I am convinced that no one in their right mind would pay $1,250 for a night at a hotel, but I’m sure if a company is trying to impress a client they will pay that. You can get in on this kind of corporate love by waiting for key weekends to redeem points. in this case, the first bloom of cherry blossoms, the start of school, and the beginning of the fiscal year make April 1 to 3, 2016 a super popular weekend to visit Tokyo. The prices for hotels reflect this demand by charging upwards of 140,000 yen a night and they would not make any reservations less than 3 nights. To get two nights, book three, then call to drop a night later and look for an Air BnB for $75, especially if you arrive super late and can’t take advantage of a full day stay. With early check in given by gold status, you can maximize points, and for a busy weekend you will get the best redemption as the points redemption remains unchanged despite the room costing more.
The Ritz Tokyo is a tier 5 hotel which demands 70,000 Marriott/Ritz points per night. We got all of these Marriott points by staying and paying cash at Marriott/Ritz Locations. With the Gold Membership Level from The RC Credit card or *A Gold from United you get 10 points per dollar spent on room rate as well as a 25% bonus. So when I spent $500 on 3 nights in Vietnam I ended up with 6,250 Ritz Points. Then added to that are the 5x points (2,500) by putting it on the Chase Ritz card which makes a total of 8,750 points with $500 spend at any Marriott for just the room rate alone. A Whopping 17.5 Marriott/RC points per dollar spent, assuming 2 cents per point, you get a 35% return on dollar spent while gold status with the Ritz Card form Chase well justifying the $395 annual fee. Which is actually a $95 annual fee if the $300 flight incidental credit is used up correctly.
The rest of the points came from 50k Chase Marriott Credit Card and then Ultimate reward Points from Chase ink and Sapphire. The website will let you book by points and you call in later to settle the balance once the points are transferred to your account. Be careful if your cutting it close since they will charge you the $1,000 a night if you don’t get the points within a week of your stay!! Since my spouse and I share the same mailing address there was no limit to how many we could transfer to my account. Additionally I had time to transfer points 1:1 from my Chase Ultimate Rewards from Ink and Sapphire. I tried to keep this at a minimum as I feel you get better redemption with UR points with Hyatt.
So my calculations of 2 nights valued at $2,500 for 140,000 points results in 1.78 cents per point which is close to the 2 cents I got for Hyatt in Taipei and 2 cents for Hong Kong. I would say that is a good use of points. So what exactly does $2,500 buy you? First off, location, as the hotel sits alone next to 東京ミッドタウン Tōkyō Middotaun park you have a very quiet part of town, so its not for those who want to waste time at the Robot Bar or whatever genki gajin crap first year visitors fall for. The room sits on the 2nd highest tower in Tokyo. An aside regarding technicalities, but Tokyo Andaz by Hyatt is a bit taller due to some scaffolding and antennae that aren’t even floors, but its building height (minus the unlivable fluff) is 247 meters, by which measure it will be the second-tallest building in Tokyo after Midtown Tower . I am still not sure what tower pitbull is talking about in his song. So whatever, its the tallest damn hotel room I have ever stayed in Tokyo. What this means is total quiet at the 49 to 54th floor far away from the hustle and bustle of the city below.
Second thing a grand a night buys you is incredible service, They were able to get us hard to come by reservations and special celebrations from the concierge, and they gave us welcome complementary champagne and gifts with cards to celebrate our arrival. Everyone magically greets you by name even when you only meet them once, it is an incredible awesome but creepy experience. However the best part perk is they have a valet that will dust off the cherry blossom pollen that lands on your vintage Ferrari.
The rest is to be expected from a nice hotel, nice glasses Nespresso and china in the room, nice beds with soft sheets, nice mattress. There are legions of employees that smile and work hard to make your stay excellent. Even the hospitality staff wear suits and quietly refresh your room twice a day without bulky carts like ninjas. Excellent restaurants that are right on site.
This is a stark contrast to the $75 Air BnB we stayed at before, but if you have no value for such wacky class tourism as I do then go ahead and spend your 140,000 Marriott points for 23 nights (and 5 free nights for every 4 redeemed) at the TownePlace Suites Bentonville Rogers in Arkansas, this is up to you. Now if you got more points than days off, just go for it, use your points for 2 nights at baller hotel, feel like a top earning Tokyo Salary-man for two nights before another round of devaluations robs you of all of its value.