I had an industry conference in Cartagena, Colombia. There are no Marriott branded properties of any kind. There aren't even any SPG properties. There are Hilton, Hyatt, IHG, Sofitel, and other well-known brands. I picked the Intercontinental, even though my event was at the Hilton. The Intercontinental was about half the price and was nicer and newer. I got an upgrade to a huge suite, a welcome amenity, bottled waters, newspaper, gift (a business card holder embossed with the hotel name), a late checkout, bonus point....and....the piece de resistance....access to the club lounge which was open every day except Sunday and had plenty of free booze. Service was great. My room was huge and had an expansive view of the Caribbean.
So, I'm 66% now on upgrades to huge suites with IHG.
Not saying I'm going to abandon Marriot in favor of IHGs, and frankly, the only IHGs I ever use are Intercontinental hotels and there aren't that many of them.
But it's interesting to see what the competition is doing...