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End of SVN Dec 31, no more upgrade credit for external ts

goaliedave

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Couple of docs for info from my update. Hard sell into Marriott and flex!
72b8378b61cb2b89e325bf9bde5c6847.jpg
ab36faac2bd1666ee3a426851888b2da.jpg


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Ken555

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Can’t read the second image.


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DannyTS

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can you please repost the second document? The resolution is extremely low so nothing can be read. Thanks
 

DannyTS

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I am also not sure what you mean by the "end of SVN". From all I see in the first image, all they are saying is that the new system, Flex, is superior to the old one. Maybe, but still way overpriced compared to resale.
 

goaliedave

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sorry.. let's try again
9f3c581ae153644af78c1e4d52a23ab0.jpg


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Ken555

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I am also not sure what you mean by the "end of SVN". From all I see in the first image, all they are saying is that the new system, Flex, is superior to the old one. Maybe, but still way overpriced compared to resale.

Yeah, it’s a poor subject choice. Perhaps the OP drafts clickbait titles for his day job? ;)


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goaliedave

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sorry... it's fine at my end but doesn't upload legibly. If interested dm me and I'll send it to you.

the top part just says internal sales recognition is moving to Marriott system where month ends on 2nd last day.

bottom part says you can no longer obtain elite status with 'phantom points' credits from external ts.

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dioxide45

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If VSN ends next week, I will have to eat my words and go to the sales gallery when we are at SVV in January and tell the salesperson that we spoke with that they were right and I was wrong. Don't make me do that!!!
 

BLUE AYES

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Good morning all,

Coming to you live poolside at Westin Lagunamar. Did the owners update yesterday, in fact VSN will be coming to an end. Everything on the computer screen showed Marriott Vacation Club, the only issue now is that they’re trying to figure out how to best merge star options into the Marriott system. Obviously, they are trying to save money by cutting out redundancy in call centers websites etc. Marriott is taking an active interest in the Aventuras program because they do not own timeshares in Mexico. The Explorer closing documents that I reviewed specifically state that the two programs will be merging within the next year but at this point there is no promises made about the ability to book into Marriott. I was also told that there is no longer the ability to retro and once Marriott takes full control there will be no buybacks. I know there will be a lot of comments and people trying to bite my head off but I’m just relaying the messages.
 

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No mention of this at our update at Lagunamar in November. Just that the programs are going to be merged and by the end of 2020 things should be merged.
 

needvaca

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my biggest question is will I be able to use my Staroptions as usual?
I like the Vistana network of properties. I don't need the Marriott network, and I don't want to pay extra to access it.
 

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Everyone was pretty upfront and open about their lack of knowledge of how things will proceed. They didn’t believe there would be any fees to access Marriott because it will all be one program. Because I am in Cancun, the sales people here are focused on Aventuras. They are looking at this from the opposite point of view, that many Marriott owners will want to access Mexico, at this point there are only Marriott hotels in Cancun, no timeshares.
 

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Good morning all,

Coming to you live poolside at Westin Lagunamar. Did the owners update yesterday, in fact VSN will be coming to an end. Everything on the computer screen showed Marriott Vacation Club, the only issue now is that they’re trying to figure out how to best merge star options into the Marriott system. Obviously, they are trying to save money by cutting out redundancy in call centers websites etc. Marriott is taking an active interest in the Aventuras program because they do not own timeshares in Mexico. The Explorer closing documents that I reviewed specifically state that the two programs will be merging within the next year but at this point there is no promises made about the ability to book into Marriott. I was also told that there is no longer the ability to retro and once Marriott takes full control there will be no buybacks. I know there will be a lot of comments and people trying to bite my head off but I’m just relaying the messages.
Cancun has many advantages and Lagunamar would be an obvious choice for the MVC owners, especially those who live on the East coast. Great resort, good weather 8-9 months of the year, lots of flights, not expensive to dine out, lots of things to see. The Lagunamar reps have been bragging about MVC since day one and about how special the resort will be once the programs merge. I just do not see what "taking and active interest" means, probably nothing, just sales rep talk. I do not see how MVC can favor one Vistana resort over the others, even when it makes sense.
 

controller1

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So for a person like myself who is only interested in the current Vistana resorts and likes the way I'm able to make home resort reservations and SO reservations, should I be concerned with the statement that there will be no more VSN?

Also, if there will soon be no VSN, why did the VSN membership fees just increase?
 

jabberwocky

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So for a person like myself who is only interested in the current Vistana resorts and likes the way I'm able to make home resort reservations and SO reservations, should I be concerned with the statement that there will be no more VSN?

