Standing applause please, for Mr. Randy Petersen. With the announcement of the end of the Freddie Awards, I humbly pay my respects to one of the reasons why I chose Starwood as my chain of choice back in my business traveling consulting days. For those that aren’t aware, the Freddie Awards were created by Randy to let travelers vote for their favorite travel loyalty programs each year since 1988. The final Freddie Awards ceremony was held on April 23, 2009 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
Back in 2006 I was a lost soul in the world of business travel. I had the luxury of selecting which hotels I stayed in, but I was all over the map. Some colleagues liked Marriott, some liked Hyatt, and some liked Starwood. I sampled here and there but found myself double dipping in Starwoods after reading that the chain had been voted the best hotel loyalty program. Had I never come across the Freddie Awards that year, who knows which chain I would have built this blog around (if at all).
From USA Today . . .
Over its 21 year history, Starwood Hotels was the most decorated hotel program, winning 103 awards, according to Petersen. Marriott Hotels came in a close second, taking 94 Freddie Awards.
So Mr. Petersen, thank you for giving the frequent travelers from around the world a way to recognize our favorite programs, as well as the forums for us to talk about all the cool/geeky travel stuff we want. Don’t you dare stop doing those!