The Complete Guide to Shangri-La Luxury Circle

Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts is a collection of luxury hotels located all over the world. Currently, there are over 100 properties, with the majority of the footprint concentrated in Asia. 

With Shangri-La, the best way to make sure you’re getting the maximum benefits out of your hotel booking is through Shangri-La Luxury Circle.

What Is Shangri-La Luxury Circle?

Luxury Circle is Shangri-La’s preferred partner program, encompassing the following Shangri-La and Kerry properties:

By booking through an authorized travel advisor, you can get extra perks and benefits for your stay, while paying the same as if you were to book on your own.

(Note that Traders Hotels and JEN Hotels, which fall under Shangri-La’s ownership, don’t participate in the Shangri-La Luxury Circle program.)

Any bookings made through Shangri-La Luxury Circle won’t cost you any more than if you booked the best flexible rate with Shangri-La directly. And even though it doesn’t cost you any more, you’ll be rewarded with additional benefits, which include:

  • Property credit of $50/$100 (USD), or 10% of the room rate, whichever is greater
  • Daily breakfast for two guests, including in-room dining
  • Upgrade to the next room type category, subject to availability at the time of booking
  • Early check-in and late check-out, subject to availability
  • Welcome amenity
  • Third, Fourth, or Fifth Night Free at select properties

The most valuable benefits with Shangri-La Golden Circle are the hotel credit, complimentary breakfast, and the upgrade at the time of booking.

The hotel credit is either $50 (USD) or $100 (USD), or 10% of the average daily room rate, whichever is higher. Most Shangri-La properties offer a baseline $100 property credit, though some of the cheaper properties only offer a $50 credit. 

This means that if your average daily room rate is more than $500 or $1,000 (USD) per night (depending on the property), then you’ll receive more than the standard amount as a hotel credit.

Book through Shangri-La Luxury Circle and get a $50+ or $100+ (USD) property credit

It’s nice to see Shangri-La rewarding those who choose to stay at one of their more expensive properties, or who choose to pay extra for a nicer room or suite.

Most preferred partner programs cap the credit at $100 (USD), and Shangri-La Luxury Circle is one of the few programs that offers a potentially higher credit. 

The complimentary breakfast can be enjoyed in the hotel’s restaurant, or can be taken as in-room dining. The choice of in-room dining is another benefit that isn’t common when compared to other major hotel preferred partner programs.

Lastly, a room upgrade can greatly enhance a stay, and the ability to confirm that upgrade at the time of booking is very helpful when planning out your trip. 

Confirm a room upgrade at the time of booking with Shangri-La Luxury Circle

In the event that the Shangri-La hotel is unable to confirm your upgrade, it’s also nice to know that in advance, so you can set your expectations accordingly. If an upgrade isn’t forthcoming, you might be able to try your luck at another hotel that might have more upgrade availability.

When a Shangri-La property offers a Third, Fourth, or Fifth Night Free when booking through Shangri-La Luxury Circle, then it’s usually a no-brainer to jump on the offer and make the booking, if it fits your schedule and budget.

Getting a free night can result in significant savings that you won’t be able to find elsewhere, as it will almost certainly beat out any other publicly offered rate.

Lastly, the ability to check in early and check out late are great perks to have. While these benefits aren’t guaranteed, they’re typically still offered as long as the hotel is not at full capacity.

Why Book Through Shangri-La Luxury Circle?

The primary reason for booking through Shangri-La Luxury Circle is to enjoy elite-level benefits without having to earn elite status in the Shangri-La Circle loyalty program.

Without the same global footprint of some of the other major hotel chains, and without a co-branded credit card in North America, it’s relatively hard to earn Shangri-La Circle elite status, unless you’re a frequent patron of Shangri-La properties.

Booking through Shangri-La Luxury Circle gives you elite perks without having status

Therefore, booking through Shangri-La Luxury Circle is a great way to get comparable benefits to elite status during your stay, without having to pay anything extra for it.

In fact, even if you have Shangri-La Circle elite status, the benefits offered through Luxury Circle are even better, and can stack on top of your regular elite benefits.

Breakfast can be enjoyed in the comfort of your room, rather than only in the restaurant, and you’ll only enjoy the $100+ (USD) credit if you book through Luxury Circle.

How to Maximize Value with Shangri-La Luxury Circle

Booking through Shangri-La Luxury Circle will always be the best choice if you’re comparing your options between the Shangri-La Luxury Circle rate and the best available flexible rate.

If you have access to lower rates, either through corporate rates or other promotions, you’ll most likely save money initially.

However, you’ll have to weigh your options in order to determine whether or not the extra benefits, as well as the change and cancellation flexibility, will make up for potential differences in pricing.

Book Shorter Stays

The $50+ or $100+ (USD) hotel credit is only given once per stay, no matter how many nights your stay is for.

