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Official Secrets of OWNERS (please) Four Seasons Aviara Thread

Discussion in 'All Other Timeshare Systems' started by GregGH, Mar 22, 2010.

  1. GregGH

    GregGH TUG Member

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    Hi
    Let me explain the subject line -- would prefer owners and issues & 'things' that owners like to share for four Seasons Aviara. There are lots of other threads for dogs in TS, or why pay hi MF's ... etc ... for a general issues -- try one of those threads, please.

    Background:
    -Four Seasons Aviara is less like a 'normal' timeshare and 'kindof' more like the level of accommodations generally written up in the 'Non-traditional Interval Ownership' folder ... hence I am posting it here.

    Possible topics for this thread ( as one can keep any thread on topic - after a while they all stray )
    - what is NEW , improved or different
    - things that make you stay better ( or worse )
    - secrets you have learned you wish to share. All contribute to a better experience while at FSA.

    =========================================
    So - lets kick off the thread and see if it gets any traction ( or it dies a lonely death )

    1) NEW SOAP - gone is BVLGARI and in comes L'Occitane( http://www.loccitane.com/a-true-story,29,1,2270,34000.htm ) --a big storey??? - well - it was to my wife, anyways!

    2) new mattresses - I asked and a supervisor says they replace every 10 years - doing in a rolling replacement. Kind of funny to see a truck wisking away a couple tied down - some one is getting a great used mattress. These beds are far too comfortable.

    3) finally found about Pelly's ( by accident ) in Ralphs mall (on way to Ocean) in middle of plaza in walkway to back - ( http://www.pellysfish.com/index.php?option=com_frontpage&Itemid=11 ) the reviews in Yelp.com and Tripadvisor.com hold pretty true - a great place for lunch with the locals. If you didn't know about it - you would never chance upon it.

    We did 3 weeks thus year - booked 5 wks for next year

    Greg

    Added 12-26-13:

    http://www.scribd.com/doc/193810400/four-seasons-aviara-one-bedroom-floor-plan

    http://www.scribd.com/doc/193810399/Four-Seasons-Aviara-Two-Bedroom-Floor-Plan

    http://www.scribd.com/doc/193810398/Four-Seasons-Aviara-Property-Map
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 26, 2013
  2. Kagehitokiri2

    Kagehitokiri2 Guest

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    there are other owners here too arent there? i know vineyarder used to be.

    if you have questions about FS scottsdale (again presumably some owners here) i know one owner that is online.

    its certainly interesting TUG never made a four seasons forum. although youre right, would probably get a lot of nonowners / nonprospective. this forum should be a lot better in that regard.
     
  3. chibuilder

    chibuilder TUG Member

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    Thanks for seeting this up. I'm sure we will all get some great use out of it. I own 2 Platinum weeks at FSA and it is always one of our family's best annual vacations. Pelly's is great. We tend to b "regulars" at a bunch of the same places and I've amassed a decent file of restaurants and places to visit. Everything from Knockout Pizza (great NYC style slice near the beach in downtown Carlsbad) to NineTen (our favorite market-fresh dinner in La Jolla) and from Legoland to the tourmaline mine. ....on a different front, glad to hear about the switch back to the L'Occitane. We thought the other was a step down in quality even if the name indicated otherwise (perhaps...).
     
  4. Sir Newf

    Sir Newf TUG Member

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    Greg, thanks for doing this..
    I'd like tips on trading 1/2 of our Aviara for Troon. Other than II, can this be done thru Four Seasons?
    Loving Four Seasons and am not at all bothered by maint. fees..anyone else agree? Only wish we could trade more easily.:)
    Also, considering selling Westin-Kierland and Laguna Shores for a Troon.
     
  5. chibuilder

    chibuilder TUG Member

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    Have you tried posting an "Exchange" ad on the TUG marketplace? I've never tried to trade for Troon but I did recently make a trade via TUG for a spot in Mexico next year. As for direct exchanges via Four Seasons, you are supposed to be able to do this with Four Seasons so you might also contact owners services to see what they can help with, but keep in mind that Aviara is bigger than Troon. Other than these options, I know that other sources like SFX and Redweek exist for making exchanges, too, and I wouldn't rule out Craigslist.

