American Express offers a program that is not very well promoted: Fine Hotels & Resorts (or “Fine Hotels & Resorts Program” in French). It is available only to holders of the Platinum Card® from American Express and the Business Platinum Card® from American Express.
The American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts Program
The American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts program offers benefits at high-end hotels around the world.
Benefits of the Fine Hotels & Resorts program
When you book with your Platinum Card® from American Express through American Express Travel and Fine Hotels & Resorts, you are assured of benefits such as:
- Arrival from noon, depending on availability;
- Late departure at 4:00 p.m;
- Obtaining a superior category room, according to availability;
- Daily breakfast for two people;
- Wi-Fi access in the room, subject to certain exclusions;
- An additional special benefit, a credit for meals, drinks or care in a wellness center.
In addition, for some hotels, additional promotions may take place, such as free accommodation for the third or fourth night.
How to book a Fine Hotels & Resorts hotel
Reservations for hotels in the Fine Hotels & Resorts program can only be made with:
- American Express Platinum Card® Travel Services
- Centurion Travel Services,
- of American Express Travel
- from americanexpress.ca/travel
The easiest way to do your research is to visit the American Express Travel website.
Note that American Express has also launched a website dedicated to Fine Hotels & Resorts that you will find here (but at this time, only the hotels Fine Hotels & Resorts will be displayed, whereas on the American Express Travel website (option “Book a trip” in the screen below), they will be displayed first, before other hotels:
- The cardholder must be part of the trip
- Regardless of the number of nights: only one “package” of benefits will be issued per stay (this applies in particular to the credit that will be offered in the hotel)
- Possibility to book up to 3 rooms per stay
- Consecutive stays at the same institution participating in the program Fine Hotels & Resorts during a 24 hour period are considered as one stay (so don’t think about checking out/checking in to get the credit offered in the establishment again… unless you have the 2 platinum cards as you will see below 😉 )
An example of a Fine Hotels & Resorts reservation
When I’m not using points to book hotels and I’m not staying at a hotel where I have status (e.g. Marriott / Hilton), I look at what Fine Hotels & Resorts offers.
We are obviously talking about high-end hotels where the nightly rate will rarely go below 200 CA$. In the past, I have used the program to get a stay at the Four Seasons Whistler for example.
So I recently repeated the experience in Las Vegas. I was looking for a hotel that could suit my family trip (with 2 young children) and one hotel particularly caught my attention: the Four Seasons Hotel Las Vegas.
Las Vegas is a particularly well-served destination for Fine Hotels & Resort, with 9 hotels in the program. And since it is often expensive to have breakfast or get a nice room in this casino town, it can be interesting to go through this program.
During the Easter weekend, this hotel was offered through the Fine Hotels & Resorts program at less than $300 CAD per night including taxes.
The hotel website offered the same room… at a slightly higher rate (excluding taxes!).
Not to mention the whole range of benefits that Fine Hotels & Resorts had to offer:
- Upgrade (room with view on the Strip)
- Arrival at noon
- Departure at 4pm
- Daily breakfast for 2 people (80 US$)
- US$100 credit for hotel spa services
We were able to take advantage of all these benefits:
- our flight from Montreal arrived in Las Vegas at 11am (perfect for check-in at 12pm)
- we were leaving Las Vegas at 5pm (perfect for the 4pm guaranteed fare departure).
- we were upgraded 2 categories (room with view on the strip)
- the credit of 80 US$ / day was – just – enough to cover the breakfasts for the 2 of us (the children having their breakfast offered!)
- the 100 US$ credit was also sufficient for a basic spa treatment (Manicure / Pedicure)
- Bad surprise: as for almost all the hotels in Las Vegas, I was charged a resort fee (40 US$ / night). Find out on the Facebook group how I intend to contest it😉
Tip for Multiple Platinum Cardholders
The Fine Hotels & Resorts program is available to holders of one of the two Platinum cards:
If you have a multi-night stay, and you have both cards (or your spouse also has a Platinum card), you can bypass the rule described above:
Consecutive stays at the same Fine Hotels & Resorts participating property within a 24-hour period are considered one stay
Being each a holder of each version of the card (yes… we like Platinum cards…!), this is what we did in Las Vegas. We divided our stay into 2 nights + 1 night and were able to take advantage of the 100 US$ credit in the Spa twice (1 hour manicure + 1 hour pedicure). We could have done 1 night + 1 night + 1 night…!
Note that this can be advantageous in hotels offering US$100 for meals and drinks in the hotel in addition to free breakfast!
You will just have to be careful to see if the hotel doesn’t offer a promotion like “third/fourth night free” which will then be much more interesting!
The list of Fine Hotels & Resorts
You can find a complete directory of American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts on this site.
In Canada, Fine Hotels & Resorts has about 20 properties. In Montreal, for example, 3 hotels are part of the Fine Hotels & Resorts program: Hotel Le St-James, Loews Hotel Vogue, Ritz-Carlton Montreal.
Of course, it is an expensive and high-end hotel. But it’s worth keeping this option in the back of your mind or for special occasions!