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I didn’t waste any time booking another Hyatt trip to use my new Globalist status as our first trip to Aruba was a success! 

For our annual ski trip this year I ended up booking the Grand Hyatt Vail and as not disappointed, this may be my next favorite ski resort.


Points Required

Originally when I booked this stay, the Grand Hyatt Vail was a category 7 requiring 30,000 points per night.  But in October 2020, Hyatt decreased the hotel from a category 7 to a category 6 (25,000 points).

This was a quick 3 night trip for us with 2 full days of skiing.  I was planning to rebook at the lower rate but didn’t have to – three separate 5,000 point credits showed up in my account automatically.

I’ll also get 18,750 points back from Hyatt’s ‘Bonus Journey’s’ promotion and holding the Chase World of Hyatt visa.  This promotion also doubled my qualifying nights from 3 to 6.

Standard rooms were running ~$1775 for a 3 night stay this winter, so I’m happy getting over 3.2¢/point value ($1,775/56,260 points)!


Parking / Shuttle

We rented a car and drove the two hours from Denver (on nonstop Southwest flight from BWI).

The Grand Hyatt Vail is valet only parking and is a whopping $45/night with in and out privileges.  Parking (including valet) is free for Hyatt Globalist members – YAY!

When we arrived bell services assisted with our luggage including taking out skis and boots from our travel bags directly down to the ski valet which was really nice.

If you don’t bring a car, don’t worry Hyatt also runs a free shuttle every 15 minutes which will take you into the main village area which is about 1.5 miles down the road.  Hop on right outside the front door.

If you bring a car, there is free parking (after 3pm) at Vail transportation hub garage (where the Hyatt shuttle drops you off).



Checkin / Room Upgrade

Unlike Aruba I didn’t use one of my four confirmed suite upgrades on this trip since it was a short trip (only 3 nights) and just the three of us.  I was still hoping for a suite upgrade since the hotel was not full (most likely due to COVID).

I received a text in the morning of our arrival from the general manager asking what time we were expected to arrive.  We ultimately arrived around 3:00pm.

Our room was ready when we arrived and the agent explained free parking and breakfast for Globalist members.  He also said we were upgraded from a standard room to a deluxe mountain view room which was 30% larger.

I was actually a little bummed not to get a suite upgrade as I had checked the Hyatt app a few hours prior (while waiting on our luggage at the airport) and it showed many rooms available (including suites) for our 3 night stay.


Deluxe Mountain View Room

Our room had a really great location – it was on the main floor down at the end of the hallway across from conference rooms and right around the corner from the ski valet.

The room was really nice – the bathroom was huge and amazing.  I’m not sure when they last remodeled but it must have been not too long ago.

If this was truly a 30% larger deluxe room over the standard, the standard rooms must really be cramped.  Some of the suites look really nice.

The room did have an amazing view!


Globalist Breakfast

There was no club lounge at this property so breakfast was served in the Gessner restaurant.  There was both an a la carte menu and a buffet.

Our first morning we opted for the a la carte breakfast.  Menus were pulled up from scanning a QR code on your phone (COVID times). 

The a la carte breakfast was limited with less than half a dozen options but all the staples were there.  I went with the egg dish – potatoes, toast, choice of breakfast meat.  My kids both ordered the pancakes.  Breakfast was $79 without tax or tip.

The second day we tried the buffet which was very small and served by an attendant (only one family allowed in the small buffet room at a time).  The buffet had just about all the items on the a la carte menu and then some.  The buffet ran $105 without tax or tip for our party of 3.

Unlike Hyatt Regency Aruba, the entire breakfast cost including tip was removed from our final hotel bill.


Ski Lift Access

The reason you book the Grand Hyatt Vail is for the skiing and location.  The Grand Hyatt Vail is located at the far end of the Vail resort in Cascade village.

It has it’s own lift up the mountain literally just steps away from the hotel ski valet.  I can’t think of a resort that has a closer lift.

Please note there are beginner green trails when you get off the lift but when returning to the hotel by trail (or lift since you can take the lift back down the hill) you will need to go on a blue intermediate trail for at least a very short time (but it’s not very difficult).


Ski Valet

The ski valet was the best I’ve experienced.  After arriving our first morning, you simply give your room #/name to the attendant – he assigns you a bench area in the large ski valet area.

Within seconds someone is bringing out your boots for you to change into – the boots are toasty warm inside :-). There are baskets under and around the bench for you to store your shoes in.

After putting your boots on, it’s literally a few steps to the ski racks where your skis are ready and waiting.  Then just a few more steps to get on the lift.  It couldn’t have been easier.


Hot Tub / Pool

The Grand Hyatt Vail has a heated pool and two separate hot tubs.  The hot tub felt amazing after a long day of skiing.

Our room included white robes that we used (but no slippers unless we missed them) to get to the hot tub.  Towels were available at the hot tub and it was BYOB 🙂


The Grand Hyatt Vail had additional activities (that we didn’t partake in) including:  a spa, a small ice rink, fire pits that could be reserved, an onsite taco truck, and a mobile ax throwing activity that could also be reserved. 

Vail Mountain

I really enjoyed Vail Mountain – there was a good mix of beginner, intermediate, expert, and bowl skiing.  We skied on a Sunday and Monday.

Sunday was much more crowded and Monday.  Even on Sunday, there were some lift lines with little to no wait and others that were really crowded.  And don’t forget you have to make reservations for your ski days due to COVID.

Monday was a much less crowded – skip weekends if you can.

Vail also instituted reservations for their onsite lunch dining if you wanted to sit at a table indoors.  Otherwise you could purchase food and eat at tables outdoors.  Temperatures weren’t bad at all during our trip (high 20s) – so we just took a few quick outdoor food/water breaks during the day.


Wrap Up

Overall I really enjoyed Vail and it quickly moved up to the top of my list of favorite ski resorts.  

The Grand Hyatt Vail was AWESOME – so much better than Park Hyatt Beaver Creek when we stayed there a few years ago.  I will definitely be back.

Where should our next ski trip be to?  So far we’ve been to:

Tahoe?  Big Sky?  Breckenridge?


Chase World of Hyatt

Definitely my favorite of the Chase hotel cards.  The Chase World of Hyatt card currently there is a 60,000 point bonus (30,000 points after spending $3000 in the first 3 months of account opening  plus earn 2 Bonus Points total per $1 spent on purchases that earn 1 Bonus Point, up to $15,000 spent in the first 6 months of account opening).

Hyatt has one the best award charts of all the hotel chains with free night awards starting at just 5,000 points.   

This card also gives you a free night certificate (good at any category 1-4) each year when you renew.

The card's annual fee is only $95.  Learn more and apply here.


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