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I have only exchanged twice and have had great exchanges both times.
1st A one bedroom at the Aviawest Rosedale on Robson in Vancouver. Great views, location etc. The unit was small since it's an urban unit, but clean, well equipped and cared for.
2nd A HUGE two bedroom at the Shell/Legacy Golf Resort in Phoenix. The unit and the grounds were well maintained and very nice. As mentioned the unit was very very big, I don't know how many sq feet, but more than adequate for 6 of us. It seemed to me to be larger than any HGVC unit I have been in, in Las Vegas and the HHV.
Our first (and only) HGVC exchange into a non-HGVC resort was into what was then the Embassy Vacation Resort on Maui (I understand they have renamed it since then.) Although our suite was mountain view, didn't have full cooking facilities like we have in HGVC suites, and perhaps not as nice what you would expect in an HGVC managed property, we got the exchange through RCI and it was a great place to stay for a visit to Maui.
Well we have done a couple of exchanges through RCI.
Landmark PCB. Which was nice and in a great location.
Mountainside in Silvercreek for a 2 bedroom that sleeps 11. Which was for this week. My Sister-in-law and her family made it up there before I-70 was closed. We were going to leave the next morning, but they closed I-70 because of a snow storm. They said it was nice and roomy.
Holiday beach resort phase 2 in Destin is nicest non HGVC property we have stayed at. Phase 2 is the newest building and I think they are all 3 bedrooms. The third bedroom is very small with bunk beds. The rest of it is very roomy. The master bath has a large jetted tub.
That's okay. There is a little more to the story. My wife and 1 year old daughter were going to stay at home while I took the 3 year old and 13 year old snow skiing with my wife's sister's family. Like I said they left Thursday night because of the bad weather moving into Denver. I didn't want to risk it because my wife was already nervous about the family being divided by 700 miles. Much less trying to drive through a blizzard in Kansas/ Colorado.
The Landmark is in Panama City Beach FL. It is a nice resort that is right on the beach. The website is www.landmarkpcb.com. It is a nice place to stay in the florida Panhandle. In fact I just bought a float week there and reserved Thanksgiving week for this year. I don't think we will go in November so I will be trading or renting it this first year.
Let me know if you have any other questions about the resort.
We have done several through RCI and I have been pleased.
Worldmark at Angels Camp, CA
Crags Lodge in Estes Park
A unique place in Red Lodge, MT
I felt that I got good treatment through RCI. None of these resorts were as nice as the HGVC resorts, but they were nice enough, fully equipped, and in such different locations. Some were very small which was interesting too.
We have also stayed at several affiliated resorts, the Bay Club in Waikoloa and our son stayed at the Charter Club Marco Beach.
This can be a good option if you run out of time to use your points or want a non HGVC location
This is not really what you are looking for, but about a month ago I wanted another week in Scotland besides the week at Coylumbridge that we had already traded into. So I had given up on getting one of the other Hilton properties, and decided to try for something through RCI. I couldn't believe it when the HGVC/RCI rep told me that I could get a week at the Craigendorroch, AND I could get it for fewer points! I hope that this will be my favorite RCI trade.
Thanks-I actually started tnis thread because I am mulling over whether or not to buy HGVC but don't have Orlando or Las Vegas at the top of my vacation planning list (enjoy them both-but there are so many other places to see). Hawaiii is great (we stayed at the Hilton Waikaloa hotel on a Hilton points award stay and loved it), but it is an 11 hour plane ride for us. TerriJ, it is good to hear that you were able to trade into some affiliates-we saw the Bay Club while in Hawaii and stopped at the Charter Club to take a tour with one of their on-site staff members while on Marco Island last spring. I'd like a mix where I could trade into an HGVC resort, an affiliate, or an RCI Gold Crown.
We own an affiliate at Sanibel Island Florida and have had wonderful exchanges into places like some of the castles in France and gold crowns in Italy. The sanibel units have been wonderful for us and allowed us many wonderful rci exchanges as well as hgvc exchanges.
