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Owner Update--Westin Desert Willow--3* Elite?

Discussion in 'Vistana Signature Experiences (formerly Starwood)' started by mig1, May 26, 2019.

  1. mig1

    mig1 Guest

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    Just left an owner update.....have a few questions.

    We never go to these with any serious interest in buying or upgrading and approached today's update with the same mindset. We went for the 20,000 Marriott points.

    From the outset we were very honest and told the rep that we were only there for the points. She said she had to spend at least 90 minutes with us so we went into the Flex program again as I told her we had no interest in converting or selling our WKORV property.

    She then shifted her presentation to trying to get us to buy 40,000 EOY Flex Points to get us to 3 star elite. Mostly for the benefits that being a 3 star elite member would provide. I'm not sure that I place much value on being able to convert or bank later in the year but the ability to be able to make a reservation in Hawaii checking in on any day of the week and staying less than a full week might have some allure. Even then I'm not sure how much value I place on that.

    The real "value" proposition was in the ability to buy over 1MM Marriott points for what I believe was around $2,000. She talked so fast that I couldn't get the actual price and didn't want to stop her because again......not sure how interested in buying points I am. She said that if I were to "upgrade" by purchasing $10,000 to get me to 3* Elite I would be able to buy up to 6 Marriott Points packages and depending on when I wanted to be able to use these points (2020 or 2021) it would affect the incentive...the more I delay the first use year, the larger the incentive of Marriott Points up to 216,000 total.

    So the takeaway is, for an extra 10K plus a yearly increase in MF's of about 400 to start, I'd become 3*, have 216,000 Marriott points added to my account, and have 40,000 Flex points added into my account.

    If I were to delay this decision by purchasing the "Encore" Package (formerly the Explorer) which is $895, I'd get another 100,000 Marriott points, be able to return for another 4 nights and 5 Days and if I were to purchase at that point, the money I paid for the "Encore" Package would go toward the price of the additional Flex options to get me to 3*.

    My question for everyone here is does ANY of this seem to make sense? I'm not crazy about FLEX at all, I have no problem making reservations at any of the properties we seem to visit in less than 8 months (in spite of the scare tactics the sales people keep throwing at us), and I'm not sure just how much value 3* elite is other than assuming it will have some type of value once the Marriott and Vistana properties are all under one umbrella.

    Should I do this? Or......should I buy the Encore Package as a hedge to lock in today's incentives and prices?

    Typically I would have no interest in this.....but it seems like a small amount for what might be a lot of value for just the Marriott points alone.

    Love to get some opinions.
     
  2. DeniseM

    DeniseM Moderator

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    Don't do it. If you want more Staroptions, buy a mandatory resort on the resale market for a fraction of the price.
     
  3. mig1

    mig1 Guest

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    Is that to say there is almost no value to 3* Elite and / or the ability to buy the Marriott points at a below the market rate? If I were to buy a resale in Hawaii or Arizona I'm told the purchase would not qualify for 3* Elite as resale purchases do not count toward your point status with regard to Elite status.

    I'm not inclined to do it anyway......just trying to get a sense of what the value of this is. The entire "Flex" concept is something that doesn't have a lot of appeal to me anyway.
     
  4. carpie99

    carpie99 TUG Member

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    Can’t anybody book an arrival date into Hawaii in the middle of the week?
     
  5. YYJMSP

    YYJMSP TUG Member

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    No and yes.

    As owners, no, as at 12mos you can only book for exactly 7 days arriving on a Fri/Sat/Sun. With SOs, yes, at 8mos or less, you can book for any number of days arriving on any day of the week.

    I think what they're trying to sell is the ability to do that, subject to availability, at 12mos or less if you owned in Westin Flex.
     
  6. YYJMSP

    YYJMSP TUG Member

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    It's $2000 per block of points. Not sure of the exact number (i'm thinking around 200K) per block, but it's definitely not $2000 for a single block of 1million points.
    Unless you plan to use the MB points in the next year, I wouldn't buy them and stockpile them, as you will only get the fixed number of points, but the redemption options will likely increase in the number of points required over time.

    They always want new money for any transaction, so you need to figure out if $10K+ up-front and the likely increase in annual MFs is worth the benefits of Eliteness and most importantly can you actually use up all of those weeks/points each year?
     
  7. cubigbird

    cubigbird Tug Review Crew Veteran TUG Member

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    Do we any actual proof that an encore package actually locks in future price or do they just say this??
     
  8. mig1

    mig1 Guest

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    I was told by the "Encore Executive" that once you sign up for the package all of the details etc are listed on the paperwork accompanying the purchase.
     
  9. vacationtime1

    vacationtime1 Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    Yes, if one owns Westin Flex one can reserve mid-week at the twelve month mark and yes, if one owns StarOptions one can reserve mid-week at the eight month mark.

    But OP would have only 40000 Westin Flex options eoy. Not enough points to reserve mid-week in Hawaii at twelve months, and only available eoy anyway.
     
    duke likes this.
  10. duke

    duke TUG Member

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    Not the same pool of available units and locations.
     

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