As I mentioned previously, I am currently back home in the US for a month before my next overseas posting. But, that's not the "home" I'm referring to in the title. I also mentioned that since there was no ongoing Marriott promotion to try for that I might consider trying out another chain for a stay. I took my family to Disneyland over the past few days and originally planned to stay at the nearby FFI as recommended on here. However, I found that Hilton offered a Gov rate while none of the Marriott properties nearby did and that made it considerably cheaper. Since I also have Gold status there I thought I'd give it a shot.
I received no recognition of status, verbal or otherwise, at the Hilton. Not so much as a free bottle of water though I think they are supposed to provide two. The room was ok, but the bathroom was a little dated and there was no light in the shower, so when you closed the curtain you were practically showering in the dark. I also never managed to get the "free wifi for HHonors members" to work.
Today I checked out of there and travelled north to Goleta near Santa Barbara where I checked into a Courtyard. Being my first stay at a Courtyard in a while, I knew there was no breakfast, and didn't really expect much. However the supervisor, Daniel, that checked me in was super nice. He thanked me for being a Platinum Elite member, gave me a voucher for a free item from The Market, and a coupon for 30% off an appetizer or entree from their restaurant. Better yet, he inquired about why we were visiting, if we'd been here before, and if we needed any tips on places to visit or anything while we were here. And, he also gave me his business card in case we did need anything, which was a first for me.
To sum up, Hilton left me unimpressed and coming back to this Courtyard makes me question why I strayed (well, it was about $60/night to be honest ). I can only hope my follow up stays in the Marriott near SFO and then next week at the JW Essex House in NYC continue meet/exceed my expectations.