Hotel Program of the Year [Europe / Africa] IHG Rewards Club

Le Club Accorhotels and IHG Rewards Club switched places this year for the Program of the Year honors, with IHG Rewards Club finding itself on top. Between 2001 and 2012, Starwood and Marriott were the only two programs to win Program of the Year in Europe / Africa so this could signify a changing of the guard. IHG Rewards hotels are found in 32 European countries. Members enjoy frequent promotions and quality service.

Scott Fillian  Manager, Loyalty Programs, Gretchen Sanford Manager, Loyalty Programs, and Don Berg, Vice President, Loyalty Programs are in the audience to accept the award.

Hotel Program of the Year [Middle East / Asia / Oceania] Hyatt Gold Passport

Hyatt upsets last year’s winner, IHG Rewards Club, for Program of the Year in this category and must be doing something right for its members in Middle East / Asia / Oceania because the program ranked fourth last year. Moving from fourth to first in one year is an accomplishment worth noting. Hyatt Gold Passport has a strong elite program that members appreciate and members can choose from truly aspirational properties when they are ready to spend their points.

Angie Rose Tynan, Associate Marketing Manager, Rene Mizwicki, Director, Hyatt Gold Passport and Jeff Zidell, Senior Vice President, Loyalty Marketing are in the audience tonight to accept the award.

Best Airline Elite Program [Americas] American AAdvantage

Elite members are happy with American AAdvantage and the program wins Best Elite Program in the Americas for the third consecutive year, just squeezing past Southwest Rapid Rewards. Top-tier elites get eight confirmed one-way systemwide upgrades from most fares and unlimited complimentary upgrades on domestic flights. Platinum members receive a 100 percent flight bonus. Members report that the elite help desk also provides exemplary customer service.

Suzanne Rubin, President AAdvantage Loyalty Program, accepts the award. 

Best Airline Elite Program [Europe / Africa] Lufthansa Miles & More

Lufthansa Miles & More ranked #4 last year in this category, so to find their way to the #1 spot is certainly an accomplishment. Among other benefits, first level Frequent Traveller members get free lounge access while Senators and HON Circle Members may overdraw their Miles & More account temporarily—up to 50,000 miles for Senators and up to 100,000 miles for HON Circle members.


Best Airline Elite Program [Middle East / Asia / Oceania] Virgin Australia Velocity

Virgin Australia Velocity wins in this category for a second consecutive year. Platinum members receive four complimentary upgrades per year on domestic flights from qualifying fares and Gold and Platinum members receive complimentary access to the Virgin Australia lounge. Silver members receive two single entry passes and a discounted annual lounge membership.

More cheers from the crowd for this win.

Thomas Alberts knows his way to the stage by now.

Best Hotel Elite Program [Middle East / Asia / Oceania] Hyatt Gold Passport

Another repeat winner, Hyatt Gold Passport wins Best Elite Program in Middle East / Asia / Oceania for the fifth consecutive year. Hyatt Gold Passport has some spectacular properties in this region, including the Park Hyatt Maldives and Grand Hyatt Tokyo. On top of blissful stays at luxurious properties, members value the program’s generous elite benefits, including confirmable suite upgrades and free breakfast for Diamond members.

Jeff Zidell, Senior Vice President, Loyalty Marketing accepted the award for Hyatt.