An article in Bloomberg news states Marriott plans to double its number of rooms in Europe by 2020. Moxy for budget travelers and Courtyard for business travelers are the plans for gaining on Marriott’s 1% market share of hotel guests for Europe.

Marriott expects to grow from 74,000 rooms in 2015 to over 150,000 rooms in 2020. Granted the statement is qualified with “will have signed or opened 150,000 rooms in the region by 2020”. Signed deals can still mean another three to five years before a hotel is actually open for guests.

Marriott County Hall London

Marriott County Hall London offers great views of Big Ben and Westminster Parliament Building


Marriott European 5-Year Plan: Get the Moxy Out

There is currently only one Moxy brand hotel open with Moxy Terminal 2, Milan Malpensa Airport in Italy. The hotel drops to a Marriott Rewards category 1 hotel at 7,500 points per reward night on March 19, 2015 from its current Marriott Rewards category 2 reward night tier at 10,000 points per night.

That is the kind of budget hotel move I like to see when looking to redeem hotel points.

Although, the hotel rate on a Sunday or a Tuesday night in late March 2015 is only 47 EUR for an advance purchase rate; less than $53 per night. I would probably pay the low room rate and save my 7,500 points for a better Marriott Rewards redemption value. A flexible rate for day before arrival cancellation with no penalty is 59 EUR ($66.00 USD).

Breakfast included rate at Moxy is 68 EUR ($76.07 USD).

Moxy fills a budget niche hotel market segment in Marriott for Europe in a way that Fairfield Inn would not resonate internationally as a cool American brand for hotel stays.

Courtyard by Marriott is simply a basic, good quality hotel at a price point for the business or leisure traveler without the expense account to always stay at the upper upscale Marriott and Renaissance brands.

Courtyard currently has 46 hotels in Europe compared to 93 Marriott Hotels & Resorts, 37 Renaissance full-service brand hotels. Marriott shows 311 hotels currently in Europe.

Marriott hotel brands in Europe

European Countries with Marriott brand hotels

Spain has the highest number of Marriott brand properties due to the acquisition of Spain-based AC Hotels by Marriott a few years ago. Spain is Marriott country.

United Kingdom has 50 Marriott full-service hotels and only 2 Courtyard hotels. Seems like Marriott may want to grow Courtyard in the UK.

Overall, there are many countries in Europe with a minimal Marriott presence or none at all. Norway, Finland and Baltic Countries have no Marriott footprint. Marriott can expand to Greece, Croatia and Slovenia. Many European countries with only a handful of Marriott brand hotels indicates doubling the size of Marriott in Europe over the next five years will likely still leave places uncovered by Marriott.

Aside from major cities, much of Europe remains outside of Marriott’s reach and may still be Marriott brand free in 2020.

Santa Cruz County will have its first Hyatt brand hotel with Hyatt Place Santa Cruz in 2016 when the 106-room hotel is completed. The $25.4 million property is being constructed at 407 Broadway Santa Cruz, one block from Ocean Avenue, the main beach access road.

Currently, visitors have about 3,600 hotel rooms in Santa Cruz County. Occupancy rate for 2014 averaged 63.6% with peak season for the beach community in July with 83% occupancy. Average room rates in Santa Cruz County climbed from $116 in 2008 to $135 in 2014.

This is good news for the Monterey Bay area. Monterey has the category 4 Hyatt Regency Monterey and Carmel Highlands has the category 6 Highlands Inn and Residence Club.

This will place a Hyatt brand hotel on the north side of Monterey Bay between San Jose – Silicon Valley and Monterey for travelers.

Source: Santa Cruz Sentinel

Club Carlson Triple Points for March 2015 is a targeted email offer sent to Club Carlson newsletter subscribers with the subject line, “We have a private offer waiting for you.” Triple points is a targeted offer for eligible stays from March 2 to March 31.

