Timeshare news and information for owners, buyers and renters

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Classic Holidays Hosts 2nd Annual Work Inspiration Program for Students

This month, the Australian-based Classic Holidays group hosted their second annual “Work Inspiration” program. Through a partnership with a local high school, students joined Classic Holidays employees at work for mentoring and career experiences.

Program Coordinator and Classic Holidays’ Sandy Point Resort Manager, Julia Whitton said, “The ‘Work Inspiration’ program at Classic Holidays has gone beyond our expectations as a work experience platform. Everyone has embraced this program, and we are seeing it really take off in its second year with more schools coming on board.”

Thirteen students from Helensvale High in Queensland, Australia visited the Classic Holidays’ corporate office for a two-day experience. Here the students shadowed employees to get a feel for what it would be like to work for Classic Holidays.

Whitton continued, “The structure of the program is what the kids really enjoy – it’s fun and engaging for everyone, particularly our Classic Holidays staff who act as mentors to the students. This year, with the support of Partnership Brokers, we are also making a film of the ‘Work Inspiration’ journey, which will be a great tool for promoting the program further.”

Classic Holidays also hosted a Work Inspiration program at two of their resorts. At the Golden Shores Resort, Horticulture students participated in a two-day grounds experience. While at Surfers Royale, hospitality students shadowed at the resort’s Reception desk. Classic Holidays is planning additional Work Inspiration events to take place in the next few weeks.

“Later this month we will be presenting ‘Work Inspiration’ to Emmanuel College staff and students, and we will be welcoming more students from Varsity College later in the year to Classic Holidays following the success of the pilot program with Varsity last November,” said Whitton.

The support from the students and employees has encouraged Classic Holidays to make Work Inspirations a long-term program. To show their enthusiasm, Classic Holidays has committed to 100 Work Inspiration events throughout the rest of 2014.

On this note, Whitton shared,

“The feedback from participating students has been 100% positive. They learn a lot about their own personalities, skills and strengths through the various talks and workshops, inspiring them to think about what kind of career they would like to have. For Classic Holidays, it’s every bit as rewarding to share behind the scenes of our business and see the students form bonds with our Classic Holidays mentors.”

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

A New Look and Direction for TheTimeshareAuthority.com

At TheTimeshareAuthority.com, we’re constantly working to provide the most essential and up-to-date information to our readers. However, as the timeshare industry continues to evolve, we too must adapt to the ever-changing environment.

For the past six years, TheTimeshareAuthority.com has delivered daily news on your favorite timeshare resorts and developers. While we will continue to bring you the most essential industry news, moving forward we will also cover a variety of consumer-related topics.

To provide more support to the consumer side of the industry, we would like to announce a partnership with our brand SellMyTimeshareNow.com. In addition to the latest on resorts and developers, moving forward we’ll also provide valuable information for timeshare owners, travelers, and SellMyTimeshareNow.com consumers.

A new direction means that we’ll also need a new look for the blog’s design. In May, we will premiere a brand new look for TheTimeshareAuthority.com.

Here at TheTimeshareAuthority.com we’re thrilled to expand our content for a well-rounded reader experience. To our current readers, we hope you’ll continue to support and share our information. Over the next few days, we will reveal more about our new and improved blog.

Stay tuned to learn more about our exciting transformation.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Marriott Vacation Club Members Celebrate 30 Years of Memories

MARRIOTT VACATION CLUB LOGOThis year, Marriott Vacation Club (MVC) is celebrating their 30th anniversary. Today, the vacation ownership brand is celebrating the tradition of the family vacation, by encouraging members to look back on 30 years of memories.

The year was 1984. The place, Marriott’s Monarch at Sea Pines on Hilton Head Island, SC. It was here that the Peter Pfiel became one of the first members of the Marriott Vacation Club. Over the next 30 years, every summer the Pfiel family traveled from their home in Cincinnati to the beautiful island of Hilton Head. This annual family vacation created memories the Pfiels will never forget.

“Frankly, it’s changed our lives,” says Peter Pfiel.

Peter was not only one of the first MVC members, but a member at Marriott’s very first vacation ownership property. Thirty years later, Peter and his wife enjoyed their time on Hilton Head so much, they decided to retire there.

Now the Pfiels use their two weeks at the Marriott Monarch to spend time with their grandchildren. By handing the timeshare down to his children, the Pfiels can continue to enjoy the benefits of the Marriott family vacation.

Peter shares, “The joy of being able to turn over the keys to my son and his family … that’s the fulfillment of a different dream than we had when we bought.”

