May 26, 2018

Maximizing Hyatt Free Nights in 2017

Hyatt Sign

The Chase Hyatt credit card offers one free anniversary award night each year at any category 1 through category 4 Hyatt hotel.  The credit card comes with a $75 annual fee.  I plan to keep the credit card, but only if I can find a worthwhile Hyatt to stay at to offset the annual fee.  I decided to review the potential options and figure out the best Hyatt hotels to maximize my Hyatt free stay certificate.

Credit Card Anniversary Award Night Exclusions

Each year Chase issues one free award night on the date of your annual fee payment.  The certificates expire 12 months after issuance.  Hyatt has 7 hotel categories.  The free night certificates are only valid for stays in the first 4 Hyatt hotel categories.

The certificates are valid at Mlife resorts as long as those properties are within the first 4 hotel categories.  Hyatt Zilara and Hyatt Ziva properties are excluded.

Category Changes

It’s also important to be aware of changes in the hotel category levels.  All major hotel loyalty programs make regular changes to the category levels of the hotel properties.  Hotels in currently listed in category 4 could potentially become excluded if Hyatt re-classifies any of those properties to a category 5.

In 2016, Hyatt Award Chart Updates included 4 hotels that previously were listed as category 4 properties but were moved to category 5:

  • Hyatt Centric Park City – Moved from a category 4 to category 5
  • Hyatt Centric the Loop Chicago – Moved from a category 4 to category 5
  • Hyatt Regency Jersey City on the Hudson – Moved from a category 4 to a category 5
  • Hyatt Regency San Francisco – Moved from a category 4 to a category 5

The Hotel category changes weren’t all negative.  Hyatt lowered 2 hotels from category 5 to category 4 and 1 hotel from a category 6 to a category 4, making them eligible for the free night award certificates:

  • Hyatt Regency Sochi (Russia) – Moved from category 5 to category 4
  • Hyatt Regency Hill Country Resort – Moved from category 5 to category 4
  • Hyatt Centric South Beach Miami – Moved from category 6 to category 4

The 2016 award changes were effective as of August 1, 2016.

Using the Free Night Certificate

I currently hold Hyatt Diamond status until the end of February 2017.  Hyatt Diamond status has been excellent over the past year.  I received some really good suite upgrades at very nice hotels.  Some of the best suite upgrades included Park Hyatt New York City, Grand Hyatt Dubai, Grand Hyatt Singapore, Park Hyatt Abu Dhabi, Hyatt Capital Gate Abu Dhabi, and Hyatt Regency Dusseldforf Germany.

Unfortunately I didn’t meet the required stays to renew Hyatt Diamond status for 2017.  So I plan to use the free night this year while I still have Diamond status.  So what are my best options to maximize the Hyatt free night award?

In most cases, category 4 properties represent the most expensive hotels to use the free anniversary night.  Since I plan to use the free night on a weekend night, I created a list of category 4 Hyatt hotels with a sample weekend rate and sorted the list by state.  Before I get to the full list, I wanted to consider the possible hotel brands within category 4.

Hyatt category 4 hotels include 38 total options for US based Hyatt hotels:

  • Grand Hyatt: 3 hotels
  • Hyatt Regency: 17 hotels
  • Hyatt Centric: 5 hotels
  • Hyatt House: 1 hotel
  • Hyatt Place: 6 hotels
  • Hyatt / Andaz / Other: 6 hotels

Hyatt classifies the Grand Hyatt and Hyatt Regency brands as premium hotel properties.  Andaz and Hyatt Centric are classified as Lifestyle hotel brands.  Hyatt Place and Hyatt House are classified as modern essentials brands.  In general, the Hyatt Place and Hyatt House brands represent the least expensive properties since they are not considered full service hotels.

Best Category 4 Hotels to Use the Certificate

The following list represents the top ten most expensive Hyatt properties based on a sample night rate for Saturday February 11, 2017.

StateHyattPoints CostWeekend Cost 2/11/17Weekend Value per point
CaliforniaHyatt Regency Monterey Hotel and Spa on Del Monte Golf Course15,000$699$0.0466
CaliforniaHyatt Centric Fisherman’s Wharf San Francisco15,000$484$0.0323
LouisianaHyatt Centric French Quarter New Orleans15,000$469$0.0313
TexasGrand Hyatt DFW15,000$469$0.0313
FloridaHyatt Centric South Beach Miami15,000$390$0.0260
VirginiaHyatt House Virginia Beach15,000$389$0.0259
TennesseeHyatt Place Nashville Downtown15,000$332$0.0221
TexasHyatt Regency Austin15,000$329$0.0219
FloridaHyatt Place Marathon Florida Keys15,000$319$0.0213
UtahHyatt Place Park City15,000$281$0.0187

It’s worth pointing out that even the least expensive Hyatt category 4 property, which was the Hyatt Regency Chicago and cost $129 per night, exceeds the $75 annual fee of the Chase Hyatt credit card.  However, if you really want to maximize the value of the free night certificate, choosing one of the hotels above offers great value on your free night certificate.

All Category 4 Hotels

I’ve included the full list of Hyatt category 4 hotels below with the same sample date and sorted the list by individual state to make it easier to use.

