Amex Fine Hotels & Resorts
Access to American Express Fine Hotels and Resorts is one of the many premium benefits available to Platinum Card holders. FHR is a hotel booking platform that features an expansive collections of luxury hotels around the world. Eligible hotel stays booked through FHR include valuable perks. In addition to the standard suite of benefits, all prepaid bookings made through FHR earn 5 Membership Rewards Points per dollar. The ability to book hotels stays via Fine Hotels & Resorts is available to Amex Platinum and Centurion cardholders.
Another thing I really like about Fine Hotels and Resorts is the transparency when it comes to hotels that are part of the program. Destination Finder lists all of the locations around the world and all of the FHR hotels in the location.
But First: Fine Print
- Payment must be made in full with an American Express Card in the Platinum Card Member’s or Centurion Member’s name but only those cards earn 5x points on prepaid reservations.
- Card Member must travel on itinerary booked to be eligible for fine hotels and resorts benefits described.
- Back-to-back stays within a 24-hour period at the same property considered one stay.
Standard FHR Benefits
Every booking made through Fine Hotels and Resorts receives the following benefits: (Benefits are guaranteed unless I've noted otherwise)
- Room upgrade upon arrival (Subject to availability)
- Daily breakfast for two people
- Unique amenity valued at US $100
- Guaranteed 4pm late check-out
- Noon check-in (Subject to availability)
- Complimentary In-Room Wi-Fi
As noted, early check in and Noon check-in and room upgrades are pretty much at the discretion of the hotel since they are based on availability and are provided at check-in, so there is no guarantee on these. The daily breakfast varies by property. I've had hotels give me a list of on-site restaurants where the breakfast can be redeemed, I've also had hotels that give you $30 in credit to be used on breakfast, in room dining or even the mini bar. The $100+ unique property amenity also varies widely.
$100 Property Amenity Examples
Food and Beverages
Enjoy the local cuisine with benefits such as complimentary lunch or dinner for two, or a credit to be used at the property’s restaurant(s) or for in-room dining.
Benefits range from a complimentary 50-minute massage for two, to a credit to be used for services such as massages, body treatments, and more.
Round of Golf for Two
Tee time for two. A complimentary round of golf, which includes greens fee and cart rental where permitted, allows you to experience the property’s world-class course(s).
Private Transfer for Two
Sometimes complimentary transfers from the property to the airport makes going back just a little bit easier.
In the case where a property includes cost of WiFi in a mandatory resort fee, the Card Member will receive a daily credit from the property in the standard amount that the property charges for WiFi.
Hotel Booking Process
FINE HOTELS & RESORTS bookings can be booked online at American Express Travel or by calling Platinum Travel Service at 1-800-525-3355. One of my absolute favorite features of booking through the Amex website is the ability to do everything online including cancellations. Often sites will allow you to book online but require a phone call to cancel.
The prepaid rate offers the same cancellation as the “pay at hotel” option. So in this case Prepaid does not mean non refundable.
Opportunities to Stack FHR Bookings
FHR Special Offers
Another great way that Amex Fine Hotels and Resorts enhances value is through limited time offers for specific hotels, brands or locations. The special offers vary but often include free nights, activities or additional credit. This can increase the value of your booking tremendously.
Applicable Amex Offers
Amex offers are my favorite because there's usually one or two applicable hotel offers for nearly all of the trips I plan. If you happen to find one for a hotel in FHR that has a special offer in addition to an applicable Amex Offer, you’re in luck.
Loyalty Program Benefits
Amex FHR is one of the few programs of it's type that includes a spot for you to add your loyalty account info to your reservation prior to check out and hotels seems to consistently treat these bookings the same as direct bookings. Essentially this means you'll get your loyalty benefits, points for the stay and elite qualifying night credits.
It's not a bad idea to call the hotel prior to your stay to ask that they add your loyalty number to the reservation.
Conclusion: FHR Value
FHR is a great way to get status benefits without the loyalty and that's why it's one of my favorite credit card benefits. I also love getting 5 Membership rewards points per dollar. I still recommend comparison shopping because American Express may not have the best rates compared to discount OTA's or direct bookings.