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Best Club Carlson Hotel Redemptions: Category 3

As of April 2013, the Club Carlson award chart has changed. Please see the updated list of Best Club Carlson Hotel Redemptions: Category 3.

Redemptions in this category start at 28,000 points. You can’t go wrong with any hotel in Asia, especially India and China. It was tough to pick, but here are the top Category 3 redemptions:

NORTH AMERICA

Radisson Hotel Salt Lake City Downtown (Salt Lake City, Utah)

Radisson Hotel Salt Lake City Downtown

Distinctions: 2011 President’s Award Recipient,  4 key rating from the Green Key Eco-Rating Program

Accommodations: This property was recently renovated and the rooms look fresh and modern. Standard rooms feature views of the Wasatch Mountains and downtown Salt Lake City. Complimentary wifi is available in all rooms.

Location: Located in the midst of the city’s business and entertainment districts, just a few blocks from historic Temple Square and other popular attractions: Capitol Theatre, Family History Library, Gateway Shopping Center, Joseph Smith Memorial Building, and more.

Honorable mention: Radisson Lackawanna Station Hotel Scranton: Not your typical vacation spot, but this is one unique property. It was a historic train station that was converted to a hotel in the 1980’s. The rooms aren’t the nicest, but the Grand Lobby is stunning.

Country Inn & Suites Gillette: Not a highly ranked property, but it features its own waterpark!

SOUTH, CENTRAL AMERICA, THE CARIBBEAN & MEXICO

Radisson Royal Quito Hotel (Quito, Ecuador)

Radisson Royal Quito

Distinctions:

  • 2011 President’s Award
  • Tripadvisor Traveler’s Choice 2013 Winner: #6 Top Hotel in Ecuador
  • 4-key rating from Green Key Eco-Rating Program.

Accommodations: Comfortable rooms with free wifi and evening turndown service. The Radisson Royal Quito offers an evening reception for all guests Monday through Friday from 5:00 PM-7:00 PM, featuring snacks, water, unlimited soda, and a choice of 2 glasses of house wine or 2 national beers.

Location: Located 15 minutes from Mariscal Sucre International Airport and is within walking distance of the Old City, a UNESCO World Heritage site. You can check out century old cathedrals, El Panecillo, local markets, art museums, and more. The hotel secures special cab fares for guests.

Honorable mention: Radisson Hotel Iquique (Iquique, Chile). Guests describe this property as being “in the middle of nowhere,” but for those looking for a tranquil beachside location, this is a great spot.

EUROPE, MIDDLE EAST & AFRICA 

Europe

Art’otel budapest by Park Plaza (Budapest, Hungary)

Art'otel budapest by Park Plaza

Distinctions: N/A

Accommodations: An art-centric hotel, each room at this property features art work by contemporary artist Donald Sultan. Standard rooms are 226-290 sqft and include complimentary wifi along with access to the fitness rooms and sauna. 

Premium Awards can be booked for 42,000 points and are the same size as standard rooms. However, they offer direct views of the Danube and come fitted with flatscreen tv’s, bathrobe and slippers, bottled mineral water on arrival, late checkout, and a free drink at the bar.

Location: Located opposite the hungarian Parliament on the Danube River and within 1 mile of all the important sights and attractions: Budapest Citadel, Liberty Statue, Fisherman’s Bastion, Matthias Church, Széchenyi Chain Bridge, Hungarian national Gallery, Batthyány Square, State Operat House, Gellert Thermal Bath, Margaret Island.

Honorable mention: Radisson Blu Hotel Olumpia, TallinnRadisson Blu Elizabete Hotel, Riga

Both of these properties received high marks, winning several awards. While Estonia and Latvia haven’t been on my list of places to visit, these properties make my list of top places to stay in the area.

Middle East

Park Inn Abu Dhabi, Yas Island (Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, UAE)

Park Inn Abu Dhabi, Yas Island

Distinctions: Traveler’s Choice 2013 Winner: #6 Bargain Hotel in the UAE

Accommodations: All rooms at this property offer views of the Gulf or golf course. A standard award gets you a 300 sqm room with a walk-in shower and free wifi. The maximum number of guests for a standard room is 3.

Stay through March 30, 2013 and get 50% off the redemption rate.

Location: 7-minute drive from Abu Dhabi, 45 minutes from Dubai. Three golf courses, Ferrari World, and Yas Waterworld are located within 3 miles of the hotel.

Honorable mention: N/A

Africa

Park Inn Cape Town Foreshore (Cape Town, South Africa)

Park Inn by Radisson Cape Town ForeshoreDistinctions: Tripadvisor Traveler’s Choice 2013 Winner: #5 Bargain hotel in South Africa.

