Marriott’s Newest Type of Platinum Challenge

 

 

Marriott has recently been offering a Platinum Challenge.  This is an opportunity for those who don’t have status with Marriott to earn platinum status by “proving their loyalty” and staying many nights in a short period of time.  According to Marriott:

On behalf of Marriott Rewards Guest Services, please allow me to extend an offer to you to conditionally upgrade your status to the Platinum Elite level.  This new status would be valid through November 30, 2013; however, an updated membership card would not be processed until the following terms have been met.

In order to maintain this status, you must accumulate nine separate paid stays beginning with the date the upgrade is processed, through November 30, 2013.  This is a one-time offer, and would be effective within 24 to 48 hours of your acceptance of this upgrade offer.

Now I already have Platinum Premier status with Marriott (not to be confused with Platinum Plus).

However I checked-in to the Springhill Suites Marriott in Conroe, Texas last night and was offered a new kind of challenge on a card within an envelope waiting for me in my room:

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The card reads:

Here is your platinum challenge for this week… What can you hold without ever touching or seeing your hands?

You may redeem this card at the front desk for a fabulous prize!  Thank you and Good Luck! Springhill Staff :-)

I still haven’t figured out the riddle, and I haven’t googled it because that would be too easy.  Anyone know it?  I wonder what the “platinum challenge” prize is?

In other news, this hotel gave me $50 cash last week for not offering me a Platinum Check-in Amenity.  I have only had this happen 4-5 other times in all my Marriott stays.

United & Marriott’s RewardsPlus Partnership

So a few months ago, United and Marriott announced their RewardsPlus Partnernship.

The key details are, from the site:

We appreciate your loyalty to United® – and now your MileagePlus Premier® recognition and benefits just got better. Together MileagePlus® and Marriott Rewards® bring you RewardsPlus, a new program with great benefits to enhance your travels.

Premier Gold, Premier Platinum, Premier 1K® and Global ServicesSM members can now register for RewardsPlus and enjoy complimentary Marriott Rewards Gold Elite status and benefits. Also, all Premier members can convert their MileagePlus award miles into Marriott Rewards points at an exceptional rate, and all MileagePlus members can enjoy greater value when they convert Marriott Rewards points into MileagePlus miles.

 

Basically as a Marriott Platinum Premier member, I got my United account upgraded to Silver status.  This was nice because United Silver members can choose an EconomyPlus seat within 24 hours of the flight.  On a recent United Chicago to Houston this paid off for me and instead of a middle seat way in the back I had a middle seat in Economy Plus which had generous legroom.

Don’t forget to sign up at the link above if you haven’t already and enjoy the reciprocal elite benefits.

Being checked into an already occupied hotel room

Yesterday I had the pleasure at the Historic Sheraton Gunter hotel of being checked into a room that was already occupied.  This only happened to me one other time, at the Hilton Miami Airport hotel in 2002.

The check-in process was uneventful, and I was upgraded to a room on the Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) floor.  I went up the elevator to my room on the 11th floor.  When I got to my room, there was a do-no-disturb sign on the door.  I thought this was a big odd, but proceeded forward nevertheless.  I swiped my key, opened the door, and walked in.

There was a suitcase on the floor, with clothes strewn all about the floor.  There were toiletries unloaded in the bathroom.  I am very happy and lucky that the occupant was not there at the time.  I immediately left the room, and went back to the front desk to let them know of their error and to be checked into another room.  They immediatley reaccomodated me at another room on the same floor, this one without an incumbent desk.

When the front desk was reaccommodating me, they called in for someone on their maintenance team to go into the supposed-to-be-vacant room and determine the name of the occupant based on something on the luggage.  I found this rather interesting and strange but I do not know what came of it.