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Is WLR concierge a salesman?

abdibile

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I have eMailed some questions to the "Concierge" that eMailed me regarding my upcoming stay at Westin Lagunamar.

The answers sound like "if a salesman's lips are moving...":

***

Organized excursions are much better than renting a car because parking around the resort is limited and I would save money by booking organized tours compared to a rental car.

He wants to explain hte details after I arrive at the resort.

He advised not to pre book anything since I can always get better prices and better options when at WLR.

***

OK, I was aware that a concierge wants to talk me into taking the timeshare tour, but at least I would have expected honest answers to my questions.

Isn't that true?

By the way: What would they be offering to take the timeshare tour at WLR? I sometimes do tours if the gifts are worth it.
 

islandguy

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I've found that at most Starwood timeshare resorts that the concierges are employed by (or part of) the sales department. They are told by their supervisors to encourage tours. As far as salesman I would draw a distinction since they don't sell and are not closers -- they are lead makers... so to speak.
 

C30NY

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Parking is limited, and the only lot we saw was next door at the new buildings...and it seemed to be full of employees and construction vehicles.

We got $100 for attending the Presentation. I cant remember our sales woman's name but she was nice and not high pressure.
 

vacationhopeful

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If a conceignor BOOKS tours for you, the vendors give these persons kickbacks checks. Yes, money. Unreported money.

Sounds like this is an enterprising person whose lips were moving. And if they get you to book a sales tour, more bennies for that person.

Book what you like with whomever, IMO.
 

VacationForever

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My take is different. You may save a bit of money booking online elsewhere but it is alot more convenient just doing so while at WLR. We booked 2 tours from WLR when we were there in May. The bus used on one of the 2 tours had dining tables for some seats (sort of like in the train) and WLR guests and guests from one other hotel were given these "special" seats. I figure that is because we paid more and it felt like traveling first class in a bus! There were some passengers arguing with the tour guide/conductor because they wanted the "special" seats too.
 

bobpark56

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We Found the Concierge Helpful

We found the WLR concierge helpful this past January. Good directions, good maps, good discounts on tours (better that we could get via the internet), good help in getting us taxi service to/from the new grocery store, good help in getting the wifi and electrical outlet in our unit working to spec. We will use the concierge folks again. And she's right to warn you...there is no parking (to speak of) at WLR...or in the vicinity.

So what if she works for the sales group? (and I don't know that to be true.) Good help is useful. Appreciate it!
 

Sea Six

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We let our concierge set up everything for us, and we were glad we did. First was the round trip airport/resort. The sales people HOUNDING you at the airport are ANNOYING, and we were lucky to walk right thru all that to a waiting van. We signed up for the timeshare tour, and got a good price break for our bus trip to Chichen Itza. I don't really remember what the numbers were. They also offer tours of Xcaret and other parks, too. She also set us up with dinner reservations, including the Thai place across the street. We were seated in our own private little hut over the water. I had a feeling if we weren't booked by Westin we would have been seated at an indoor table like everyone else. She also set us up with tickets to the dolphin show at the aquarium across the street. I think that show was only $8. There's more, but that's my story.
 

djdavid79

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I liked the concierge that I dealt with at WLR, and I was not expecting to at all. Yes, they are definitely lead generators, but they were also VERY helpful with booking anything that we needed.

My opinions of the concierges in Hawaii are the complete opposite. They were completely and totally worthless, rude even.
 

Ken555

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+1 for the concierge at WLR. When I was there shortly after they opened the resort, the concierge was one of the few bright points of the trip. And we didn't attend a sales presentation. I'm sure they received compensation from the restaurants and trips we booked thru them, but I didn't care since that's so common in Mexico.

Unlike the earlier post, I also found some, but not all, of the concierge staff in Hawaii also very helpful. Some of them aren't well trained, though.
 

Sea Six

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I'll tell you one more thing - when we crossed the state line out of Quintana-Roo (in the tour bus) heading towards Chichen Itza and saw the military vehicles and machine guns, we were glad we listened to them when they said "DON'T rent a car and drive around!". Later that week we walked down the street from the resort to a big mall for the tequila tasting and saw the same thing. I don't think renting a car is a good idea. The concierge set up the tequila tour for us as well.
 

Ken555

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I'll tell you one more thing - when we crossed the state line out of Quintana-Roo (in the tour bus) heading towards Chichen Itza and saw the military vehicles and machine guns, we were glad we listened to them when they said "DON'T rent a car and drive around!". Later that week we walked down the street from the resort to a big mall for the tequila tasting and saw the same thing. I don't think renting a car is a good idea. The concierge set up the tequila tour for us as well.

