How do Hilton treat you as an Elite?

QF WP

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Just thought I'd create a thread for this - looking back over the last year, I thought I'd done a thread here as well as on Priority Club.

I'm a Gold member.

Friday, 22 May to Sunday, 31 May (yes, 9 nights)
Property: Hilton Cairns
Room booked: King Room
Rate: Travelzoo $135 package rate (included bottle of red wine)
Received: Upgrade to King Suite, card from GM and the wine, obligatory 2 free water bottles per day

Wednesday, 8 July
Property: Hilton Parmelia Perth
Room booked: King Room
Rate: Award room
Received: Upgrade to King Suite, card from GM and the obligatory 2 free water bottles

Thursday, 9 July
Property: Hilton Adelaide
Room booked: King Room
Rate: Award room
Received: Upgrade to Exec Floor, card from GM and the obligatory 2 free water bottles

Saturday, 11 July
Property: Hilton Brisbane
Room booked: King Room
Rate: Met Package (birthday present for Mrs LW, included 2 buffet breakfasts at Atrium Cafe & 2 tickets to Qld Art Gallery for Impressionists Showing from Metropolitan Museum New York - to get some culture)
Received: Upgrade to Exec Floor, card from GM and the obligatory 2 free water bottles

Got some more travel to do to Melbourne this Friday, so hoping to fly down Thursday night to sample the new Hilton.
 

hydrabyss

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Property: Hilton Sydney
Status: Diamond
Room booked: King Guest Room
Rate: $278 X2 points rate (pushing up my balance for an upcoming award stay)
Received: King Deluxe Room + 2 drink vouchers for Marble Bar, 1PM Late Checkout.
When: Jan 2021

So I just finished another stay at Hilton Sydney. This time around was a bit better than my last stay up thread. The check in agent was much better than the last (except they failed to mention Glass was closed), upgraded me 1 room type and something new for me at this property, 2 x vouchers for Marble Bar. I value my late checkout, probably more than any other status benefit. It's a shame the second time in a row, while again the property seemed fairly quiet the max late checkout without additional cost they would give me is 1PM, which previously has always been at least 2PM.

Breakfast: Glass was closed and breakfast was served in the adjacent event rooms. The person checking me in for breakfast did mention something strange, they said to make up for breakfast being in the other room they would upgrade me to a full breakfast. I've always been provided a full breakfast with no upcharge in this property. Was this just to make me feel like they were doing me a favour or is there a breakfast upcharge being introduced here? Also the usual coffee tax was charged.
Depending how regular you stay different staff may provide little extras not normally given. I haven't stayed since covid began and they provided full breakfast back then but things did change and I am sure they may have only been offering continental.
 

QF_Flyer

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Property: Hilton Sydney
Status: Diamond
Room booked: King Guest Room
Rate: $278 X2 points rate (pushing up my balance for an upcoming award stay)
Received: King Deluxe Room + 2 drink vouchers for Marble Bar, 1PM Late Checkout.
When: Jan 2021

So I just finished another stay at Hilton Sydney. This time around was a bit better than my last stay up thread. The check in agent was much better than the last (except they failed to mention Glass was closed), upgraded me 1 room type and something new for me at this property, 2 x vouchers for Marble Bar. I value my late checkout, probably more than any other status benefit. It's a shame the second time in a row, while again the property seemed fairly quiet the max late checkout without additional cost they would give me is 1PM, which previously has always been at least 2PM.

Breakfast: Glass was closed and breakfast was served in the adjacent event rooms. The person checking me in for breakfast did mention something strange, they said to make up for breakfast being in the other room they would upgrade me to a full breakfast. I've always been provided a full breakfast with no upcharge in this property. Was this just to make me feel like they were doing me a favour or is there a breakfast upcharge being introduced here? Also the usual coffee tax was charged.
The coffee tax is annoying, also completely agree about late checkout, that's one of my most valuable benefits and I consider 16:00 reasonable for a Diamond member, but have never had that late be offered (or granted on request) at Hilton Sydney, that I can remember.

Not specifically relevant to Hilton, but a lot of Aussie hotels seem to be making 11:00 the norm now (or maybe I just never noticed before, outside of the lower end of the spectrum), which seems a bit stingy.
 

