Mar142009

Waldorf Astoria Collection Great Getaway Offer – $50 Credit per 2 Night Stay and a Free Future Night

Waldorf Astoria Collection, the finer side of Hilton HHonors

This Waldorf Astoria Collection free night deal had me buzzing last weekend when I thought I found a high leverage promotion for a free vacation at the $500+ per night Waldorf Astoria Grand Wailea Resort on Maui.

Then, the promotion fine print finally filtered through my brain to realize this deal has some leverage potential, but the deal is mitigated by the fact that to use the free night at Waldorf Astoria requires two paid nights in conjunction with the free night award. The deal is actually a third night free award on a future stay.

I am still confused on the fine print of the Great Getaway offer and the slight variations in Winter Escapes promotions with the same basic offer of $50 credit for two nights and a free night award. Different hotels seem to have different requirements for earning free night certificates and redeeming certificates.

The fine print of this offer is not consumer friendly in terms of stating the free night terms and participating hotels for redemption. It is confusing to see the promotion stating a $50 resort credit for a two night stay and an added bonus if booked and stayed by April 30, but then being told La Quinta Resort takes a three-night minimum stay to earn the free night award.

The confusing part to me is the promotion states “up to $400” in bonus offers, yet a free night at the Grand Wailea Resort in Hawaii is typically over $500 per night for the lowest priced room. The free night award participating hotels include the Grand Wailea Resort.

The Great Getaway and Winter Escapes offers:  Stay two or three paid nights (check with specific property to determine minimum stay for free night certificate) at a participating Waldorf Astoria Collection hotel (and some Hilton resorts) on a Winter Escapes rate by April 30, 2009.

Winter Escapes rate provides a $50 resort credit for every two nights of your stay.

The promotion also states that bookings and stays by April 30, 2009 will earn up to $400 in valuable bonus offers including a free night certificate for a future stay.  The third night free award is valid for a future Waldorf Astoria hotel stay between May 1 and December 15, 2009.

Type WAC into Group Field on reservations page or call 1-800-925-3673 for rates and reservations.

Waldor Astoria Collection Link:

The Waldorf Astoria Collection Great Getaway

Beach. Mountains. Desert. Amenity-rich destinations at every elevation. Enjoy a $50 resort credit after every second night of your stay. You will also earn a complimentary night stay gift certificate. Book and stay from March 1, 2009 – December 15, 2009. Learn more.

 

Participating Hotels: Initially I saw this Great Getaway offer for three Waldorf=Astoria Collection hotels: the Arizona Biltmore in Phoenix, Grand Wailea Resort, Maui, and a  third resort Dakota Mountain Lodge, Park City, Utah that is not scheduled to open until summer 2009.

Further research detected a similar Winter Escapes deal for about a dozen Waldorf Astoria and Hilton Resort hotels including several in Florida, Puerto Rico, and California. Honestly, I have not sussed out the extent of this promotion.  Suffice to say, many more Hilton resort properties are participating than the three shown above.

Hilton is running the promotion between participating Hilton and Waldorf=Astoria Collection hotels, and LXR, luxuryresorts.com, is running this promotion among its hotels.  

The Value: Winter Escapes promotional rates tend to be higher priced than the lowest available rate for many hotel properties.  The deal may not be worth the effort unless you have definite plans for getting value out of the free night certificate. Advance Purchase and AAA rates will not have the benefit of a $50 resort credit per two nights or a free hotel night certificate, but may be a better deal overall.

This deal is best for someone who may have been planning a resort vacation at one of the participating properties for 2009. The Winter Escapes free night may allow you to get enough value out of free nights to pay for winter vacations over the next six weeks.

Paying less now with a nonrefundable internet or refundable AAA rate can be a huge savings at these luxury hotel properties and may work out to be a better value than going for this promotion if you just want to travel now.  This also means you are not held hostage to a future reservation at Waldorf Astoria hotels in 2009 to get the best value on your initial Waldorf-Astoria qualifying stay for the free night.

This deal is a per stay offer.  You could earn several free night awards with multiple two-night or three-night stays over the next six weeks (check the property requirement to earn free night). You can have luxury spring vacations and have discounted luxury hotel stays throughout 2009 since the free night awards are valid for most of the year.

Rate Analysis for Promotion:

Arizona Biltmore Resort & Spa ($28 daily resort fee is in addition to room rates and total shown below)

Winter Escapes rate, Monday to Friday, 4-night stay, April 13-17, 2009

(cancel up to two days prior to arrival)

Rate includes $100 resort credit for 4-night stay and third night free certificate for 2009 stay

·         $259 Classic King Room (Total after tax = $1,163)

·         $289 Resort King (Total after tax = $1,298)

·         $309 Premier King (Total after tax = $1,388)

·         $699 Villa Suite (Total after tax = $3,169)

Advanced Purchase Rate (Nonrefundable prepaid rate, no changes allowed)

·         $179 Classic King Room (Total after tax = $804)

·         $200 Resort King (Total after tax = $898)

·         $214 Premier King (Total after tax = $961)

·         $483 Villa Suite (Total after tax = $2,169)

AAA group rate (cancel up to two days prior to arrival)

·         $190 Classic King Room (Total after tax = $853)

·         $212 Resort King (Total after tax = $952)

·         $226 Premier King (Total after tax = $1,015)

·         $263 King Club Level (access to Club lounge and Club pool) – (Total after tax = $1,181)

·         $292 Deluxe Club Level (Total after tax = $1,311)

·         $483 Villa Suite (Total after tax = $2,299)

I view the AAA rate as a vacation insurance policy worth the small premium for the higher room rate, but flexible cancellation policy as opposed to the lower-priced, nonrefundable Advanced Purchase rates.

