Saturday, 25 August 2018

Maximising your discount on an MGallery hotel room

Yes I know. It seems like this site is sponsored by MGallery. But it isn't. There are just a few MGallery hotels that my wife and I love. Notably: the LaGare Venezia on Murano (see this post), the MGallery Ceretani in Florence, and the Avista Hideaway Phuket Patong. There are also a few that we liked less: the MGallery in Milano (not because of the hotel itself, which was great, but because of the arrogant staff of the rooftop bar) and the MGallery in Vienna, which was merely a second hand Sofitel instead of the 'boutique hotel' that an MGallery is supposed be.

Phuket old town: one of the few attractions besides water and "entertainment" on Phuket 

Anyway, this post is about discount. If your hotel spend justifies it, buy the Ibis business card as describes in this post. Make an Topcashback account as described in the same post. For our stay in Phuket, we booked three nights in the local MGallery. We paid some 400 euro for the room for 3 nights, including breakfast. At the time, we received a 15% cashback rate from Topcashback, which amounts to 60 euro. Our gold status provided us with an upgrade to a jacuzzi suite (my wife and I both thought: did he just say jacuzzi suite?) and entitled us to free cocktails between 5 and 7 PM.

The Accor Le Club points program gives 37 points per 10 euro spent (if you have gold status), which translates into a value of approximately 30 euro for this stay. You can spend that (a minimum of 40 euro per 2,000 points) on hotel stays and food&beverage. Together with the cashback that amounts to a discount of approximately 22,5% on your stay in an MGallery hotel. If there is a good rate on offer on the website, and if it also looks good in comparison with the competition, 22,5% obviously is a good discount, effectively reducing the rate to 310 euro for 3 nights.

Worried about the opportunities to spend the points? If you visit Accor chain hotels quite regularly, you need not be. We spent our latest 40 euro voucher on a single night in a Mercure hotel in Riga early next year, which cost exactly that: 40 euro. To give you an idea, Accor hotels cover the complete spectre from very basic to very luxurious, where my wife and I regularly use the Novotel and Mercure chains (efficient 4 star) and more luxurious MGallery and Sofitel chains (luxurious 4 and 5 star).
"Did he just say: jacuzzi suite?"

How about that specific MGallery on Phuket? You'd have to consider if you really want to visit Phuket, being a concentration of beach and land side resorts and the kind of entertainment in Patong that you'd better leave aside. But if you like a quiet retreat on a mountain overlooking the sea, this hotel had an spectacular lobby, several pools and impeccable service. The restaurant was fantastic with amazing food presentation.

Finally, please note that the Accor hotels website has the very nasty (and in the Netherlands I think it's actually illegal) habit of not including taxes (VAT) until you have almost completed your booking. So the first rates you will see won't be the final price. Also note that hotel prices in Phuket are highly season-dependent. You will get much better deals during the rainy season - for obvious reasons.

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