    A couple of my friends who own at Troon (one of them actually introduced us to Four Seasons Aviara and is how we ended up at Aviara...purchased resale, of course) actually prefer Aviara to Troon so if their preference is any sort of indicator, my guess is that a posting on the TUG marketplace would yield results.

    I've never used II for a trade because TUG worked without the fees much quicker than II. I hope that helps.
     
  6. Steve

    Steve Moderator

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    I own at both Four Seasons Aviara and Four Seasons Scottsdale. They are quite different, but I love them both. Aviara is more formal and more elegant. Scottsdale is more laid back, has wonderful architecture, and has an exceptionally friendly staff. I'm happy to answer any questions if I can be of help.

    Steve
     
  7. GregGH

    GregGH TUG Member

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    The internet keeps giving us so many helpful things - hard to keep up ... any of you tried Panoramio ? Part of Google (now) A handy way to share photo's and tag to a map

    http://www.panoramio.com/map/#lt=33.107504&ln=-117.283859&z=3&k=2&a=1&tab=1

    I posted two balcony shots (may take a day for updating ??) from the Summits - a few other shots but not many - might you have one or two to share? Disclaimer --I am a not a good photographer but I love my iPhone.

    I keep asking the same question year after year -- how can this place have no flying insects ?? We live in a wonderful spot on Lake Erie -- but - boy - do we share our spot of heaven with a gazillion bugs in the spring & summer. Our birds are well feed. Must be vegan birds in Carlsbad?

    Greg

    ps - and just so others won't think this is just a one sided thread on how wonderful FSA is -- how about the next thing to update is the sound system in the living room ...what .. no iPod dock! The bedroom radio with ipod dock is really handy ... or a sound system that plays thru whole condo. ??
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2010
  8. GregGH

    GregGH TUG Member

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    Last edited: Apr 14, 2010
  9. Steve

    Steve Moderator

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    Hi Greg,

    The recent upgrades in Scottsdale are really nice. I'm sure that Four Seasons will do a great job at Aviara as well.

    On another note, it is funny that the results of the arbitration between Four Seasons and the hotel owner have never been made public. I have stopped worrying about it, but I'm still curious as to what has happened.

    Steve
     
  10. Kagehitokiri2

    Kagehitokiri2 Guest

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  11. scoccermom

    scoccermom Guest

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    FS will no longer manage the hotel. TS has how many more years under FS management? Could be 20 or 2. FS is not disclosing this. I'm guessing when the remaining TS are all sold out, FS will exit per the contract.

    Hyatt will take over under the Park Hyatt brand, which is two rungs below FS. The arbitration panel found that FS did not breach its obligation or fiduciary duty under its FSA.

    Basically, FS will be paid to leave.

    Anyway you want to spin it, this is not good for the TS.
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2010
  12. chibuilder

    chibuilder TUG Member

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    I just called the Four Seasons global reservation number and asked the agent how the residence club was affected by the news. She confirmed what we already knew which is that the Residence Club property remains with Four Seasons but I questioned further regarding usage of Hotel amenities like spa and restaurant and after checking with a supervisor, the woman I was speaking with told me that the arbitration ruling specifically calls for the the Residence Club owners and guests to receive continued usage privileges of the hotel amenities in perpetuity as a condition of the agreement (spa, restaurants, etc.....) Let's see how this information is relayed to us, as owners, by Four Seasons.
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2010
  13. zentraveler

    zentraveler Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    I hadn't seen this thread and also posted the link to the San Diego paper article about this in a separate post. Happy to hear about the perpetual use of the hotel, but the loss of the name and the brand (Park Hyatt's are nice but NOT the FS) is really a loss. And it certainly does not appear that this will be temporary. Anyone have thoughts about whether this will effect trading substantially?
     
  14. GregGH

    GregGH TUG Member

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    Hi

    just wondering if we could keep this thread for what we know --and use this thread ( called Hyatt selected to Manage ... >>> http://www.tugbbs.com/forums/showthread.php?t=120271

    for the speculation and guessing on the future -

    Meant in the most positive nature - thanks

    Greg
     
  15. GregGH

    GregGH TUG Member

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    Post this FYI for anyone interested .... summary of FAQ questions from Manager at FSA received yesterday ... the wife will be happy with the Spa/Fitness Gym being open

    Hay - anyone been there recently ??