Consider trips abroad very carefully. I've lived in some areas of the world we would classify as dangerous, and for a vacation there's no way I'd choose one regardless of how fantastic the natural beauty of the region might be.
 

Robert D

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I've found that at most Starwood timeshare resorts that the concierges are employed by (or part of) the sales department. They are told by their supervisors to encourage tours. As far as salesman I would draw a distinction since they don't sell and are not closers -- they are lead makers... so to speak.

I think their internal job title is "body snatcher". :)
 

Margariet

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I have eMailed some questions to the "Concierge" that eMailed me regarding my upcoming stay at Westin Lagunamar.

The answers sound like "if a salesman's lips are moving...":

***

Organized excursions are much better than renting a car because parking around the resort is limited and I would save money by booking organized tours compared to a rental car.

He wants to explain hte details after I arrive at the resort.

He advised not to pre book anything since I can always get better prices and better options when at WLR.

***

OK, I was aware that a concierge wants to talk me into taking the timeshare tour, but at least I would have expected honest answers to my questions.

Isn't that true?

By the way: What would they be offering to take the timeshare tour at WLR? I sometimes do tours if the gifts are worth it.

In many timeshare resorts the concierge who gives the parking tickets is the first one who tries to get the guests to attend a timeshare presentation. Yes, he/she does get a commission if an invitation is accepted. All the major companies use these methods.
 

SuzyQ

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We stayed at Westin Riverfront in September. The three concierge there were extremely helpful and friendly. Gave us great advice. AND, we did the owner's update - the lowest pressure and actually enjoyable owner's update we've ever attended. We told them up front we wouldn't be interested in upgrading, so they spent their time helping us with ideas for my daughter's honeymoon next year in Hawaii! Got the usual sales pitch, but it was only because they had to! Beautiful resort by the way!
 

DavidnRobin

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All concierges (incl hotels) work on some type of kick back system, but they supply a service - esp for those without the capabilitity for Internet searching
 

clsmit

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The WLR concierge system is well-organized. Yes, they are there to help you "plan your week", which includes your owner's update schedule. You can always say that you don't want to do one on this trip. We have used them to get an updated map and bus info and combine their restaurant recommendations with TUG and TripAdvisor to decide where to eat. We have not booked any trips through them since I really like the service I have gotten through entertainment-plus.net. I also didn't like the grocery store they have preferred taxi service to (Superama) -- it didn't have the variety that Walmart or Soriana have. But they have great ideas and suggestions overall. Feel free to use them as much as you want.
 

lbuszkie

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We are headed to the Westin LM in January for the first time. Did you all just talk with the concierge once you got there about tickets, the grocery store, etc? I am bringing 4 children so we will definitely need a grocery run. I would also be interested in the aquarium across the street, and, there are 6 of us that need transportation to/from the airport. Should I email them ahead of time? Thanks!
 

clsmit

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Depending on the ages of the kids and how many adults you have, how you do groceries varies. If they are little, leave them with an adult and have the other adult take the recommended taxi to the recommended place to shop. If you have older kids and any of you speak Spanish, taking the bus to the Soriana, shopping, and taking 2 taxis or a taxi van home would be an adventure worthy of your vacation. We have done both, but since we speak enough Spanish to go shopping we prefer the Soriana version.

Again, excursions depends on the ages of the kids. You can look at sites like entertainment-plus.net for ideas as well as work with the concierge when you get there.
 

malyons

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as long as you have the willpower to say no, they can be helpful. last time ours was Luigi I think, and he was very nice, and didn't push too hard when we said we didn't want to do the tour. He still gave us our discount card and gift and we made sure we used him where we could. That trip it was just for one dinner reservation, but for going through him instead of walking in at La Destilleria (which was EXCELLENT by the way), my wife and I each got our first margarita on the house, which was a nice little benefit. I'll always be sure and check with them from now on when making a dinner reservation, and wouldn't hesitate to at least compare their tour prices to whatever I find on my own and use them if the deal is just as good
 

K&PFitz

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We are headed to the Westin LM in January for the first time. Did you all just talk with the concierge once you got there about tickets, the grocery store, etc? ... Should I email them ahead of time? Thanks!

Our concierge emailed us a week or two before arrival. We also talked by phone before our trip. We disappointed her by never attending an owner update, but we had just done one five months earlier. She was still very helpful with restaurant recommendations and discount coupons. She wrote her name on all the discount coupons, so she obviously was getting a commission or referral fee, but that's how the business works, and everyone benefitted.
 
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