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One of the best perks of having the Chase IHG MasterCard is the annual free night certificate offered by the card. Well, “free” should be in quotes since the card has a $49 annual fee. But it is still a great deal since the certificate is valid at any IHG hotel. With all of IHG’s options at your fingertips, here are some best hotels to use your IHG free night certificate:

Remember, if you are looking to pick up the Chase IHG Mastercard, the signup bonus is currently up to 80,000 points (and some people have been able to match to a 100,000 point offer), you can read my review here, and find the signup bonus for the card on our top credit card offers page.

InterContinental Carlton Cannes

My wife and I stayed at the Carlton hotel in Cannes as part of an *amazing* multi-week trip to Europe last summer. It is located right on the Boulevard de la Croisette with an enviable view of the bay.

The hotel is iconic. It has been used in several movies, not to mention it is the premier hotel for hosting movie stars during the Cannes Film Festival. Quite a few suites are named for celebrities.

For our dates, the InterContinental Carlton Cannes was going for over €400 per night! Definitely one of the best hotels to use your IHG free night certificate at in terms of value.

InterContinental London Park Lane

Located at the corner of two very famous parks, the InterContinental London Park Lane is one of the premier hotels in The Old Smoke. The hotel often runs over $400 per night, giving you huge value for your free night certificate.

Best hotels to use your IHG free night certificate

The hotel is utterly elegant, but like any luxury lodging, it comes with luxury prices. You’ll pay a pretty penny for everything beyond your free room. Luckily, the hotel is located just steps from the underground, leaving the rest of London at your fingertips.

If you’re going for luxury, location, and max value, the Intercontinental London Park Lane is one of the best hotels to use your IHG free night certificate.

(PWaC: Personally I “wasted” my free IHG certificate at the Staybridge Suites London Vauxhall but I’m a bit of an odd bird.  We also stayed at the London Hilton on Park Lane which is very near the Intercontinental London Park Lane)

InterContinental Hong Kong

There might be better places at which to use your certificate in terms of rate, but the InterContinental Hotels Group is still heavily in the running. Located right on Victoria Harbour in Kowloon, the hotel boasts fantastic views of  Hong Kong island.

You can relax in the infinite pool and take in the city skyline. Then wander the streets of Kowloon and eat at one of the many great restaurants in the city.

Cash rates often top $250 at the InterContinental Hong Kong. It is also one of IHG’s top category properties, requiring 60,000 points per night. Your certificate is the way to go here, as I value my IHG points more highly than that.

InterContinental Amstel Amsterdam

Situated in an elegant and impressive 19th century building along the Amstel River, the InterContinental Amstel Amsterdam is another great choice at which to use your IHG certificate. Paid nights often start around €400, giving you great value for your $49 annual card fee.

Even though they aren’t promised on award stays, see if you can talk your way into a river view room. Gotta make that complimentary Platinum status count for something.

InterContinental Bora Bora Resort Thalasso Spa

Bora Bora is often viewed as one of those “paradise on earth” destinations. The island is utterly idyllic, and the views are amazing. It is the one IHG hotel where you can be booked into an overwater bungalow on a free night certificate (or points). This alone makes it one of the best hotels to use your IHG free night certificate.

With cash rates often starting at over $1,000 per night, this is almost certainly the most expensive IHG hotel at which you can use your certificate. Just be prepared to pay a lot for everything else at the property.

The issue with the InterContinental Bora Bora Thalasso is that award availability is scarce. You can typically only find a few nights in the entire calendar, and rarely more than a day or two at a time. You’ll have to obsessively search to piece together a multi-night stay here. But it can be done!

If the Bora Bora option is a bit too overwhelming, consider the nearby island of Moorea. The InterContinental there is a more reasonable option in terms of price, award space, and logistics. You just won’t be booked directly into an overwater bungalow.

Other best hotels to use your IHG free night certificate?

Don’t feel like you have to burn your certificate at a place just to get the max value. There are plenty of other wonderful options in the IHG portfolio. My wife and I have even burnt ours at airport hotels, which is a deal to us, given that the Staybridge Suites SFO often goes for more than $200 per night. Plenty of value there.

It all depends on your travel needs. If you can get $400+ out of your certificate, great. If not, that’s totally fine (SEE: Where I “wasted” my 2 IHG free night certificates). Travel how you want to.

Remember, if you are looking to pick up the Chase IHG Mastercard, the signup bonus is currently up to 80,000 points (and some people have been able to match to a 100,000 point offer), you can read my review here, and find the signup bonus for the card on our top credit card offers page.

All hotel photos (except Carlton hotel) courtesy of IHG. 

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