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It's always Happy Hour at The GateHouse

THE WORLD’S BIGGEST AFTER-HOURS TIMESHARE WATERING HOLE!
 

PUBLISHED WEEKLY, EVERY SATURDAY
Pull up a stool, order your poison and join the conversation!

What do you know that you’d like to anonymously pass along? Did we get something right or wrong? Got gossip, rumors or bitches & moans, obituaries, kudos, etc. you’d like to share? Send it on in to [email protected]

It’s easy, it’s a blast– it’s anonymous… (Your identity is always protected so use any ‘handle’ [nickname] you want!)

And always remember: If you don’t want to see it in The GateHouse, don’t do it…


Some Special Features from InsideTheGate.com you might want to check out this week:

  • CURRENT NEWS HEADLINES (stuff you might have missed last week)
  • SCOOP DU JOUR (retired, but available at the link)
  • MORNING MEETING: Sales training tips designed to get you thinking, to expand your knowledge, to help you to become all that you can be in the timeshare sales arena.
  • OFF TOPIC (Just for fun, from the goofy to the profound, published weekly, every Monday)
  • ON THE ROAD Timeshare Resort destinations and reviews, travel deals and more! (Published weekly, every Monday)

EMAIL: [email protected]


Diamond Resorts now hiring

Permanent link to this article: http://www.insidethegate.com/gatehouse/2010/10/welcome-to-the-gatehouse-3/

Weekly Wisecrack: February 25, 2017

the boss 
What Could Go Wrong?

Though he never booked a timeshare tour, never worked the sales line, never closed a deal in his entire life, was never a Podium speaker or VLO, never managed a sales center and never ran a timeshare marketing department –– as the newly appointed C-Level Exec in charge of all marketing and sales activities the big-guy is confident the entire staff will embrace the new commission and bonus program he’ll be announcing his first day at the helm.



The Weekly Wisecrack is an often snarky look inside the workings of the timeshare industry, usually but not always from the viewpoint of sales and marketing representatives. Do you have a different point of view? Leave your own caption in the Comments if you’re so inclined…
Image Source: ClipartKid.com

Permanent link to this article: http://www.insidethegate.com/gatehouse/2017/02/weekly-wisecrack-february-25-2017/

Timeshare Odds and Ends: February 25, 2017

happyhourgatehouse

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. -First amendment to the United States Constitution

Would you believe that a certain C-Level personage in this industry is so hot under the collar about this publication that he insists it should be shut down? In spite of the fact that nothing negative has ever appeared in our pages about him, the company he works for, his wife, his mother or even his dog?

major-overreactionWhat’s up with that?

So what’s the Scoop? Read all about it at Scoop du Jour: International Ring of Professional Con Artists



Marriott Vacations Worldwide Corporation has reported fourth quarter and full year 2016 financial results and there’s a lot to cover, so I’m just going to hit a few highlights and you’ll have to look at the full report to get all of it.

First of all, Hurricane Matthew negatively affected the company’s numbers significantly and the report has noted those effects throughout the release. You’ll find it interesting, so go there and look.

  • Adjusted net income was $50.8 million, compared to adjusted net income of $34.7 million in the fourth quarter of 2015, an increase of 46.4 percent.
  • Total company vacation ownership contract sales, excluding residential sales, were $234.3 million, an increase of $30.1 million, or 14.7 percent, compared to the prior year period. Contract sales in the key North America and Asia Pacific segments increased over the prior year by $32.6 million, or 16.9 percent.
  • North America VPG increased $402, totaling $3,563, a 12.7 percent increase from the fourth quarter of 2015;
  • Total tours in the fourth quarter of 2016 increased 3.4 percent, driven by an 8.3 percent increase in first time buyer tours.
  • Asia Pacific vacation ownership contract sales in the segment were $16.1 million, an increase of $5.6 million, or 52.5 percent, from the fourth quarter of 2015, due primarily to the opening of a new sales location in Surfers Paradise, Australia in the second quarter of 2016. Segment financial results were $1.8 million, relatively flat to the fourth quarter of 2015.
  • European fourth quarter 2016 contract sales were $9.1 million, a decrease of $2.5 million from the fourth quarter of 2015. Segment financial results were $5.0 million, a $0.3 million increase from the fourth quarter of 2015, driven by $0.5 million of higher development margin.

As of December 30, 2016, the company had approximately $197 million in available capacity under its revolving credit facility after taking into account outstanding letters of credit and approximately $103 million of gross vacation ownership notes receivable eligible for securitization in its warehouse credit facility.