Berlin

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Not specifically relevant to Hilton, but a lot of Aussie hotels seem to be making 11:00 the norm now (or maybe I just never noticed before, outside of the lower end of the spectrum), which seems a bit stingy.
Agreed, that’s becoming more and more the norm now (there are some properties in New Zealand that even claim 10am is their ‘standard checkout’) and is one of the most annoying tricks that hotels pull on you: You go and kindly ask for a late check out and get told that they can “generously make it 12 o’ clock”.

As an aside, that’s where I like Hyatt’s program much better- it’s 4pm as a top tier member and actually guaranteed unless it’s a “resort property”. Usually gets proactively offered even, hardly ever happens at Hiltons. And you get full hot breakfast too, not the “continental” unless you’re lucky that Hilton does.
 
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Not specifically relevant to Hilton, but a lot of Aussie hotels seem to be making 11:00 the norm now (or maybe I just never noticed before, outside of the lower end of the spectrum), which seems a bit stingy.
Well I've generally found checkout times in aus as follows (there are some exceptions to this rule):
Low tier hotels + hostels: 10AM
Mid tier hotels: 11AM
High tier hotels: 12PM +

I consider Hilton in the top bracket so its sad that its dropped to 11AM, TBH I haven't stayed at any other hotel brands since at least 2019 so this could have changed during the pandemic.

I have a stay coming up this weekend, however I already received an upgrade which is my first time receiving one from the new auto upgrade system, so figured I'll post it now and update it after my stay if I receive anything else. My rate includes late check out so I will be very pushy if they don't give me anything later than 1PM.
Property: Hilton Brisbane
Status: Diamond
Room booked: King Hilton Guest Room
Rate: $242 Member Travel and Save
Received: King Hilton Deluxe Room
When: Jan 2021
 

justinbrett

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I’m currently in the US and just spent the last 2 weeks staying at quite a few Hiltons (10+), mostly in the SE and East Coast. Mostly Hilton /DT with one or two Garden Inns.

Rather than a specific hotel by hotel review, I thought I’d give a general overview of how Hiltons are treating elites at the moment.

  • The good news - almost every hotel granted me an upgrade about 2-3 days prior to check in. Almost 100% success rate.
  • The F&B credit is not so bad. Most hotels price their continental breakfast (if they have it) to the credit amount so you’re no worse off. If you’re travelling solo, book the room as 2 adults and you’ll get twice the credit. With digital check in they don’t know any better (And I don’t feel guilty considering the other cuts they’ve made). That can make a significant dint in your dinner and/or drinks bill and so much better than a continental breakfast especially if, like me, you’re not normally a big breakfast person.
  • Not a single executive lounge was open, a couple had the facility open but no food or drinks beyond instant tea/coffee (not even bottled water). None offered any compensation / vouchers in lieu with the exception of Hilton NY Midtown, who gave a free continental breakfast in addition to the F&B credit.
  • Bring your own toiletries if you don’t normally. I don’t think a single hotel had the full set of 4 they normally offer - I think shower gel was the rarest. They also have some unusual brands, you might see three different brands of shampoo but no conditioner. This was true for the expensive city locations through to the budget locations.
  • the F&B credit isn’t as automatic as they imply. You’ll need to monitor your receipt and chase up as required. Probably easiest to check out at the desk and ask for a printed copy so you can check there and there. That said, about 70% emailed the receipt around midnight prior to checkout so that was helpful.
  • Expect food and beverage outlets to be closed without notice due covid. They claim it’s due staff getting covid. One hotel I stayed at in Richmond VA had completely closed everything including breakfast and the hotel bar. Not a single thing to use the F&B credit on. I complained (in addition to a large group of drunken guests taking over the closed bar and lobby whilst staff did nothing), and got a full refund for that night‘s stay. I did have video evidence of the drunken guests that I sent to Hilton via Twitter which probably helped.
  • 50/50 you will have to specifically ask for bottled water, it won’t be offered.
  • Low staffing in general. Very rare to see doormen/bellhops so you’ll have to carry your own bags. In New York they only had one staff member at the front desk and there was quite a queue, no priority given for diamonds. Bars not well stocked (most couldn’t make a Negroni) and a lot of the bar staff didn’t seem very qualified for anything more complex than a G&T.