Since 1984, the Marriott Vacation Club has grown from a single resort on Hilton Head Island to 52 resorts across the globe. As for the Pfiels, they are now joined by over 415,000 families within the MVC owner network.

President and CEO of Marriott Vacations Worldwide Corporation, Stephen P. Weisz shared,

“This year marks an exceptional milestone and one I am very proud of – the 30th anniversary of our Marriott Vacation Club brand. We’re in the business of fun, and it’s been amazing to watch MVC revolutionize an entire industry. On the personal side, it’s exciting to think of all of the families who are creating a lifetime of vacation memories through Marriott Vacation Club.”

To learn how you can become a member of the Marriott Vacation Club, just like the Pfiels, visit SellMyTimeshareNow.com.

Monday, April 21, 2014

ARDA World 2014 – The Next Generation of Vacation Ownership

ARDAThis month, over 3,000 industry professionals gathered at vacation ownership’s largest annual event, ARDA World 2014.

As mentioned previously, this year’s theme was “Next Gen”, a focus on the next generation of timeshare owners, products, distribution sources, and business models. As timeshare ownership continues to evolve, resorts and developers will need to adjust their business practices. At the same time, a new generation of travelers is beginning to think about investing in timeshare.

ARDA’s president and CEO Howard Nusbaum said, “We were excited to have so many people in our industry embrace this year’s theme and share their business approach about reaching the next generation. Learning from the best and brightest makes our industry poised to move forward together to reach the Millennial generation and continue to share why timeshare is a better way to vacation for so many travelers.”

ARDA World attendees learned from some of the industry’s biggest organizations. These speakers focused on maintaining a flexible product that can attract more than one type of consumer. Featured speakers included the CEOs from Disney Vacation Club, Wyndham Vacation Ownership, Welk Resorts, and Marriott Vacations Worldwide Corporation.

President &amps; CEO of Wyndham Vacation Ownership and ARDA Chairman, Franz Hanning shared, “Our developers are meeting the demands of the Millennial generation by providing more variety and flexibility in the products, as well as new ways to enhance the vacation experience.”

Welk Resorts shared that they have begun using social media to engage consumers. President of Welk Resorts Jon Fredericks commented, “Next Gen travelers increasingly rely on vacation opportunities where they can co-create their own experiences.”
Through social media, consumers can communicate with the resort before, during, and after their vacation. From Facebook to Twitter, more brands are creating an online presence in order to connect directly to the new generation of timeshare consumers.

President &amps; CEO of Marriott Vacations Worldwide Corporation, Steve Weisz added, “The oldest of the Millennial generation turns 35 this year and is entering their prime family vacation years, making them an important audience to engage with about the benefits of traveling with timeshare.”

According to a recent Pew Research Study, 73% of adults are active on social media.

Senior VP and general manager of DVC, Ken Potrock said, “Clearly, technology is becoming more and more important when people make decisions about their travel. As an industry, we must continually enhance our use of online and social media to help our members engage with us —and with each other—in new and meaningful ways.”

To learn more about ARDA World 2014, visit ARDA.org.

Friday, April 18, 2014

New Study Shows Americans Are Not Using “Vacation Time” to go on Vacation

Americans need vacations more than ever. As work hours increase and schedules are completely booked, time off from the daily routine is essential. Vacation is a time to relax and rejuvenate. However, in 2014 many Americans are using this time to simply catch up.

A recent study conducted in Ocean City, Maryland showed that residents are using vacation time to run errands, attend doctors’ appointments, and make home improvements. Results had shown that up to 70% of participants are using at least some vacation time on these activities.

Compared to most workers around the globe, Americans statistically receive the least amount of paid time off from work. The fact that they are using this small amount of time to attend appointments, rather than relax, can only result in a more stress.

Ocean City, MD mayor Rick Meehan commented, “We have discovered the public is using vacation days for activities like doctor appointments or home improvement projects instead of leisure and fun. Now, more than ever, people need to put the vacation back into their vacation days, and we hope they consider visiting our beautiful beach town this spring and summer.”

Results had shown that 30% of residents polled took time off work to schedule appointments with maintenance workers (plumbers, electricians, etc.), while 16% spent their time doing house work.

“The American idea of a vacation day is in need of a serious makeover,” continued Meehan.

TheTimeshareshareAuthority.com invites you to use your vacation time to actually take a vacation. While many timeshare owners are using their annual week, there are still many Americans who are not. With the timeshare resale market, it’s easier than ever to purchase a timeshare and take affordable yearly vacations.

For those unsure about making the switch to vacation ownership, we suggest a timeshare rental. Even if you can only take a weekend away, it’ll be worth it!