That sounds pretty healthy to me.



TWEET OF THE WEEK:

Have you seen the world yet?

Where are YOU going this year?

 

Permanent link to this article: http://www.insidethegate.com/gatehouse/2017/02/timeshare-odds-and-ends-february-25-2017/

Weekly Jukebox: February 25, 2017

Blue mic 
I’m going rogue this week with a group called “Mathias Duplessy & Violins of the World”, but don’t skip on by thinking this is some highbrow classical music that puts you to sleep. No no no! This is more in line with “You ain’t seen nothing yet!”

The members of the group are, from left to right: Aliocha Regnard, playing a “nyckelharpa,” (“keyed fiddle”, or literally “key harp”), which is a Swedish instrument somewhat related to a hurdy-gurdy; Mathias Duplessy, who plays guitar on this track; Guo Gan playing the Erhu, a two-stringed bowed musical instrument, more specifically a spike fiddle, which may also be called a Southern Fiddle; and Enkhjargal Dandarvaanchig, playing the ancient Mongolian horse head violin.

This is the title track from the 2016 album “Crazy Horse”, composed by Dandarvaanchig & Duplessy. You can start smiling right now.

What are YOU listening to tonight? And what would you like to see here?



The Weekly Juke Box aims to feature good music/good fun regardless of era or genre. Send in your own favorite and if I can find a good version on YouTube I’ll post it for you! What would you like to see or hear? [email protected]

Permanent link to this article: http://www.insidethegate.com/gatehouse/2017/02/weekly-jukebox-february-25-2017/

Florida USA Timeshare News: February 25, 2017

It's Happy Hour at The GateHouse >> EASTERN USA TIMESHARE NEWS

TALLAHASSEE: Club Med, which is already in the process of getting BIGGER, has unveiled plans for its intention to get even BIGGER than that.

The pioneer of all-inclusive vacations, Club Med is in the midst of a $1.5 billion investment in opening new properties and renovating many of its 68 existing resorts around the globe, but has now revealed plans for its next series of openings and enhancements in addition to the two resorts that opened in China in 2016 – Club Med Sanya and Club Med Beidahu.

The company is promising the opening of 15 new resorts in the next three years in France, Italy, Brazil, China and Indonesia, among others.

The brand had gotten stale in recent years, seemingly closing more resorts than it opened, but it has found new blood, new ideas and new energy (to say nothing of new money) and is now growing again.

For one thing, the company is being reimagined to cater to more affluent travelers in all corners of the globe, a strategy that seems to be taking off.

Says Xavier Mufraggi, CEO of Club Med North America, “Thanks to our 68 resorts worldwide and diversified offerings, we achieved solid growth in 2016 and our best net result in 15 years; also setting a new record in North America with a 20 percent year-on-year increase in operating income.”

One particular example of Club Med’s success in 2016 can be seen in the brand’s ski business, with the number of American and Canadian guests travelling to one of Club Med’s 20 allinclusive ski resorts in the Alps having nearly doubled in two years.

You may recall that a two-year-long bidding war for control of Club Med began in 2013, culminating in 2015 when China’s Fosun International won out with the final sale price of €939 million ($1.07 billion). It took very little time for Fosun to get to work making Club Med great again. (sorry, I couldn’t resist)

It already is not the Club Med of your parents’ generation, and you should expect a large influx of affluent Chinese tourists worldwide making their presence felt.



“If you haven’t got anything nice to say about anybody, come sit next to me.” -Alice Roosevelt Longworth

Tip JarDo you have tips or rumors you’d like to share ANONYMOUSLY? Something you’d like us to investigate or follow up on? Help fill up the Tips Jar so we can share it with the whole Timeshare World! CONTACT: [email protected]

Permanent link to this article: http://www.insidethegate.com/gatehouse/2017/02/florida-usa-timeshare-news-february-25-2017/

Colorado USA Timeshare News: February 25, 2017

It's Happy Hour at The GateHouse>> WESTERN USA TIMESHARE NEWS:

BOULDER: Last December I told you about Kristopher Chavez, a/k/a Chris Culhane and Timothy Hatcher who were indicted by a Boulder County grand jury on charges alleging their participation in a timeshare transfer scheme that targeted elderly timeshare owners across the USA over a two-year period.

The government hit them hard, indicting both on two counts of violating the Colorado Organized Crime Control Act (COCCA) – one for racketeering the other for conspiracy – as well as numerous other counts: Chavez was charged with 47 counts of theft and criminal impersonation, while Hatcher had 21 theft counts charged against him.

