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Maximizing SPG/Marriott Hotel Points on Maui

Discussion in 'Vistana Signature Experiences (formerly Starwood)' started by CalGalTraveler, Aug 23, 2018.

  1. CalGalTraveler

    CalGalTraveler TUG Member

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    As suggested on another thread, I am creating a new topic on how to best value/compare hotel points stays at TS and Hotel properties vs. renting a timeshare for cash. There are blogger valuations of points:

    https://thepointsguy.com/guide/monthly-valuations/

    I am all for maximizing hotel/air points, however, I am still trying to get my head around the economics of points vs. cash. For me, it is difficult to perfectly equate points to cash. so here is my take:
    • Points are a past/sunk cost and available limited purposes. Earned via cc spend and bonuses (free). You can't invest points and they will devalue over time if saved.
    • Paying cash for a rental is a future cost - you need to take the money from some other investment or future income to pay for a rental. Cash can be used for any purpose. Earned through work/investments. You can invest it and it will increase in value over time if saved in an interest bearing account.
    To make this concrete, here are my alternatives for a 4 night "gap" stay between 2 TS weeks. Which is best?

    Use points:

    1) 395,000 or 78,000/night Marriott Points for WKORV 1 Bdrm OV for 5 nights - fifth night free. ($15/night parking)
    Valued at $3555 or $711/night

    2) 440,000 or 88,000/night Marriott Points for Ritz Carlton Kapalua OV 5 nights (plus $35/night and $40 night parking).
    Valued at $3960 or $792 / night + $375 in fees = $4335

    3) 96,000 Chase Reward Points to rent a 1 Bdrm Oceanfront at Kapalua Villas Maui for 4 nights.
    Valued at $2016 or $504 / night. Note: Chase rewards can be used for MANY purposes including airfare.

    or use Cash?

    4) $3000 or $750 / night to rent a 1 BDRM WKORV or WKORVN OV for one week (but only need 4 days)

    5) Rent TS elsewhere e.g. $2200 or $550 / night at Kaanapali Beach Club 1 Bdrm OV Deluxe.


    Although the other alternatives are cheaper, I am still intrigued by the Ritz Residences because it is aspirational and we would never pay cash to stay there. This may be our only chance to try this out. Yes, this is a LOT of points but it's not cash...how should one approach this?
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2018
  2. emuyshondt

    emuyshondt TUG Member

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    If I were in this situation, I'd evaluate what other uses I could have for the points within the next year or two. If I had other stays with a better redemption value ($/point used), I'd save the points. The redemption value at WKORV is on the border for me, perhaps a little low, but also a lot of cash to put out. The redemption value at the Ritz is similar but you have a bunch of fees on top of the points usage.

    Cash vs. points: It depends on how much disposable income you have! Just like if you have lots of points, you might want to use them, if $2-3K is not a lot of cash to you, then use that today and save the points for when you can get more value out of them. Otherwise, if cash is difficult to replenish, use points that are just lying around right now.

    As to location, that is personal preference. I like the Kaanapali area better than Kapalua, but both are nice. I'm sure the Residences are nice, but I travel around enough that I'd rather save some points for other trips. I am not familiar with the Kapalua Villas, but they sound like a reasonable deal in the Kapalua area, and are ocean front to boot. I'd be exploring those since they seem like the best overall deal. I don't have Chase Reward points so I have no idea how to value them.
     
    CalGalTraveler likes this.
  3. duke

    duke TUG Member

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    Your price is too high for renting 1 BR WKORV OV (7 nights).
    Should be about $2,000 or maybe less.
     
  4. DavidnRobin

    DavidnRobin TUG Member

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    WPORV (Kauai)
    WSJ-VGV (St. John)
    WKV (Scottsdale)
    I get around $2K (+/-) for my OFD studio.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  5. CalGalTraveler

    CalGalTraveler TUG Member

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    Forgot to mention that we are staying on a popular week - July 4th so prices are higher. Best I could find on Redweek was $2,450 for a 1 bdrm OV ($612/night for 4 nights. The timeshares are a full week but we only need 4 nights.)

    For comparison SPG/Marriott.com lists the WKORV 1 bdrm OV at $907 per night ($3628 total for 4 nights) and the Ritz Residence 1 Bdrm OV is listed at $1199 per night ($5096 including fees for 4 nights) for these dates.

    Using hotel values, WKORV is .92 cents per point, and the Ritz stay comes down to 1.07 cents per point which is slightly better than the .9 cent Marriott Reward point valuation given by TPG. Plus with the reward stay we get the 5th night free. I don't believe they give a 5th night free for cash stays so I limited the cash analysis above to 4 nights.
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2018
  6. DavidnRobin

    DavidnRobin TUG Member

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    WPORV (Kauai)
    WSJ-VGV (St. John)
    WKV (Scottsdale)
    I reserve Prez week for the OFD studio.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  7. aeroflygirl

    aeroflygirl TUG Member

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    Several years ago when we were staying at the Hyatt Regency Maui, the front desk called and said the hotel was over-booked and we were offered a stay at the Ritz Carlton Kapalua. We accepted the offer and moved to the Ritz Carlton. The property was very lovely with an ambiance I would call “understated elegance”. That said, we felt that it was a little too quiet for us and the walk to the beach was a little too far to be convenient. I am glad we were offered the experience, but I would not choose to stay there again. My preference would be to rent from an owner at WKORV.
     