Overall the cost cutting is obvious everywhere - although this must be taken in context with the US in general where this is widespread. It’s not worth being an elite member at the moment. Although this trip will requalify me I wouldn’t be stressed about losing status. Some Gsrden Inns have better service than full Hiltons. It’s just random.
 

Daver6

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  • Not a single executive lounge was open, a couple had the facility open but no food or drinks beyond instant tea/coffee (not even bottled water). None offered any compensation / vouchers in lieu with the exception of Hilton NY Midtown, who gave a free continental breakfast in addition to the F&B credit.

My US experience with ELs at Hiltons during regular times wasn't too different to what you described. They really are pretty coughpy.
 

Flashback

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I’m currently in the US and just spent the last 2 weeks staying at quite a few Hiltons (10+), mostly in the SE and East Coast. Mostly Hilton /DT with one or two Garden Inns.

Rather than a specific hotel by hotel review, I thought I’d give a general overview of how Hiltons are treating elites at the moment.

  • The good news - almost every hotel granted me an upgrade about 2-3 days prior to check in. Almost 100% success rate.
  • The F&B credit is not so bad. Most hotels price their continental breakfast (if they have it) to the credit amount so you’re no worse off. If you’re travelling solo, book the room as 2 adults and you’ll get twice the credit. With digital check in they don’t know any better (And I don’t feel guilty considering the other cuts they’ve made). That can make a significant dint in your dinner and/or drinks bill and so much better than a continental breakfast especially if, like me, you’re not normally a big breakfast person.
  • Not a single executive lounge was open, a couple had the facility open but no food or drinks beyond instant tea/coffee (not even bottled water). None offered any compensation / vouchers in lieu with the exception of Hilton NY Midtown, who gave a free continental breakfast in addition to the F&B credit.
  • Bring your own toiletries if you don’t normally. I don’t think a single hotel had the full set of 4 they normally offer - I think shower gel was the rarest. They also have some unusual brands, you might see three different brands of shampoo but no conditioner. This was true for the expensive city locations through to the budget locations.
  • the F&B credit isn’t as automatic as they imply. You’ll need to monitor your receipt and chase up as required. Probably easiest to check out at the desk and ask for a printed copy so you can check there and there. That said, about 70% emailed the receipt around midnight prior to checkout so that was helpful.
  • Expect food and beverage outlets to be closed without notice due covid. They claim it’s due staff getting covid. One hotel I stayed at in Richmond VA had completely closed everything including breakfast and the hotel bar. Not a single thing to use the F&B credit on. I complained (in addition to a large group of drunken guests taking over the closed bar and lobby whilst staff did nothing), and got a full refund for that night‘s stay. I did have video evidence of the drunken guests that I sent to Hilton via Twitter which probably helped.
  • 50/50 you will have to specifically ask for bottled water, it won’t be offered.
  • Low staffing in general. Very rare to see doormen/bellhops so you’ll have to carry your own bags. In New York they only had one staff member at the front desk and there was quite a queue, no priority given for diamonds. Bars not well stocked (most couldn’t make a Negroni) and a lot of the bar staff didn’t seem very qualified for anything more complex than a G&T.

Overall the cost cutting is obvious everywhere - although this must be taken in context with the US in general where this is widespread. It’s not worth being an elite member at the moment. Although this trip will requalify me I wouldn’t be stressed about losing status. Some Gsrden Inns have better service than full Hiltons. It’s just random.

My US experience with ELs at Hiltons during regular times wasn't too different to what you described. They really are pretty coughpy.

Exactly this, not really different to pre COVID. That's why I've been 100% Hampton by Hilton this year, you know exactly what you are getting and they're modern and comfortable.
 

austgap

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Property: Hilton Melbourne - Little Queen
Status: Diamond
Room booked: King Guest Room
Rate: $272
Received: King Premier Room + 2x bottle water, 2x beers, 2x bottle of wine

Initially booked at the DT however the HI rates dropped to within the TA budget with work so switched across and the upgrade came across almost immediately. Hotel totally empty even with the AO on (DT dropped to $205 for the same one night stay).

Staffing a clear issue at the hotel, much more noticeable then the DT and everyone came across very frazzled (needed to see the desk as the digital key wasn't working for the elevators) full of first day trainee's whom looked very overwhelmed. No canapes left in the fridge, did query this with the front desk supervisor on checkout and she was unsure if that's a new stance or it was just forgotten.

