How I plan to use 23 Marriott Suite Night Awards this year
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One of the perks of earning higher levels of Marriott Bonvoy elite status is an annual Choice Benefit. And one of the options you can choose at the 50-night threshold and the 75-night threshold is five Suite Night Awards.
My husband and I both earned Marriott Bonvoy Titanium Elite status last year. And we both also have Suite Night Awards from previous years that Marriott extended during the coronavirus pandemic. So, I currently have eight Suite Night Awards, with three expiring on June 30 and five expiring on Dec. 31, and my husband currently has 15 Suite Night Awards, with 10 expiring on June 30 and five expiring on Dec. 31.
As this collection of 23 Suite Night Awards indicates, we’ve been hesitant to use Suite Night Awards suboptimally. But now we’re in a position where we should request Suite Night Awards on Marriott Bonvoy stays whenever possible. Unfortunately, many of our currently booked stays are at brands or properties that don’t participate in the Suite Night Award program.
Most of our mid-to-late-2022 travel plans are still tentative. Some of our Suite Night Award requests will likely not be confirmed. But here’s how I’m currently planning to use our Marriott Bonvoy Suite Night Awards before they expire.
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5 nights at the Le Meridien Kochi in India
We have a 20-night trip to India planned for this April, so I booked a collection of good-value Marriott and Hyatt hotels throughout the country.
One stay I’m particularly looking forward to is a five-night stay at the Category 1 Le Meridien Kochi that I booked for just 30,000 Marriott points total.
The 330-square-foot room I booked with points looks modern and comfortable. But, since I have Suite Night Awards expiring, I’ve looked at the Suite Night Award options for this stay. In doing so, I found I can request an update into two pretty impressive room types: a 768-square-foot one-bedroom junior suite with city view or an 858-square-foot one-bedroom executive suite with backwater view.
I have three Suite Night Awards expiring on June 30, so I requested a Suite Night Award for either room type for my five-night stay. Since this stay is in April, I’ll still have time in May or June to use my Suite Night Awards that expire on June 30 if they don’t clear for this stay.
7 nights at the Sheraton Grand Rio in Brazil
We’ll have seven nights in Rio de Janeiro this May. When we booked our flights, I snagged a seven-night stay at the Sheraton Grand Rio Hotel & Resort with my husband’s Marriott account. We’re booked into a 334-square-foot partial ocean-view room with a balcony for $120 per night.
Having a balcony and a partial ocean-view room sounds great. But, since my husband has 10 Suite Night Awards set to expire on June 30, we might as well try to use seven awards on this stay. Luckily, there are a staggering eight room types you can select from when submitting a Suite Night Award request:
- 1,076-square-foot duplex bi-level one-bedroom suite with one king bed, a sofa bed and a balcony.
- 807-square-foot Carioca one-bedroom larger suite with one king bed, a sofa bed and a balcony.
- 430-square foot executive corner suite with one king bed and a balcony (oceanfront, high floor).
- 430-square foot executive corner suite with one king bed and a balcony (oceanfront).
- 334-square-foot deluxe guest room with one king bed and a balcony (oceanfront, high floor).
- 334-square-food deluxe guest room with two double beds and a balcony (oceanfront, low floor).
- 334-square-food deluxe guest room with one king bed and a balcony (oceanfront, low floor).
- 484-square-foot one-bedroom larger family suite with one king bed and a sofa bed (partial ocean view).
I don’t want to upgrade to a room without a balcony for this trip, so I didn’t request the larger family suite. But all of the other room types would be an improvement over our currently booked room, so I put in requests for the seven other room types since these awards will likely expire (or be used suboptimally) if not used on this trip.
3 nights at the Renaissance Bengaluru in India
To use the last three Suite Night Awards in my husband’s account that expire on June 30, I booked a three-night stay at the Renaissance Bengaluru Race Course Hotel at the start of our April trip to India.
I’d planned to stay at the Hyatt Centric MG Road Bangalore for these three nights. But with expiring Suite Night Awards and an uncertain travel schedule in June, I also booked us a stay at the Renaissance Bengaluru Race Course Hotel. As the trip approaches, and I have a better idea of whether we’ll want to apply any Suite Night Awards to stays in June, I’ll decide whether to keep the Marriott or Hyatt stay in Bengaluru.
The Renaissance Bengaluru Race Course Hotel, which I chose for a combination of its decent-looking base rooms, pricing and location, doesn’t offer many choices for Suite Night Awards. In particular, I currently only see the following four options:
Each of these options would provide a larger room if confirmed, and having a terrace or balcony is appealing. So, I selected all four options when submitting a request. After all, these Suite Night Awards may go unused if not confirmed on this stay.
3 nights at the Bangkok Marriott Hotel Sukhumvit in Thailand
In July, we plan to visit Bangkok for a robot soccer competition that we help organize.
I booked an inexpensive Holiday Inn Express for during the competition, as we won’t spend much non-sleeping time in our room during the competition. But, for three nights before the competition, I snagged a room at the Bangkok Marriott Hotel Sukhumvit for about $83 per night.
Assuming I don’t find more compelling uses for my final three Suite Night Awards that expire on Dec. 31, I plan to request them for this trip. Currently, there are only two options available when I go to submit a Suite Night Award request:
The bathtubs in these suite photos look appealing, but I’m holding off on requesting these Suite Night Awards for now. After all, I may find better uses as this trip approaches. Or I may need to cancel this trip if the competition organizers cancel the competition or Thailand’s entry requirements at the time of the trip aren’t workable.
5 nights at The Stones Hotel — Legian Bali in Indonesia
We’ve booked several trips to Bali over the years, but for various reasons we’ve needed to cancel each trip. So, we’ve booked yet another trip to Bali, Indonesia, this time in July when we already have plans to be in Southeast Asia.
I snagged a five-night stay at The Stones Hotel — Legian Bali, part of Marriott’s Autograph Collection, for just $71 per night with my husband’s account. I booked into a room with one king bed. But there are plenty of room types that we can request for Suite Night Awards, including:
I’m not confident this trip will happen, and we may find better uses for his Suite Night Awards, so I haven’t put in the request yet. If we make it to Bali and can snag a suite or a room with a plunge pool, I’d feel like we got an excellent value from his Suite Night Awards.
Some of the above trips are more certain than others.
For example, I feel confident we’ll go to Brazil. And with the number of room types available for Suite Night Award requests, I hope our request confirms us into one of the available upgraded rooms for this trip. Other trips, like Bali and Thailand, are less certain.
I also know some of our requests will likely not be confirmed. So I expect I may need to make some last-minute plans as the June 30 and Dec. 31 expiration deadlines approach. When booking additional stays, I expect I’ll need to book several hotels in a city before I find one that offers compelling Suite Night Award options. After all, you can’t see what types of Suite Night Awards you can request until you have an active booking.
In short, I know I’ll need to play the Suite Night game strategically this year to get the most value from these awards.
Featured photo of the Westin Langkawi Resort & Spa in Malaysia by Katie Genter/The Points Guy.
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