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Best Starwood Preferred Guest Hotel Redemptions: Category 3

Within Starwood’s Category 3, several Luxury Collection properties start showing up. Oddly enough, many of them aren’t in the best shape and don’t measure up with lower-end brands like Four Points and Sheraton. However, there is still a great deal of value to be had in this category, with hotels and resorts requiring just 7,000 points per night. Redeem a hotel in this category as part of a Nights & Flights award and the rate on a 5-night stay decreases to just 2,000 points per night. Here are the best Category 3 Starwood Preferred Guest redemption options:

NORTH AMERICA

Canada

The Westin Bear Mountain Golf Resort & Spa (Victoria, BC)

Westin Bear Mountain Golf Resort & Spa

Westin Bear Mountain Golf Resort & Spa – One of the Best Category 3 Starwood Hotels

Distinctions: Tripadvisor Certificate of Excellence 2014

Accommodations: At the standard level, guests can book a 450 sqft Fairways Building Traditional room, which sits right on the first hole of the championship golf course and offers views of the surrounding mountains or village, which guests can enjoy from the private balcony.. The room also features a kitchenette, while the bathroom has a deep soaker tub.  comes equipped with a kitchenette. It’s worth noting all rooms at this property are smoke free, which shouldn’t be surprising for a resort.

Location: The Westin Bear Mountain is a great place to redeem your Starpoints if you’re looking for a relaxing resort experience or a family vacation with a bit of the outdoors. You’ll likely need a car if you want to venture outside of the resort, where you’ll find several national parks, a movie theatre, shopping, a casino, and the harbor – all within 10 miles of the resort.

Honorable mention: N/A

Mexico

The Westin Resort & Spa Cancun (Cancun, Mexico)

The Westin Resort & Spa Cancun

The Westin Resort & Spa Cancun – One of the Best Category 3 Starwood Hotels

Distinctions: N/A

Accommodations: Award redemptions don’t always get you rooms with the best views, but that’s thankfully not the case at the Westin Resort & Spa Cancun. Guests get a 455 sqft Deluxe Room with a balcony offering beautiful ocean and lagoon views. The room decor is a bit on the tacky side, with turquoise tile floors in some rooms, but for the most part it’s typical Cancun. 

Location: The hotel is located right on the beach, where guests can enjoy typical activities like snorkeling, scuba diving, or zip lining if they venture out 30 miles. Within five miles, there are golf courses and several shopping centers to indulge in. Really, the big draw is it’s location on the beach and it’s reasonable redemption rates.

Honorable mention: La Purificadora, Puebla, a Member of Design Hotels

CENTRAL & SOUTH AMERICA

The Westin Camino Real, Guatemala (Guatemala City, Guatemala)

Westin Camino Real Guatemala Lobby

Westin Camino Real Guatemala Lobby

Distinctions: Tripadvisor Travelers’ Choice 2014: #20 Top 20 Luxury Hotels in Central America

Accommodations: Guests booking a standard room get a tastefully decorated 301-377 sqft Deluxe Room with either a King or two Queen beds. This is a nice option compared to most hotels in Europe, which offer tiny Single (or Twin) beds instead.

Location: The Westin Camino real is located within walking distance of several museums, a shopping mall, and just 5 miles from the National Palace.

Honorable mention: N/A

EUROPE

Western Europe

Sheraton Fuschlsee-Salzburg, Hotel Jagdhof (Salzburg, Austria)

Sheraton Fuschlsee-Salzburg, Hotel Jagdhof

Sheraton Fuschlsee-Salzburg, Hotel Jagdhof – One of the Best Category 3 SPG Hotels

Distinctions: Tripadvisor Certificate of Excellence 2014

Accommodations: A standard award at this resort gets you into King Room with a balcony or patio overlooking the lake, park, garden, or golf course. Amusingly, the hotel website brags about the rooms featuring “windows that open,” which may be a huge plus for some people. In the rooms, guests can enjoy complimentary wifi, an espresso machine, and even umbrellas!

Location: With it’s location on Lake Fuschl and regular rates of over $300 per night, the Sheraton Fuschlsee-Salzburg is a great redemption option. The hotel is within 15 miles of the center of town, Mozart’s Birthplace, Hellbrunn Palace, and Salzburg Festival House. Guests can play golf, go skiing in the proper season, or hike around and take in the stunning scenery.

Honorable mention: Hotel Elephant, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Weimar

Eastern Europe

Metropol Palace, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Belgrade (Belgrade, Serbia)

A Deluxe Room at the Metropol Palace Belgrade - One of the Best Category 3 Starwood Hotels

A Deluxe Room at the Metropol Palace Belgrade – One of the Best Category 3 Starwood Hotels

Distinctions:

  • TripAdvisor Travelers Choice: #6 Top 10 Hotels – Serbia 

Accommodations: At the standard level, guests can book a Classic Room that offers 237 – 258 sqft of space and floor-to-ceiling windows. A plasma screen tv accompanies the room’s modern design, and the bathrooms feature rainforest shower heads.