Coffee tax continues to be enforced.

Agree with other posts, hard spot to love for work visits to MEL - nothing is open around the hotel MON/TUE/WED so finding dinner is a bit of a PIA.
 

chowda85

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Property: Hilton Brisbane
Status: Diamond
Room booked: King Guest Room
Rate: $239
Received: King Hilton Suite + bottled water(s)

Am still at the property as I write this, due to checkout in a couple of days so just some initial comments.

Had organised a transfer from airport and from arrival at the hotel, the team members have been exceptional starting with those from concierge and then to those in the check-in lobby. Had mentioned they were expecting me and certainly acknowledged my Diamond status. Have also received regular texts to see how my stay is so far.

No welcome card or other welcome amenities however I did request, as part of a special occasion, for an item to be arranged for the night before check-out so am happy it was accommodated (haven't received it as yet). As for the suite, what can I say other than really enjoying it. From me for now definitely a solid 9/10 experience.
 

eric2011

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Property: Hilton Brisbane
Status: Diamond
Room booked: King Guest Room
Rate: $239
Received: King Hilton Suite + bottled water(s)

Am still at the property as I write this, due to checkout in a couple of days so just some initial comments.

Had organised a transfer from airport and from arrival at the hotel, the team members have been exceptional starting with those from concierge and then to those in the check-in lobby. Had mentioned they were expecting me and certainly acknowledged my Diamond status. Have also received regular texts to see how my stay is so far.

No welcome card or other welcome amenities however I did request, as part of a special occasion, for an item to be arranged for the night before check-out so am happy it was accommodated (haven't received it as yet). As for the suite, what can I say other than really enjoying it. From me for now definitely a solid 9/10 experience.
Congrats on getting the suite upgrade. I stay here 2 or 3 times a month as a Diamond and have never got better than Executive floor.
 

eric2011

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Congrats on getting the suite upgrade. I stay here 2 or 3 times a month as a Diamond and have never got better than Executive floor.
Upgrade for this Thursday night just came through. Once again no suite, just Executive floor. 3rd stay this year
 

eric2011

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I take it the Exec lounge is still closed, so what is being offered to Diamonds in place of the lounge?
Downstairs in the lobby lounge. Drinks and canapés. I have not ever had a truely positive experience so don't even attend. Same with the breakfast offering in the restaurant. Used to be a full buffet breakfast but last time I went was told I could only have a Continental.

TBH I don't know why I continue to be loyal to HH, however Accor hotels and Marriott are still not taking any bookings so don't have many other options
 

jase05

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Downstairs in the lobby lounge. Drinks and canapés. I have not ever had a truely positive experience so don't even attend. Same with the breakfast offering in the restaurant. Used to be a full buffet breakfast but last time I went was told I could only have a Continental.

TBH I don't know why I continue to be loyal to HH, however Accor hotels and Marriott are still not taking any bookings so don't have many other options
Pullman and Sofitel in Brisbane is taking bookings aren’t they?
Had some real good stays at both in the past
 

DC3

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Downstairs in the lobby lounge. Drinks and canapés. I have not ever had a truely positive experience so don't even attend. Same with the breakfast offering in the restaurant. Used to be a full buffet breakfast but last time I went was told I could only have a Continental. ..
The last time that I stayed there, Chris Partridge was the GM.

He may appreciate some feedback: [email protected]
 
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eric2011

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The last time that I stayed there, Chris Partridge was the GM.

He may appreciate some feedback: [email protected]
I have provided feedback a number of times but never received any response. I have given up even trying. The only contact I ever get is the text once you check in but they are impersonal and just cut and paste sentences
 

DC3

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Pullman and Sofitel in Brisbane is taking bookings aren’t they?
Had some real good stays at both in the past
Sofitel reopens on Saturday 5th February from what I saw.
Post automatically merged:

I have provided feedback a number of times but never received any response. I have given up even trying. The only contact I ever get is the text once you check in but they are impersonal and just cut and paste sentences
You may need to go to the top, and bypass the others.

Edit: I have provided feedback (probably three times) via Chris Partridge’s email, and each time he has got back to me, and on one occasion advised of adding one matter to my profile
 
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