California

StateHyattPoints CostWeekend Cost 2/11/17Weekend Value per point
CaliforniaHyatt Regency Monterey Hotel and Spa on Del Monte Golf Course15,000$699$0.0466
CaliforniaHyatt Centric Fisherman’s Wharf San Francisco15,000$484$0.0323
CaliforniaHyatt Centric Santa Barbara15,000$246$0.0164
CaliforniaHyatt Regency Mission Bay Spa and Marina15,000$216$0.0144
CaliforniaHyatt Regency La Jolla at Aventine15,000$195$0.0130

Delaware

StateHyattPoints CostWeekend Cost 2/11/17Weekend Value per point
DelawareHyatt Place Dewey Beach15,000$135$0.0090

Florida

StateHyattPoints CostWeekend Cost 2/11/17Weekend Value per point
FloridaHyatt Centric South Beach Miami15,000$390$0.0260
FloridaHyatt Place Marathon Florida Keys15,000$319$0.0213
FloridaHyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort and Spa15,000$270$0.0180
FloridaHyatt Regency Grand Cypress15,000$189$0.0126
FloridaHyatt Regency Orlando15,000$144$0.0096

Georgia

StateHyattPoints CostWeekend Cost 2/11/17Weekend Value per point
GeorgiaAndaz Savannah15,000$229$0.0153

Illinois

StateHyattPoints CostWeekend Cost 2/11/17Weekend Value per point
IllinoisHyatt Regency McCormick Place15,000$184$0.0123
IllinoisHyatt Place Chicago River North15,000$139$0.0093
IllinoisHyatt Regency Chicago15,000$129$0.0086

Louisiana

StateHyattPoints CostWeekend Cost 2/11/17Weekend Value per point
LouisianaHyatt Centric French Quarter New Orleans15,000$469$0.0313
LouisianaHyatt Regency New Orleans15,000$259$0.0173

Maryland

StateHyattPoints CostWeekend Cost 2/11/17Weekend Value per point
MarylandHyatt Regency Baltimore Inner Harbor15,000$161$0.0107

Massachusetts

StateHyattPoints CostWeekend Cost 2/11/17Weekend Value per point
MassachusettsHyatt Regency Boston15,000$225$0.0150
MassachusettsHyatt Regency Boston Harbor15,000$144$0.0096
MassachusettsHyatt Regency Cambridge15,000$139$0.0093

Nevada

StateHyattPoints CostWeekend Cost 2/11/17Weekend Value per point
NevadaMonte Carlo15,000$179$0.0119
NevadaMGM Grand15,000$175$0.0117
NevadaNew York New York15,000$175$0.0117

New Mexico

StateHyattPoints CostWeekend Cost 2/11/17Weekend Value per point
New MexicoHyatt Regency Tamaya Resort and Spa15,000$153$0.0102

Pennsylvania

StateHyattPoints CostWeekend Cost 2/11/17Weekend Value per point
PennsylvaniaHyatt at the Bellevue15,000$190$0.0127

Tennessee

StateHyattPoints CostWeekend Cost 2/11/17Weekend Value per point
TennesseeHyatt Place Nashville Downtown15,000$332$0.0221

Texas

StateHyattPoints CostWeekend Cost 2/11/17Weekend Value per point
TexasGrand Hyatt DFW15,000$469$0.0313
TexasHyatt Regency Austin15,000$329$0.0219
TexasHyatt Place Austin Downtown15,000$247$0.0165
TexasHyatt Regency Hill Country Resort and Spa15,000$221$0.0147
TexasHyatt Centric the Woodlands15,000$199$0.0133

Utah

StateHyattPoints CostWeekend Cost 2/11/17Weekend Value per point
UtahHyatt Place Park City15,000$281$0.0187

Virginia

StateHyattPoints CostWeekend Cost 2/11/17Weekend Value per point
VirginiaHyatt House Virginia Beach15,000$389$0.0259

*Opens in May 2017, reservation from 7/8/17.

Washington State

StateHyattPoints CostWeekend Cost 2/11/17Weekend Value per point
WashingtonHyatt at Olive 815,000$190$0.0127
WashingtonGrand Hyatt Seattle15,000$180$0.0120

Washington DC

StateHyattPoints CostWeekend Cost 2/11/17Weekend Value per point
Washington DCGrand Hyatt Washington15,000$199$0.0133
Washington DCHyatt Regency Washington on Capitol Hill15,000$189$0.0126

 

About First Class Travel Guide 128 Articles
Travel enthusiast that spent years flying in the back of planes and staying at cheaper hotels in order to save a little money. After learning how to leverage airline and hotel loyalty programs, I've developed an interest in luxury travel and write about my experiences with it.

2 Comments on Maximizing Hyatt Free Nights in 2017

  1. Thanks for the list exactly what I was looking forward. But just to clarify Hyatt Regency Monterey Hotel and Spa on Del Monte Golf Course I ended up paying $179 (plus tax and resort fees) for the weekend of 2/11. I did book the second week of Feb after the ridiculous price in Carmel/Monterey went down. The Pebble Beach Open was that week and weekend and the hotels had exaggerated prices for months.

    Fishermans Ward is $599 for a saturday stay in june right now. really depends on what is going on around town for a lot of these prices.

    • Your exactly right about the price changes. The list is a good guide as to what the best values are, but seasonal and event specific factors can lead to big price changes for short periods of time that can skew the results.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


*