The police weren’t satisfied with that though, believing there were more victims of the alleged scheme, and they were right. The two men have now been indicted by a Boulder County grand jury on new charges. Chavez was indicted on 37 new counts of theft and criminal impersonation, while Hatcher was indicted on 11 new counts of theft.

That’s a total of 84 counts for Chavez and 32 for Hatcher plus the two counts of violating the COCCA. If they were to be found guilty on all counts they would probably spend the rest of their lives in prison, with the two COCCA violations alone being Class 2 felonies punishable by eight to 24 years in prison. But I’m guessing they’ll eventually reach some sort of plea agreement, you think?

Both men are due for arraignments on April 7.

This case is currently being heard in Colorado district court; do you suppose it will be transferred to the Federal Court system?

Stay tuned for more info as I get it.



“If you haven’t got anything nice to say about anybody, come sit next to me.” -Alice Roosevelt Longworth

Tip JarDo you have tips or rumors you’d like to share ANONYMOUSLY? Something you’d like us to investigate or follow up on? Help fill up the Tips Jar so we can share it with the whole Timeshare World! CONTACT: [email protected]

Permanent link to this article: http://www.insidethegate.com/gatehouse/2017/02/colorado-usa-timeshare-news-february-25-2017/

Idaho USA Timeshare News: February 25, 2017

It's Happy Hour at The GateHouse>> WESTERN USA TIMESHARE NEWS:

BOISE: The ubiquitous timeshare resale and recovery scams being operated out of Mexico have finally come to the attention of Idaho’s government. More precisely, the Idaho Department of Finance has issued a cease-and-desist order against Reliant Escrow Transaction & Coordination, which claims to be an online escrow company located in Boise that offers escrow services to prospective sellers of timeshare units in Mexico.

But here’s the rub: Reliant does not reside in Boise and is not licensed by the department as an escrow company or as any other type of financial service provider.

This is a very familiar scenario to the thousands of timeshare owners who have been ripped off by various Mexico-based scams over the last several years, but it is taking official governmental agencies an annoyingly long time to recognize the problem, much less do anything about it.

The order cites violations of the Idaho Escrow Act by Reliant for pretending to operate as a licensed Idaho escrow company located at 886 Main Street in Boise. The order also cites violations of the Idaho Financial Fraud Prevention Act, which prohibits leading the public to believe you are a financial institution, such as an escrow company, for the purpose of obtaining money. The order states that Reliant tried to deceive consumers and gain legitimacy by using an assumed business name that was filed with the Idaho Secretary of State in 2000 but that became inactive in 2002.

Reliant appears to be working with a company called International Investors located at 194 Wood Avenue South, Iselin, New Jersey. The order states that no company by that name exists at the advertised location. Further, owners of timeshare units in Mexico are contacted by International Investors claiming to have a buyer or lessee for their timeshare unit and asking if the owner is interested in selling or leasing their unit. International Investors then directs the seller to Reliant to close the escrow transaction and owners are asked to pay fees in advance of closing the transaction.

In this case the cease-and-desist order, while a step forward, is toothless since the perpetrators are almost certainly operating from Mexico and such an order is inconsequential to them; its only value is informing the public. The grifters will continue to use the names of these companies until they are no longer profitable, then they’ll change names and start all over again. Neither the Mexican government nor the various governmental authorities in the USA and Canada have the severity of the issue on their radars even though it has cost timeshare owners millions of dollars over the years.

ANYhow, a copy of the order, and other information can be found on the Internet at finance.idaho.gov and may be obtained by contacting the department at (208) 332-8000 or Idaho toll-free at 1-888-346-3378.




“If you haven’t got anything nice to say about anybody, come sit next to me.” –Alice Roosevelt Longworth
Tip Jar Do you have tips or rumors you’d like to share ANONYMOUSLY? Something you’d like us to investigate or follow up on? Help fill up the Tips Jar so we can share it with the whole Timeshare World! CONTACT: [email protected]
 

Permanent link to this article: http://www.insidethegate.com/gatehouse/2017/02/idaho-usa-timeshare-news-february-25-2017/

Caribbean Timeshare News: February 25, 2017

It's Happy Hour at The GateHouse>> INTERNATIONAL TIMESHARE NEWS

SINT MAARTEN: In the getting BIGGER category, you could say that Oyster Bay Beach Resort is expanding. Pearl Development N.V., developer of OBBR, recently acquired Duck International, Ltd., which owns 11 of the 24 remaining and unsold units at Coral Beach Club, a neighboring community on Dawn Beach. It will be operated as exclusive, upscale waterfront hotel and vacation residences on the water.