The Winter Escapes rate at $1,163 for a Classic king room is $310 more than the AAA rate for this four night stay. The $100 resort credit is nullified and $210 of the free night certificate is lost due to higher room rates paid to earn the certificate.  The longer the stay and the higher price paid for a better category room makes the Winter Escapes deal even less valuable.

La Quinta Resort & Club, La Quinta, California (Palm Springs area)

La Quinta Resort, near Palm Springs, had Winter Escapes rates as low as $159 per night that matched the lowest available rate, and a three night La Quinta Resort stay qualifies for the free night certificate good for the Grand Wailea Resort and several other Waldorf Astoria properties in the USA and Puerto Rico. 

$550 for a three night stay at La Quinta Resort will earn a free night at Grand Wailea worth about $550. The certificate requires paying two nights for the free night certificate, so you still have to spend the $1,100 for two nights at the Hawaiian resort to take advantage of the free night certificate.

Winter Escapes

·         $50 Resort Credit per room for every 2 nights stayed/paid.

·         $100 Resort Credit for 4-night stay

·         $150 Resort Credit for 4-night stay

·         $200 Resort Credit for 4-night stay

Book and Stay at least 3 consecutive nights on Winter Escape rate by April 30, 2009 and receive an additional bonus offer including:

·         Third night free certificate for participating Waldorf-Astoria Collection hotels for a stay between May 1 and Dec 20 (some properties may have Dec 15 end date).

·         50% off second equally or lower priced spa treatment when at least $100 spent on one spa treatment.

·         One free ½ day session in Kids Club at participating hotels.

·         $30 to $35 discount on golf rates.

Some of the participating properties mentioned by the reservations agent for free night award certificate included:

EL CONQUISTADOR RESORT &
GOLDEN DOOR® SPA

THE WALDORF ASTORIA COLLECTION
Fajardo, Puerto Rico
Book Your Winter Escape Now.
Or call 877.202.1447

LAS CASITAS VILLAGE &
GOLDEN DOOR SPA

THE WALDORF ASTORIA COLLECTION
Fajardo, Puerto Rico
Book Your Winter Escape Now.
Or call 877.202.1447

EDGEWATER BEACH HOTEL
Naples, Florida
Book Your Winter Escape Now.
Or call 877.202.1447

CASA MARINA RESORT &
BEACH CLUB

THE WALDORF ASTORIA
COLLECTION
Key West, Florida
Book Your Winter Escape Now.
Or call 877.202.1447

NAPLES GRANDE BEACH RESORT
THE WALDORF ASTORIA
COLLECTION
Naples, Florida
Book your Winter Escape Now.
Or call 877.202.1447

REACH RESORT
THE WALDORF
ASTORIA COLLECTION
Key West, Florida
Book Your Winter Escape Now.
Or call 877.202.1447

LA QUINTA RESORT & CLUB
THE WALDORF ASTORIA COLLECTION
La Quinta, California
Book Your Winter Escape Now.
877.202.1447

ARIZONA BILTMORE RESORT & SPA
THE WALDORF ASTORIA COLLECTION
Phoenix, Arizona
Book Your Winter Escape Now.
877.202.1447

GRAND WAILEA RESORT HOTEL & SPA
THE WALDORF ASTORIA COLLECTION

Wailea, Maui, Hawaii
Book Your Winter Escape Now.
Or call 877.202.1447

Carmel Valley Ranch Resort, an LXR property

Another company, LXR, luxuryresorts.com, owns a number of Hilton branded properties, Hyatt Pier Sixty-Six in Fort Lauderdale, and a variety of other resorts.  LXR is also running this promotion outside of HHonors.

LXR is offering the same free night certificate and $50 resort credit for stays through April 30, 2009.

The advantage of the LXR offer is the opportunity to expand the free night certificate to other properties outside of Hilton branded hotels like one of our local Monterey County resorts in Carmel Valley, about 8 miles from where I live.

Winter Escapes is available at the Carmel Valley Ranch Resort for April rates as low as $129 per night for a 650 square foot Santa Lucia suite. $149 will land you a Verandah Suite with 1,100 square feet of space and cathedral ceilings.

carmel-valley-resort-bar

Carmel Valley Resort Dining Area

About Ric Garrido

Ric Garrido of Monterey, California started Loyalty Traveler in 2006 for traveler education on hotel and air travel, primarily using frequent flyer and frequent guest loyalty programs for bargain travel. Loyalty Traveler joined BoardingArea.com in 2008.

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