Bits: new SPG hotel in London, Marriott Rewards devalues but adds ‘cash and points’

Links on Head for Points may pay us an affiliate commission. A list of partners is here.

News in brief:

Town Hall Hotel now an SPG property

I have written before about how Starwood is slowly integrating certain Design Hotels into Starwood Preferred Guest.

This week, the acclaimed Town Hall Hotel & Apartments in Bethnal Green (yes, Bethnal Green) went live.  You can see its home page on here.

The hotel (photo below) is well regarded.  Nuno Mendes, for example, was the chef there before moving over to the much-hyped Chiltern Firehouse.

If you book this hotel, you will receive SPG stay credit and earn Starpoints.  In theory, although some Design Hotels may act differently, your elite status will not be recognised.  The hotel will become available for SPG redemptions in the near future but you cannot book them yet.

Town Hall Hotel Bethnal Green

Marriott announces its annual devaluation – but ‘cash and points’ coming

It says something of the approach that Marriott Rewards has to its members that the news of the annual devaluation was met with a ‘could be worse’ attitude over in the US.

To put it in context, over 500 hotels are getting more expensive.  Only 200 are getting cheaper.

To be fair, some of the ones going down in price are actually in places you may be visiting.  (Compare this to the IHG changes where almost every hotel going down in price was in China, India or Brazil.)

Two UK hotels get cheaper – the Courtyard and the Renaissance at Heathrow.  UK hotels increasing in price by one category are:

  • Bristol City Centre Marriott
  • Cheshunt Marriott
  • The Glasshouse (Autograph)
  • London Kensington Marriott
  • London Regents Park Marriott
  • Newcastle MetroCentre Marriott
  • Waltham Abbey Marriott

The full list of changes can be seen here.

You can book at the old prices – for stays up to 50 weeks in advance – until 24th March.

On 24th March, Marriott will also be launching ‘cash and points’ – more on that when I have the full details.

British Airways launches special Club World deals for Easter travel
1,200 Avios for every £3 you spend - ACT QUICKLY

Click here to join the 14,500 people on our email list and receive the latest Avios, miles and points news by 6am.

Amazon ad
AMEX Gold 20,000 bonus points
About Head for Points

We help business and leisure travellers maximise their Avios, frequent flyer miles and hotel loyalty points. Visit every day for three new articles or sign up for our FREE emails via this page or the box to your right.


  1. OT but HR story points have now posted

    • Yes, got mine too

      • I got mine too – husband also got 500 pts – he didn’t do the story thing – statement says “member gets member – existing 500 member” – anyone know what that is about? His is an old membership which lay dormant for years and we reset is last year and got a new card .

  2. OT looks like the Virgin devaluation has arrived. As of 1st March upgrades are increasing by 5000 miles per segment for E-PE, 10,000 for PE-UC and 15,000 for E-UC. This means a return upgrade to NY from E-UC is now 70,000 return, considering a full redemption is 80,000 I’m thinking that will change soon too.

  3. Slightly OT:
    It’s been four weeks to the day today since my annual amex account has completed a full year, still no sign of the annual gold 7.5k bonus. I was under the impression it takes a max of four weeks for the bonus to hit accounts?

  4. SPG have announced a list of category changes too, with the changes kicking in Mar 1.

  5. OT: My IB Avios have posted for subscribing to Amazon VIP and Showroomprive.

  6. OT but I noticed yesterday QR website in Romania were showing free limousine service:

    Think they are trialling this before launching across all flights?

  7. OT regarding SPG in Miami Beach: anyone can give me advice on a non family oriented but fun place for a redemption please? Or other properties where I may want to go to? Never been and don’t know where to book.

    • You could try the W on South Beach. It’s beachfront on Collins Ave, where the big 5* hotels are mainly situated, a little way down from the main Art Deco bit of South Beach. Close to Lincoln road outdoor Mall. It’s an all suite hotel, so good size rooms too, most, if not all have balconies. Definitely not aimed at families it’s loud and proud, like most of South Beach.

  8. Idrive – I second the observations about the W South Beach (the W Fort Lauderdale, 25 miles away, is another option if you are looking for a younger crowd ie 20/ early 30s). Also look at the Royal Palm South Beach (a new hotel and new to the SPG portfolio) but I can’t vouch for it.

  9. thanks Pol and Peter, I will dig into that and see also if there are reasonable alternatives.

Please click here to read our data protection policy before submitting your comment.