Accommodations: Standard rooms range between 247-344 sqft and feature modern rooms with flat screen TV, complimentary wifi, and gym access. Breakfast at RBG Bar & Grill is included. All rooms at this property feature views of the city and the beautiful surrounding scenery.

Location: This is a great property located right in the city centre and just 15 miles from the airport.

The hotel offers a complimentary shuttle service that runs within a 1-mile radius – enough to get you to many popular attractions, including: Artscape Theatre Centre, Cape Town international Convention Centre, train station, Robben Island, Table Mountain, Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, Cape Town Gardens, and more.

Honorable mention: Park Inn Ulysse Resort & Thalasso Djerba (Djerba, Tunisia) – This beachfront property boasts stunning views and has won three categories of Tripadvisor awards: Top Hotel in Tunisia (#8), Top Luxury Hotel in Tunisia (#9), and Best Service (#14)

ASIA AND THE PACIFIC 

Asia

Radisson Hotel Agra Taj East Gate Road (Agra, India)

Radisson Blu Agra Taj East Gate Room

Distinctions: Voted #3 hotel in Agra on Tripadvisor

Accommodations: Strangely, this hotel lets you choose between a Superior and Deluxe room on Standard Award redemptions. Superior Rooms are 376 sqft while Deluxe are 403 sqft and include free wifi, tea & coffee maker, and turndown service.

Location: Excellent location, within half a mile of the Taj Mahal. Agra Fort, Itmad-ud-Daulah and Sadar Bazar are within 2 miles of this hotel.

Honorable mention: The Park Plaza Sukhumvit Hotel, Bangkok has won a slew of awards and would have taken the top spot, but I think the Category 2 Park Plaza Bangkok Soi 18 is a better redemption in the city for half the points.

  • Rising Star Award, 2009 Carlson Hotels Worldwide Asia Pacific Annual Awards
  • Global Hospitality Award 2010
  • Carlson Employee of the Year Asia Pacific 2011 Award
  • Expedia Insiders’ Select 2012: Top 200 hotels worldwide.

Pacific

Radisson Blu Hotel Cebu (Cebu, Philippines)

Radisson Blu Hotel Cebu

Distinctions: Tripadvisor Traveler’s Choice 2013: #4 Top hotel in the Philippines, #4 Best Service in the Philippines.

Accommodations: Standard Awards offer Superior Rooms which are 376-495 sqft and offer views of the city or Mactan Channel. All rooms come equipped with memory foam beds, goose feather pillows, and down filled duvets, free wifi, laptop safe, and bottled water.

Location: Cebu is the oldest city in the Philippines and offers lots to see, all of which can be accessed from this property. Just 6 miles from Mactan International Airport, this hotel is a short walk from public transportation and the ferry terminal. This makes it easy to get to the many local attractions, including: Magellan’s Cross, Cebu Taoist Temple, Basilica Minore del Sto. Niño, Colon Street (the oldest street in the Philippines), Fort San Pedro, and Casa Gorordo.

Honorable mention: N/A

Thoughts, questions, suggestions about this list? Please comment below.

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Ariana Arghandewal

10 Comments

  1. Hey! I stayed in what looked like that very room, in Quito, Ecuador this last summer. I got one suite for me and my husband and one suite for my kids. We were only there for a few days, and it was adequate, but nothing spectacular. However, free is free! and that makes all the difference in the world, since we stayed on points from the 50,000 Club Carlson giveaway.

    • Then I chose well! How was the city? It seems like a very interesting place to visit.

  2. Thank you for creating this wonderfully informative guide. I just recently became a Club Carlson cardholder and have been looking for a trip to save up my points for. Do you happen to know if there are any typical times of year that Carlson offers bonus points/contests/etc to look out for? Thanks again.

    • @ Jill, I’m glad you find it useful! Club Carlson ran their 50k bonus pts/stay promo last summer and just before the end off the year 2012.

      They had a great promo that ended in March, offering 50% off standard award redemptions. You can keep tabs on Club Carlson promos by checking out the Point Database on the main toolbar. Hope this helps!

  3. I staid at the art’otel Budapest and the Rad Blu Cebu – both great properties well worth the points!
    he Rad Blu Cebu has beautiful rooms, very good facilities and outstanding service. The location is good to see the city or for business, but not on the beach (where most of the resorts are).

    • @ Rupert, thank for the feedback! It’s always good to hear from those who have actually stayed at these properties.

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