A LoyaltyLobby reader send us a question by email about SPG Platinum amenity that appears to be gone at SPG properties if lounge is closed and member would like to have a breakfast.
You can access Marriott’s page for T&Cs here.
Here’s the email from the reader:
I just stayed at Westin Phoenix Downtown on Friday, September 7. During checkin as a Platinum member, I was told that the Club Lounge would be closed for ‘maintenance’ and that since post-merger, they no longer provided breakfast vouchers in lieu of club access.
I was given the option of using my Platinum amenity to get the voucher but I chose the points which is my normal choice. When I checked out today, I asked again at the front desk and was told the same story as the previous night.
After I arrived back home, I looked up the Rewards T&C from their website which clearly state that a voucher should be issued when club access is not available. I also contacted Rewards elite line for clarification.
The agent agreed with what I thought but she then excused herself to ask a senior colleague for assistance. When she returned, she said her colleague found on SPG’s internal site where it states that there is no provision for when club access is not available at all Westin/Sheraton hotels. Of course I next inquired why this information was available on the public website to which she could no answer (of course). She said I could file a customer service request to have them look into but I am no sure how far that would go. Maybe you have more influence!
The “updated” breakfast rules for Marriott Rewards/SPG Platinum members are extremely confusing and some properties are incorrectly applying them (not the case here unfortunately). I recently wrote a piece about them that hopefully clarifies the minefield (read more here).
Here are the lounge access rules:
When the lounge is closed at Sheraton, Westin and Le Meridien brands the hotel is not required by the program T&Cs to offer breakfast in the restaurant. Guest then can have option to use the Platinum welcome gift to have it in the restaurant.
Good hotels go above and beyond what is the absolute minimum required by the program T&Cs. How long do you think that the lounges at these three brands and especially at resorts (read more here) will stay open and 7 days a week?
It is unfortunate than when programs standardize benefits they usually choose the lowest common denominator.
You should choose and reward hotels that are good with their elites and stay away (like I do) from the ones that could care less. If hotel doesn’t like to provide the elite benefits, why carry the brand’s flag?