while I am all for your suggestion, I would think that the Ritz would iike to keep the franchise "a notch above" in many areas of service and amenities. The Ritz Club Room is much more special than the Concierge room at marriott. I for one, would like to ensure it stays that way. Also, in Resort properties, you actually pay a premium to get access to the club room. I think it's $50 a day. Just my opinion. What do others think?
Yes, Ritz is a luxury brand and quite proud of it. As you may have also discovered there are rack rates there and fewer discounted rates than at a typical Marriott hotel. As Shoeman correctly points out, the Club Floor and Lounge are exclusive places with free drinks and excellent food offerings--not like the Concierge Lounge at all.
Thus, I think the Ritz Carlton is correct in making the Club Lounge special for those guests wanting to pay for the privilege of using it.
As Shoeman and SS have explained, maintaining distinctive and coherent brand images is a central aspect of Marriott's thinking both in respect of strategic development and operational management. You might ask: "Then why is it only at the Ritz sites that MR Elite members cannot access the full range of benefits, including access to Club Lounges?" The answer lies in what is perceived to be the mystical allure of "luxury" brands, which has everything to do with the paraphernalia of status distinction and little, if anything, with functionality or needs. Dilute this, the argument would run, and you risk weakening the aspirations that give the entire brand range its potency.
Well, something along these lines..........