NH Hotels, the Spanish chain of stylish boutique hotels, that hit the news when they were acquired by Chinese investors HNA, is now revamping their loyalty program, NH Rewards. Against the trend of devaluation and disappearing benefits, NH Rewards is actually improving the program with higher earn rates and better perks. Find out if it is enough to earn your loyalty below!
NH Hotels has about 400 hotels in 30 countries, mostly in Europe and Latin America. They are branded as NH Hotels for the most part, with the stylish nhow and more upscale NH Collection as sub-brands (read more NH Hotels – Facts & Figures).
I first ran into NH Hotels in South America and liked the stylish and reasonably priced hotels. They manage to by stylish without being loud – it’s a fresh approach compared to many US chains and the in-your-face modernity of some Accor brands (read more about the NH Hotels Experience).
Despite the nice hotels and signing up as a member of the NH Rewards program, I never stayed enough to get value out of the program. Similar to Accor LeClub, both earning and redeeming points is revenue-based, so you get a small discount on your stays by earning points. Now, NH is revamping the program to make the brand more attractive. Here is what they are doing:
Earn more points: You now earn points at a quicker rate for room nights as well as food and services. Higher level elite members get a bonus, increasing the point earning up to 7%. You also earn an additional 5 points by booking online or through their app – which is a similar discount to member rates introduced by other hotel chains!
Get elite status faster: You can now earn Silver status with only 5 nights – one of the lowest in the industry. Gold status requires 20 nights and will get you upgrades and early check-in / late check-out. You reach top level Platinum after 40 nights and get more reservation flexibility as well as premium WiFi and a room guarantee – not the most rewarding compared to other top level elites.
Redeem immediately: You can redeem your points as soon as you have at least 10 points. You can use them at check-out for any part of your bill and still earn points on that stay.
Bottomline: Any positive changes to loyalty programs are good news these days among all the devaluations, so I applaud NH Hotels for making these improvements. Unfortunately, none of the changes are very innovative or offer screaming value that makes you jump for joy. It’s an improvement, but unless you stay frequently with them, booking an NH Hotel might still make more sense via hotels.com that offers a 10% Reward without being tied to a brand!