For more information on Ocean City’s study, visit OCocean.com.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

RCI Wins 9 ARDA Awards from 2014 ARDAWorld

RCI-Timeshare-ExchangeRCI, the global leader in timeshare exchange, received not one, not two, but nine awards at last week’s ARDA Awards gala.

As mentioned previously, the annual gala was hosted on Wednesday, April 9, 2014 at the Bellagio in Las Vegas. Awards were presented in 70 different categories, including 16 ARDA Circle of Excellence (ACE) awards.

The RCI team took home three of these prestigious awards, including the ACE Customer Service: Industry Partner award. The company is extremely excited to take home this particular award, as RCI has a core focus on delivering quality customer service to their members.

President of RCI Gordon Gurnik shared,

“We are ecstatic to once again take home the ACE Customer Service Award. Customer satisfaction is our number one priority at RCI, and we are committed to listening to, engaging and servicing our customers in whatever way is most convenient and accessible for them. Whether helping a customer online or on the phone, RCI®vacation guides consistently provide prompt, friendly service and assistance to make it easy to book amazing vacations all over the world.”

The organization is consistently working to improve their customer service team and technologies. This year, they introduced such innovations as their “Click to Chat” services on RCI.com. This interactive help tool provides direct access to the RCI customer service team, which is available to members during business hours.

Tara Bergeron, RCI’s Manager of Business Development, received the ACE Spirit of Hospitality Award. Bergeron came to RCI with an impressive resume, filled with industry experience. In particular, the ACE award recognized her contribution in the implementation of RCI’s Online Tour Generation program. Bergeron also works with RCI’s affiliated brands to educate their members about timeshare exchange and RCI.

Later in the evening, Amy Self accepted the ACE Volunteer of the Year Award. Self accepted the award as a member of the RCI team involved with the ARDA LEAPS Leadership Development Task Force. This one-year program is a great tool for industry professionals in various management roles. The program works to educate and develop these employees into future leaders.

“On behalf of everyone at RCI, we’re thrilled to have won nine ARDA Awards today,” continued Gurnik. “This impressive collection of awards stands as a testament to the great work being done throughout the company from graphic design, advertising and marketing campaigns to video production and mobile app development. We will continue working on behalf of our subscribing members and affiliates, and we’re excited to help make timeshare the preferred choice of travelers everywhere.”

To see the entire list of ARDA Award Winners, visit ARDA.org.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Unlimited Vacation Club Reveals Latest Updates to Dreams Tulum Resort

Unlimited Vacation Club (UVC) by AMResorts has announced the completion of renovations at the Dreams Tulum Resort & Spa.

Located in Riviera Maya, the Dream Tulum Resort is a luxury oasis for timeshare owners and guests. Named after the Tulum ancient ruins, located just a few miles away, the resort offers elegant suites, gourmet dining, and a full service spa.

During the renovation, UVC redesigned 222 guest rooms and suites. All rooms were updated with new furniture, new LED Televisions, LED lighting, and refurbished bathroom suites. Updated bathrooms now feature new cabinets, modern showers and Jacuzzi bathtubs. The décor was also updated to reflect a more modern resort experience.

Even more exciting features were added right outside these units. During the remodel, 44 Deluxe and Junior Suite Garden View rooms were transformed into “Preferred Club Swimout” rooms. These preferred rooms provide direct access to a private pool on each suite’s patio area.

In addition to the guest room updates, the resort also remodeled the Sky Sports Bar & Lounge, the resort gardens, and grounds area. As a popular relaxation area, the Sky Sports Bar has been remodeled to include new LED HD televisions and a more modern décor. The Lounge Bar has also been update to reflect a more modern style.

This was not the only exciting news to come from UVC. They resort group also announced that in May 2014, a selection of Deluxe Garden View, Junior Suite Garden View, Preferred Club Deluxe Swimout, and Preferred Club Junior Suite Swimout rooms will become Adult-only areas. This particular section of the resort will be in a secluded area, providing the perfect location for an adult getaway.

For information on buying and renting Unlimited Vacation Club timeshares, visit SellMyTimeshareNow.com.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Wyndham Vacation Ownership Wins 16 ARDA Awards

Last week’s ARDA World conference concluded with the annual ARDA Awards gala. Wyndham Vacation Ownership (WVO) cleaned up, receiving 16 ARDA awards.

The ARDA Awards Gala, hosted on Wednesday April 9, is an annual event to celebrate the leaders in the timeshare industry. Awards were presented in 60 different categories, including 12 ARDA Circle of Excellence (ACE) awards. The ACE Awards are given to the best of the industry. Awards such as the ACE Spirit of Hospitality, Women on Their Way, and Customer Service awards are just some of the prestigious honors.

