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CentaraThe1 Complete Guide

by Neil McPherson

First published 1 January 2022

This CentaraThe1 guide is based upon CentaraThe1 Terms & Conditions version 1.2


Summary / Overview

Centara Hotels & Resorts is one of the smaller hotel chains that we look at.

However, as well as enticing properties, its loyalty program "The1" has some unique features that make it especially appealing, offering value that offsets the fewer location options. 

As a CentaraThe1 member, you can instantly enjoy exclusive benefits, including member rates that are '15% lower than anywhere else*. From birthday treats and fine wine for the festivities to exclusive savings on spa treatments, there are many benefits.

With every visit, you can earn CentaraThe1 points redeemable towards future stays, free upgrades, special privileges, celebratory gifts for memorable occasions, dining and spa experiences.

When you book directly with Centara, then, if you later find a lower rate with the same reservation (date, hotel and room type), Centara will match it and offer an additional 10% off to the final booking price. For further information on the Centara Hotels & Resorts Best Rate Guaranteed,

Guests also have the option to join the (paid subscription) Centara Privilege Club and receive attractive guaranteed savings, up to 50% off dining and 25% off accommodations, free stays, complimentary upgrades and other member-only benefits.  However, this review is limited to the CentaraThe1 program.


Let's take a closer look.


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Centara Hotels logo for CentaraThe1 loyalty programCentaraThe1Card - overview

Contents - CentaraThe1

Centara Brands and their Market Positioning
Geographic spread of Centara Hotels & Resorts locations
How the CentaraThe1 program works
CentaraThe1 Elite Tiers & Benefits
Earning & Retaining CentaraThe1 Tier Status
Earning CentaraThe1 points
Using your CentaraThe1 points 
Expiration of CentaraThe1 points
Special Features of the CentaraThe1  program
Conclusions
Applying for CentaraThe1 membership
CentaraThe1 FAQ

Centara Brands & Their Positioning

Founded in Thailand in 1983, Centara Hotels & Resorts has a collection of 6 brands, covering the range from budget (Centra by Centara and COSI) to luxury (Centara Reserve).

Table 1 - Centara brands and approximate alignment with some competitor brands
Company Luxury Upper upscale Upscale Upper midscale
AccorHotels Sofitel, Fairmont, Raffles Swissôtel, Grand Mercure
Pullman, MGallery, The Sebel, Adagio Premium
Suite Novotel, Adagio, 
Mama Shelter
Best Western Hotels
WorldHotels Best Western Premier, Vīb, BW Premier Collection
Best Western Plus, Executive Residency by Best Western
Hilton Worldwide Waldorf Astoria, Conrad Hotels
Hilton, DoubleTree, 
Canopy by Hilton, 
Curio Collection
Embassy Suites by Hilton
Hilton Garden Inn, Homewood Suites by Hilton, 
Home2 Suites
Hyatt Hotels Corporation Park Hyatt, Grand Hyatt Hyatt Regency, Hyatt Hotels, Andaz Hyatt Place, Hyatt House Hotels, Hyatt Centric   
InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) Six Senses, InterContinental, Regent  Crowne Plaza, Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants
Hotel Indigo, EVEN Hotels, Staybridge Suites, Holiday Inn Select, HUALUXE Hotels & Resorts

Holiday Inn
Meliá Hotels International Gran Meliá, ME by Meliá, Paradisus
Meliá, Innside
Marriott International Ritz-Carlton, Bulgari Hotels, Edition Hotels, JW Marriott Hotels, St. Regis, Luxury Collection
Renaissance Hotels, Marriott, Autograph Collection, Delta, Marriott Executive Apartment, Gaylord Hotels, W Hotels, Design Hotels, Westin Hotels & Resorts, Le Méridien, Sheraton, Tribute Portfolio
AC Hotels, Fairfield Inn by Marriott, Courtyard by Marriott, SpringHill Suites, Residence Inn by Marriott, Four Points by Sheraton, Aloft Hotels, Element Hotels MOXY Hotels, Protea Hotels, 
TownePlace Suites
Centara Hotels Centara Reserve Centara Grand Centara
Centara Boutique Collection

Source: extract from wikipedia.org

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Centara's Geographic Spread

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Centara's property portfolio is concentrated in Asia, especially Thailand.

There are 4 properties in the Middle East - 2 in Muscat and 1 each in Doha and Dubai.

So this is something to consider, as unlike other chains we consider, it does not have a global footprint. 

Chart 1: Centara hotels & resorts by region

Centara Hotels & Resorts by Region (c) points N places


This concentration is illustrated by Table 2.

