on or before March 24th in order to lock in the current award rate. Lazytravelers.net has a good overview of upcoming changes if you want to take a […]

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