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Via this thread on Flyertalk, Starwood has announced the list of properties that are moving up or going down in their redemption categories. The categories themselves are staying the same, but there are several pages of individual hotels that are changing categories. There are certainly more properties that are going up in categories (ie up in the number of points that will be required for a free night) than there are coming down, but at least Starwood was pretty up-front about that. You can book the hotels at their current categories until 3/1/12, so take a look at the list and see if it makes sense to lock in some award reservations before the change. Of course, some properties will require fewer points after 3/1, so keep that in mind, too.
I haven’t had a ton of time to examine the list, but several NYC Starwood properties I have been eyeing are moving up. I will strongly consider locking in a reservation at the current rate before that happens.
On a side note, I got an email regarding an award reservation I had at the Sheraton Newark. They are leaving the SPG family of hotels. My award stay will still be honored – but frankly I am not sure I want it now that it won’t count toward my quest for SPG Platinum status in 2012. Rats. 😉