    Greg H


    Frequently Asked Questions
    1) Will Four Seasons stay as manager of the Residence Club?
    Yes, Four Seasons will continue to manage the Residence Club. We highly value our relationships with our Residence Club owners and are committed to maintaining the unique Four Seasons experience that distinguishes home ownership at the Residence Club.
    2) How will the change in hotel management affect my annual assessments?
    We do not expect this transition to result in an increase in your annual assessments.
    3) Will Residence Club owners maintain signing privileges at the hotel?
    Yes, signing privileges for Residence Club owners will remain intact and continue as before.
    4) Will access to hotel facilities be available?
    Yes, access to the hotel’s facilities and amenities will continue uninterrupted. This means that Residence Club owners will enjoy the same access to the golf course, tennis courts, restaurants, spa, fitness facilities, pools, game room and children’s programs as before. In addition, we have been advised that the hotel has no plans to change the current golf packages and promotions at this time.
    5) Will current Residence Club employees remain Four Seasons employees?
    Yes, Residence Club employees will remain Four Seasons employees.
    6) Will the Park Hyatt retain any of the Four Seasons hotel employees?
    Our understanding is that Park Hyatt will retain the majority of hotel employees.
    7) Will the Four Seasons Accommodation Credits program remain in place?
    Yes, the Four Seasons Accommodation Credits program will remain intact according to our current agreement.
     
  16. chibuilder

    chibuilder TUG Member

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    For what its worth, I spoke with the Director of Residences (general manager) of the Four Seasons Residence Club at Aviara over the phone this past weekend. He assured me that things are progressing nicely and that communication and coordination between FSA and the Park Hyatt management has been positive and is moving in the direction we would all like to see. He reiterated that the access to services at the hotel will not change and that the hotel management realizes that we, as owners at FSA, and thus the most frequent users/guests of the Aviara resort, are a very importance constituency for the hotel. As such, management at FSA has been relatively pleased with the the response to our concerns and the results. Additionally, FSA management is hopefull that even more opportunities for special programs for FSA owners may result. In general, it was a positive call.

    Like most, I purchased at FSA because of the "Four Seasons Experience" and the general manager's communication and willingness to call me on a weekend to discuss is further testament to that experience. They recognize that most FSA owners were (or still are) nervous about the Park Hyatt taking over the hotel in 2 weeks and FSA management seem to have been working diligently to preserve the level of service and access to amenities and services that we, as FSA owners, have come to expect. I'm looking forward to our upcoming visit later this Summer.
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2010
  17. zentraveler

    zentraveler Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    Thanks jonelevey. I am pleased to hear that is the intention and imagine it is being offered sincerely. Some in the business world are able to recognize an asset when the see one and will be interested hearing from owners who experience or hear of how it is.
     
  18. chibuilder

    chibuilder TUG Member

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    You are welcome, zentraveler. Mgmt tells me that this could actually be positive for us as FSA owners as it allows them to open communications with other amenity providers in the area whereas when both the hotel and the residence club were under the same flag, they were tied together and that prevented partnership with say, another golf course to offer an addtl. discounted play. Now, they can explore those other options. Also, he was quick to point out that Park Hyatt mgmt recognize that we, as FSA owners, are very important clients for the Park Hyatt Aviara in that we are on site at the resort as repeat visitors much more often than most anyone else. As a result, we represnt a huge source of cash flow for the hotel. So, working with the FSA mgmt team to keep us happy is in Park Hyatt's interest, too. Only time will tell, but I do believe that the FSA residence club mgmt is working diligently and sincerely on our behalf to maintain that "Four Seasons Experience" for us and our guests. I'm looking forward to my time out in Carlsbad later this Summer.
     
  19. GregGH

    GregGH TUG Member

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    Hi

    In this thread ( http://www.tugbbs.com/forums/showthread.php?t=128127 ) the poster said "I have been unable to find a sticky or a good summary of the FS system. If someone knows of one here on TUG (or elsewhere), please point me in that direction."

    While the original intention for this thread was
    Possible topics for this thread ( as one can keep any thread on topic - after a while they all stray )
    - what is NEW , improved or different
    - things that make you stay better ( or worse )
    - secrets you have learned you wish to share. All contribute to a better experience while at FSA.
    I am sure some non-owner type questions can be answered.