Wyndham Vacation Ownership took home 16 awards, including the ACE Innovator Award. Recognizing Wyndham as one of the most innovative companies in the industry, the ARDA ACE Innovator Award is one of the event’s most impressive honors.

Wyndham’s innovative practices for 2014 include the successful launch of WVO Mobile Technology Initiative (MTI). With MTI, the WVO sales department can now use iPads to help owners and customers. In 2014, Wyndham distributed over 3,000 iPads across their dozens of timeshare resorts.

President and CEO of WVO Franz Hanning said,

“We are honored to receive these coveted industry recognitions, including the ACE Innovator Award — they are a true testament to our commitment to excellence as demonstrated by our hardworking associates each and every day. Our company’s success is a direct result of the achievements of our associates who always strive to deliver exceptional customer service by fostering a culture of continuous innovation and engagement.”

To see the full list of ARDA award winners, visit ARDA.org.

Friday, April 11, 2014

The Registry Collection Forms Partnership with Adventures by Disney

Adventures by DisneyThe Registry Collection, the leading luxury timeshare exchange program, has just entered into an agreement with Adventures by Disney®. This upscale travel program from Disney allows ordinary travelers to visit extraordinary destinations. From Cambodia to Costa Rica, travelers will enjoy a comprehensive travel experience complete with planned tours and activities.

With this new partnership, members of The Registry Collection can use their exchange privileges to book these exciting vacations. Through Adventures by Disney, members will have the chance to visit some of the world’s most sensational travel destinations.

The Registry Collection global VP Gregg Anderson commented on the new partnership, saying,

“Adventures by Disney is a perfect fit as our newest Collection Partner, and we are thrilled to have them on board. We have seen a growing desire for experiential travel options from luxury consumers, and Adventures by Disney fits that bill. The level of service they provide to travelers, who come back raving about their trips, matches the type of meaningful and memorable vacation experiences we aim to provide to each of our member families.”

Since their founding in 2005, Adventures by Disney has grown to offer 29 travel itineraries in 24 countries. All trips include upscale accommodations, dinning, and activities for adults and children. Disney takes care of everything, so families can relax and enjoy their vacation.

Senior VP and general manager of DVC and Adventures by Disney, Ken Potrock said, “We’re excited to be The Registry Collection’s newest Collection Partner, bringing our unique Adventures by Disney vacations to more and more guests around the globe. This is another great example of how the relationship between Disney and RCI benefits members and guests with exciting new vacation options.”

We are equally excited to see this division of the Disney Vacation Club (DVC) creating new partnerships and relations. We look forward to see what Disney will do next with this unique travel program.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

RCI “Win Your Dream Vacation” Sweepstakes

rci win your dream vacationRCI, the world’s largest timeshare exchange company, has announced their latest sweepstakes, Win Your Dream Vacation.
With summer right around the corner, now is the perfect time to start planning your next vacation. While there are thousands of timeshare rentals available on sites likeResortRentals.com, wouldn’t it be great to win one for free?

With RCI’s latest sweepstakes, you can. All RCI members and travelers are invited to “Dream it. Share it. Win it.” and win a grand prize vacation. Enter now through June 18, 2014 to win the trip of a lifetime.

With the recently designed RCI.com, you’ll have the chance to create your dream vacation and share it with family and friends. Each time you share your vacation, you’ll enter for a chance to win the vacation or a variety of other travel related prizes. The more you share the more chances you’ll have to win.

In celebration of RCI’s 40th anniversary, RCI will award 40 prizes throughout the Win Your Dream Vacation contest. The grand prize “dream vacation” will be a customized vacation package valued up to $25,000. Remaining prizes will allow travelers to plan and enjoy a dream vacation of their own.

The “Dream it” theme is a great chance for travelers to get excited about travel. By planning the ultimate vacation, they’ll have the chance to explore all the possibilities available to vacationers through RCI. In this step of the contest, guests can choose their dream destination, type of vacation, and who you want to bring along.

Next you can “Share it”. Each time you share, not only will you gain an additional entry, but you’ll be helping children around the world. Once they reach 250,000 shares, RCI has made a pledge to donate $20,000 to Christel House International, a program for the world’s impoverished children. This non-profit organization is working to break the cycle of poverty by supporting underprivileged children with education, nutrition, and support.

To enter the Win Your Dreams Vacation sweepstakes, visit RCI.com . The grand prize winner will be selected during the last week of June.