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Big $$$ - But Will the Market Bear It?

Question asked by ssindc on Oct 19, 2016
Latest reply on Sep 20, 2017 by fschumpert

So, exactly how wealthy is the top one percent?  And is there any limit to what folks can - and will - pay for luxury travel?

 

Some of you remember this poll about the most folks have paid for a single hotel room - https://www.rewards-insiders.marriott.com/polls/1278 -  What the poll showed is that most of us (mere mortals) are not the high rollers.

 

Quite simply, not including most of us, there are a lot of rich folks willing to pay huge amounts for travelling in style....

 

Look, there is now regular 24-day National Geographic Around The World trip - on a chartered all Business Class jet - for which pricing begins at $76,000 apiece - and that's double occupancy (so, yup, that's $85,000 if you're travelling solo or, yes, that's $150,000 per couple), and there's a wait list to get on the plane...  Check it out: Around the World by Private Jet | National Geographic Expeditions

 

In the Marriott collection, it's rumored that the most expensive room/suite is the Bridge Suite at Atlantis - Bridge Suites | Royal Towers Paradise Island | Atlantis Bahamas - and, let's be frank, that's an extraordinary suite within an over-the-top property....  Who knows, maybe jerrycoin and jasper100 and fschumpert have become accustomed to a certain standard of luxury, and this is well within their travel budgets.

 

All of which brings us to the pricing at the new Trump Hotel in the Old Post Office Pavilion in Washington, D.C.

 

Now, let's remember that - not far from the Marriott mother-ship -  there's no shortage of hotels in DC, and there's plenty of excellent, high end options.  (See, generally, Biggest, Baddest DC Hotel Player | Marriott Rewards® Insiders)....  Here in DC, we have Ritz Carlton and Four Seasons and St. Regis and Mandarin Oriental and W ... and unlimited numbers of boutique properties....

 

But the fundamental assumption underlying the property is that, despite all of that competition, there are plenty of folks that will pay top dollar for extraordinary luxury... (Maybe the millennials and those younger, hipper, more tech-savvy high rollers are the target demographic.  What do you think, seatexan?)

 

In any event, let's take  a look... For a mid-March (non-event) weekend, the rate structure looks like this:

 

  • $460 night - lowest rate - for military, AAA, or advance purchase
  • $575 night - standard rate
  • Junior suites run $700-850
  • One bedroom suites run $1,100 to ... um ... $12,000 (for the Presidential suite, but you can have that for $9,600 if you have AAA (yeah, I think that covers the $15 annual membership fee) or if you're military (wait a minute - nobody I know in the military is dropping $9,600 per night for a bedroom, but, I digress); and, then, of course
  • there's the Trump Townhouse - $20,000 per night for AAA, and $25,000 for the unrestricted rate - but ... wait for it ... for an extra $10, you can have breakfast...
    • no, that's not a typo - $25,000 per night for the townhouse, and there's a separate rate of $25,010 if you want breakfast!!! although, apparently, that's a bargain - the $10 gets you "$40 Food and Beverage credit per person (up to 2 guests)"
    • I'm guessing pingreeman will tell us that that breakfast is one of the great bargains in the hotel industry today....

 

For better or worse, the premium pricing hasn't gone up much...  For the weekend on New Year's 2017, the rate structure looks like this:

 

  • $472 night - lowest rate - for military, AAA, or advance purchase
  • $628 night - standard rate
  • Junior suites run $697-928
  • One bedroom suites run $1,072 to $12,000
  • the Trump Townhouse - $18,750 per night for AAA, and $25,000 for the unrestricted rate

 

Heck, for the 2017 weekend of the Cherry Blossom Festival, the rate structure looks like this:

 

  • $492 night - lowest rate - for military, AAA, or advance purchase
  • $655 night - standard rate
  • Junior suites run $717-955
  • One bedroom suites run $1,092 to $12,000
  • the Trump Townhouse - still only $18,750 per night for AAA, and $25,000 for the unrestricted rate

 

Granted, these rates are significantly less than Trump originally anticipated....  The media has reported that those $500/night rooms were supposed to be going for $750/night... And, who knows, maybe they will someday....

 

So - what do folks think?  Will the market sustain that kind of rate structure?  Can the property survive?  how about thrive?

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