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SPG Aloft Brand: “Kombucha” of Hotel World?

This is a Sunday filler-type post. Hope you’ll enjoy it! So, the other day I came across this drink at the grocery store, called kombucha.  I’ve heard of it before and apparently, that’s what all the cool/hip kids in San Francisco drink nowadays.

As a self-proclaimed “lame mom“, I can definitely use an infusion of hipness. So, I just had to try it. Never mind the fact that the sucker cost me $4. It came in this tiny yet colorful glass bottle, and the description promised cure to all of my ailments.

As soon as I took my first sip, I recognized the taste. Those who used to live in one of the former Soviet republics would probably say it reminds them of  kvass. Sure, the latter is made from fermented rye bread, but the taste is very similar to kombucha (which is made from fermented  tea). Anyway, kvass was just about the cheapest beverage you could get during my childhood, 5 coins (equivalent to 5 cents) if I remember correctly. Actually, that’s not totally accurate.

Behold the mineral water dispensing street machine:


Image courtesy of Russianreport blog

Man, I must be getting old because I clearly remember using this contraption as a kid. Each machine had a glass and before getting your drink, you were encouraged to manually  rinse it off with cold water (provided via separate dispenser). Gulp! Nope, no disposable cups, just one glass. For everyone. Because there were no diseases in Soviet Union, OK? Regular mineral water cost 1 cent, and if you wanted to get really fancy, you could pay 3 cents and get syrup added to it. Basically, Soviet version of Sprite.

What does this have to do with miles and points? Well,  I’ve written a post awhile back where I mentioned using my Ultimate Rewards to book a hotel  for a friend of mine.  The hotel in question is Aloft San Francisco Airport and here is what SPG program charges for it in June:

Definitely not a cheap rate via points or cash, wouldn’t you agree?

Anyway, my friend said she really enjoyed the hotel, not that she would tell me otherwise even if she didn’t. I asked her to send me some photos, so here we go:

IKEA furnishings?

Exposed pipes are part of the charm

Here is how hotel’s own website describes the style: “Aloft SFO perfectly blends design, style, and technology providing a forward-thinking alternative for the savvy traveler.” Maybe it’s just me, but it looks  like a dorm. A fancy dorm, but dorm nonetheless.

To me, Aloft brand is sort of like kombucha. Fancy and hip packaging, expensive price tag, but on the inside, it’s still a cheap drink. Don’t get me wrong, the most important thing to me is the cleanliness of the room and apparently, Aloft delivered in this respect. However, charging 16,000 SPG points for what amounts to a dorm room? I don’t think so. Of course, I paid 8,000 UR points so I suppose, for that price, it’s OK. Barely.

Readers, do you find this room ultra modern or ultra cheap?



Author: Leana

Leana is the owner and founder of Miles For Family. She enjoys beach vacations and visiting her family in Europe. Originally from Belarus, Leana resides in central Florida with her husband and two children.

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6 thoughts on “SPG Aloft Brand: “Kombucha” of Hotel World?

    • Michelle, true, San Francisco is an expensive area. But 16K SPG points per night? That seems crazy to me. But paying 8K UR points is probably about right.

  1. Definitely cheap in my book and not worth 16K SPG points – that’s just crazy especially now that I know I can fly roundtrip to Hawaii for 20K SPG (w/5K bonus) per person 🙂

    • @Stephanie Exactly! This is just an airport property, and there are many options nearby that cost around $110 all-in. And get this, the rate didn’t even include breakfast. SPG has some bargain hotel redemptions, but those are mostly Cat.1 and 2 properties. One definite exception: Sheraton Sand Key in Clearwater beach that goes for 10K points per night. That’s a good deal during spring season.

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