Marriott Forces Al Maha Dubai To Restore Full Board And Activities On Award Stays

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The Al Maha Luxury Collection Resort & Spa in Dubai was one of the very few bright spots of the SPG-Marriott merger. It went from costing 60K Starpoints to just 60K Marriott points (20K Starpoints) in August. That’s a real bargain for hotel that can set you back over $2,000/night!

It’s an ultra-luxury desert oasis that consists of all villas with private pools. All meals are included as are 2 daily activities like Falconry, camel trekking, archery, horse riding, desert AWD, and more.

 

I loved my Dubai stopover in 2017 and definitely plan to try to make it to Al Maha one day when I have more time to spend there.

Unfortunately last month Al Maha stripped out the meals and activities from rooms that were booked with points:

 

 

The full board and activities is one of the reasons that the resort is able to command the prices that they do, so stripping everything out seemed pretty unfair.

Al Maha’s Trip Advisor rating tanked from the top of the list in Dubai all the way down to #67 as reviewers pummeled the hotel with 1 star reviews for the new policy and for making the changes apply even for people who booked award stays before the policy change.

Gary points out that he was able to help get the situation resolved.

As it turns out, Marriott requires hotels to offer everything on point stays as they do on revenue stays, so Al Maha management didn’t have a leg to stand on.

However Al Maha was also supposed to be reimbursed at a higher rate for point stays that they have been since the merger due to the all-inclusive nature of their resort.

All of that has been resolved and point stays once again include all meals and 2 daily desert activities:

This hotel will climb to a category 8 (70K-100K Marriott points) when Marriott releases their new program in the coming months, so be sure to book your stay now for 60K points/night if you have any Dubai travel plans this year.

Marriott point earning cards include:

  • Chase Marriott Consumer Card
    • $95 annual fee,75K welcome bonus, free 35K anniversary night, earn 2 points per dollar everywhere and 6 points per dollar at Marriott hotels, Silver elite status and earn Gold status with $35K annual spending, free premium in-room internet.
  • Starwood Business AMEX
    • $95 annual fee waived for first year, 75K welcome bonus, free 35K anniversary night, earn 2 points per dollar everywhere, 4 points per dollar on US gas, wireless service, and shipping, and 6 points per dollar at Marriott hotels, Silver elite status and earn Gold status with $35K annual spending, free premium in-room internet.
  • Starwood Consumer AMEX 
    • $95 annual fee waived for first year, 75K welcome bonus, free 35K anniversary night, earn 2 points per dollar everywhere and 6 points per dollar at Marriott hotels, Silver elite status and earn Gold status with $35K annual spending, free premium in-room internet.
  • Starwood Luxury Consumer AMEX
    • $450 annual fee, $300 in annual Marriott credit, free 50K anniversary night, earn 2 points per dollar everywhere, 3 points per dollar on US dining and airlines, and 6 points per dollar at Marriott hotels, Gold elite status and earn Platinum status with $75K annual spending, free premium in-room internet.

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23 Comments On "Marriott Forces Al Maha Dubai To Restore Full Board And Activities On Award Stays"

All opinions expressed below are user generated and the opinions aren’t provided, reviewed or endorsed by any advertiser or DansDeals.

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Moe

Is there kosher food available in Dubai?

Nelevy

Stayed at the Ritz in Dubai with private villa + private pool on points and it was awesome!! Highly recommended!

Uber

Isnt this the purpose of resort fees? Why don they just charge a resort fee.

Moshe

Safe for frum Jews to travel? What about passport with Israeli stamp?

Thanks

sean

not safe for jews. watch out

Freddy

I called them last month and they offered full board on award, when did they remove it.?

chaz

was planning to go with my children on vacation to Dubai.can anyone please tell me if they would feel safe to walk around with a yarmulka and tzitzis and children of all ages.please only answer if you have been to Dubai.

DDF Fan

Try the Forums.

RL

I was there and they seem to be tolerant of all kinds of people BUT I wouldn’t recommend walking with a kipa and tsisit , especially with children .

Moshe

I personally wore a cap but felt completely safe. Just feel like why advertise ur Judaism. Can’t really hurt to wear a cap and not stick ur tzitzis out.

aK

I didnt wear my kids zizis and kippot i admit

Worth noting

Kids under the age of 10 are not allowed at the property

Yosef

Can you post about the spirit air discrimination story against the boro park family? Seems like a good boycott is in order..

Eliezer D. Blumenthal

Dan,
Based on this info, how is it that the Marriott/SPG hotels in Israel can get away without providing breakfast for award stay?

“As it turns out, Marriott requires hotels to offer everything on point stays as they do on revenue stays, so Al Maha management didn’t have a leg to stand on.”

Eli

Renaissance – that’s the one I was referring to. Thanks Dan

aK

I stayed there 2 years ago and it was amazing

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