Table 2 - Participants in CentaraThe1 by country/region
GHA Hotels  by Brand Thailand Vietnam Sri Lanka Maldives Middle East Oceania US & Canada Latin  America & Caribbean Total
Total 38 1 1 2 4 0 0 0 46
82.6% 2.2% 2.2% 2.2% 8.7% 0% 0% 0%
Centara Reserve 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1
Centara Grand 6 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 7
Centara 20 1 1 1 4 0 0 0 27
Centara Boutique Collection 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2
Centra by Centara 6 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 6
COSI 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3

(c)  points N Places 2022(c)  points N places 2021


Nevertheless, there are particularly attractive hotels and resorts within the portfolio, making this definitely a program to consider should the (somewhat limited range of) locations suit you.

Popular Searches for Centara Hotels & Resorts

Tripadvisor and Centara Hotels are two of our advertisers. Should you use the links below, at no additional cost to you, we may receive a small remuneration.

For generally searching or where price is the main factor:

If you wish to earn or burn points with your selection, you must book direct with Centara.

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How the CentaraThe1 Program Works 

Each CentaraThe1 member must be a natural person over the age of 18 and may only hold one account. (T&C's 1)

Like most programs, points, are earned from hotel stays at qualifying properties (although in this case, for up to 9 rooms at a time per member - T&C 13) paid for by the member. Unlike some other programs, you also earn points from spending on dining or relaxing at SPA Cenvaree (with or without a stay) at the same base rate of 5 points per USD 1 spent..

Eligible spend excludes taxes, tips.

As you accumulate more points, you progress through the elite tiers and qualify for additional benefits (including faster earning rates through tier bonuses). The tier-based earning rates apply only to room rates, not all spending.

Only one CentaraThe1 membership may be registered per person. If CentaraThe1 discovers that an individual has more than one membership, GHA may terminate any and all of those memberships

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CentaraThe1 Elite Tiers & Benefits

CentaraThe1 Status Tiers

There are 4 membership levels within the program - one base level and 3 elite tiers (T&C 3.16).


Summary

CentaraThe1 Preferred Tier

CentaraThe1 Silver Tier

CentaraThe1 Gold Tier

CentaraThe1 Platinum Tier

Qualification Criteria

(T&C 14.


You receive Preferred Tier status upon joining the CentaraThe1 program.


15 nights OR 7,500 points in a single year
(min spend USD 750)


30 nights OR 30,000 points in a single year
(min spend USD

50 nights OR 75,000 points in a single year
(min spend USD

Member Rates
15% discount when booking online

Complimentary Wi-Fi
Enjoy an unlimited internet connection

Exclusive Offers
Access member-only opportunities

Earn points per USD spent on room rate *
(or 30 Thai Baht)

5

5.5

6.25

7.5

Double points if booked via Centara Hotels or CentaraThe1 
(T&C's 13.1)

10

11

12.5

15

Welcome Amenity

Personal Choice
(eg pillow type)

Room Upgrade or Club Access


Upgrade to a room on higher floor, corner room or room with preferred view - member's room only  Upgrade to a Club level room or a similar room as for Gold Tier but with Club access included

Late Check-out

3 pm

4 pm

Early Check-in

11 am

48hrs Availability


* This tier rate is applied to the amount of your folio relating to the room rate in USD. The base rate of 4 points per USD applies to all other eligible spending. T&C 13.3)

Status-matching

Status-matching from another program is not offered.

Earning & Maintaining CentaraThe1 Tier Status

The only way to earn status tier points is through paid stays.  There is no status-matching offer available.

Bookings made through third parties (expedia.com etc) or at special rates (MICE, corporate team-member or industry) do not earn points. (T&C's 13.1 )

Tier status is determined by either points earned or eligible nights stayed. Note that although a member can earn points for up to 9 rooms (eligible rates) in a single stay booked and paid under their name, the number of eligible nights (for tier qualification) is based on the member's room only(T&C's 13 )

Key points for tier qualification include:

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Earning Points

Members earn points from stays at the rate of 5 points per USD 1 spent. This doubles to 10 points per USD if you book directly with Centara at either centara1card.com or centarahotelsresorts.com (T&C's 13.1).

The exception is COSI properties, where (T&C's 13):

To earn points for eligible room rate spend, the member must reserve the room(s) in their name and must provide their CentaraThe1 program membership number when making the reservation or upon check-in or check-out.

No points will be awarded for "no show" (T&C 3.13) - so no "mattress runs" are possible.

When a member books multiple rooms under the same name, then up to a maximum of 9 rooms will be counted toward earning points, as long as the member is staying overnight in one of them.  (T&C's 13).

Points will be earned, even without a stay, for spa treatments and fitness centre membership fees.

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Buying Points

You can purchase CentaraThe1 points at a fixed price - currently THB 405 per thousand (approx USD 12.15 per thousand points).

The maximum purchase amount per transaction is 5,000 points. There doesn't appear to be a annual purchase limit.

Points that are purchased do not count to towards your membership tier status.

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Points Expiration

Unlike most other programs, the CentaraThe1 points that you receive have a fixed expiration expiration of 2 years from the date of check-out or purchase. (T&C 13.4)

Purchasing points or earning points from spending do not extend the life of existing points.

