On Monday, Hyatt delivered a Valentine’s Day gift – a change of category for 146 hotels, which will go into effect on March 22, 2022. 70 hotels will shift to a higher award category, and 76 will shift to a lower award category. Nine Hyatt properties will move into Category 8 (40,000 points per night, up from 30,000 points per night – OUCH!), a category previously reserved only for Small Luxury Hotels of the World (SLH) hotels and Destination by Hyatt residences.
Note that most of the hotels that have gone up in category (with a few exceptions) are the hotels you care about, and the ones that have gone down in category (with a few exceptions) are the hotels you could care less about.
Obviously, make sure to make your reservations before March 22nd for any hotels you are interested in that are going up in category that day.
My motto has always been AFFORDABLE LUXURY, and now you can say that, at least for some properties, that luxury is a little less affordable. There are 9 properties that will become category 8, or 40,000 points per night. More importantly, a free night certificate for a category 1-7 hotel will no longer work for a free night at any of these properties: Alila Napa Valley, Alila Ventana Big Sur, Andaz Maui at Wailea Resort, Park Hyatt New York, Park Hyatt Sydney, Hôtel Lou Pinet (France), Park Hyatt Paris-Vendôme, Park Hyatt Milan and Park Hyatt Kyoto.
I’ve been fortunate to stay at two of these hotels – Park Hyatt New York (see, [Hotel Review] Park Hyatt New York – ‘Twas the Night Before New Years) and Park Hyatt Paris Vendôme (see, Hotel Review: Park Hyatt Paris Vendome), and I’ll miss the opportunity to check out the others (especially Alila Ventana Big Sur, which everyone seems to love, love, love), but honestly, there are still many affordable luxury properties that I’ll stay at again and again.
Within the past few months, I’ve stayed in many Hyatt hotels that are filled with grandeur and love (and incredible staff), and all are Category 6 or below and NOT going up in category:
The Park Hyatt Vienna (Category 6) (review coming soon):
The Párisi Udvar Hotel Budapest (Category 5) (review coming soon):
Hôtel Reisen Stockholm (Category 4) (review coming soon):
Hyatt Centric Las Condes Santiago, Chile (Category 4, miraculously dropping to a Category 3) (see, Great Trip to Santiago, Chile and a Wonderful Stay at the Hyatt Centric Las Condes Santiago):
I was treated like a goddess at all of these locations – and I’ll return in a nanosecond if my travels bring me there.
While I’ll be scratching a few Park Hyatts off of my list of hotels to possibly visit, and I’m a tiny bit sad that I may never experience the wonders of the Alila Ventana Big Sur, there is so much that I still love about World of Hyatt hotels.
And, honestly, though I love the glamor of hotels like the Park Hyatt Vendome, I might actually be more of a Hyatt Regency or Grand Hyatt kind of gal. There I said it. (Dia, did you catch that? ha ha). Plus, in my experience, Hyatt Regency and Grand Hyatt hotels usually have lounges as well as the best fitness centers!
Here’s my take on some of the changes.
I’m sad to see the Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress in Orlando go from a category 3 to 4, but that’s a reasonable change, and it would not stop me from returning. (see, Hotel Review – Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress, Orlando, Florida).
I visited the Confidante Miami Beach in 2021 (see, The Confidante Hotel, Miami Beach, Florida) and already have plans to return for another visit in a few months. I’m not sure I would rush back there when it changes to a category 5.
I can’t speak to the Andaz Maui at Wailea Resort as I have only stayed at the Hyatt Regency, which I like a lot and will happily return to (see, [Hotel Review] Hyatt Regency Maui Resort & Spa).
I think people only liked Gild Hall in New York City because it is a category 4 and less expensive than many of the options uptown (see, Hotel Review – Gild Hall NYC – A Thompson/Hyatt Hotel). It will probably remain less expensive, so people will choose this hotel, if at all, for the price rather than the points.
In Philadelphia, I’ve only stayed at the Bellevue hotel (see, Hotel Review – The Bellevue Hotel in Philadelphia, PA). Now that the Hyatt Centric Center City Philadelphia will be a category 4 hotel, might be cause to plan a staycation to the City of Brotherly Love.
There are a lot of Hyatt Places and Hyatt Houses going up in categories. I will stay at a Hyatt Place/House if it’s a convenient location, but frankly, I can’t generally imagine paying 20,000 or 25,000 points per night for a Hyatt Place.
Both the Hyatt Regency and the Grand Hyatt in Bali are going down to a category 1 – 5,000 points per night! I’ve never been to Indonesia. Not yet.
I’m glad that the Hyatt Regency Amsterdam is going to once again be a category 4 hotel. I loved the Andaz Amsterdam Prinsengracht (see, Hotel Review: Andaz Amsterdam Prinsengracht), but would also like to check out the Hyatt Regency Amsterdam. Having once lived and studied in Amsterdam, I do like to return every few years.
I loved Chile and enjoyed my stay at the Hyatt Centric Las Condes Santiago in December. I find it incredible that both the Centric and the nearby Hyatt Place are going down in categories. I’ve been pondering an extended trip to Central or South America to study Spanish after I retire. Maybe I should think about Chile?
I won’t stop traveling. And despite the devaluation, Hyatt is still my number one choice for hotels.
If I can make one suggestion to Hyatt, if you’re reading this, please lengthen the category 1-7 certificates to one year. Six months just doesn’t make sense.