Club Carlson Triple Points March 2015

I do not currently have a stay planned in March with Club Carlson, but I may make an effort for one more 3-night stay with this offer.

Assume I can find a room rate under $80 per night room rate for a 3-night stay. This offer is good for stays through March 31, but I will want a 3-night stay by March 29 to take advantage of Club Carlson’s Extend Your Stay 30,000 bonus points.

Club Carlson UC Davis

Club Carlson Points Earned:

Country Inn & Suites Dixon, California UC Davis area

Friday, March 20 to Monday, March 23, 2015

AAA rate = $77.10 per night.

  • $231.30 x 60 points/$1 = 13,878 points
  • Extend Your Stay 3-night stay bonus = 30,000 points
  • Club Carlson Gold Elite 35% bonus points = 4,857 points
  • Club Carlson Visa payment 10 points/$1 bonus points =  2,313 points.

Country Inn & Suites Dixon, CA 3-night stay for $263.68 after tax earns

51,048 Club Carlson points.

That is enough points for a Club Carlson category 6 hotel 2-night reward stay in London in peak tourist season July 2015.

Radisson Mercer London July 2015

Two night stay for Radisson Blu Edwardian Mercer Street London in July is 50,000 Club Carlson points for a Club Carlson Visa card member or $1,246.88 for two nights in Superior Room.

Club Carlson Rad Blu Mercer July 2015

Excellent redemption value for Club Carlson points in London and Europe is why I might plan another 3-night stay in March 2015 for triple points + 30,000 Extend Your Stay bonus points.

On another note, when I checked Paris hotels for Club Carlson free nights, I found most hotels in Paris are currently unavailable for free nights for all of July and August 2015.

Check your email for Club Carlson – “We have a private offer waiting for you.”

Club Carlson Triple Points + Extend Your Stay combine for one of the best rebate values on hotel stays we will likely see in 2015.

Related Posts:

Loyalty Traveler – Club Carlson Jan 12 to March 29, 2015 stays earn 15K for 2 nights, 30K for 3 nights (Jan 5, 2015)

Loyalty Traveler – US Radisson Blu free Business Class upgrade to March 29 on 2-night and longer stays (March 2, 2015)

Loyalty Traveler – Radisson 35% off Americas. Book by March 10 for 2-night stays March 27 to June 6 (March 2, 2015)

HHonors Representative on FlyerTalk announced today Hilton free Wi-Fi for all HHonors members begins August 2015. HHonors Diamond members will receive premium Wi-Fi access beginning sometime in 2015 second quarter.

Hilton Wi-Fi Update

Hi all,
As you know, we value your feedback tremendously and have been listening closely to what you have to say to help us continue to evolve the HHonors program. And, thanks to your thoughts and input on our Wi-Fi offerings, we’ve decided to make some updates as we know this is one of the HHonors benefits that matters most to you. Details below:

  • Our most loyal guests, Diamond members, will receive complimentary premium Wi-Fi beginning in the second quarter this year at all of our properties when they book directly through a proprietary Hilton channel or via one of our corporate travel partners.
  • Starting in August, we will extend complimentary standard Wi-Fi access to Blue and Silver members when they book their stays directly through a proprietary Hilton channel or one of our corporate travel partners.
  • Complimentary standard Wi-Fi will continue to be a benefit for HHonors Gold members who also book directly through our proprietary Hilton channels or one of our corporate travel partners.
  • Booking directly through a proprietary Hilton channel one of our corporate travel partners:
    • The Hilton HHonors mobile app
    • Online from,, or any of our brand/hotel websites
    • Calling Hilton Reservations Customer Care: 1-800-HHonors or your local Hilton reservations office
    • Calling an individual hotel (plus walk-ins and physical on-property too)
    • Via corporate travel agencies and travel professionals that book via a Hilton proprietary channel
  • This update doesn’t apply to hotels where there is a resort charge.

