IHG Rewards Club Gold, Platinum & Spire Elite Property Amenity Program Update February 1, 2017 (Reader Help Required!)

by -

IHG Rewards Club has had a program called Surprise & Delight (in some regions and not implemented by all properties) where elite members are offered Food & Beverage amenity or set number of points.

IHG Rewards Club Gold, Platinum & Spire Elite Property Amenity Program Update February 1, 2017 (Help Required!)

Some hotels have offered only the F&B amenity while others only give out these drink vouchers for use at a hotel bar. Now, IHG Rewards Club has launched more formalized Surprise & Delight program (while keeping it semi secret).

You can access IHG Rewards Club here.

READ MORE: IHG Rewards Club Rate & Bonus Points And Miles Promotions

Here’s the information I was able to get from the IHG spokesperson:

In which regions is Surprise & Delight is now valid?

IHG® Rewards Club Elite members are offered a choice of Welcome Amenity upon check-in to thank them and recognize their loyalty. The enhanced Welcome Amenity offers will take effect on February 1, 2017, in the U.S., Canada, AMEA and Europe regions. An enhanced Welcome Amenity will launch in Mexico, the Caribbean and Greater China at a later date.

The F&B amenity or points per tier: Gold, Platinum & Spire

Elite members are given a choice of points or a food & beverage option upon check-in. The specific Welcome Amenity varies by brand and region.

Wasn’t the points amount also dependent of the IHG brand?

The number of points offered as a Welcome Amenity varies by both brand and status level (i.e., Gold Elite, Platinum Elite and Spire Elite).

Note that AMEA is Africa, Middle East & Asia.


IHG Rewards Club couldn’t share the information what the amenity points are per status level and if they have formalized the F&B amenity across all regions.

I would like to hear from readers at the Gold, Platinum and Spire Elite levels. What you were offered in terms of F&B choice or points? Do they have standardized slip that have the options to choose from like SPG and Marriott have (take a snap and email it to me if they have). I am sure that we can soon figure out the points values for each of the regions.

There is also an issue how the amenity points are issued. Some hotels give you a slip that you can use to deposit to any account of your choosing (perfect way to extend the validity of dormant family member account) while others deposit those directly (and sometimes forget).

When I was cleaning my receipt bag late last year, I probably had 30 to 40 of these drinks chits. I would have chosen the point amenity option most of the time if I had a choice.

If you enjoyed this article, get our blog updates for free!


  • JC

    Hi John , while not directly related to the amenity offer.
    I have just completed a stay at Intercontinental KL , having just attained Platinum status,
    My welcome was a packet of three mini cakes , previously they offered a decent drink in the bar , I felt like the bean counters have been at this and that such a cheap offering totally undermined the principle of a loyalty programme

    • Hmm. They should have offered the choice per the info received.

      I have commented about this IC before. Their rates are low but they used to be very problematic property for Royal Ambassador members starting with creating a fake room category used for upgrades.

      • Mike

        Here in the U.K. We used to get a choice of vouchers with a code to deposit points (typically 300 @HIE or 500 @ HI) or a free drink. More recently the hotel allegedly adds them automatically for you but since the turn of the year none of the 8 properties I have stayed at have done so without an email reminder from myself!

        • Mike

          Sorry should have said as a Platinum member…

          • Same with me (Platinum as well). HIE is 300, HI is 500, I have had 500 and 600 at CP. To add to Mike:
            – In my experience, staff is not 100% accustomed to the practice (HI/HIE/CP all the same). It is one of the last things in their check-in routine and -in my experience- they often forget. Even if they forget asking, they usually by default add points to my account. In one case I even had the hotel adding points to my account BEFORE I had arrived/check-in or had stated my preference.
            – When they forget (and me as well) and points are not added to my account, usually an email to IHG or the hotel is enough to get the points (sometimes even with extra points because of the inconvenience).
            – When casually talking with staff, they pretty much all stated that the large majority of customers chooses points over drinks. They explain this usually by saying that ‘the company’ usually pays the bar tab for the Platinum and other higher tier level guests, so it does not make any sense for them to choose the free drink.

  • David

    In last Dec, I stayed at Holiday Inn Düsseldorf, they offered me welcome drink or 500 points. I chose points and they automatically credited into my account few minutes after check in. I am a Platinum AMB

  • Terry Davies

    Platinum Ambassador. Agree with previous posts about points offerings, and staff sometimes needing a gentle reminder. I always go for drink option (as I pay my own way!). HIE give one drink and snack. Some are very strict about what drink, some more generous. I’ve always been surprised it’s only one drink for the member, and not one each for a two-person stay. I occasionally get points and drink, presumably an admin error. Crowne Plaza this week gave me two drinks, plus chocolates and water in room. First CP stay so don’t know if this is typical. Intercontinental gave me nothing on my one stay at Park Lane. I had to ask three times just for the water. Gave up on anything else.

