New to this game, was offered a Gold challenge late 2014, kept Gold for 2016 with 50 nights last year, most were leisure stays,so not as easy as if someone else is paying! Thought I'd take up the platinum challenge this Feb, and completed it by mid March. Was so looking forward to our first platinum stay, which was last night, April 14th at Leeds, were we had a room booked and tickets for the Grand Theatre to see Alan Bennett's 'Single Spies'.
Checked in, decided not to ask for anything, just to see what room we would get. A suite perchance, or maybe a room with a decent position and view?
Went along to the room full of hope and expectation, opened the door, and my partner immediately said 'oh dear' ! It looked like their lowest grade room, in an internal corner, with a view of an adjoining corridor to the left and the roof in front and to the right. The Leeds Marriott is one of our absolute favourites, we have chalked up 8 visits over the last 16 months, and ALL the staff are great. But this room was in the worst position we'd ever been checked into.
I thought, I'm sure it's not supposed to be like this and went back down to reception. To his credit, the chap on duty offered to look for something better, and came up with an extremely acceptable executive room (263) with a view over the Brigate (city view).
Leeds is a great city, superb shopping and a beautiful Victorian theatre. The Marriott's Lounge was superb as usual, with salad, 2 hot choices and cheese and biscuits to follow. Red and white wine and bottles of Peroni were also on offer. Porridge, cereals and cooked items were on offer for breakfast, which was also excellent. And while I think about it, regarding other posts, no crowding at all, in fact very quiet.
I had the pool to myself this morning at 9am, so I swam diagonally just for the hell of it!
On a different note, the play, which is about the lives of Burgess and Blunt, 2 of the Cambridge spy ring, after the war, was not quite my thing, though the acting was superb.
To finish this account off, as we left the room this morning, a maid was cleaning out room 259, 2 doors away, and as it was a suite, I asked if we could take a quick look around. Wow!
It impressed me so much that while checking out, I asked for a paid upgrade to the room we had already booked for next week (River Dance at same theatre!).
So the moral is, as I've read in yet another post recently, if you really, really want a suite, pay for it!
I've never paid for a suite, but I seem to get one about every 3rd or fourth stay in FS Marriott properties. I enjoy them but I rally don't regard them as worth the added cost. It sometimes seems to help if you call the front desk a day or two in advance and ask for an upgrade. If there is a special occasion attached to my stay, I let them know and that also seems to help.
I am a bit like you;
I am a bit too embarrassed and also a bit too proud to ask upfront for an upgrade;
I just turned Platinum last year (on real stays that is...)
In the beginning there wasn't a big change in interactions between me and hotel staff
lately however, I seem to get more and more upgrades and also always recognition of my status
(it may help that my preferences state "non-smoking room" (here in China everybody seems to be a smoker), that I make a lot of short stays (1 to 2 days), that in some hotels I am a frequently returning customer and that at this moment I already have over 40 nights on my account (being over 25 actual stays))
tonight, upon my return to Shanghai, I will stay in the Renaissance Pudong for one night;
for an exhibition later next month I have also already booked a room for myself and 2 colleagues;
for a change I will (pre-)inquire if it is possible to arrange for an upgrade for one of my respected colleagues (instead of me) for that stay;
I am curious how this will go...
It's nice when a property upgrades you without asking. That happens now and then. Usually when I arrive, I ask for an upgrade if one is available. Upgrades are not always suites. Sometimes it's just a room on a high floor, a corner room, one with a better view, or just a larger room. Getting a suite is harder, but it can happen without paying extra. You are right that if you really want one, paying for it is only sure way.
Just got back from 4 weeks on the road, leasure travel road that is, and was upgraded more than a few times as a Plat. member. The JW Marriott Resort surprised us with a large suite in Scottsdale, upgraded to a beautiful room at the Ritz in Tuscon, AZ, upgraded room with a perfect view in Nashivlle, at the Marriott Vanderbilt, upgraded room at the Bohemian Hotel in Charleston, SC. Never asked at any of the check-in's for an upgrade and pleasantly surprised with the amount of attention we were paid at check-in several times and the upgrades. I never ask for an upgrade but from what I am seeing I guess maybe I should more often.