Anbang walks! The Starwood drama is over! Marriott to acquire!

SPG Thrifty Traveler

Featured photo: W Resort and Spa – Vieques, Puerto Rico

Yesterday, the Chinese consortium led by Chinese insurer Anbang, walked from their offer of $14 billion for Starwood Hotels & Resorts. It appears that the soap opera is finally over, and now Marriott will purchase Starwood for $13.6 billion, which was the counter-offer Marriott made on March 21st. Anbang’s multiple offers required Marriott to pay around $1.4 billion more than it’s original offer.



Nov ’15: Marriott Offers $12.2 Billion

March 18th: Anbang offers $13.2 billion

March 21st Marriott Counters at $13.6 billion

March 28th: Anbang offers $14 billion

March 31st: Anbang walks from deal


Our hope here at Thrifty Traveler has been that Marriott wouldn’t counter Anbang’s $14 billion offer and Anbang would ultimately purchase Starwood. It is likely that the Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) program would have remained mostly intact with an Anbang purchase. When Marriott purchases Starwood, it is likely the SPG program will be gutted when it is merged with Marriott’s loyalty program in late 2017 or early 2018.

Bottom Line

SPG members now have little choice now but to welcome Marriott with open arms, in hopes that they retain the best parts of the SPG program. Our hope is airline transfer bonuses, Delta/Uber/Emirates crossover rewards, platinum breakfast option, 5th night free, and suite night upgrades will remain. We’ll make sure to update you on any new developments.


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