  • jason_111

    As a Platinum Ambassador I get the best benefits at Intercontinentals in Asia.
    I always get chocolates, fruit plate, bottled water, and a gift.
    At the IC Bali over the past 2 years (been there 3 times) I get: box of chocolates, fruit plate, box of nuts, gift, fresh flowers, and a bottle of wine.
    I just made it to Spire Ambassador, so let’s see if there are any other perks that I will get. I would not be surprised if I don’t get anything more.
    As far as points go, yes I always get bonus points but they are not worth much.

    • IC Bali is one of the better InterContinental hotels in the Asia-Pacific. Have stayed there many times.

  • Emily Flemer

    As an IHG plantium elite member, last year we were offered 400 points, a bottle of water with a snack or a drink voucher for the bar. I picked the points obviously. And I think on our stay in October (which was a free stay via a resort club tour) we were offered points or water. I don’t remember any offers at any other times.

  • Anna Antunez

    As a IHG Spire member, I haven’t stayed at IHG since January 2017 so I have no idea what the enhanced amenity awards are, but prior to this Indigo offered 600 points, Holiday Inn, Candlewood Suites and Staybridge offered 500 points and Crowne Plaza offered 600 points. I’m always offered choice of points or drink at the bar (if there is one) or water and a snack. I always choose the points so I do not know what the snack consists of.

  • Barbarella

    I stayed last weekend at the InterContinental Barclay in NYC.
    Besides that I did not receive the welcome letter upon arrival in my room, neither at the check-in (I have been a pale Platinum Ambassador), the staff was confused about the amenities and unfortunately was confusing me as well….to the point that they were claiming that the in-room water was not an guaranteed amenity (it was a paid stay; and not a RN) if guests selects the $20 off for the minibar usage instead of 1500 points.

    As per the recent ambassador changes; the welcome amenity/”gift” is salty/ savory OR sweet snack OR fruit *AND* in-room water. At least in theNorth America

    P.S. No, John, there will be no “compensation clinic”. I have a life and they brought in the free mineral water ( the mini bar Evian was just $12;)) and a welcome letter (3 hours after my arrival) after one IC/Ambassador line call. I wanted to know what has changed overnight but they could not verify either (sic!) what has changed;) ( classic at IHG)

    Summarizing, to me there is no value at IHG, especially since there is no guaranteed room upgrade on a reward night in contrast to Hilton or SPG where they don’t mind to recognize your loyalty

    • Nik

      The Barclays is the greediest IC out there – water AND fruit AND gift are guaranteed.
      Definitely not the rule for other IC’s.

      • Barbarella

        Unfortunately I have to agree. This is supposedly a classy hotel and an iconic venue in the heart of Manhattan. What is the cost of two or three bottles of generic/ regular plain water? 75 cents? Unbelievable. The attitude was like I was “demanding” a case of Perrier limited addition, perfectly chilled to 38 Fahrenheit degrees

    • I have never understood why IHG wants to officially “penalize” those that use their points. I would say that most of the ICs where I have burned points have extended the full RA benefits sans the minibar at some.

  • Euan Ross

    Had this for a long time now in UK. Spire Elite and platinum before spire was available. Either a free drink (all brands) or 600 points CP, 500 HI, 300 HIE

    • Mark Fenton

      The free drink in some UK is restricted to house wine or one lagar

      • MKB

        And, when there are two of you in the room, offering just one person a drink smacks of stinginess and poor hospitality.

  • Nik

    Was offered 600 points or a drink (beer/wine/cocktail) at the IC Madrid this weekend. (RA)
    My friend (Gold) was offered 400 points or a drink (beer/whine).

    Was told that they just received the changes from IHG and we were the first guests who would receive it. (Points never posted – of course)

    • The person checking you in should post the amenity points using their IHG portal. You would then get an email within half an hour from IHG about this.

      Annoying if you have to chase few hundred points.

  • josmon10

    They have once again forgotten about Central and South America, where I travel to the most. Over there Spire Elites get a small snack or a bottle of water, and if you’re lucky, both, but no points whatsoever. Over there I feel like royalty…NOT!

  • Sven Polter

    I stayed at the Crowne Plaza, Salalah, Oman as a Spire Elite member recently as was given a scratch card for my loyalty. Turned out to be a “Discount 25% off restaurant bill” which I did not use since I was aiming for more points for F&B spend for the 2017 Accelerate Promotion. However, upon check-out they applied the discount anyway! https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/70bf976b8ab715571bb6d4743dbaa90294c5c49e171ca5bfb13f0e0f663e60fd.jpg

  • TimOBrien8

    they still haven’t got the selection of welcome snack in the account right yet

  • Kflik

    Gold, HI Zilina. Drink or points, so nothing changed.
    no upgrade also (had in few times in the past in Zilina although it is not official for Golds)