Also, if there will soon be no VSN, why did the VSN membership fees just increase?

I think they will have to continue with VSN as there would be too many headaches (legal and otherwise) with trying to eliminate the system immediately. They have to have figured out an overlay or some other way to bring existing Vistana owners into the system before they start getting rid of it completely. I don't think they have gotten to that stage yet. As of today I can still try to make a reservation using SO for late 2020 (although I only have 500 SO left!)

What I can see is that they start to market everything under the MVC brand. To me it seems like they have been backing off the Vistana name for several months and instead using "Westin Vacation Club" and "Sheraton Vacation Club" more prominently.

If they are doing everything under the MVC brand then I could see them start to sell DC points in addition to the Flex programs, perhaps taking back deeds to add to the DC point trust as an incentive to convert. Despite the deedback program that they've started I'm not sure there would be enough Vistana property inventory in the DC point trust right now to sell it. Remember, people looking to buy on site would likely want to return to that same location. If that location is not available in the product they are selling then that likely would hurt sales.
 

BLUE AYES

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Danny, please read my post carefully “Marriott is taking an active interest in the Aventuras program because they do not own timeshares in Mexico”.
 

LisaRex

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When I was an owner, one of the things I hated about these timeshare programs is how the developers took what was a fairly simple program and turned it into a train wreck. Although I didn't agree with all the SO valuations, at least I understood how it worked. Then, undoubtedly because they wanted to be able to trick high season owners into subsidizing low season owners, they decided to add a layer of complexity.* Once they started doing that, it ruined it IMO. Now we have SOs, Vistana Flex, WestinFlex, SheratonFlex, WSJflex...and perhaps Marriott TS points overlaid on top of it. All I can say is that I hope that they take the initiative to IMPROVE and SIMPLIFY the system instead of complicating it further.
 

cubigbird

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No mention of this at our update at Lagunamar in November. Just that the programs are going to be merged and by the end of 2020 things should be merged.

I have also recently done an update at Lagunamar I received the same info, in that some kind of integration was expected in 2020. I was told they are no longer accepting weeks as trade in / buyback toward money down for a new purchase, rather they will only retro into VSN what is held existing resale acquired weeks. VSN isn’t going away right now at this point in time.
 

dioxide45

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@goaliedave I sent you a PM requesting you email me the second document that is illegible.
 

goaliedave

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sorry... I sent it to controller1 and asked him to verify it was legible but no luck. I wrote the text above

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dioxide45

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Vistana started a new retro program in October. Perhaps those are the "phantom" points they are referring to? Not sure why they would kill a four month old program. Marriott also has a retro type program that they usually offer as a promotion every spring/summer. Perhaps this program started in October was just a promotion and they will only offer retro in the future similar to how they offer it for owners of Marriott weeks.

It doesn't seem that any of the paperwork shown in page one indicates anything about the "End of VSN". Perhaps that is what the sales rep said? Our sales rep said the same thing in October and I called them out on it. Basically calling them a liar. I knew they were offended, but I didn't care. I told them they souldn't be telling prospects speculation as if it is fact. They know nothing more than we know at this point about how the program will change.

About the changes to the programs. We know that the VAC CEO has said that in 2020 they plan to come out with a combined currency to allow for cross booking between Marriott, Westin and Sheraton. We know nothing of what it will look like, just that there will be some way for cross booking. Following that, they are looking at how to sell that combined currency. Again, no details on what that would look like either.

I have searched the Orange County recorder's website looking for any recorded trust documents that may tell us if they are setting up a new trust to hold Vistana and Marriott deeds, but I haven't found anything yet. So any weeks they are still taking in through ROFR, foreclosure, buyback or trade in are still being dumped in to the existing DC or Flex trusts. Though I have noticed that Marriott hasn't added any new weeks to the DC trust since April when they have historically added weeks to the trust twice a year, usually in spring and fall. Inventory has been added to the Westin Flex trust as late as early November 2019 but the Sheraton Flex trust hasn't had inventory dumped in it since January 2019.

Not sure if those dates really mean anything, but it could point out that perhaps they are looking at a two tiered program, with perhaps new Marriott and Sheraton weeks are going to get added to a new combined trust and Westin will still be separate. Who knows and those past conveyance dates could just be coincidental.
 

jabberwocky

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Vistana started a new retro program in October. Perhaps those are the "phantom" points they are referring to? Not sure why they would kill a four month old program. Marriott also has a retro type program that they usually offer as a promotion every spring/summer. Perhaps this program started in October was just a promotion and they will only offer retro in the future similar to how they offer it for owners of Marriott weeks.

