After our BAcon14 conference Lisa & I decided to take some time and play around in the Vegas area including a visit to the Westin at Lake Las Vegas since it looked amazing and was an OK price with SPG points & cash and I needed a few more stay credits before year end.
I have to say I am really happy about pushing, to the exclusion of other hotels and possible deals I might add, to just about exclusively stay at SPG hotels this year. Delta, as I talked about in yesterday’s post about my wish list for the 2016 Medallion program, could learn a thing or two about my actions. I was willing to pay a little bit more to stay LOYAL to SPG.
As a result it drove my buying and earning decisions for the year. Maybe on a pure cost basis I would have come out ahead spreading my spending around but the perks, the treatment by SPG people across the chain, the value I receive guided my choices. This includes keeping my SPG AMEX card that I just about always pull when I stay at SPG brands plus I really like the 2 stay credits I get each year from my card (btw the business SPG card gives the same perks and you can hold both at once if you want). This alone makes the card worthwhile to me to help me reach my 25 stays per year to reach Platinum with SPG.
As I continue with the Jr. Suite upgrade tour I will touch on something I was both impressed with and still upset with. Like my fellow BA blogger Chris Elliott, I HATE RESORT FEES! Yes, some properties are resorts but let’s take my miserable stay at the IHG Intercontinental The Palazzo in Las Vegas. My “free” Chase IHG card night certificate cost me almost $30 in resort fees. REALLY? Now the Westin also has a resort fee of $25.
Having said that, and it did irk me, they rebated 50% of the fee as an SPG Platinum. $12.50 is still irritating but almost so low that I can let it go. That is a tip to hotels, want to charge a resort fee, make it so small that people almost don’t notice. Anyway, I again saw a perk of being Platinum and that will stick with me when buying hotel rooms next year.
The view from our suite was amazing. After the view of the strip this, less that 30 minuets from downtown, was stunning and a real treat to see.
The view at night was just as impressive if not even more so. Having not spent much time in desert areas I found myself just “wow’ed” again and again. I wished I had take more days to really play and enjoy the resort fee I did pay 😉
Also not all that far from the hotel, and one of the reasons for the choice of the property, was how close it was to the Hoover / Boulder Dam. I had never been. Wow x100! There are few words to describe this amazing feat and accomplishment.
The view from the bridge above really puts the size of it all into perspective. I encourage you to take the walk out on the pedestrian walkway and take it all in. What a treat. But back to the hotel review (the reason for the post after all).
One of the best perks of SPG Platinum, after suite upgrades, is free breakfast. I really really really (did I mention really) like when a hotel gives you more than the stock “continental breakfast” that is all that is promised. The breakfast buffet at the Westin Lake Las Vegas is very nice.
And talk about value – just take a look at what we saved. Now I would not have paid that much myself, but the choices and the quality was very good and the service was just about perfect. This hotel gets breakfast. Impressive.
Overall this was a great stay. I again regret not staying longer and if I had it to do over again I would have stayed here both before and after my BAcon14 conference. Lesson learned and I will be back if I find myself in the Vegas area again (plus I must bring my golf clubs as well next time as the course looked fantastic)! – René
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