Marriott To Buy Starwood and Invades the Vegas Strip

Marriott
Marriott

Marriott announced that they will be buying Starwood Hotels this morning. This comes on the heels of Starwood announcing that SLS Las Vegas will be a part of their Tribute Collection last week (see article on Travel Zork). Part of the SLS connection is that Starwood would be changing the Lux tower at SLS into W Las Vegas.

A Starwood sale wasn’t a secret but Hyatt was becoming the favorite to buy them (see article on Travel Zork). This deal was made because most of Marriott’s rooms before the purchase were in the United States. About 2/3rds of Starwood hotel rooms are outside of the United States. Marriott now has 1.1 million hotel rooms around the world.

Back to Vegas.

Starwood’s biggest connection with Vegas is through its current affiliation with Caesars Entertainment. The SLS program will begin in December and W Las Vegas will open mid-late 2016. Marriott’s current Vegas Strip affiliation is with the Cosmopolitan. Since the Cosmo was sold last year it’s been rumored that they will eventually join Hilton in some way.

Might the Cosmopolitan become a Starwood hotel?  I know at least one person that will lose his mind if that happens.

Details on the merger of the programs haven’t been released yet. The press release is more financially driven. It’s possible, but unlikely, that Starwood and Marriott will remain separate brands that would keep their individual loyalty programs.

The deal isn’t expected to be completed until sometime in 2016. Unless relationships change these are the hotels on the Vegas Strip that will become Marriott hotels:

  • Bally’s
  • Caesars Palace
  • Cosmopolitan
  • The Cromwell
  • Flamingo
  • Harrah’s
  • The Linq
  • Paris
  • Planet Hollywood
  • Rio
  • SLS Las Vegas 
  • W Las Vegas

Marriott would be the hotel partner for almost half of the hotels on the Vegas Strip (12 of 26 or so). That’s kind of a big deal. Look forward to more information to follow next year.

PS: Starwood Hotels and Starwood Capital are not the same company. This old rumor is probably just be a coincidence.

Ventetian & Palazzo Sign Deal with InterContinental Hotels

Yesterday Venetian and Palazzo announced that they signed a 10 year partnership with InterContinental Hotel Group (Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn, etc.) to partner their Priority Club members.  This gives IHC a foot into Las Vegas where they previously didn’t have a property and gives Sands corp (Venetian and Palazzo) access to a new database of potential visitors.

Guests at the Venetian and the Palazzo will be able to earn points and redeem them for stays at any of IHG’s 4,500 hotels worldwide, while IHG’s Priority Club Rewards and Ambassador members will be able to use their own points for stays at both resorts.

I would never have found Planet Hollywood years ago if they weren’t a Starwood Hotel.  My friends and I use Starwood often.  Now that I’ve found Kimpton, I’d love for them to have a property in Las Vegas but I doubt that will happen as they’re more boutique focused.

As it relates to Venetian and Palazzo, this probably means that more families will visit the hotels.  This locks that I won’t be returning to Venetian as it’s already packed with too many families.  I’m curious to see how Palazzo handles any overflow that may occur.

This continues the copycat marketing in Las Vegas as Cosmopolitan previously signed a partnership with Marriot to access their customers.  As the ducks line up we’ll probably see Harrah’s expand their relationship with Starwood.  Who will MGM Resorts International partner with next?  They’re next in line.

Harrahs Adds Starwood To Total Rewards Alliance

I notice that Harrah’s added Starwood to their Total Rewards Alliance while I was poking around Total Rewards to make sure I was confirmed for an upcoming trip to Atlantic City.  The Total Rewards Alliance includes deals with Norwegian Cruise Lines and Hawaiian Airlines.  Here are the details on how things will work with Starwood.

Total Rewards introduces Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG®) as our newest member of the Total Rewards Alliance! By adding new members to our Total Rewards Alliance, we are giving you more flexibility to build your Reward Credit balance. Now, earn 2 Bonus Reward Credits for every eligible dollar you spend at over 500 participating SPG locations in North America, including the U.S., Canada, Mexico, and the Caribbean. As a Total Rewards member, you’ll also receive exclusive SPG rates at incredible resorts including the W, Westin, and Sheraton.

To be eligible for this exclusive promotion, you must register with your Total Rewards number prior to booking at www.spg.com/TotalRewards. Reward Credits received through your stay will post to your account within 14 days of checking out.

Eligible dollar spent includes only the hotel room rate at participating locations in North America. Taxes, incidentals, or other fees are not included as eligible spend, and will not qualify for Reward Credits. Guests must register for the promotion with their Total Rewards account number prior to booking, and must book through the designated booking site. Other Terms and Conditions apply. For a complete list of Promotional Terms and Conditions, visit us at www.spg.com/TotalRewards.

Total Rewards account must be in good standing to be awarded Reward Credits. All Rules and Regulations of Total Rewards apply. Click Here to see a complete list of Rules and Regulations for Total Rewards.

I’m a starwood member and try to stay at their locations whenever I travel, so getting Total Rewards points is just a bonus.  I don’t see many points coming from this, but if I can get a free meal out of some business travel I’ll take it.

I have to make hotel reservations for an upcoming trip, so this comes at a convenient time for me.  The FAQ answered most questions I had.

Riviera Files For Chapter 11; Starwood Takes Over

To no surprise the Riviera (hotel and owners) filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization yesterday.

…because this is a Chapter 11 filing backed by the key creditors, it’s likely the Riviera Las Vegas and the Riviera Black Hawk will operate normally through the bankrupty process.

This is backed by the bulk of the companies creditors, so don’t expect Riviera to go away too quickly.  Hopefully this reorganization includes renovations and cleaning up of one of the last remaining casinos from the old strip.  Sometimes I’m nostalgic.

Photo: Las Vegas Sun

Update: It seems as if Starwood will be taking over the Riviera.  Vegas Tripping has the quick and dirty.