6 Places to Have a Blast on the Fourth of July

It might be less than a month away, but there’s still plenty of time (and points redemption/earning opportunities) to book a getaway for Fourth of July weekend. Whether you’re looking to bliss out on a sleepy shoreline, sing along at a Beach Boys concert, cheer at a hot dog-eating contest or run a 5K, TPG…

5 Fabulous Sailing Vacations at Points Resorts

In this month’s installment of “Sail Away,” TPG Contributor (and expert sailor) Shayne Benowitz shares the scoop on five points properties that offer experiences for your inner sailor. Whether it’s a US Sailing Certified course or a luxurious day sail complete with a butler and chilled Champagne, these far-flung adventures will put the wind into your wanderlust. 1. The St. Regis Aspen, Colorado If you…

Escape to These 5 Small Caribbean Islands with Points Hotels

The larger islands of the Caribbean give travelers a myriad of points earning/redeeming hotels, but for those looking to explore the region’s smaller, less commercialized islands, finding lodging with redemption options can be a challenge. TPG Contributor Liana Lozada has found five smaller and lesser-known islands that still boast hotel options with points or perks, allowing beach seekers…

Travel to Machu Picchu on Points and Miles

Machu Picchu has become one of the most popular travel destinations in South America — and it’s easy to see why. The centuries-old ruins of a lavish estate seem to float above the rest of the world, offering incredible views of jagged peaks jutting through the clouds and condors soaring over lush river valleys. It can be…

Is the SPG Amex Worth Getting with the Increased Annual Fee?

TPG reader Ricardo tweeted me to ask about the Starwood Amex: @thepointsguy– “With the increased annual fee of $95 on the SPG Amex, do you think the card is still worthwhile?” I hate an annual fee increase just as much as the next points maximizer, but added benefits take the sting out of it. SPG…

Hotel Review: Royal Palm South Beach Miami

For far too long, Starwood properties in Miami have been a study in extremes — the St. Regis Bal Harbour sits at the high end, while the Four Points by Sheraton (up by 43rd Street) is pretty … basic. Starwood’s newest offering, the Royal Palm South Beach Miami, sits somewhere in the middle. Set right in the heart of South Beach, the property is…

How to Save $10,000 on a Destination Wedding

Picture this: You just got engaged and have your heart set on an exotic location for your big day, far away from home — but is the price to pull off your dream wedding unrealistic? The average wedding costs about $25,000, and that price can go up even further depending on location, venue, guest list and all the…

Starwood Preferred Guest Amex Cards Adding New Benefits

Today, TPG Senior Points & Miles Correspondent Nick Ewen examines some planned updates to one of the travel rewards credit cards I use the most. The Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from American Express has been a TPG favorite for a number of years. His most recent valuations peg Starpoints at 2.4 cents apiece (higher than any…

7 Top Hotel Trends to Look For On Your Next Stay

With the hospitality industry ever changing to meet customers’ needs, we’ve noticed a few prevailing trends in recent years. I’ve tapped TPG Contributor Shayne Benowitz (a Miami-based hotel expert) to outline the hottest trends in hotels today. A top priority in hospitality has always been meeting and exceeding guests’ expectations, and today hotels are doing this through technology,…

Starwood Plans to Improve Sheraton, Add 150 Hotels by 2020

Starwood has a lot of fantastic properties around the world, but for every gorgeous new W or industry-leading St. Regis, there’s a Sheraton that’s in desperate need of a refresh — and as of today, this appears to be a top priority for Starwood. As part of its 10-point Sheraton 2020 plan, the chain plans to…