The SPG Amex Holiday Challenge in Guam USA

Winter is coming! You might have heard that a few times in recent months but winter means holiday travel and a lot of potential headaches. I was given a challenge by the good people at the Starwood Preferred Guest® Card from American Express (SPG Amex). The challenge was to book a peak season holiday stay at a Starwood Hotel using 70,000 Starpoints. This was my fourth year taking the SPG Amex holiday challenge and I have to say that with no blackout dates and over 900 properties, the challenge was simple to win! I did the SPG Amex Holiday Challenge in Guam USA!
Garden Beach, Guam, SPG Holiday Challenge, SPG Amex, SPG
Guam is an unincorporated territory of the United States about a 7-hour flight from Honolulu in the Commonwealth of the Northern Marianas Islands. I used 24,000 Starpoints to book 2 nights at the Westin Resort Guam. This was great because then I had some leftover to book the Sheraton Resort Kauai in Hawaii for a few days as well!

This was actually my 4th trip to Guam, if you can believe it. The idea originally hatched around a Wake Island charter that had been announced earlier this year. Sadly, it was cancelled just a week or so ago. No problem, when life gives you lemons, you crush your trip anyway. I ended up substituting my day trip to Wake Island with a quick overnight trip to Rota.

The Westin Resort Guam is a nice hotel in a great location right in the center of Tumon Bay for excellent views of the bay and easy walking distance to all the attractions of the center of Guam. The main attraction is shopping.
Tumon Bay, Guam, SPG Holiday Challenge, SPG Amex, SPG,
Guam is home to many duty free luxury stores such as Gucci, Prada, etc. Asian tourists flock to Guam to buy top fashion brands at cheap prices. So pretty much everything in Guam is catered toward Japanese, Chinese and Korean tourists. The main occupant of Guam is the US Military.

There is both a Naval Base and an Air Force Base and you’ll see Americans and their families all over Guam. During my first trip to Guam in 2010, I met some US Military people who ended up showing me around and really made my trip.

Since Guam is technically the United States and uses US Dollars, you don’t have to worry about foreign transaction fees. But if you’ll remember my trip to Mauritius with the new SPG Amex card this past summer to help announce the elimination of foreign transaction fees with the SPG Amex card; you wouldn’t have to worry about them if it was International!

Guam is a cool island. I would certainly recommend renting a car and driving around the island. It rained in Guam, the first two days I was there this trip so my photos didn’t come out great. Be sure to check out the photos from my first trip to Guam to see what everything looks like in the sunshine!
Guam, Ritidian Beach, SPG Holiday challenge, SPG Amex
Even with the rain I was able to get out and see some new spots I didn’t see on my other trips including Garden Beach. I was originally trying to go visit Ritidian Point and the US Wildlife Refuge at the far north of the island but they were both closed due to the inclement weather.

So with no prior knowledge of Garden Beach, I stumbled onto a great little beach. These things happen when you travel! You should always be flexible and give yourself some time because you never know what could happen! As I always say, good things happen to good people!
Garden Beach, Guam, SPG Holiday Challenge, SPG Amex, SPG
So with that and a glorious final day on Guam relaxing at the pool and beach at the Westin Resort Guam, I say I have conquered the SPG Amex holiday challenge in Guam USA yet again. I look forward to an exciting and interesting upcoming year for Starwood and the SPG Amex card!

Disclaimer: I receive financial compensation as an SPG Amex Star, a program I’ve been a part of for 4 years now. My flights to and from Guam were paid for and I was given 70,000 Starpoints although I pay taxes on the cash value of those points. I have been using the SPG Amex card since 2001 and it is my favorite credit card and it’s not even close. I have several; a personal card and one for each of my businesses.

Comments

  1. I’ve stayed at the Westin in Guam. That and the Outrigger are the best hotels in Tumon Bay. I was in and out of there on different contracts for years.

  2. Hi Lee, I was on Guam about 10 years ago while my husband was stationed there. It’s a beautiful island and there’s a lot of close islands to it. I hope you’ll write about and post more pictures of Rota. I also loved it there.

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