You’ll receive this benefit when booking directly through a proprietary Hilton channel or one of our corporate travel partners, which enables us to provide you with a more personalized stay experience. We heard you loud and clear when it comes to Wi-Fi and have shared your feedback with our broader team, so thank you for helping us better understand what is important to you.
If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out within this thread or through PM.


Hilton HHonors
FlyerTalk Ambassador

Here is an article I wrote recently about Hotel Wi-Fi policies. Hilton Worldwide was the laggard hotel chain that finally makes the move to free Wi-Fi.

Loyalty Traveler – Major hotel brands Free Internet Rules 2015 (Feb 5, 2015)

When I look at the 35-page Marriott PDF listing over 1,400 hotels in a list with no geographic descriptors, my thought bluntly is

“What a bunch of assholes at Marriott to post a list of 1,400+ hotels, in no geographic or other kind of order except up or down, as the primary source for hotel reward category changes impacting Marriott Rewards members worldwide on March 19, 2015 .”

There are something like 375 hotels going down in category. Most are in the USA. I looked over the list and focus on around 50 international hotels going down on March 19, 2015.

Marriott 2015 down selection

Ritz Carlton Wolfsburg drops to RZ1 at 30,000 points per night for this hotel near Volkswagen world HQ. Germany also has two Courtyard hotels in Bremen and Cologne dropping category.

One of the biggest surprises to me is seeing the highly touted MOXY at MXP Milan Malpensa International Airport Terminal 2  in Italy is dropping to category 1. Years of media hype on Marriott’s millennial hotel brand and the first hotel to open in the brand is kicking the category gutter at 7,500 points per night.

Russia ruble woes sees 8 hotels in Russia drop category. Moscow hotels were the world’s most expensive a few years ago. Rates have dropped and hotel reward category drops make Moscow and St. Petersburg far more affordable if closer proximity to Putin does not put you off.

Canada oil profits are down along with the Loonie. The dramatic drop of the Canadian Dollar relative the US Dollar in 2014 is still impacting the currency with news stories today on whther the CAD will drop below the 80 cents level against the USD.

2015 is a good year for lower cost Canada travel. I am planning to take advantage of the low value Canadian Dollar next month in Vancouver with my free Alaska Airlines ticket earned in January from the Ski The West promotion.

Mulu Marriott Resort at Gunung Mulu National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Sarawak, Malaysia on the island of Borneo, opens this month and the hotel has already dropped from a category 3 to category 2 Marriott Rewards hotel at 10,000 points per night. Borneo is one of the best deals globally for low category name brand hotels with all modern conveniences in the tropical rain forest.

Tegucigalpa Marriott Hotel Honduras is another upper upscale hotel dropping to only 10,000 points per night.

Marriott Rewards members weekly discount rates for Thursday to Sunday nights is posted for March 5-8, 2015. Thursday requires a Friday night stay. Sunday requires a Saturday night stay. Friday or Saturday can be one night stays.

Two ways to book:
Reserve below — make sure MEB is in the corporate/promotional box. Reserve by phone — call 1–800–752–7571 or a worldwide reservation center.

Marriott eBreaks 3-2-15












New York

North Carolina

South Carolina

South Dakota





Outside of U.S.




Radisson and Park Inn offer 35% off room rates for 2-night and longer stays at participating hotels in the Americas. Country Inn & Suites offer 25% off Best Available Rate booked by March 10 for stays March 27 to June 6, 2015.

These are good hotel rate discounts since the reservations may be cancelled without penalty, usually up to day of arrival.

Stay Two Nights and Get Up To 35% Off Terms and Conditions

The Stay 2, Save Up to 35% Off Discount Offer (“Promotion”) is available for new reservations made by March 10, 2015 for Eligible Stays on select days between March 27, 2015 and June 6, 2015 (“Promotion Period”) at participating Carlson Rezidor hotels in North and South America (“Participating Properties”). Promotion is valid for 35% off the Best Available Rate on standard rooms, double occupancy during a two night consecutive Eligible Stay at select Radisson and Park Inn by Radisson hotels. Promotion is valid for 25% off the Best Available Rate on standard rooms, double occupancy during a two night consecutive Eligible Stay at select Country Inns & Suites.