I believe the phantom points refers to the practice of giving up to 30k in phantom SO with a developer purchase in order to enable the owner to get to the next elite tier. You could not use them for booking but they would get you to that next level.

This probably isn’t a big deal anymore since you can build a flex package of any size to get to the next level. In the pre-flex days you would have to buy a whole week and might just be a little short. For example, a purchase of a 148k Maui week might be given 11k phantom options to get then to 3* elite rather than making them buy a studio or 1BR that they don’t want. It’s much easier to get someone to drop an extra $4k to make up the difference than another $20-40k.
 

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Went to an owner update today at SVV. Ended up in the Sheraton Flex.

I know how the TUG regulars feel about the value of it and I've actually avoided doing this the last several updates. Even even did this and rescinded two years ago at Steamboat. (Thanks to the TUG team for that one).

But... now there are some factors that seem to make this a better fit for us even if I am not thrilled by doing it.

From the Sales Team, the major push items were two things:
1. As the OP noted, they won't take upgrades from the legacy Vistana stuff after 12/31/19
(Everyone I talked to today had come over from Marriott and were kind of salty on the whole upgrading thing)
2. The absolute Major selling point was that we'd be getting access to the resorts in the Marriott Vacation Club portfolio but only in flex. Not through deeded weeks.
More on these two later...

Long story short--Owned a 2BR annual at WPORV and even year 1BR at Sheraton Mountain Vista.

These were done back in the day before we knew what we were doing, so we've gotten a lot of good travel out of them. But they were/are expensive.
Got the SMV to get to 3* as we were converting to points more back before the Marriott takeover.

Have really hung onto the Princeville because we love it there. But living in Florida, so it's pretty far; we still have a bunch of pay off, the maintenance is murder ($3300 for 2020), we only get to Hawaii every 3-4 years now. Our son just started kindergarten so our travel pattern is about to get much tigheter. Also, I only book most stuff 8 months out anyway. With the SMV, our annual maintenance is almost $4K.

So with the Flex we took 220K options and will end up overpaying a bit for what nets us around 40K more a year in options. But it works for us because we really needed to work with our existing equity and the value for us is in our usage. Not really in the position to be shopping on the resale market right now. Side note: They did take back the SMV, even after saying they wouldn't.

Saving some $$ by not starting until 2021, so skip 4 months of payments into 2020 and the $4K maintenance for 2020. Rebating maintenance for SMV for 2019 on the 2021, bill, which will push that down below $3K for year one. And then kicked us comp 250K in Bonvoy points for 2020 travel in the meantime.

Interestingly enough--we did get the Westin Flex presentation in Nov. in Steamboat. The pitch was for Princeville only and even so, there was basically no discount (10% off $75K for 185K options). I probably would have preferred WFlex, but they have not much incentive to discount at this point.

OK, back to Marriott Vacation Club

Basically, the story was this:

1. Back to the OP's point, the Vistana properties won't be used any longer to upgrade ownerships with no money down. So you would have to put new money going forward in some ways because, well, Marriott wants to get paid. Will be very curious to see if they stick to this.

2. Key item would be that you'd specifically have to buy new options to access the Marriott Vacation Club properties, which you will apparently get with the Flex. Starting in 2020 the pitch is that you'll be able to use these flex options to book into the existing MVC resorts. Of course, no one could explain exactly how this would work. MVCs valuations are significantly different...

3. They had some interesting sheets (I missed photographing one of them, so will see if I can snag it tomorrow.) that essentially showed that these resorts would be standardized for 2BR, 1 week in the top season at 110,000 points. They make reference to Interval Points. This was on the OPs document as well (posted my copy, which might be more legible). And the secondary sheet that looked like the Vistana option charts almost, but with these Interval points. When pressed, basically they said that until the program is combined officially, the MVC access will be through Interval at those rates. So bottom line--the 220K options was done because it's 2-2BR weeks a year cross the MVC resorts as well.

They had kind of an interesting graphic that showed they'd also acquired Hyatt, so this would include the Hyatt Vacation resorts as well--all rolled into the new MVC.

Still not exactly clear on how all of this is going to work, but the discussion was that next month the ILG transition completes, allowing for the relaunch of the newly re-branded MVC. Interval will be launching an MVC specific portal to do this. I'll believe it when I see it, but take that for what it's worth, I guess.

VistanaMVC.jpg
 
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