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Marriott Rewards Year of Surprises

Marriott Rewards® Final ‘Year of Surprises’ Nomination Period – Nominate Someone For a Surprise Party!

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Imagine this..It’s a Tuesday and it’s your 37th birthday.  No big deal, right?  You pick the kids up from school, run into the store to grab a couple of things, listen to your kids tell you about their day at school in the car.. at the same time, then you pull into the driveway and breathe a sigh of relief because you hope you’re in for a relaxing, hopefully treat-filled evening with your family, and BAM.. confetti hits your face and you hear screams of Happy Birthday! as you walk in the front door. surprise party  You can’t help but smile and your worries melt away when you see your friends and family there to celebrate your birthday with you.

Surprising people is fun, don’t you agree?   Despite that everyday life gets hold of our natural instinct to make people happy, it’s human nature to want to make people happy and surprise them.   A surprise doesn’t have to be BIG or expensive to be appreciated but Marriott Rewards® is going big and is giving you and I the opportunity to throw an amazing surprise party for someone special that will be BIG!   The last nomination period for Marriott Rewards’ Year of Surprises is happening now through August 31st!  There is still time to nominate a special person in your life to win a once in a lifetime surprise party just like four other people already have after having been nominated!  Surely, you can think of at least one person who deserves to be celebrated this year?

Marriott Rewards Year of Surprises


Did your child graduate college or high school this year?  Did a friend return from a tour of duty or beat the odds after a health scare?  These are all great reasons to celebrate!  Don’t downplay milestones like these and even birthdays.  Turning 40, 50, 60+ is a big deal and should be celebrated.   Time isn’t indefinite – celebrate life!

Marriott Rewards Surprise Parties

Marriott Rewards has already announced eight winners in the Year of Surprises contest from the first two nomination periods. Four of the winners have already experienced their unique surprise party! You can see all the parties at http://yearofsurprises.com/latest-parties.

While all of the people who have been chosen to have a surprise party hosted for them are amazing, two ‘Year of Surprises’ parties that resonated with me are Super Dad’s Rockin’ Bash and Courtney’s High School Graduation.

Amanda, a mom of two with a 2-year-old daughter who was diagnosed with a rare form of Leukemia at age 2, nominated her husband, aka “Super Dad”.  Bryan left his job to be by his daughter’s side at the hospital for 6 months.  Amanda nominated her husband for a party of a lifetime because he is truly a “Super Dad.”  For Bryan’s upcoming 30th birthday, Amanda gave her husband the surprise celebration of a lifetime at The Baron’s Theatre at Whiskey Row Lofts in Louisville, KY.  The night was filled with performances by Bryan’s favorite musicians, including Jalin Roze and the Violet Knives, face painting and dancing for the kids, and a surprise reunion performance by Bryan with his college band, Modern Silence.

Watch Amanda and Bryan’s story:


Dwayne Stevenson was the first lucky Year of Surprises winner and he chose to throw a surprise graduation party for his eldest son, Courtney at Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center. Courtney’s family moved from Texas during the middle of his sophomore year of high school, which was a very hard time to leave his friends. Dwayne wanted to throw his son a surprise graduation party to celebrate the important milestone before Courtney heads off to college in the fall. Courtney’s friends and family came from all over the country to celebrate with him.

Watch Courtney’s story:

Why become a Marriott Rewards member?

Marriott Rewards brings memorable experiences to life for its members.  Two of my favorite perks of being a Marriott Rewards member is the late check-out and free wi-fi.  Read about and watch a video of me explaining what I love about Marriott Rewards!  Marriott Rewards is free to join and has no blackout dates*. Members can earn and redeem points at 14 distinct hotel brands with more than 3,800 hotels in 70 countries and territories. Members can also redeem points for frequent flyer miles, cruises, car rentals, merchandise and more.

Voted “Program of the Year” 7 years in a row, Marriott Rewards has maintained excellence in rewarding members with points to redeem for hotel stays, flights, exclusive events and shopping. Through their membership, guests earn status to receive memorable experiences during their hotel stays with benefits such as priority check-in and complimentary room upgrades. For 30 years, the magic of Marriott Rewards has helped travelers create new memories all around the globe.

To enroll in Marriott Rewards and see all the benefits of membership, visit marriott.com/rewards. And don’t forget to visit yearofsurprises.com to nominate a loved one and get upcoming related updates on nomination periods, winner information and latest parties.

*Hotels may limit the number of standard rooms available for redemption on a limited number of days. All Marriott Rewards program terms and conditions apply.

How to nominate someone for a surprise party

Marriott Rewards is looking for the most memorable ideas you can come up with, so go to yearofsurprises.com and nominate your loved one today for a surprise party.  Nominations will be reviewed based on creativity/uniqueness of entry, overall appeal of nomination essay, and feasibility of the surprise party. Four winners will be notified in September and parties will be scheduled throughout the remainder of the year. This is the last nomination period for Year of Surprises so enter now!  Keep up with all the winners and their stories at yearofsurprises.com.  You could be next!

Limit one (1) entry per person/email address per nomination period.  Please see the “Nominate” section at yearofsurprises.com for the nomination entry form and requirements.  You do not need to be a Marriott Rewards member to submit a nomination, but if your nomination is chosen, you and the nominee will need to enroll at Marriott.com/rewards.  For more details on the contest, check out the Year of Surprises official rules at yearofsurprises.com/rules.

