I'll be checking into this property next week for several days and am trying to get a sense from members here who have stayed there as to their success rate of garnering an upgrade. In addition to my wife, my 20 year old son will be joining us and while I reserved a rollaway, a nice larger room with a sofabed would really fit the bill.
You are going there next week? Would it happen to be for Cisco Live? I've not stayed at that property but my guess is with 60-80k folks invading SF for the event, many of them executives of major companies that upgrades might be few and far between. The hotel costs for us was so bad we actually turned to airbnb and found a house for less than what one room would have cost us. There's 3 of us going so we feel like it was the most cost effective way but first time using that service so who knows.
Hope you have a fantastic trip!
True, though a good number of folks I know are actually there through the 23rd and into the weekend. A bunch of things are still going on through Friday even if the bulk of things are done later Thursday. The down side, as I understand if from some friends at Cisco, that property is pretty much hosting the Cisco folks from all over. Could be hit or miss checking in on the 22nd but I'm sure you'll do fine Perhaps if they don't give you an upgrade on night one, ask if there's something coming available on the other nights. I've had that happen a LOT where the first night is no good but then the mother of all upgraded rooms is idle the rest of the stay. Its a pain to move rooms but could be worth it.
In the FWIW category, I stayed there in late '12 and did receive an upgrade, but I was seeking a nice view (which they do charge $40-50 more for, so it was a legit upgrade). I don't know about space upgrades, nor the date difference, nor as zuk mentions the demand, but in general, I had a good working relationship with the property; at the time they seemed pretty open to pleasing platinums - so best of luck.
Please let us all know how that airbnb works out. I'm a big VRBO fan, and am excited about the airbnb potential, but am still a bit nervous about being an 'early adopter' (that's a younger man's game, and you're just the guy!), so I hope it's a terrific experience, because that would be another valuable arrow in our travel quiver - thanks.
I will certainly let you know how it goes. I can say its a bit different initially. Finding the best place is somewhat little more convoluted than a traditional hotel search. They allow folks to rent sofa's or inflatable mattresses for "beds" so you have to pay close attention to what type of bed you are getting. The next thing was "is this a house or room or partial house" selection. Many of the ones we found were partial things, as if you were sleeping in the kids room for a night and day to day operations in the household would continue around you. We found an entire house, 3 actual beds and what seems like pretty good looking other rooms and at a price (sub $1500/week) that we couldn't turn down. Considering the rooms for the conference were north of $300/night by the time we decided to attend, well you can see how this could get very attractive.
The next part was that you had to "apply" for the property. It's very much up to the owner if they will take you or your group so we had to put down information about the guests. In our case I'm guessing it sounded "OK" but still took the owner almost a full day to "approve" our request. They have a very good review system in place on the site, I read them for the property we are going to and for the owner's other local properties. All read well and our owner has been very good with communication.
The payment was painless, though it was up front and like any other "vacation rental" there's various penalties for cancellations. They are very clear about it on the site but again something to consider in the booking unless you are 100% sure you won't cancel. They have various levels where some seemingly could careless if you cancel 2 days late or others that want some insane notice for a partial refund. Buyer beware on this part for sure
There's the other things that seem to go along with any other vacation house rental things (cleaning fees, etc) but that's all wrapped into our price presented to us at booking.
So far the entire process has been quite easy and painless. I will arrive into SFO this weekend and will report back once we have completed our stay
On a side note, a buddy that lives in the San Francisco area told me that he's got some friends that host on airbnb. He indicated that at least in SF they are working to change how some of the process works, mostly for the better of the folks renting properties he said. I guess that's a good thing having seen some of the listings for what people have out there. On the other side of that, I hope they don't dork around too much with it as it seems a great option. If this goes well I'd certainly add it to the arsenal of things to consider for family vacations. Even with the stack of points I have, $1500 for a week in the SOMA area of downtown San Fran vs 240k+ points for the better MR properties...eh, that becomes a real head scratcher. Those same 240K+ points can be worth 3x that dollar figure in other areas of the world.
Thanks for the thoughtful reply. This is encouraging, VRBO started off with several hiccups and bumps as well and now I consider it an excellent, reliable option. airbnb is well financed and is going thru the often usual start up growth learning curve (as in its battle with the state of NY) and I think the concept (not necessarily in its exact current form, but one that evolves) has legs. Not being a traveling 'people person' (only stay at B & Bs where I know the owners) the airbnb house concept greatly interests me.
Best wishes for a great stay and thanks for being the Alan Shepard of Insiders with regards to this concept (I've just about mastered my VCR).
and thanks to mikieg for sharing his thread, good luck next week in getting junior some extra sleeping space
I'd like to follow up on this thread. I just returned from my trip and am happy to report that I was automatically upgraded to an large corner room without even asking. The view from the 28th floor was simply spectacular.
The CL at this property is top-notch and had great breakfast and dessert selections.