Radisson Stay 2 March 10 2015

United States


Read More…

I tend to learn about more Club Carlson specials through emails to my non-elite wife’s account than my own Gold elite account emails. One of the promotions I just learned about today is US Radisson Blu free Business Class upgrade to March 29 on 2-night and longer stays. This promotion has been on since January 12, 2015.

Free Business Class room upgrade offer is available for stays at

  • Radisson Blu Chicago,
  • Radisson Blu Philadelphia, 
  • Radisson Blu Minneapolis
  • Radisson Blu Mall of America.

Business Class rooms include a Nespresso machine, free high speed internet, newspaper and access to Club Lounge for breakfast.

This offer for free Business Class room upgrade is combinable with Extend Your Stay 30,000 bonus points on 3-night stays or 15,000 bonus points on 2-night stays.

Rad Blu Biz Class free upgrade

Kelley loved Andaz Amsterdam Prinsengracht. She specifically wanted me to mention how friendly the hotel staff were for our stay. They were so friendly when we were leaving that I considered asking the staffer to wheel Kelley’s luggage to the #197 airport express bus stop at Leidseplein while we talked. Seriously though, the staff at the hotel were exceptionally kind and welcoming to us.

Andaz Amsterdam Atrium

Andaz Amsterdam is a relatively new hotel for Amsterdam with its grand opening November 29, 2012. The former public library building on Prinsengracht is located in the historic canal district of Amsterdam in close proximity to Leidsestraat, one of the central shopping and entertainment districts of the city. The location is about as central as one can be in Amsterdam.

Andaz Ams entrance

The entrance to the Andaz is rather non-descript, except for the blue Andaz flag outside the hotel. One of the features of being in the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the 17th century Amsterdam canal ring of the Prinsengracht is limited signage. Many of the buildings in the canal ring are 17th century houses. Hotel Pulitzer, a few blocks north on Prinsengracht is Starwood’s Luxury Collection Hotel designed from a series of historic houses. Andaz Amsterdam was redesigned from a more recently built public library that was open from 1977 to 2007.

The design elements of the public spaces and rooms are detailed on this page from Marcel Wanders, the hotel’s interior designer with high resolution photos. Check out the page for rationale on why each room features a fish head spoon.

Andaz FishSpoon

Andaz Amsterdam has 122 rooms. Our room 111 faced the Prinsengracht, almost directly over the hotel entrance.

Andaz view

A canal view is one of the most desirable locations in an Amsterdam hotel. Word of warning though. Much of the business traffic for hotel deliveries and waste management occurs in the morning hours when trucks deliver and pick-up at the least congested time of day on the narrow canal roads. I am typically awakened around 6 to 7am by trucks and canal street noise when staying in canal ring hotels of Amsterdam.

Amsterdam XXX

One of the Andaz Amsterdam hotel room features is the bathroom sink and vanity mirror in the center of the room. The toilet has its own door. The walk-in shower is a treat for people across the canal if the window curtains are open.

Andaz Shower room

This photo was taken by the room window. The plate on the shelf is glued down. There were about two dozen books in the room. The reflection of the fish spoon is seen on the shower mirror and the shower stall door is open to the left. The open white door is the toilet room.

Andaz toilet-2

A closet beside the toilet was large enough to store all our luggage inside.

Andaz doorknobs

The space is probably large enough to be made into a child’s bed space.

Andaz Closet

The Andaz bathroom toilet offered plenty of hands-free reading material.

Andaz toilet

The vanity area in the center of the floor allowed both of us to use the mirrors at the same time when seated on opposite sides.