  8. jtp1947

    jtp1947 TUG Member

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    Using an owners discount, a one bedroom oceanfront at Marriott Lahaina/Napili villas is $524 a night plus tax.
     
  9. CalGalTraveler

    CalGalTraveler TUG Member

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    Thanks all for your perspectives on extending our stay on Maui using points. I just booked Nanea 1 bdrm for 240,000 Marriott Reward points for 5 nights (48,000 MR per night). Although it will be island view, we decided that blowing 400k+ MR points on the Ritz or WKORV OV was too much; this enables us to check out Nanea and squeeze another vacation or two out of our remaining points. Plus there are no junk fees and excessive parking fees like the Ritz that would have added another $500 to our stay.

    I calculate that 240,000 points at .9 MR Value = $2160 or $432/night which is cheaper than renting via the 25% discount for July 4th week via the SPG site.

    We can also cancel the resie until 48 hours prior to check-in so will continue to look at arbitrage possibilities for last minute rentals, promo packages and other resorts. I am still wanting to try the Ritz, but could look for an opportunity in the future stay when we only need to extend by 1 - 2 nights to keep the points and junk fees to a minimum.
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2018
    glord and kobidobi like this.
  10. duke

    duke TUG Member

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    I agree with your decision as the 240,000 MR points calculate back to 16,000 OLD SPG points.

    However, your valuation of the MR Points is incorrect (as is TPG). Forget FlyerTalk and TPG world. This is Vistana Timeshare world and we have a much better deal that has not been recognized by the FT and TPG world. We STILL get 3X MR Points for each of our OLD SPG points. This applies to Requalified Resales and Developer purchased weeks that can convert to SPG now Marriott Points. Using TPG valuations the 86,000 x 1.1 = 94,600 OLD SPG points I get as 5* Elite X 3 = 283,800 NEW Marriott Points X 0.009 = $2,554. Close to exactly the annual maint fee and TWICE the value of the SMV annual fee.
     
  11. ValleyGirl

    ValleyGirl TUG Member

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    5* & Done (again)
    Didn't Marriott transfer at 3:1 > 240,000 MR points = 80,000 SP?
     
    CalGalTraveler likes this.
  12. CalGalTraveler

    CalGalTraveler TUG Member

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    Yes 80,000 old SPG points divided by 5 nights = 16,000 old SPG points per night. @duke is correct, he simply took the calc to a per night cost.

    Sounds like 5* elite conversions to MR still get the 3x rate. Nice perk.
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2018
  13. YYJMSP

    YYJMSP TUG Member

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    Vistana adjusted the conversion rates on all properties to be 3x what they used to be in SPG points.

    it's just a change in currency/exchange, nothing specific to eliteness...
     
    CalGalTraveler likes this.
  14. emuyshondt

    emuyshondt TUG Member

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    The thing 5* gives you is 10% more points than if you are not Elite. I'm not sure whether that bonus kicks in at 4* or 5*.

    Thus, a regular WKORV/WKORVN 2BR, whether island or ocean view, is worth 264,000 Marriott Points these days. That is already on the order of magnitude of what the maintenance fee is. If you then get the 5th night free reservation at some nicer hotels, then Points can provide good value compared to the maintenance fee of what you own. You can do better if you rent out the unit, but if you don't want the hassle, you can at least recover what you pay for maintenance.
     
  15. CalGalTraveler

    CalGalTraveler TUG Member

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    Got it. We are mandatory resale so cannot convert to SPG. Wonder if this will be the case in future requalifications...it is nice that existing dev purchasers are grandfathered to 3x.
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2018
  16. duke

    duke TUG Member

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    Henry is correct and as I've mentioned before......those of us that requalified resale purchases so that we can get StarPoints X 3 = Marriott Points are getting a hidden great value.

    -> -> With the devaluation of the ability to earn Points via credit cards, 5th night free, and the revaluing of Hotels according to demand rather than Cash Price THESE Timeshare requalifications and 5* Elite provide a fantastic hidden value.
     
  17. controller1

    controller1 TUG Member

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    The 10% bonus on conversions to Marriott points begins at 4*.



    Nothing grandfathered about it. Anything that previously had to do with Starpoints is now 3x that amount in Marriott points. Vistana sent an email about that on August 21. The 3x conversion also applies to new owners of developer purchases.
     
    CalGalTraveler likes this.
  18. okwiater

    okwiater TUG Member

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    "Fantastic" might be overstating the case, but I have always felt that most of my ownerships could be converted to SPG/MR points at a decent salvage value.
     
  19. controller1

    controller1 TUG Member

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    What is the devaluation of 5th night free?
     

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