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Thursday, 8 February 2018

Starwood Category Changes Means Book NOW-Niagara Falls Included!

Every year hotel chains change the category number of some of their hotels--some moving up and some down.  Starwood (SPG) has announced what hotels will be going up and down in category numbers, and by how much.  47.5% of SPG changes are for the better (going down) while 53% are going up.  Most hotels are staying the same.  Overall, 276 hotels are changing categories.
Another important change is that while you can book an SPG property 550 days in advance, that's changing too--to 350.  That means if you want to book for next Passover, you will want to do so sooner rather than later--as of February 11th, it will be down to 350 days in advance.
This means you can book as far as August 11, 2019 (Tisha B'Av) as of this posting.  You may wish to book WAAAY in advance as you can always cancel for free later.
The category number effects you if you are planning on paying with points (or points and cash) for a hotel stay.  With SPG, the 5th night is free, which makes it useful to book in sets of 5 (5 nights, 10 nights, etc.)
Click HERE for a list of ALL the hotels going up and down in categories.
The biggest and most relevant to my readers will be the Four Points by Sheraton Niagara Falls Canada.  The hotel has been a category 2 (3K points for a weekend, 4K for a weekday).   It's moving up to a category 4 (10K points EVERY night of the week).  Yikes!
While it is NOT connected to the Fallsview water park (you'll have to buy passes separately for it), either through Groupon (though their version does not include long weekends such as Family Day), some other discount website, or through the Fallsview Water Park website.
Using points to stay there makes the most sense, compared to what their rates can go up to during high season--points do NOT go up which makes it a great use of SPG points.
For my Jewish readers: It has Shabbos services right by the Chabad Centre--and Chabad set up an eiruv between the two buildings.  You can ask for a "cultural Shabbat" key, which will mean you will be on one of the lower floors over Shabbos that uses a regular key.  Chabad also caters the hotel.  This is the ideal hotel to stay in as an observant Jew.
Go to the Chabad Niagara website for more info on the hotel and Chabad's connection to it.

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