7 US Hotels Perfect for Food Tourism and Free With Limited-Time 100,000-Point Offer

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As ya’ll know, I love to eat!  Whether it’s cheap, authentic Thai food in Queens or a memorable tasting menu in Rome at a 1-star Michelin restaurant.

If you enjoy dining out in different cities, you can do well with the limited-time Chase Marriott 100,000-point sign-up bonus.

Because you can redeem points for free stays in neighborhoods close to fantastic restaurants, including Austin, New York City, and Santa Monica!  And saving money on your hotel stay means you might want to splurge on a fancy meal!

Best US Food Cities 2017
Use Marriott Points to Stay Within a ~5 Minute Walk of Jean-Georges in New York City Where You Can Try This Decadent Tasting Menu Dessert

I’ll share how you can use Marriott points to stay in the best US food cities!

Earn 100,000 Marriott Points

Link:   Marriott Rewards® Premier Credit Card

Link:   My Review of the Chase Marriott 100,000-Point Offer

With the Chase Marriott card, you’ll earn 100,000 Marriott points after spending $5,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of account opening.

After completing the minimum spending, you’ll have at least 105,000 Marriott points (100,000 point sign-up bonus + 5,000 points from minimum spending).

And because you can instantly transfer points between your Marriott and Starwood accounts at a 3:1 ratio, 105,000 Marriott points are worth 35,000 Starwood points.

This means you can use the Chase Marriott sign-up bonus for free hotel stays at MarriottRitz-Carlton, and Starwood hotels.

Here are my 7 picks for US hotels near popular restaurants .

1.   JW Marriott Essex House New York

There are lots of terrific areas in New York City to find amazing food.  One popular neighborhood known for fantastic restaurants is Columbus Circle, located close to Central Park.

Best US Food Cities 2017
Looking for Fine Dining? Consider a Stay Near Columbus Circle, Which Is Near the Entrance to Central Park!

You can use Marriott points to stay at the JW Marriott Essex House New York, which is just a ~5 minute walk to Columbus Circle.  Some of the fantastic area restaurants within walking distance include:

Team member Jasmin enjoyed the tasting menu at Asiate as part of a 3-day culinary tour in New York City.  This trip also included amazing dinners at Babbo and Craft.

Best US Food Cities 2017
Team Member Jasmin Enjoyed the Tasting Menu Appetizer of Oyster With Bloody Mary Sauce, Sea Urchin, Razor Clam, Yellowtail, and Ahi Tuna

And a meal at Per Se is a real treat because it’s one of the few 3-star Michelin rated restaurants in the US.

Best US Food Cities 2017
The Cuisse de Poularde Is Just One of the Many Dishes You’ll Get at Per Se If You Choose the Tasting Menu

Or if you like burgers and fries, you can visit the popular burger joint at Le Parker Meridien hotel.

Another tip for folks staying near Columbus Circle is to make a quick visit to Bouchon Bakery for delicious macarons.  Team member Jasmin says they are incredible!

Best US Food Cities 2017
Don’t Leave New York Without Macarons From Bouchon Bakery!

The JW Marriott Essex House New York is a Category 9 Marriott hotel.  So you’ll use 45,000 Marriott points for a free night.

2.   Courtyard Santa Monica, California

In search of the best fish tacos?  You might consider using points for a stay at the brand new Courtyard Santa Monica.

The hotel is less than a 5 minute walk from Blue Plate Taco, which team member Keith says has the best tacos!  I hear the vegetarian tacos there are tasty and would love to try them!

Best US Food Cities 2017
A Visit to California Isn’t Complete Without Tacos! Team Member Keith Recommends Blue Plate Taco in Santa Monica, Which Is Close to the New Courtyard Santa Monica

Or you can consider lots of other great restaurants which are also in walking distance, including:

Santa Monica also has popular food trucks, which are located on Ocean Avenue just a few blocks from the hotel.  And if you’re in town on the 1st Friday of the month, you can take a short Uber or Lyft ride to Venice to attend the monthly food truck event where there’s a huge variety.

The Courtyard Santa Monica is a Category 8 hotel.  So you’ll pay 40,000 Marriott points for a free night.

3.   The Westin Nashville

Besides amazing live music venue, Nashville has a great food scene!

You can convert Marriott points to Starwood points for a stay at The Westin Nashville, which just opened in November 2016.

This hotel is a ~10 minute walk to Etch, which is the top rated restaurant in the city.

Of course a visit to Nashville isn’t complete without barbecue!  You can check out Martin’s Bar-B-Que, which is around the corner from the hotel.

Best US Food Cities 2017
Meat Lovers Can Check Out Martin’s Bar-B-Que in Nashville!

For vegetarians like me, you can take a ride over to the Mas Tacos Por Favor food truck.  It’s a ~10 minute drive from the hotel.  But they have a quinoa-sweet potato taco which has excellent reviews!

It costs 12,000 to 16,000 Starwood points for a free night at The Westin Nashville.  Because of the 3:1 transfer ratio, this means you can convert 36,000 to 48,000 Marriott points from the 100,000-point Chase Marriott sign-up bonus for an award night.

