After having to pass up some of the category 1 and 2 Hilton properties in Southeast Asia I decided to take a look at some lower-tier Hilton properties in my next destination—Argentina.
The choices are limited as there are only two Hilton properties in all of Argentina. The first being the Hilton Buenos Aires which looks to be a great property if you want to stay in Puerto Madero, but seems a bit overpriced at 60,000 points per night or $189 per night. Redeeming points at the property would mean you are getting 0.32 cents per point in value.
For comparisons sake, the Palacio Duhau Park Hyatt Buenos Aires costs 20,000 points and can easily run $500 per night (2.5 cents per point). This property looks to be a great hotel to burn the two free nights from the Hyatt credit card and possibly book an adjacent night or two using points.
Since the Hilton Garden Inn Tucuman is a category 1 hotel it normally costs 5,000 points per night and a paid night runs around ~$100 per night. I have made plans to stay in Argentina for 2-3 months starting in October, so I decided to redeem 100,000 Hilton points on a 25 night stay at the property.
One benefit of having Hilton Gold status is that you get the 5th night free on award stays of 5 nights or longer. To maximize this benefit I booked five separate 5-night stays, which brought down the average nightly points rate to 4,000 points per night. In theory you are allowed to get up to 4 free nights for a stay of 20 consecutive nights, but because we want to be flexible with our schedule for times we want to leave Tucuman and explore other parts of the region, we booked several back-to-back stays rather than having to alter one existing reservation.
What kind of value am I getting? Close to 2.5 cents per point, which I consider an incredible deal for Hilton points. Plus having Gold status will get me free breakfast and wifi at the hotel, but unfortunately there is no lounge. For manufacture spend considerations, the nightly cost at this hotel could be as low as $7.00 using the Amex Hilton Surpass card which will give you 6 HHonors points at gas stations and supermarkets.
One thing to note is that there is a maximum of four ‘5th-night free per stay’ per consecutive stay, meaning you can book up to a 20 night stay and get four free nights. Being that 25 nights is a long time to spend at one hotel I decided to break up the stay in the middle to take a few days to explore the highlands and wine country around the area. I loved visiting Salta the last time I was in Argentina in 2009 and truly think that it is one of the more diverse areas of Argentina.
After previously spending close to a year in Argentina, I am excited to get back and explore more extensively. This trip will include a visit to Ushuaia and southern Patagonia, both of which have been on my bucket list for awhile. I also plan on spending at least a month based in San Martin de Los Andes to enjoy the mountains and trails in the area.
I am definitely looking forward to a killer Asado, pouring a glass of Malbec, and brushing up on my spanish. Have you ever been to San Miguel de Tucuman? What was your experience like? Do you have any advice? Will I get bored? I would hear about them!