Hilton HHonors Category 7 Hotel List and 50% VIP Reward Increase for 22 hotels

Hilton’s press release yesterday states they added 302 hotels in 2009 following the company’s  2008 banner year with 327 new hotels. Hilton now has over 3,500 hotels globally with nearly 600,000 hotel rooms. Hilton has opened more newly constructed rooms in the US than any other company for the fourth consecutive year. Hilton has more rooms open and operating in the US than any other hotel chain.

Hilton seems to be shifting attention to its international portfolio. In 2009 50% of all hotel starts are outside the US compared to only 17% two years ago. This is only reasonable since the US hotel metrics for occupancy and room rate are the worst performing regional market globally.

Hilton Worldwide’s pipeline of new hotels is currently more than 900 hotels. Hilton looks poised to bypass InterContinental Hotels Group for the most hotels by chain in the next few years unless IHG has similar growth plans.

Hilton also reported its luxury hotel portfolio in the USA doubled and the number of international luxury hotels grew by 50% in 2009.

The growth in luxury hotel properties in Hilton Worldwide may provide some rationale for why there was a need for a Category 7 with its 25% points increase for free nights.

Hilton HHonors Category 7 Hotel List

There are 64 Hilton Hotel properties in the USA in the new Category 7. In the January 15, 2010 adjustment there was a  double category jump from Category 5 to Category 7 for 16 hotels in the USA, 25% of the new category 7 hotels. 

This change has a substantial impact on HHonors members. Category 5 hotels are 35,000 points per night and were only 150,000 points for a VIP 6-night GLON2 reward in 2009. Since the disappearance of PointStretcher discount awards in the second half of 2009, the VIP rewards are the only discount available to HHonors members (unless you have the American Express HHonors card for AXON rewards). The hotels making the double jump to Category 7 in 2010 cost 50,000 points per night or 225,000 points for 6 nights.  The cost for a VIP 6-night stay in these 16 newly Category 7 hotels, mostly vacation resort properties, increased 50% this month from 150,000 to 225,000 points for 6 nights.

Jan 31 update: The list below mistakenly includes Embassy Suites Chicago Downtown which only moved from Category 5 to a Category 6 hotel, not Category 7 as shown in the table. This actually reduces the number of hotels moving from Category 5 to Category 7 for a 50% VIP Reward increase from 23 hotels to 22 hotels. The USA hotels is reduced to 64 hotels in Category 7. The numbers in the preceding text have been corrected, but the table below is a picture image and the original file will have to be adjusted to correct the table. – Ric Garrido

Hilton HHonors Category 7 Hotels in USA

Hilton HHonors Category 7 Hotels in USA


Puerto Rico has 4 category 7 hotels listed here with the international hotels.




Internationally there are 53 additional Category 7 hotels.  Six of these hotels made a double jump from category 5. Two newly branded Doubletree Hotels in late 2009 in Tanzania are Category 7.

Hilton HHonors Category 7 Hotels international

Hilton HHonors Category 7 Hotels international

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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  1. […] If we analyze this and check out a Category 7 hotel for 6 nights, it only costs 225,000 points.  Break that down per night and that’s a CRAZY ridiculous amount of 37,500 a night!!  WOW IS RIGHT!  At this point you should start thinking…what Category 7 hotels are out there?  Now if you want to know…head here:  http://loyaltytraveler.boardingarea.com/2010/01/26/hilton-hhonors-category-7-hotel-list-and-50… […]


  1. Some of those jumps and category ratings just don’t make any sense.

    Two cities that I know the hotels for fairly well:
    Washington, DC
    The two Embassy Suites are fine and are somewhat expensive at times. The Capital Hilton is maybe the 4th best Hilton in the city and its a category 7? I can somewhat see this, possibly, based on room rates though. However…

    Trafalgar and Waldorf (which isn’t a Waldorf…) I can definitely see. The level of those two hotels and the general room rates justify it. Some of the others I think are a step down from those two (Doubletree, Paddington, Park Lane, Tower Bridge) but they still command BAR room rates close to the Trafalgar and Waldorf (and they all have something going for them) so I get why they’d have a similar category.

    However, Islington, Green Park, and Hyde Park all have typical room rates that are half of the other hotels that are in category 7. If someone told me they chose one of those hotels to stay at on points I would probably laugh in their face unless they had to be next door to the hotel. Early the next morning. And they had a broken leg.

  2. I guess I can be proud of being a Seaside High graduate since Seaside, California is now the proud city of a Hilton HHonors Category 7 hotel.

    London, Tokyo, Sydney, Dubai, Hong Kong, and Seaside.

    Seaside just fits so naturally with these world class locations.

    Too bad the Fairmont Fort Ord got axed. I would truly be a proud hometown son.

  3. Seriously? All those Embassy Suites in the same category as, say, the Conrad Tokyo?

    Maybe they need to rebrand them as Conrads… Would the thought of Conrad Seaside make you proud? Are induce uncontrollable laughter?

    I am thinking of doing a trip to Monterey to burn my last Hyatt FFN. I might have to stop at that jewel in Hilton’s crown to take a look around.

  4. The taco truck across the street from the Embassy Suites in the Home Depot parking lot is a great place for lunch.

    And the hotel actually does have great views of Monterey Peninsula from some rooms.

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