    Just got the new newsletter ( http://www.fourseasons.com/interlude/2010_M08/ ) and quickly spotted the dreaded 'changes' that Hyatt will start for the Hotel Spa ( link here >>http://www.fourseasons.com/interlude/2010_M08/article_17400.html ). I can see Hyatt charging $20 - after all they aren't a Four Seasons and they have the hedge fund owners who are demanding the $$$ in this tough economy. Have yet to break the news to the wife - maybe we suck it up and pay or maybe we use the 'nice' but not opulent showers & steam rooms at the two villa's complex's

    Anyone been to Aviara recently? What can you add for other things to share

    Greg
    ps - does Hyatt still offer the Fri Sea Food buffet - is it up to FS standards?
     
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2010
  20. oceanview2

    oceanview2 Guest

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    No more HBO at Four Seasons Aviara Residence Club!

    Tonight we checked in to the FS Aviara Residence Club for the first time since the hotel's ownership change, and when we went to watch HBO we discovered it was gone! We called the front desk, and their excuse was something like "when the hotel switched to Park Hyatt they lost their cable access, and they had to get a new cable connection and they let HBO go". We hope this is not a forerunner of more cuts to come! We asked that they let the management know we thought this was very tacky.
     
  21. GregGH

    GregGH TUG Member

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    Hello Oceanview or anyone else ??

    I think the annual meeting is tomorrow ( Tue Nov 2nd -- ) -- any chance we can have a TUGger attend and report back ?

    The loss of HBO sounds funny for a FS -- mind you - the cable quality in general has been poor when you are used to new higher quality signal ... for us the over the air antenna is giving us tremendous results ( albeit no HBO - bit then I spend that much more time on the internet ..:-(

    Greg

    ps-annual meeting is Thur Nov 4th --hope someone has ability to report back ?

    ps - just got letter from GM --- here is part ,,,,
    With that said, I am excited to announce that Four Seasons Residence Club Aviara has just completed a comprehensive upgrade to our In-Villa technology. It became apparent to us that with the transition, the Residence Club would need its own cable infrastructure independent from the hotel. This would include new phone, television and internet service.

    On your next visit, you’ll find the Villas are now equipped with the following:
    Wireless Internet access
    DVR in the living room
    Complimentary local telephone calls
    Residential domestic long distance phone rates
     
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2010
  22. Sir Newf

    Sir Newf TUG Member

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    Hi all- we'll be at Aviara in 2 weeks- just received the technology upgrade email tonight: sounds good. we'll post after our visit..:)
     
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2010
  23. chibuilder

    chibuilder TUG Member

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    Thanks! I'm anxious to hear your update.

    We were there in August and, truthfully, didn't notice anything amiss with the tv situation but were told of the impending tech update and, in my opinion, the in-unit wireless internet is far more important than the HBO (though I do agree that in this day and age it would be odd for a Four Seasons to not offer HBO when every little motel/hotel in the world seems to find a way to do so). I have spoken to Florian Reidel several times and spoke briefly with him while on-premise last August and I do find him to be genuinely concerned with keeping the quality as high as we all (and Four Seasons Mgmt.) expect. I am cautiously optimistic that we will see future letters from him, like the one sent yesterday, that announce further upgrades to services and amenities now that FSA is not wholly-tied to the hotel for partnership/affiliations.
     
  24. Sir Newf

    Sir Newf TUG Member

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    At Aviara this week- any Questions?

    Hi all, quick update:
    The Whirlpools are hot, the pools are nicely heated, the weather is perfect- having a great time.
    Wireless in unit is working terrific, it's $5 a day/$15 week, per technology- so a laptop and iphone are 2 fees- but I'm using Edge on iphone, so only 1 fee.
    Don't see HBO on channel listings, TV channel 99 is the TV Guide.

    The Hyatt hotel seems empty, the staff not very excited. The women's spa is not worth the $20, they removed the lounge chairs and other small amenities like teas- I prefer the Meadows spa....The hotel spa is offering an owners facial and masssage special for $99 each. I had the facial, 40mins it was well worth it- pretty empty- only me and one other person getting treatment.

    The Residence Clubs are fairly full, but nicely quiet and private, staff very personable as always, and attention to detail prevails.. One of the Summit buildings is closed for reno, looks like inside and out.

    Let me know if you have any questions and I'll ask..:)
     
  25. Kagehitokiri2

    Kagehitokiri2 Guest

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