Here is our list of exchanges of HGVC points through RCI & SFX:
Club Regina at Westin, Puerto Vallarta
Fairfield Grand Desert, Vegas
Back into HGVC South Beach & HGVC Sea World (for less HGVC points)
Sheraton Mountain Vista, Beaver Creek
Swallowtail Sea Pines, HHI (a mistake, thought it was still a Marriott)
Morritt's Grand, Cayman Islands
HGVC Strip, Vegas (SFX Bonus week)
Back into HGVC South Beach (for less HGVC points)
2007 - booked exchanges
(Our recent purchase of 6 1/2 weeks through High Country Club membership may cause us to change some of these.)
Streamside @ Vail
HGVC Eagles Nest, Marco Island
Marriott Monarch, HHI
FF Waikiki Beach Walk, HI (SFX Bonus week)
Kona Hawaiian Village
HGVC Flamingo (SFX Bonus week)
Back into HGVC South Beach (for less HGVC points)
We will be in Scotland late July and early August of 2007. The RCI trade got us into Craigendorroch during the Highland Gathering in the nearby town! Since I am new to HGVC and timesharing, I don't know if this was stroke of luck (the way I'm taking it) or typical of HGVC trading - someone with more experience will have to help you with that one.
We have been to a lot of beach places. We just purchased another HGVC at Sea World and will probably purchase another. As long as I plan ahead there is no problem with trades into RCI. In the past 10 years I have always gotten what I requested. We liked the Royal Palm in Aruba and not sure where to go now that is closed. Barbados- Sand Acres & Bouganvillea are nice location & part of the same place. St Lucia- Windjammer Landing was probably are favorite place in the Caribbean. St Maarten- Sunterra Resorts Flamingo is nice- was being updated. In Mexico- Westin Regina is very pretty. Los Cabos- Fiestas are great. Cancun- Westin again is very lovely.
We don't have any little kids but like going to Orlando for Spring Training and hike around to different ball parks. Trades have been good also in Hawaii- probably my all time favorite even though the flight is long from Ohio. Sooby
This is kind of a weird answer but early summer we got two back-to-back weeks at the Manhattan Club, New York. This timeshare itself has real problems. (Elevators not working, problem with door key everyday, maids leaving door open several times, uninformed/inattentive staff, etc.) On top of that they charged us $25.00 a day. So why is this on my list of great exchanges? The location is unbeatable and we had an absolutely incredible time. It’s about 1 ½ blocks from Central Park, 4 blocks from Time Square, ½ a block from Carnegie Hall and Broadway, block from 2 blocks from 5th Ave. and so on. Recently we stayed in NYC for the marathon and paid $350 a night for a tiny-tiny hotel room that was just okay. WE got the exchange through RCI and it didn’t take long.. I talked to a lot of owners who complained that they could never get the dates they wanted. Apparently, MC gives exchangers first choice, hummm…
We recently stayed at the Kauai Beach Boy, a lovely quiet resort in Kaapa, Kauai. I liked the rooms and the location-in the middle of Kauai. Princeville and Poipu have more gorgeous beaches, but as we enjoy seeing all of the island I really appreciated the location. Additionally, since it is actually a small town it didn’t completely shut down at 9pm like most of the Kauai resort areas.
We also stayed at the Santa Barbara Yacht Club in Pompono Beach, FL. This was a “excess inventory” week. We paid $207 for the entire week. It was a studio, but it was way larger than a lot of one bedroom. The outside of the building looked really plain, but the room itself was gorgeous.
Finally our very first timeshare experience was at Kahana Falls in Maui. We thought this was a great exchange. Of course looking back I realize it was the smallest 1bdrm we have seen. Still, we had a blast.
We have gotten all of our exchanges and the excess inventory week through RCI via HGVC.
The Bay Club was available through the HGVC website, so no RCI fees. From what I remember they had plenty of availability if you can plan somewhat in advance. It was a great place to stay, I hope to be able to go back.
There are sanibel and marco island hgvc for sale out there just do a google search for timeshare resales and then ask for and advanced search for just sanibel island and/or marco island timeshares and they will come up. I have seen them on www.redweek, on the casa ybel owners site, on many other sites as well. You just have to search and be sure to research before you purchase. We own gold fixed weeks in sanibel because those are weeks 14 or 15 which usually fall during our children's spring breaks every third year or so. Good Luck! Doug
If there is a certain resort on Sanibel or Captiva that you want, call the resort itself. I think they all have resale departments. South Seas sold 1 week for me last year and I still have another week listed with them. They don't have very many.