Best IHG 40K Point Hotels in the U.S. for Free Night Certificates

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Photo courtesy of IHG Hotels.

Best IHG 40K Point Hotels in the U.S.

One of the best benefits of holding the IHG Premier Card or discontinued IHG Rewards Club Select Mastercard is the annual free night certificate. These used to be good at any IHG hotel worldwide, as long as there were reward nights available. However, the value of these certificates is now capped at 40,000 points. As I’m currently sitting on an unused free night and have two more coming in the first quarter of 2021, I thought I’d browse the chain’s properties to find the best IHG 40K point hotels within the U.S.

Using Your IHG Free Night Certificate

The best way to search for properties bookable with your certificate is to click on your account dashboard. You can then click on the “X free night(s)” link, and click through once more to be taken to the search using your certificate.

The search box will look the same, but you’ll now see “Chase Anniversary Night” in the rate box.

Ten Excellent Domestic IHG 40K Point Hotels

This makes finding the best IHG 40K points hotels within the U.S. a bit tricky. Now that any property is technically bookable with a certificate (as long as the rate falls far enough), this can be a list of whatever I feel like. But in the spirit of providing a usable list, I’m omitting any that are consistently not available as a free night award. Some are pretty seasonal, so if you’re willing to travel shoulder season, you can find a good number of nights.

Photo courtesy of IHG Hotels.

InterContinental Mark Hopkins San Francisco

Although both InterContinental hotels in San Francisco are consistently available for IHG free night certificate use through the first half of 2021, I selected the Mark Hopkins as the better of the two. The building is situated at the top of Nob Hill and is absolutely beautiful. The views of the city below and bay beyond from the restaurant are excellent (but who knows when it will be open again).

The downside is that you’re in a historic hotel and the standard rooms aren’t all that great. If you want a modern feel, pick the other InterContinental.

Photo courtesy of Kimpton Marlowe.

Kimpton Marlowe Hotel, Cambridge, Massachusetts

This stylish upscale hotel is high on my list for when I finally plan a visit to Boston (besides the airport). Rates are insanely good during both winter and COVID-19, so I’m not sure I would burn points or certificates at the moment. But for dates further out in 2021, there are lots of opportunities.

Voco The Franklin New York

Being completely unfamiliar with the Voco brand, this NYC hotel stood out to me. The upscale lifestyle brand is rather new on the scene, and they have just 25 hotels worldwide, with only two in the United States. The second is in St. Augustine, Florida. I’d be willing to burn a night here just to see what the brand has to offer.

Kimpton Hotel Monaco Philadelphia

Maybe it’s COVID-19 or maybe Kimpton hotels are cheaper than I recall, but there are plenty of Kimpton nights available to book with your IHG free night certificates. I settled on the Kimpton Monaco Philadelphia as a potential pick for a visit to the City of Brotherly Love. It’s been quite a while since I’ve visited Philadelphia, and I’m sure a history trip with the kids will be in order in the next couple years.

Photo courtesy of RiverPlace Hotel.

Kimpton RiverPlace Hotel, Portland

I really liked the south waterfront area in Portland when I stayed there a few years ago at the very new Hyatt House. This Kimpton looks excellent, with lovely aesthetics and décor and just steps from the Willamette River. Rates get as low as around $150, but I’d still be willing to part with a free night certificate for a stay.

Hotel Indigo Traverse City, Michigan

Prices fluctuate wildly for this property depending on what time of year you plan to visit. Northern Michigan is popular in the summer, and using your IHG free night certificate here will likely not be possible. But if you can visit in shoulder season when the weather is cooler but still pleasant, you can get good value. Think of taking the amazing color tour in the fall when all of the leaves have turned.

Multiple Kimpton Hotels in Miami Beach

I was going to try to pick a Kimpton off the list, but after searching four different date ranges this coming spring, there were consistently 3-4 Kimpton Hotels available for IHG free night use. You’ll get ~$200 per night in value here, which isn’t shabby. Although I don’t have any personal experience staying here, all of the properties look nice.