By booking a shorter stay, especially if it’s at one of the less expensive Shangri-La properties, you can get the most relative value out of this one-time hotel credit.

Compare with Virtuoso and American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts

Many Shangri-La hotels can also be booked through Virtuoso and Amex Fine Hotels & Resorts. Virtuoso is similar to the Shangri-La Luxury Circle program, in that you get additional benefits, but only if you book through an authorized travel advisor.

With Amex FHR, on the other hand, you can make the booking yourself, but only if you hold an American Express Platinum Card or American Express Business Platinum Card.

While Virtuoso and Amex FHR offer similar benefits, the benefits are generally better through Shangri-La’s Luxury Circle program, due to a few reasons. 

Compare benefits offered through different booking platforms to ensure you’re getting the best deal

To start, you can confirm your room upgrade within 24 hours of booking via Luxury Circle, which you can’t do with Virtuoso or Amex FHR.

Another thing to keep in mind is that the hotel credit received with bookings made through Shangri-La Luxury Circle is more flexible, whereas the Amex FHR credit can sometimes be limited to the spa.

On the other hand, Amex FHR gives a 4pm late check-out as a guaranteed benefit, whereas it’s only subject to availability with Shangri-La Luxury Circle.

If your average nightly rate for your booking is more than $1,000 (USD), then it will most certainly be more beneficial to book through Shangri-La Luxury Circle rather than Virtuoso or Amex FHR, as you’ll receive a larger hotel credit.

On the other hand, at certain properties like the Midtown Shangri-La Hangzhou, Amex FHR guarantees a $100 (USD) property credit, whereas Luxury Circle and Virtuoso may be lower at $50 (USD). 

Ultimately, you’ll always want to compare rates to make sure you’re getting the best deal. While you won’t be able to book Virtuoso rates yourself, your travel advisor will be able to compare the rates for you in order to make sure you are getting the best deal possible.

For example, at the time of writing, Virtuoso and Shangri-La Luxury Circle currently offer a Third Night Free promotion at the Shangri-La Toronto. The same deal isn’t available through Amex FHR.

The cost is the same for booking through either Virtuoso or Shangri-La Luxury Circle for an Executive King Room, at $1,845.11 (CAD) for three nights. 

It would make the most sense to book through Shangri-La Luxury Circle, though, as you’d get a $100 (USD) credit that can be used for anything in the hotel and a room upgrade confirmed upon reservation.

With Virtuoso, the $100 (USD) credit can’t be used at the hotel’s signature Miraj Hammam Spa, and the upgrade is subject to availability at check-in. 

As a point of comparison, the same stay booked through Amex FHR would total $2,802.87 (CAD), due to the absence of a Third Night Free promotion. 

Below is a table that compares the benefits of booking through Amex FHR, Virtuoso, and Shangri-La Luxury Circle:


Shangri-La Luxury Circle


Amex FHR

Complimentary breakfast

Daily breakfast for two guests, in the restaurant or via in-room dining

Daily breakfast for two guests, in the restaurant or via in-room dining

Daily breakfast for two guests, in the restaurant

One-category room upgrade

Subject to forecasted occupancy within 24 hours of booking

Subject to availability upon check-in

Subject to availability upon check-in

Property credit

$50 or $100 (USD), or 10% of the room rate, whichever is greater

$100 (USD)

$100 (USD)

Early check-in

Subject to availability

Subject to availability

12pm, subject to availability

Late check-out

Subject to availability

Subject to availability

Guaranteed 4pm

Stack with Amex Offers

If you have a Canadian-issued American Express credit card, including Scotiabank American Express cards, you’ll have access to Amex Offers, which frequently offers discounts on Shangri-La stays. 

For example, back in early 2023, select cardholders were able to get a 20% statement credit, up to $150, if they booked a stay at a Shangri-La hotel in Canada. Essentially, you could have maxed out the $150 offer if you spent a total of $750 at Shangri-La hotel.

Booking a Shangri-La hotel in Canada through Shangri-La Luxury Circle would count towards the Amex statement credit, as you’ll be charged by the hotel directly.

If you plan to visit the Shangri-La Toronto or the Shangri-La Vancouver, and you have access to the Amex Offer, then you could leverage all of the benefits available through Luxury Circle while enjoying 20% off your hotel bill. 


With Shangri-La Luxury Circle, you can enjoy a plethora of additional benefits at your next Shangri-La stay, including hotel credits of $100+ (USD), complimentary breakfast, and even an upgrade confirmed at the time of booking, all at the same price as the flexible rate.

Shangri-La has some amazing luxury hotels all over the world, including here in Canada and with a particular concentration of properties in Asia. Be sure to book through a Luxury Circle travel advisor to elevate your next Shangri-La hotel stay. 

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