4.   The Westin Austin Downtown

One of the many things I love about living in Austin is the wide variety of food options.  If you’re visiting the city, you can stay at The Westin Austin Downtown, which is centrally located to terrific restaurants and bars.

Best US Food Cities 2017
Convert Marriott Points for a Stay at The Westin Austin Downtown, Which Is a Great Starting Point to Explore the Austin Food Scene!

The hotel is only a ~10 minute walk to the very popular Rainey Street, which is home to popular bars, brunch spots, food trucks, and restaurants like Banger’sBungalow, and NO VA.

Team members Harlan and Jasmin ate at Bangers and loved the funky atmosphere.  There were picnic tables, string lights, live music, and lots of sausages and beer to choose from.  It’s a great spot for a group meal.

Or you can enjoy a wonderful dinner within a few blocks from the hotel at Roaring Fork.  Several team members had dinner at one of the restaurant’s other locations and thought the food and service were AMAZING!

And for a local favorite brunch spot, you can go to South Congress Cafe.  They’re known for their Bloody Mary.

Award night prices are the same as The Westin Nashville.  So you’ll pay 12,000 to 16,000 Starwood points for a free night, which means you can convert 36,000 to 48,000 Marriott points from the 100,000-point Chase Marriott sign-up bonus for an award night.

5.   Boulder Marriott

Foodies will really enjoy a visit to Boulder, Colorado.

There are lots of amazing restaurants to visit year-round.  But you might consider a visit to the annual Taste of Pearl festival, which showcases some of the top chefs and restaurants in Colorado.

To stay nearby, you can use 40,000 Marriott points to book an award night at the Boulder Marriott.  The annual festival is ~1 mile away.  So you can take a ride share or rent a bike and ride over like a local Boulderite.

Best US Food Cities 2017
Foodies Will Enjoy Attending the Annual Taste of Pearl Festival in Boulder, Colorado!

And for breakfast, you can walk just outside of the hotel to The Buff.  But keep in mind this popular spot can have long waits!

Or for a fast casual meal, you can check out Modern Market, which is also steps away from the hotel.  This chain started in Colorado and is known for great sandwiches, pizzas, and salads.

6.   W Dallas

Team member Harlan recommends the W Dallas – Victory for folks looking to explore the restaurants in the Uptown area.

There are LOTS of cuisines to choose from.  Within walking distance of the hotel, you can find great restaurants serving steak, seafood, and craft beers.

One of Harlan’s favorites in the area is Shell Shack, which serves fresh seafood prepared cajun style.  And the restaurant has quite a dining experience.  You get a bib and there’s a rapid hand wash machine next to the bar to clean up once you’re done eating.

Best US Food Cities 2017
Y’all Might Enjoy a Dining Experience at Shell Shack in Dallas

I also found a highly rated Indian restaurant called Spice In The City Dallas, which looks amazing!

A free night at the W Dallas – Victory costs 12,000 to 16,000 Starwood points, which means you can convert 36,000 to 48,000 Marriott points.  So the 100,000-point Chase Marriott sign-up bonus is enough for 2 free nights!

7.   Fairfield Inn & Suites New York Manhattan / Downtown East

New York has so many great areas for food I had to include it twice!

You can use 35,000 Marriott points for a free night at the Fairfield Inn & Suites New York Manhattan / Downtown East.  This is a great starting point to quickly get to neighborhoods like Little Italy or the East Village by foot or on the subway.

A few of the Million Mile Secrets team members top picks in the area include:

Best US Food Cities 2017
Team Member Jasmin Really Enjoyed the Seared Calamari Salad at The Mermaid Inn

Several team members also loved dining at nearby Taqueria St. Mark’s Place.  They have delicious margaritas and the tacos were outstanding.  Some even tried the delicious beef tongue (lengua) tacos.

Best US Food Cities 2017
Feeling Brave? Try the Beef Tongue Tacos at Taqueria St. Marks Place

If you’re visiting New York in September, you can check out the popular 11-day Feast of San Gennaro in Little Italy where you can experience tradition, culture, and great food.

Best US Food Cities 2017
Folks Visiting New York City in September Can Stay Near the Festival of San Gennaro and Enjoy Italian Delicacies

You’ll also want to leave room for a famous pastrami on rye sandwich from Katz’s Deli.  This family run business is 100+ years old and is only a 15 minute walk from the hotel.

Bottom Line

Folks can use points from the limited-time Chase Marriott 100,000-point sign-up bonus to stay free in the best US food cities!

With the Chase Marriott sign-up bonus, you’ll have enough points for 2 award nights at the JW Marriott Essex House New York.  This hotel is a ~5 minute walk to Columbus Circle, which is home to some of New York’s top fine dining establishments, including Per Se.

Or book an award stay at the Boulder Marriott in Boulder, Colorado, and attend the annual Taste of Pearl festival, which showcases some of the top chefs and restaurants in Colorado.

What did I miss?  I’d love to hear your favorite US city for great food options!

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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