Andaz 111

Zenology bath products were in the shower.

Andaz Shower

Books in the room would have kept us occupied for days if the weather had been lousy during our winter stay. Blue skies for the week kept us wandering the canals most of the daylight hours taking in the sights and sounds and beauty of Amsterdam.

Andaz 111 desk

The mini-bar at Andaz is free for guests, except for alcohol beverages. The minibar in Room 111 is a sliding cabinet under the desk. A Nespresso coffee maker is also on the desk. Kelley was astounded at the loudness of the Nespresso and Keurig coffee machines in the hotels during our trip. She would love a simple quiet drip coffee maker in the morning making coffee while I work on my laptop. Kelley does not drink coffee.

Breakfast at Andaz was complimentary for us with my Hyatt Gold Passport Diamond status. I went to the restaurant early to drink coffee while Kelley slept. My one complaint about the restaurant is coffee drinks were made to order while most diners had a pot of tea on their table. I would have preferred a pot of coffee. That may have been possible, but I did not ask.

Andaz Dining room

The dining room at Andaz has an open space design concept with grills and chefs working around one counter and food on an adjacent counter. The breakfast price was 20 EUR for buffet and 30 EUR for buffet and cooked to order menu items. The food was excellent.

Andaz Reception

Andaz Amsterdam has five room floors and the ground floor with reception, restaurant, bar and library.

Andaz bar

We were in the Andaz bar on a Sunday afternoon and on a couple of weekday nights. The place was generally doing good business. There is a 5 to 7pm wine reception in the library. The wine was good. No camera with me at the time and I don’t recall the vintages.

Andaz library

This was one of those hotel stays where I did not wander around the hotel checking out all the nooks and spaces. There is a courtyard that I entered once, but did not take any photos.

This Andaz Amsterdam Prinsengracht hotel stay was where we splurged on our Amsterdam trip by burning 20,000 Hyatt Gold Passport points per night for the category 5 hotel before it increased to 25,000 points per night as a Hyatt category 6 reward on January 22, 2015.

Andaz Amsterdam Prinsengracht hotel room rates typically start around 400 EUR per night.

Related Loyalty traveler posts:

Words and pictures of Andaz Amsterdam (Feb 20, 2015)

Get lost walking Amsterdam canals (Feb 25, 2015)

#HyattAllIn promotion for 100,000 AA miles and 3 free nights at Ziva or Zilara all-inclusive resort is a Twitter sweepstakes running February 17 to 6pm CT March 10, 2015. Sweepstakes is open to residents of 48 states and D.C.

New York and Florida residents are excluded from this promotion.

To enter #HyattAllIn Twitter Sweepstakes:

In the Promotion, eligible entrants may enter by making a post from their Twitter account that contains

(i) contains the sponsor provided video or a link to the video (“Video”) and

(ii) the hashtags “#HyattAllIn” and “#HZEntry,” (“Required Hashtags”)

Limit of one entry per day.

Prizes: Three (3) Prize Winners, subject to verification, will receive a prize, which consists solely of: a trip for winner and one (1) guest to a Hyatt Ziva or Zilara property on Sponsor-approved dates that consists solely of one (1) room based on double occupancy) for three (3) nights for use only by winner and verified guest (ARV $1200) and one hundred thousand American Airlines AAdvantage miles (ARV $3,190). Winner must be or join American Airlines AAdvantage program in order to receive the miles. Total ARV of Prize: $4,390.

Prize must be redeemed within one year.

HyattAllIn video


Published on Feb 17, 2015

We sent three lucky couples on a once-in-a-lifetime getaway to the all inclusive Hyatt Zilara, and you could be next! Enter to win an unforgettable experience at Hyatt Zilara or Hyatt Ziva for you and a guest when you share this video on Twitter with #HyattAllIn and #HZEntry. Rules:
Explore all that Hyatt All Inclusive Resorts have to offer:

HyattAllIn entry

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