May232016

Going to Rio? Hilton, Hyatt, Marriott and Sheraton deals.

This piece looks at hotel rates in the Rio de Janeiro at some of the major chain hotels in the couple of weeks before the Olympic Games 2016. All these hotels are unavailable during the dates of the Olympic Games. Still, there are some surprisingly low rates in July 2016 in my opinion, just before the big event in August when the games begin.

My wife asked me about the price of hotels in Rio de Janeiro for the Olympics in August. “I don’t know. I have not looked at Rio rates in some time.” I recalled writing an article on Rio hotels a few months ago. I figured this would allow a direct comparison of hotel rates for some hotels from searches long before the Olympics.

Loyalty Traveler – Constructing 10,500 hotel rooms in Barra da Tijuca, Brazil for Rio Olympics 2016 (March 12, 2015).

Turned out my article was posted 14 months ago. Oh my, how memory flies away from me in these times.

Anyway, it turns out that I did not mention any hotel rates in my earlier article. Grand Hyatt Rio, Hilton Barra Rio and AC by Marriott Barra da Tijuca were not even open yet.

Grand Hyatt Rio de Janeiro

Grand Hyatt Rio de Janeiro opened March 28, 2016 as the second Grand Hyatt in Brazil and a category 4 Hyatt Gold Passport reward night at 15,000 points. This is also the highest hotel category level allowed for Hyatt Chase Visa credit card free nights. This hotel is available up through July 31 for reward nights at 15,000 points or Points + Cash reward nights for 7,500 points + $100 USD ($118 after tax). Grand Hyatt Rio de Janeiro website.

Listed room rates are $224 USD per night advance purchase rate ($260 after tax) for this property on Sunday July 31, the week before the Olympics. Standard rate is $279 ($324 after tax).

Grand Hyatt Rio de Janeiro, Sunday July 31

Grand Hyatt Rio Jul 31 cat 4 award

Points + Cash is a good value since this rate conserves 7,500 Hyatt Gold Passport points for $118 copay. Those 7,500 points cuts the room rate from $260 nonrefundable rate or $324 standard rate to $118. The 7,500 points you redeem get higher redemption value $142/7,500 points = $18.90 per 1,000 points. I generally calculate redemption value on the standard rate since I rarely book nonrefundable rooms unless I know there is little chance my travel plans will change.

$324 room rate for $118 + 7,500 points gives the points a redemption value of $27.46 per 1,000 points. That is almost 50% more than the price to buy Hyatt points at $18.47 per 1,000 points today during their 30% bonus sale.

Loyalty Traveler – Hyatt Gold Passport purchase points 30% bonus to June 15, 2016 (May 17, 2016).

Grand Hyatt Rio Grand Suite King (753 sq.ft.) has $476 rates and Ocean Front Suite and Ocean Lagoon Suite with same room size and 150 sq.ft. balcony lists for $676 and $776 per night. This would be a good hotel to use Diamond suite upgrades if you can book an ocean view room since the entry level room rate is $174 in later months like November 2016.

Grand Hyatt rio suite rates Nov 20

Hilton Barra Rio de Janeiro

The 298-room Hilton Barra Rio de Janeiro opened April 2015. This hotel is currently HHonors category 7 with reward nights at 60,000 points for every month in 2016. Hilton Barra Rio de Janeiro website.

The good news is there are standard reward nights are available every night for more than two weeks before the Olympics all the way through August 2, 2016.

Tuesday August 2 rates

  • HHonors Discount Rate = $522.83 ($604.25 after tax).
  • Hilton Best Available Rate = $539.00 ($622.85 after tax).
  • Standard Reward = 60,000 points.
  • HHonors Points & Money = not available.

Rio Hilton rates Aug 2

Hilton HHonors Standard Reward availability every night July 19-August 2, 2016.

Rio Hilton reward night calendar

Sheraton Grand Rio Hotel

This 538-room hotel supposedly completed a $50 million two year renovation last year. This is the old Sheraton on the beach.

There is a new Sheraton hotel open for the Olympics games in Sheraton Barra Rio de Janeiro. This is the southern coastal Rio suburb of Barra de Tijuca where many of the new hotels and Olympics facilities were built.

Rio Starwood map two Sheraton Hotels

Sheraton Grand Rio, SPG category 5, has reward nights through July 29, 2016 for 12,000 points per night or 6,000 points + $110.

Friday July 29, 2016

  • Standard Rate = $455 advance purchase, nonrefundable ($526.25 after tax).
  • Best Flexible Rate = $479 cancel with no penalty to July 28, ($553.85 after tax).
  • Standard Reward = 12,000 points.
  • Cash & Points = 6,000 points + $110.

Rio Sheraton Grand rates July 29

Sheraton Barra Rio de Janeiro

Starwood’s new 292-room hotel for the Olympics, Sheraton Barra Rio de Janeiro, looks like it is struggling to finish being built before the Olympics. There are hotel booking warnings that the hotel is undergoing facilities work through July 31, 2016. The Club Lounge is not open.

Sharaton Barra Rio renovations notice

Sheraton Barra Rio July 29, 2016 rates

  • SPG Member Rate = $130 ($139.93 after tax). Nonrefundable.
  • Standard Rate = $189 ($201.45 after tax). Cancel by 7/28 no penalty.
  • Standard Reward = 16,000 points.
  • Cash & Points = 6,000 points + $110 ($118.50 after tax).

This is a case where the nonrefundable rate look like the best value and a risk worth taking, given the high prices of other booking options.

Marriott struggling to open Rio hotels in time?

Marriott has five hotels listed for Rio de Janeiro with JW Marriott, a Courtyard and Residence Inn and two AC Hotels. All, but JW, are new hotels scheduled to open in June 2016. Two of the hotels in Barra de Tijuca, Olympics venues, have low rates all the way up to the weekend before the Olympics begin.

Rio Marriott 5 hotels

Rio Marriott brands open June 16

That is a look at Rio de Janeiro hotels in Hilton, Hyatt, Marriott and Starwood chains pre-Olympics 2016. There should be some good deals post-Olympics at these hotels. Brazil is going through its worse economic crisis in decades. I doubt the Olympic Games will ease much of that strain on the economy.

Loyalty Traveler – Hotel Promotions Guide May 2016.

Loyalty Traveler curated Airfare Deals.

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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