Pearl will offer weekly and fractional vacation ownership opportunities to the public and to OBBR owners looking to trade up to even more luxurious accommodations.

The purchase price was not disclosed.

Six of the newly acquired units are beach front, four face the marina, and one serves as an apartment as well as an office and reception center. The six residences on the ocean front are three- or four-bedroom villas featuring panoramic views of Dawn Beach and Oyster Pond Marina. Each of these units also has a private pool; a travertine marble pool deck; and short, private walkway to the beach. Four of the units are two-bedroom, water-side townhouses with views of the three marinas on the Oyster Pond. The townhouses also offer access to a semi-private central swimming pool overlooking the Oyster Pond. Also included in the purchase is a spacious second-floor, two-bedroom apartment with ocean views and a walkway to the beach.

The reception building, which is shared by the other owners at the resort, will be remodeled in a modern, spacious style by professional designers and architects. New landscaping and an improved entry way will help in creating an enhanced sense of arrival and a preview of the special hospitality offered at Coral Beach Club.

Coral Beach Club will maintain a separate and distinct community and identity for its owners and guests but OBBR will provide 24-hour management, augmented security and other services for Coral Beach Club owners and guests.

OBBR is affiliated with Interval International, and the plan is to affiliate Coral Beach Club with Interval too, as well as with its “Preferred Residence Collection” — an exchange program modeled after the famous, “Small Hotels of the World.” Approval from Interval is pending.

Hot stuff! clap


“If you haven’t got anything nice to say about anybody, come sit next to me.” -Alice Roosevelt Longworth

Tip JarDo you have tips or rumors you’d like to share ANONYMOUSLY? Something you’d like us to investigate or follow up on? Help fill up the Tips Jar so we can share it with the whole Timeshare World! CONTACT: [email protected]

Permanent link to this article: http://www.insidethegate.com/gatehouse/2017/02/caribbean-timeshare-news-february-25-2017/

Ya Burnt! February 25, 2017

happyhourgatehouse

If you are a timeshare owner who regularly attends timeshare presentations solely for the proffered “gifts”, with no intention of giving the presentation a fair hearing, you may not subsequently complain about those presentations to your friends on the various online timeshare forums. Nor may you heap scorn on the sales reps or reference them as pond scum when they work you over to make the sale, since you are contributing to the high sales/marketing costs of timeshare intervals (about which you later complain) and you are wasting everyone’s time and money for that “free” gift. YA BURNT!

If you are a timeshare sales rep you should finally come to terms with the fact that you are not a rap star or a gangster. Frankly, if you’re still wearing pimp suits, slicked back hair and too much jewelry in this day and age, you need to retire. White shoes and a diamond in your nose may be a fashion statement at the “club”, but at work it just tells your guests that you’re a jackass. Likewise, if you’re the kind of T/O who tries to close a guest by saying “What do I have to do to get you to buy from me today?” you must immediately pack up all your belongings and slink back to the car lot from which you came because you are an embarrassment to real sales professionals. YA BURNT!

Tip Jar Do you have a burn you’d like to share in this category? Help fill up the Tips Jar so I can share it with the whole world! CONTACT: [email protected]

Permanent link to this article: http://www.insidethegate.com/gatehouse/2017/02/ya-burnt-february-25-2017/

Idle Timeshare Thoughts: February 25, 2017

It's Happy Hour at The GateHouse

QUOTABLE QUOTES: “Do not confuse motion and progress. A rocking horse keeps moving but does not make any progress.” — Alfred A. Montapert


 

 

For a decade now Redweek.com, arguably the largest online community and marketplace for timeshare rentals and resales, has released a report on the most popular timeshare rental resorts as ranked by its more than 2.3 million subscribers. This year Marriott and Disney resorts captured 16 of the top 25 rankings, which is quite a statement IMO.

Topping the list at Number 1 is Disney’s Beach Club Villas (Lake Buena Vista, FL), followed closely by Marriott’s Aruba Surf Club (Palm Beach, Aruba). Marriott-branded resorts won five of the top 10 rental resort slots and 11 of the top 25. Disney’s new Bay Lake Tower at the Contemporary Resort joined the rental popularity list for the first time at #25 and expanded Disney’s overall presence to five resorts.

The Top 25 includes six independent resorts and one timeshare each from Westin, Wyndham and Hilton. One third of the Top 25 resorts are located in Florida, followed by Hawaii (28 percent), Aruba (16 percent), South Carolina (8) and California, Mexico, Bahamas and New York (with 4 percent each).

