I am a platinum and a vacation club owner. I have never used a n anytime reward and rarely use a single night. I see this change as a significant increase in points. Just a short time ago they increased the hotel catagory on most hotels making it more expensive to stay. I fear that that will be done again. I have about 1.5 million points and I think that Marriott should have given Platinum members and vacation club members more time to use existing points.
Marriott has changed to make their program similar to Starwood but Starwood gives more bang for the buck. Their vacation club members can stay 7 nights at most any hotel for the points given for a week. Marriott uses the points to attract buyers but if one figured the cost per point they would find that they could pay for the stay at most hotels and save money. Why buy a timeshare from Marriott?
As for the lounge, I agree that it is not the same. Often it is noisy and the food is not always great. Eggs can be hard and the best food goes in the first minutes of being set out. Breakfast hours are short. On my last stay, I was in a different time zone. The longe stopped serving breakfast at 6am my time. I had to get a wake up call to get there in time and go back to my room and nap after. The option to eat breakfast in the resturant would be great. I also would like free internet use as is offered in most of Marriotts lower end hotels. Some Marriott hotels have free business centers for guests but not all. It would be nice if they all had this.
Here are answers to your great questions.
"Why buy a timeshare from Marriott?" See the answer below.*
"As for the lounge, the food is not always great." See the announcement ** for an update.
"The option to eat breakfast in the resturant would be great." I agree and would like the option as Platinum Elite to have complimentary BF vouchers - especially on weekends when Concierge is now closed.
"I also would like free internet use as is offered in most of Marriotts lower end hotels." Agreed, but I think the business case for free internet access needs to be presented differently. There is an operational cost to providing a safe and secure service that as guests we should receive. Who would assume the liability? Do you have any additional thoughts on this?