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Points Transfer

Points currently cannot be transferred from one member to another. (T&C 13.7).

It does appear however that this is under consideration, as Centara says it "will advice when point transfer feature is available in the future".

Points may be transferred from a member's CentaraThe1 account to their The1 account (Thai residents only) or vice-versa. For every 10 The 1 points which are transferred, the member will receive 8 CentaraThe1 points and vice versa.

Transferring points does not extend the life of existing points for either member.

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Using CentaraThe1 points - C1 points

Points can be redeemed for the following (as at 31 December 2021):

Centara Points Redemption Type Points value (USD / thousand)
Room rate / folio 3.60 (high-end properties eg. Maldives) to 3.62 (COSI properties)
Food & Beverages 4.25 (although member special offers, often 33% discount, can make cash a better option - at 2.85)
SPA Merchandise 2.90
Gift Vouchers 2.86


Thai residents can also transfer C1 points to The 1 points to redeem against retail items.

Note that at these redemption rates, it does not make sense to purchase points, other than for minor top-ups..

C1 points may be redeemed for the room rate only part of their folio for a maximum of 10 rooms) on the same stay date at the same property provided the CentaraThe1 membership number is recorded on each reservation and the required points are redeemed for each room.  

Award points cannot be redeemed for:


Note that for CentaraThe1 members who cancel their reward night reservation, CentaraThe1 points used for that reservation will be forfeited and are not refundable

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Special features of the CentaraThe1 program

Birthday Bonus 

On each member's birthday, they receive a 20% discount on any hotel booking.

When you first enrol, you provide details of the month of your birthday. Centara loads up a reminder of the benefit into your account for that month.

This is quite generous and a nice "feels good to be a member" benefit.

CentaraThe1 Points Boost

Every Wednesday, a member can redeem their accumulated points at 50% more than their usual value !
This effectively boosts the value of points being redeemed from USD 3.60 per thousand to a much healthier USD 5.40.

points N places - advice on the best use of hotel points and airline miles for luxury travelTip: Just remember to make your redemptions only on Wednesdays !

#TGIF for CentaraThe1 Members

With the #TGIF for CentaraThe1 feature, members can shop with Centara on the first Friday of each month and get double the value for their CentaraThe1 points !  This effectively boosts the value being received from a lowly USD 2.90 per thousand to a much healthier USD 5.80 for spa merchandise or meal deals for your holiday.

points N places - advice on the best use of hotel points and airline miles for luxury travelTip: Remember to plan ahead for this redemption- first Friday of the month after the Wednesday that you book your room(s) !


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Observations - CentaraThe1

Features of the program we like:

  1.  The generous earning rate, but only if you only book direct & on the right days (!).
  2.  Group stays of up to 9 rooms earn full points for the member making the booking (although night credits are earned only for the member's room). Very handy for a destination wedding.
  3. On your birthday, you receive a 20% discount on any hotel booking, anywhere you want to go!  
  4. Every member receives a 15% discount for the room rate and F&B, plus free wi-fi, exclusive check-in and no black-out dates for room redemptions. 

Features of the program we believe can be improved:

  1. the fixed expiration of points earned. At least the term of 24 months is reasonable.
  2. The forfeiting of points if an award booking is cancelled (points are not refunded, which is harsh compared to most other programs).
  3. the information for members could be better organised. The sites of CentaraThe1, CentaraDeals and Centara1Card have to be first found and then navigated. This could be a turn-off for some potential new members. (Although hopefully this article will overcome much of that).
  4. the relatively low earning yield. A member booking directly with Centara receives approx 3.6% of the booking value in points. For top tier (Platinum) members this improves to 5.4%, which is lower than many other programs. For example, even base level Accor Live Limitless members receive 5.0%, while top tier members receive approx 8.8%. Compared to Accor, you will spend more with Centara to achieve a "free" night stay of the same USD value. This is largely offset by the Birthday Bonus and Points Boost features, but these are restricted by dates whereas other programs are not.
  5. no tier offers breakfast as a status benefit.

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Conclusions - CentaraThe1

There is a lot to like about the program and only a few disappointments. The main drawbacks are the generally low earning rate and the somewhat limited options outside Asia.

The special features of birthday discounts and weekly bonuses for points redeemed mean that even lower tier members can achieve a reasonable return from their membership of CentaraThe1 (with some planning).

Overall, I like this program, particularly for travellers who travel mostly within Asia.  For more global travellers, this may still make an attractive supplementary program to another with a larger footprint.

Just note that your path to higher tier status will be slower than with other programs - less of an issue given the standard benefits and generous discounts.


How to Join CentaraThe1

It is easy to open a CentaraThe1 account and it's free (T&C 1).

You can also apply at any participating property.

Unfortunately, CentaraThe1 does not status-match from any other programs.

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FAQ - CentaraThe1



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