– Alicia


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The Marriott Rewards Member Experience {Video} + Year Of Surprises Giveaway

The Marriott Rewards Member Experience {Video}

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Lately, I don’t know which end is up.  Not generally speaking, but around my house.  When the kids are out of school I sort of lose my mind between trying to work, entertain my youngest, be a mediator between the kids, and keep up with the dishes and laundry..my brain turns a little mushy in the summer.   Given that, I like to get away from home as much as possible in the summer.  Away from the dishes, laundry, and yard work.  I actually enjoy my job though so I take it with me wherever I go. 🙂

I’m always on the lookout for fun places to take the kids and recently got enough points through the Marriott Rewards® ambassador campaign I’m participating in to take my daughter and one of her friend’s on a girl’s trip to Marriott’s Gaylord Opryland Resort in Nashville.  I could make a long story short by telling you that Madelyn wants to live at Opryland, or any hotel for that matter, but I want to tell you why our experience at Opryland and other Marriott hotels we’ve stayed at this summer, has been so great.

When my daughter, her friend, and I arrived at Opryland after the from Atlanta, we were thrilled to see that there was a line for Marriott Rewards® Platinum Elite members… a SWEET reward after driving for 5 hours and hauling way too much luggage for three people, through the hotel.  Hallelujah!  The receptionist talked to us like she knew us and when she told us that our room was upgraded and gave us a $10 voucher to spend at the hotel, Marriott Rewards® Platinum Elite member perks, Madelyn just about “fainted”.  She rolled her eyes back and her jaw dropped.   I think she thought $10 was more like a million dollars. 😉

Our room was gorgeous.  It had a balcony and a view of the atrium.  The girl’s could have spent the entire trip on the balcony but after they learned that there were two pools, tons of shops, a frozen yogurt shop, and a boat ride, they practically ran out of the room.

Marriott Gaylord Opryland Resort in Nashville, TV

During our stay at Opryland, a Marriott property we received excellent service.  I had to call the front desk a few times to ask about the indoor boat ride schedule and pool hours, and later about late check-out and each time I called I was greeted by name and overall pleasantry.

Opryland pool

The Marriott Rewards member perk I appreciated the most during our stay was late checkout.  The girls and I stayed up pretty late swimming, shopping, and wandering around Opryland and it was really nice to know that we didn’t have to wake up early and rush to shower, eat breakfast and pack the morning of checkout.  You’ll definitely enjoy this perk!  As a Marriott Rewards® Platinum Elite member you’ll also get 48-Hour Guaranteed Availability, Platinum Exclusive Elite offers, dedicated Platinum reservation line, free wifi, and select Marriott properties offer Platinum Elite members free breakfast during their stay.

Watch my video below to hear about my experience as a Marriott Rewards® member


Go to Marriott.com/rewards to become a Marriott Rewards® member today, free!



Now that I’ve shared some of the benefits of being a Marriott Rewards® member with you I want to tell you about the Marriott Rewards® Year Of Surprises giveaway that is going on right now.  Marriott Rewards® is celebrating their 30th birthday with the Year of Surprises.com giveaway contest, during which you can nominate someone who deserves a vacation.  If the person you nominate wins, Marriott will throw them a huge surprise party/vacation!  Creative submissions are a must, so plan ahead!  The third round of nominations begins August 1st and ends August 31st, 2014.  Read more about the Year of Surprises contest and the yearofsurprises.com rules.

Enjoy earning points and rewards during your next Marriott stay!

– Alicia


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Marriott Rewards® Wants To Celebrate Its 30th Birthday With You!

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Marriott Rewards 30th BirthdayI am thrilled to be a Marriott Rewards® Ambassador during which time I will post 2 more times over the course of the next several months to share great news related to Marriott Rewards with you!

Can you believe Marriott Rewards is celebrating its 30th birthday?   Apparently I was 9 years old when Marriott Rewards began.  We didn’t stay in hotels much when I was young; we lived in Orlando and didn’t need to travel far to go to fun places, obviously.  🙂 However, I take any chance I can get to travel and stay in a hotel these days and I love reward programs like Marriott Rewards.  What’s not to love about a free rewards program that gives you points toward travel, hotel stays, products, and more?

I’ll get on to the exciting stuff!

Marriott Rewards is kicking it off their 30th birthday by throwing a surprise party for someone in your life!  What better way to show how much you care about someone by nominating them in the Year of Surprises.

The first round of nominations for Year of Surprises takes place February 1 to February 28, 2014.   Nominations will be reviewed based on creativity/uniqueness of entry, overall appeal of nomination essay, and feasibility of the surprise party.  Three winners will be awarded and announced in March and parties will be scheduled each month throughout the year.  There will be a total of three nomination periods throughout 2014.  The second nomination period is during the month of May, and the third is during the month of August.  You can nominate one person per nomination period.  See the “Nominate” section at yearofsurprises.com for the nomination entry form.

You don’t need to be a Marriott Rewards member to submit a nomination, but if your nomination is chosen, you and the nominee will need to enroll so that they can reward your points for the party. I think that’s a very fair trade-off!

Voted “Program of the Year” 6 years in a row, Marriott Rewards has maintained excellence rewarding members with points to redeem for hotel stays, flights, exclusive events and shopping.  Does that mean that Marriott Rewards is not just for hotel stay discounts?  Yes, it does!  For example, you can earn points when you buy Valentine’s Day gifts from select retailers.  Cool, right?

With a Marriott Rewards membership, guests earn status to receive memorable experiences during their hotel stays with benefits such as priority check-in and complimentary room upgrades. Members can also redeem points for frequent flyer miles, cruises, car rentals, merchandise and more.  It is quick and easy to enroll in Marriott Rewards at Marriott.com/Rewards.

For more details on the contest, check out the Year of Surprises official rules at yearofsurprises.com/rules.

If you’re on Facebook, you can follow Marriott Rewards Facebook page here.

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Who will you nominate for a surprise party from Marriott Rewards?