Thursday, January 16, 2014

Four Points San Antonio Airport

Hotel Stay Details 
Hotel: Four Points San Antonio Airport
Dates: January 16-17, 2014 
Rate Paid: 2,000 SPG + $35 Cash 
Regular Room Rate: $139/night (incl. taxes)
Suite Upgrade: Complimentary
Suite Rate: $162/night (incl. taxes)
Total $ Benefit: $121
Point Redemption Value: 6.1 cents/pt

My father finished up his meetings yesterday at 12PM, so we decided to spend the rest of the afternoon checking out San Antonio's famed Alamo and Riverwalk. But since the company had only covered our first two nights at the Omni Hotel, we shifted our third night to my father's beloved Starwood.

Of course, the premier Starwood hotel in town was the Westin ($241 cash or 10,000 SPG) which is right on the Riverwalk. While we looked at that option, I told my father we didn't need to splurge on a random night in San Antonio.

So instead of paying $241 + $35 in overnight parking at the Westin, we went with the budget option, Four Points near the San Antonio Airport which was cheaper and had free parking. Fortunately for us, Four Points had a Cash & Points award available, allowing us to book for 2,000 SPG points + $35 cash. After taxes, we'll have paid just under $41 in out of pocket cash for our 1 night stay.

Of course, Four Points isn't a luxury brand. The brand is much more akin to a comfortable business traveler hotel (similar to the Hyatt Place hotels we stayed at in Boise), but it suited our needs perfectly as a comfortable place to sleep at night where you're not paying excessively for extra amenities that we're not going to need/use.

Upon our 5PM check in, we walked through the ground floor lobby (on the 2nd floor) up to the friendly front desk agent and she welcomed us as SPG Platinum guests. We were immediately upgraded to one of their suites (slightly longer room, with a partial wall separating the living room area from the bed).

Additionally, we were offered a choice of complimentary breakfast or 150 SPG points (worth about $3 to us). We took the breakfast option, thanked the front desk agent and went upstairs to our room.

As you can see from the floor map, our suite (room 526) wasn't massively larger than the regular rooms in the middle of the floor, but who doesn't appreciate some extra space?


We were more impressed with the fact that the room was immaculately clean when we entered.

The living room area was well appointed with a very comfortable red couch (which turned into a pull-out bed) as well as large flat screen TV and an extra long desk for my father to send out his emails and websurf his boring websites.

The bathroom was amazingly spotless and exceptionally well-lit, which is always much appreciated by my dear mother.

Given this hotel has more focus on functionality, we also had a nice empty refrigerator and a microwave in addition to the standard coffee maker.

The view from our room wasn't a key selling point, but I'm not sure the property had any at all rooms with a superior view given this was an airport-based location.

Heading back down to the first floor (remember, the lobby was on the 2nd floor), we found the fitness center and the doors leading to the outdoor pool.

We went back to the lobby to check out the bar / restaurant area and found a large group of hotel guests watching television and talking among themselves. It was pretty lively for an airport hotel on a Thursday.By the time my father finally finished taking all the room photos, it was after 5PM and having missed my daily afternoon nap, I was exhausted. Let's just say I can personally vouch that the bed is exceptionally comfortable.

The next morning, we head downstairs to the lobby restaurant to get some breakfast with our Platinum vouchers. Our server told us we could sit wherever we wanted and that the buffet was behind the wall. It wasn't overly impressive by any means, but it was more than what Four Points had to offer (they're only required by Starwood to provide a free continental breakfast to Platinum guests). No complaints here!


So for $41 in cash, the three of us spent a night in an exceptionally clean hotel and had a full hot breakfast. Another great example of how actively participating in hotel loyalty programs (points and elite status) allows you to travel at a fraction of the retail cost.

The one caveat about the Four Points San Antonio that I feel compelled to mention is that there were multiple signs around the hotel parking lot about any loss or damage to your car/property is not the responsibility of the hotel and that you park at your own risk. Odd, but OK. Then when we noticed another warning sign in our room asking you to use the deadbolt and security bar on the the door whenever you're in the room. Makes you wonder what must have happened in the past that prompted the hotel to put up these warning signs.

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