Photo courtesy of IHG Hotels.

Holiday Inn Resort Beach House, Hilton Head Island

This resort on Hilton Head Island will likely get you close to $300 in value, after taxes, for your IHG free night. This is on my radar for a combined trip to visit Savannah, Georgia. I’ll have three certificates by early March, which would be perfect for half the trip.

InterContinental Los Angeles Downtown

Given that the InterContinental hotels in San Francisco have very low rates for much of 2021, I thought I’d check out Los Angeles hotels as well. I found that I could book a night at the InterContinental Los Angeles using my free night certificates over most dates I search, getting $200-220 in value here.

Final Thoughts

The real takeaway is that IHG free night certificates are both better and worse than they used to be. You can now book any hotel that is available for 40,000 points or fewer on a given night. But you also won’t be getting outsized value when you do. Most hotels going for 40,000 points per night won’t cost more than ~$220 per night. Gone are the days of getting $500 per night hotels for free.

Still, if you’re traveling domestically and looking to burn your certificates from your IHG Premier Card card, consider if any of the above IHG 40K point hotels fit your plans.

Featured photo courtesy of IHG Hotels

Ian Snyder
After igniting his passion for award travel while planning his honeymoon, Ian now enjoys using points and miles to see the world with his wife and three internationally adopted kiddos. He loves dissecting loyalty programs to find maximum value. His goal is to demonstrate that extraordinary travel is possible for the ordinary family.

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15 COMMENTS

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15 COMMENTS

    • Not sure. You have to find the cheapest dates, and there were lots of these during COVID-19. When prices rise, the points rates go way up.

      Since you’re seeing 84k, it’s also possible that IHG has reinstated a devaluation that seemed to be applied, and then be rolled back earlier this year. Guess the answer is: I don’t really know.

  1. So needing 40,000 points and despite having the 5x offer on gas groceries and restaurants still makes this impossible because of the 1500 cap. And not to mention I’d have to spend a lot…

    • The specific case here is for free night certificate usage, which is an annual benefit of two IHG cards (one of which is discontinued). Earning IHG points through credit card spend is not something I would recommend.

      • When you say discontinued do you mean the select MC card itself or just the free night benefit for that card? I have both cards but was unaware the select card or free night was going away.

        If the free night benefit is going away then I can for sure cut that card after I use my current night on that card.

    • There are some more in NYC on many dates. When rates are low, lots fall under the cap. Intercontinental Boston may also be cheap enough, although I did not check it specifically. Would guess it would, given the SF ICs hit as low as 40k.

  2. Second the Kimpton in Philadelphia. I live here and it is always our go-to hotel for a night away from home. The rooms are great, especially the spa rooms (extra nice are the corner spa rooms with a view of independence mall). The location cannot be beat in old city, which puts you close to the tourist sites and some great restaurants. Only downsides to this hotel are the on-site restaurant is not that great for breakfast or dinner and the rooms can look a little outdated with some of the oldest/smallest TV’s I’ve seen in a hotel recently. I love this hotel though and would recommend it to anyone.

    During COVID, rates here dropped as low as 25K/night

  3. There’s a typo in the first paragraph: “However, the value of these certificates is not capped at 40,000 points.” –Says “not” instead of “now”

    • Kimpton Overland hotel in ATL is also a great option. I was upgraded to the presidential suite room was Huge to bad it was only for 1 night before our flight. I travel with our dog so I always love Kimpton as they are super pet friendly.

  4. I redeemed my free night last week Christmas day on Kimpton Epic Miami. When I was looking online, rates for standard rooms goes around $200 before resort fee. My room was upgraded on waterview 25th floor which is EPIC itself. I think you get more than $300 value once you get an upgrade, 3rd party websites rates are $300+ before tax for waterview rooms. I’m less confident getting an upgrade if I book standard room on expedia,booking.com etc. I was expecting to pay $33 for their resort/amenity fee but there’s no charge on my final bill which is very nice.

    • Nice! Glad that one hits lower than 40k as well. Wasn’t showing as available for all the dates I checked.

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