Location: The Metropol Palace Belgrade gets high marks for its central location. Within a 2 mile radius, guests will find the Kalemegdan Fortress, the Museum of History of Yugoslavia, Church of St. Marko, and St. Save Orthodox Temple. Tasmajdan Park is located right outside the hotel and Tesla fans might appreciate the museum dedicated to its namesake – Nikola Tesla – within walking distance.

Honorable mention:

Mediterranean

Le Méridien St. Julians Hotel & Spa (St. Julians, Malta)

Le Meridien St. Julians Hotel & Spa - One of the Best Category 4 Starwood Hotels

Le Meridien St. Julians Hotel & Spa – One of the Best Category 4 Starwood Hotels

Distinctions: TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence

Accommodations: Redeeming points at the Le Meridien St. Julians Hotel & Spa gets you a ~ 350 sqft classic room with a balcony overlooking the town. Be aware that this is one of those hotels that offers either a King or two Twin beds per room, as opposed to two Queens. Rooms are somewhat outdated, but chances are you won’t be spending much time there anyway, thanks to the hotel’s location…

Location: The Le Meridien St. Julians Hotel & Spa is located on Balluta Bay and a short distance from popular attractions like the Dragonara Casino, Grand Master’s Palace, Tarxien Temples, and St. John’s Cathedral. The hotel concierge can help guests book excursions to Malta’s old Roman capital, Mdina, as well as other nearby islands.

Honorable mention: Sheraton Fuerteventura Beach, Golf & Spa Resort Canary Isle 

AFRICA & THE MIDDLE EAST

Africa

Le Meridien Ile Maurice (Pamlemoussens, Mauritius)

Le Meridien Ile Maurice - One of the Best Category 3 Starwood Hotels

Le Meridien Ile Maurice – One of the Best Category 3 Starwood Hotels

Distinctions: Tripadvisor Certificate of Excellence 2014

Accommodations: Standard rooms at this hotel are relatively spacious at 538 sqft, with a balcony offering ocean or garden views. The set up of these rooms are similar to junior suites, featuring a separate seating area.

Location: This oceanside resort is a great option if you’re looking for a cheap redemption in Mauritius.  There aren’t many sight-seeing options in the area, which is why the hotel’s activity center is so important. Guests can arrange a variety of activities, including a bike tour, swimming with dolphins, snorkeling, and nearby island tours.

Honorable mention: Le Méridien Amman

Middle East

Four Points by Sheraton Le Verdum (Beirut, Lebanon)

Four Points Le Verdun Beirut

Four Points Le Verdun Beirut – One of the Best Category 3 Starwood Hotels

Distinctions: Tripadvisor Travelers’ Choice 2014: #1 Top 10 Luxury Hotels in Lebanon

Accommodations: Guests booking a standard award can choose between a modern 291-355 sqft Classic or Preferred room. The Preferred rooms, true to the name, are the way to go if you don’t mind being on a higher floor and getting a welcome amenity of a fruit basket. The bathroom comes equipped a bidet, as well as grab bars for guests who need assistance. All guests get complimentary wireless internet

Location: Beirut was once dubbed the “Paris of the Middle East.” For those who are undeterred by travel advisories and political turmoil, this the Four Points Le Verdum is a good place from which to explore the city of Beirut. The hotel is within walking distance of the beach, local shopping area, and the Beirut National Museums. Sights like Beiteddine Palace and Jeita Grotto are within 25 miles of the hotel.

Honorable mention: Four Points by Sheraton Bur Dubai (Dubai, UAE)

ASIA PACIFIC

ITC Grand Central, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Mumbai (Mumbai, India)

ITC Grand Central Mumbai - One of the Best Category 4 Starwood Hotels

ITC Grand Central Mumbai – One of the Best Category 4 Starwood Hotels

Distinctions: TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence

Accommodations: Booking the ITC Grand Central Mumbai on points gets you into a nicely appointed Executive Club room, outfitted with a large writing desk and a marble bathroom. 

Location: The ITC Grand Central Mumbai has a central location, perfect for sightseeing. Within a 5-mile radius, guests have access to a variety of museums, art galleries, and tourist attractions like Haji Ali’s tomb, Dhobi Ghat, Malabar Hill, and a myriad of shopping centers. Even corporate travelers are within close proximity of the offices of major corporations like Johnson & Johnson, American Express Bank, and MTV India. 

Honorable mention: 

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Ariana Arghandewal

2 Comments

  1. The Westin Warsaw is a great hotel, but I believe you can often get rates in the $60s/nt, so definitely consider paying revenue instead of points.

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