Below is a letter I wrote to Amex and SPG regarding a letter that they sent me. n_______________________________nDear American Express / SPG, nI am writing you in regards to an email I received from SPG, advising that my stay in Jerusalem Sheraton on July 24th using my Starwood points (Confirmation #XXXXXXX ) will not be honored because as of 6/30 the hotel will no longer be a part of the Sheraton brand. nThrough my own research I found an article stating that Eilat Sheraton will no longer be part of the Sheraton family as well. I have outstanding reservations at the Eilat Sheraton fot 7/28-7/31 for two rooms with my Starwood points, though have yet had any communication from SPG on this matter. (Confirmations #XXXXXXXX, XXXXXXX). nThis is all deeply disturbing to me since my wife and I have been planning this trip to Israel for some time, and this was the main reason we signed up for the Amex SPG Rewards card. Prior to opening up an account I researched Israel destinations to be sure that there are Starwood Hotels in Jerusalem and Eilat which were both on my itinerary. Since becoming an Amex SPG member, in Sept 08, my wife and I made sure to use it as our primary card in order to accumulate enough points to guarantee free stays during our Israel trip. In March ’09, we finally booked our trip carefully budgeting our itinerary. At that time the Starwood Points were used to book rooms in Jerusalem for my wife and I, and in Eilat for us both, and one room for family that will be travelling with us. nWhile I understand that in the course of business Starwood has the right to end its relationship with its participating hotels, it is unacceptable that we as the customers have to suffer because of it. At the time of booking we were not warned that this is something that Starwood was considering. I am sure that this decision to drop the Jerusalem and Eilat hotels did not come overnight. I received confirmations and guarantees for all the rooms booked. SPG should not have been confirming reservations if there was any doubt about the status of the hotels, or at the very minimum put up a huge disclaimer saying that these hotels might be removed from the Sheraton family nSo, this is something that either Amex or SPG has to remedy. Amex prides itself on being all about the customer, and SPG markets itself as a program catered for individuals who like to travel. Any of the below options would be acceptable to me and my family. n1) We stay at the hotels as we were confirmed and guaranteed and SPG or Amex resolves the payment with the hotel management. n2) An Amex Travel Consultant arranges for complimentary comparable rooms in the vicinities of the Jerusalem Sheraton and Eilat Sheraton. (Eilat has a Le Meridien, which on SPG looks like it is fully booked for those days) n___________________________________ nDear Mr. XXXXXXX: nI am contacting you to advise of a change in the status of the Sheraton Jerusalem Plaza Hotel. As of June 30th, the Sheraton Jerusalem Plaza Hotel will no longer be part of Starwood Hotels and Resorts WW and will no longer participate in the Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) program. n I see you are currently holding a reservation, confirmation number XXXXXXXX on July 24, 2009 for 1 night. I have been advised that the new management will not accept your Starpoints for a Preferred (free) Night Award as your stay was confirmed. The existing management request that you contact the on-site reservations department by June 15th should you wish to convert your reservation to a paid rate. The hotel can be contacted on the following number: 972-2-6298666. nPlease remember that you will not earn Starpoints for any normally eligible charges, and you will not be given your usual Starwood Preferred Guest amenities and benefits. nWe appreciate your continued patronage of Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide and we apologize for this unforeseen change and any inconvenience it may cause for you. We look forward to welcoming you to a Starwood Preferred Guest participating property in the near future.n________________________________________ nNeither Amex or Starwood has tried to either honor our confirmations or get us complimentary rooms. Amex advises to speak to SPG and SPG advises that there is nothing they can do and that the consumers should contact the hotels themselves and agree on a rate (Jerusalem soon to be former Sheraton offered me a $375 “reduced”” fare… NO THANKS). nReally frustrating as it seems the consumers are getting screwed…. nRippedoffconsumernBrooklyn
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