Is it just me and the particular Residence Inns that I have been staying at, or has there been a drastic decline in the evening socials. First, Thursday nights have been dropped completely. Tonight, the location I was at listed Tune In as the evening social theme. It was tortilla chips, salsa, lemonade, and ice tea. This is not what I have been used to in the past.
Has anyone else run into this?
With 5 points per dollar for rewards, and the new more limited evening socials, I'm thinking RI is going to move down my favorite list for business trips.
My last choice in the Marriott brands is Courtyard. As a platinum rewards member, I get free breakfast at full service hotels either in the concierge lounge or if there is none, at the restaurant. Fairfield, RI, Springhill, etc all come with free breakfast for everyone. Although they are typically nice locations, I only stay at a Courtyard if it is the only one in an area, or there is a great discount.
I have always experienced a wide range of offerings at the RI's I've stayed in. Some offer basically snacks and limited beverages, and others offer a full meal with wine and beer. I haven't stayed recently, so I'm not sure whether there has been a decline or you just experienced one of the subpar locatioins. I have found the evening receptions at Homewood Suites to typically be much better than RI's, so I've recently converted more stays from RI or Courtyard to Homewood and HGI, depending on the length of my stay.
The last couple I recently stayed out (Richmond Va. and Oxnard Ca.) still had excellent breakfasts and evening provisions.
As long as we know the rules of 5 points per rate dollar, I've had no problem factoring it into my lodging equation. If the rates make sense, I always prefer today's dollars over future (declining value) points. And as a breakfast self paying player, I totally agree with ks77, to me, still much better value than a CY.
alwweb, this is something worth keeping an eye out for as more and more properties chase margins specific to their market. Thanks for sharing.
The breakfast is still very good, but I can typically get good breakfasts at Springhill or Fairfield for less per night. There are times on a long trip that the full size refrigerator and all.
I too agree on the CY as I mentioned in my reply to ks77.
Someone mentioned the lack of similarity in hotels within the same chain. The dependability was something that I really appreciated about Marriott in the past.
It's not just you. Residence Inn is our preferred brand for long-stays for business, which is most typically how we travel in the US. We have noticed the decline in the past couple of years, but haven't investigated any official policy. There's still a wide range of offerings from property to property, but those that offer the evening social M-TH are few and far between. Some spots are even down to just Mon and Tues! We miss being able to relax a bit after a long day, or grab something light when we're driving a vehicle that's too big to take to a decent restaurant, etc. I can also see the challenge of maintaining it, since so many people seem to abuse it. It's a pet peeve of ours to see people fill 3-4 plastic cups with wine at a time, and fill to-go boxes to take back to the room as if they were grocery shopping for the next few days. Ugh.
OK I am a platinum member and had no idea we only get 1/2 the points at Residence Inn's. I like the spacial floor plans and if you can get an upgrade to a two bedroom it beats a one room at the Marriott where the windows do not open. I agree with you tamaramunoz on the people hoarding food doesn't make it seem so much like a social. The other thing I found is that many times people treat the Residence Inn as their homes (basketball and swimming into all hours of the night with plenty of family and extended family members) and sometimes that is a little uncomfortable for those of us who are only there for a night or two.