Here is the 2017 list:

  1. Disney’s Beach Club Villas – Lake Buena Vista, Florida
  2. Marriott’s Aruba Surf Club – Palm Beach, Aruba
  3. Disney’s BoardWalk Villas – Lake Buena Vista, Florida
  4. Harborside Resort at Atlantis – Paradise Island, Bahamas
  5. Marriott’s Maui Ocean Club – Lahaina, Hawaii
  6. Marriott’s Aruba Ocean Club – Palm Beach, Aruba
  7. Marriott’s Ko Olina Beach Club – Kapolei, Hawaii
  8. Marriott’s Newport Coast Villas – Newport Coast, California
  9. The Manhattan Club – New York, New York
  10. Costa Linda Beach Club – Oranjestad, Aruba
  11. Playa Linda Beach Resort – Palm Beach, Aruba
  12. Boulder Ridge Villas at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge – Lake Buena Vista, Florida
  13. Marriott’s Grande Ocean – Hilton Head Island, South Carolina
  14. The Westin Ka’anapali Ocean Resort Villas – Lahaina, Hawai’i
  15. Disney’s Old Key West Resort – Lake Buena Vista, Florida
  16. Marriott’s Maui Ocean Club – Lahaina, Hawai’i
  17. Marriott’s Ocean Pointe – Palm Beach Shores, Florida
  18. The Royal Sands – Cancun, Mexico
  19. Marriott’s Oceanwatch Villas at Grande Dunes – Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
  20. Hilton Grand Vacations Club at Hilton Hawaiian Village – Hawai’i
  21. Marriott’s Waiohai Beach Club – Koloa, Hawai’i
  22. Marriott’s Maui Ocean Club – Napili Villas – Lahaina, Hawai’i
  23. Wyndham Bonnet Creek Resort – Lake Buena Vista, Florida
  24. The Galleon Resort – Key West, Florida
  25. Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort – Lake Buena Vista, Florida

Studying that list, would it have any influence on which resort/company you might either want to own at or work for?




“If you haven’t got anything nice to say about anybody, come sit next to me.” –Alice Roosevelt Longworth

Tip JarDo you have tips or rumors you’d like to share ANONYMOUSLY? Something you’d like us to investigate or follow up on? Help fill up the Tips Jar so we can share it with the whole Timeshare World! CONTACT: [email protected]

Permanent link to this article: http://www.insidethegate.com/gatehouse/2017/02/idle-timeshare-thoughts-february-25-2017/

Getting BIGGER: February 25, 2017

It's Happy Hour at The GateHouse

Festiva Real Estate Holdings has acquired Wachesaw Plantation East golf course at Murrell’s Inlet in South Carolina. The purchse includes the on-site East Grill and Pub.

Festiva’s well-loved Ellington at Wachesaw Plantation East resort abuts the golf course and for years the resort has enjoyed a healthy business relationship with Wachsaw Golf LLC, who previously owned and operated the golf course and grill. This purchase completes ownership of the whole package by Festiva.

Patton Hospitality Management (PHM), a hospitality management company based in Asheville, N.C., has been chosen as the management entity for the golf course and grill. PHM currently manages the resort operations at Ellington at Wachesaw Plantation East.

This resort, btw, familiarly known simply as Ellington at Wachesaw to Festiva Adventure Club members, is also a Club affiliate of Diamond Resorts International. In case you didn’t know.



RCI added more than 170 new affiliated resorts to its exchange network in 2016 and they’re darned proud of it. The additions, which include some resorts currently under construction, span across every populated continent.

Perhaps not surprisingly the vast majority of the new affiliations are located outside of the USA, a trend I’ve noticed for quite some time. Resorts in the Asia-Pacific region (with nearly 30 resorts added collectively), and Latin America (with 60 new resorts added throughout the region) dominated the list, with many resorts throughout Europe also contributing.

The number of new affiliations for 2016 is on par with the 2015 count; RCI added more than 170 new affiliated resorts to its exchange network in that year, too, and even used the same language in the announcement.

Still, 240 new affiliations in two years is nothing to sneeze at, so congratulations to RCI. Good job! tip of the hat



Tip JarDo you have tips or rumors you’d like to share? Something you’d like us to investigate or follow up on? Help fill up the Tips Jar so we can share it with the whole Timeshare World! CONTACT: [email protected]
 

Permanent link to this article: http://www.insidethegate.com/gatehouse/2017/02/getting-bigger-february-25-2017/

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