The Bay Gardens Beach Resort And Spa is the newest member of the Interval International exchange network of resorts on St. Lucia. The island paradise is well known for its spectacular beaches, unspoiled tropical rainforests, and majestic mountains. The Bay Gardens Beach Resort features one and two-bedroom suites complete with a full kitchen and living and dining areas. Its design juxtaposes the charm of neoclassical Caribbean architecture with timbered balconies and verandas. The amenities are state-of-the-art with DVD and CD players, high-speed Internet access, and Wi-Fi in all public areas, including the beach.
Archive for November, 2010
Wyndham Worldwide Corporation has recently renewed its financing for its Orlando based timeshare operations. According to a recent story in the Orlando Sentinel, Wyndham has stated that the securitized timeshare receivables conduit has a capacity of $600 million, and is renewed through September 2011. Timeshare companies typically use the receivables facilities to turn timeshare buyers mortgage into cash that the companies can use for further development.
Welk Resorts has received increased financing commitment from Liberty Bank. The increase in lending commitment is now $35 million, up from $10 million. Liberty Bank representatives have stated that they are very pleased with the performance of the Welk Resorts portfolio and how it has remained strong despite the recent challenges in the U.S. economy. Welk’s president, Johnathan Fredricks has stated that “we are meticulous about touring and selling to buyers with solid credit scores.” Welk Resorts include the Villas on the Green and Lawrence Welk Resort in Escondido, and the Lawrence Welk Desert Oasis in Cathedral City– all in California.
The White Point Resort is the first luxury Private Residence Club in Nova Scotia and is RCI affiliated. Located on Nova Scotia’s south shore, the White Point Beach Resort features a three quarter mile white sand beach, indoor and outdoor pools, lake, golf, tennis, volleyball, trails, surfing, recreation programs, a Spa and a dining room. Just 90 minutes from Halifax, White Point is perfect for day-trips to coastal fishing villages, beaches, lighthouses, museums, National and Provincial Parks, Wineries, Festivals and Lunenburg, a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Divi Resorts appears to be a good steward of the environment, implementing an impressive number of “green” programs at all of its properties across the Caribbean. Divi’s property in Barbados, Divi Southwinds, has served as the catalyst and leader for the earth-friendly practices in 2008 after it was certified as a “Green Hotel”, the first property in Barbados to receive the designation. Last year, the resort was a semifinalist for the prestigious Ministry of Tourism Green Hotel Award and received the “Honorary Award” from the Travel Foundation’s “Switch Off Save Big” challenge. “Our guests are increasingly attuned to the health of the planet and basing their hotel selection on environmental standards,” commented E.J. Schanfarber, CEO of Divi Hotels Marketing, Inc. “It is imperative for hotels to recognize their responsibility to the environment, and our efforts evidence Divi’s corporate belief in sustainable tourism. Our success at Southwinds has been a key building block for the lessons and initiatives we are applying to the rest of the properties.”
Universal Orlando’s profits are way up thanks to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Universal Orlando has just posted its best quarterly results in its entire 20-year history. Attendance at the resort has soared 36% in the recent third quarter when compared to the same quarter last year, climbing by over one-million visitors to 3.7 million. It is the highest quarterly attendance Universal has reported since Universal Studios opened in 1990 and the biggest percentage gain since its second park, Islands of Adventure debuted in 1999. Universal’s quarterly revenue has rocketed up 62% to $364 million fueled by ticket sales and enormous demand for Potter-themed merchandise. The popularity of the park allowed Universal to raise ticket and parking prices in the middle of the quarter.
The Hotel Hacienda La Purisima is now an RCI exchange timeshare property. Located in Ixtlahuaca, Mexico and just one hour from Mexico City, Hacienda La Purisima has 12 units complete with hardwood floors, a fireplace and a soaking tub. The property offers a lake with boating, 18-hole golf course, entertainment and game rooms, an indoor pool, spa and barbecue facilities. Also on site are tennis, soccer, volleyball, basketball and badminton courts. Hacienda La Purisima offers several wooded acres with horseback riding trails, a leisure farm, bullring and church. Local attractions include the famous Nevado de Toluca, Valle de Bravo, Metepec, El Oro, Temoaya, Tlalpujahua and The Otomi Ceremonial Center.
Interval International has revealed that its U.S. resident members reported annual household income greater than $125,000 per year, 88% are satisfied with their membership, 33% would like to purchase additional holiday time, and Interval International’s U.S. members spend about 23 nights away from home, taken as leisure time. Also determined in the profile, Florida, California and Hawaii are the most popular destinations members said they wanted to visit within the next two years, with New York City the most popular urban destination. The Caribbean is the number one “international” favorite destination for US residents. An official at Interval International said, “The observations and insights drawn from this research reinforce the value our members place on vacationing. This study also represents the latest in Interval’s continuing commitment to bring timely and consumer-centric research to the market.”
Timeshare operations have learned from the credit crunch. According to a recent article in the Orlando Sentinel, the plummeting sales of timeshares have finally leveled off. Nationwide, timeshare sales have fallen from a peak of $10.6 billion in 2007 to $6.3 billion last year, according to figures released during the 12th annual Vacation Ownership Investment Conference held at the Peabody Orlando Hotel. Employment in the industry has fallen 30% from about 279,000 to about 196,300. Timeshare business was humbled as credit markets dried up in late 2008, but the industry’s major trade group said the credit crunch that crippled the industry also helped change the way companies do business for the better. Marketing techniques have changed into more efficient tactics, such as selling more product (upgrades) to current owners and targeting prospects with higher credit scores resulting in higher closing percentages. Down payments are up, occupancy is steady at 80% and individual units are now selling at an average of $20,468 versus $16,278 in 2005. Financing is still tight, but it is easing up, but according to officials in the timeshare industry, it is still going to be awhile until we get back to the way it was three years ago when there was plenty of financing.
The Anfi Tauro Golf and Luxury Resort will be the newest addition to the Canary Islands list of vacation ownership properties. Given the green light by its Supreme Administrative Court, the new resort will include two brand new man-made beaches and a 500-berth leisure harbor, a number of residential and leisure facilities, with a focus on golf. The 7,500-bed tourist complex will be targeted to European visitors and the luxury development already boasts a luxury hotel, a selection of bungalows and villas, an 18-hole championship golf course, golf academy and 9-hole pitch-and-putt course.