Earlier in the week the European Commission cleared the purchase of Starwood by Marriott in the grounds that it doesn’t affect the competition landscape in the European Union.
Seems that the deal that was expected to close sometime in July will as a matter of fact close earlier than many of us thought. The Starwood already lists itself as a subsidiary of Marriott International on some program T&Cs that are dated to July 6, 2016.
You can access Starwood’s website here.
Could the deal already close tomorrow or right after fourth of July holiday in the United States? The text on Starwood’s website indicates so.
Nothing will change in the near term for Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) members. I would expect reciprocal benefits at some point this year for Marriott elite members at Starwood hotels and vice versa.
The program merger and bigger impact is likely going to happen at the beginning on 2018 (at least so I hope).
I have had roughly the same number of nights with both chains and each has it own strengths and weaknesses. SPG members are, however, far more vocal and attached to the program and the chain than Marriott ones.
I still don’t believe that this merger will work for Marriott Rewards or SPG members (or that Marriott will achieve the costs savings). I hope to be proven wrong.