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seeking opinion of various locations/resorts

blueskys

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Hi, as you can see it's finally sinking in to me that in order to book our 1st choice destination, one must plan ahead.

So, I'm wondering if anyone has stayed in Whistler, British Columbia, either at the Club Intrawest Whistler Resort or the Hilton Whistler Resort and Spa...any comments about either one as they are both getting mixed and scant reviews on the internet. Though I'm leaning towards the Intrawest as I think it's a better use of points.

We're also looking at resorts in either Flagstaff or Sedona Arizona. I don't know much about either town or the resorts there. And we've never been to Arizona. Is the Grand Canyon close to either town? I was initially choosing Sedona as I have heard that's a nice town, but the airport is in Flagstaff, but I don't know anything about that place.

I haven't seen too many other threads regarding reviews of resorts, so I hope it's ok that I keep asking. There is such a wealth of information on this site.

thanks everyone!
 

Passepartout

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One of the things that makes membership in TUG so valuable is access to the reviews of thousands of resorts. Once one begins to do exchanges, it is easy to justify the $15 spent. If you don't exchange, and just use your own resort week, no need to know about other choices. By 'paying it forward' and writing reviews on resorts you visit, you can make your membership free- or darn near.

Incidentally, most people fly into Phoenix due to cost. Grand Canyon is closer to Flagstaff. We like, and own, at Sedona. Grand Canyon should be an overnight trip as it's soooo beautiful at dawn and sunset.

Happy travels.

Jim
 

blueskys

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Thanks Passepartout, do you have to be a member to have access to the reviews? 'paying it forward' and making membership almost free...sorry, how does that work? What are the other advantages to being a member?

ok, I can see that Sedona is about a 2 hour drive from Phoenix. Is it a pretty drive? major highway I'm guessing. It does save us a ton of $$$.

How far would Sedona be from the Grand Canyon?

thanks for your help!
 

Passepartout

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The 2 big things about TUG membership are access to the reviews and the 'Sightings and Distressed' forum where members can see quick-to disappear weeks on some exchanges (members are encouraged to post what 'treasures' they spot, or some great exchanges that for one reason or another a member can't use and would 'direct exchange' to another member.

One extends their membership by publishing reviews of resorts they go to. 3 months (I think) for each review you write and turn in.

Iirc, GC is 2 or 3 hours from Sedona. Pretty drive up US 89, but too far for a day trip to be worthwhile. Believe me, you can't just look over the edge at El Tovar and say "OK. Big hole. I'm ready to head back now".

Jim
 

blueskys

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have you found the reviews helpful?

Thanks for the tip re: drive to GC from Sedona. I thought it was closer. Where do people stay to be closer to the GC?

thanks again,
 

itradehilton

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We have stayed at the Club Intrawest in Whistler and enjoyed it very much. It had a more rustic feel than newer HGVC resorts, IMOH, but we loved the free shuttles and the amenities. We would stay there again.
 

blueskys

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We have stayed at the Club Intrawest in Whistler and enjoyed it very much. It had a more rustic feel than newer HGVC resorts, IMOH, but we loved the free shuttles and the amenities. We would stay there again.
thanks so much, that's nice to know. Did you drive up from Vancouver, or take the bus?
 

Blues

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have you found the reviews helpful?

Helpful? I'd say more like imperative; required.

If you're just traveling back to an area or resort that you've been to before, then you don't need the reviews. But if going somewhere you've never been (and isn't that the point of traveling?), then the TUG reviews are a necessity.

-Bob
 

DeniseM

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TUG members have access to these Member's Only features:

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More info. - http://www.tug2.net/tug-pr.html
 

Sandy VDH

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Best money ever spent. Get a membership and access the reviews. Reviews are usually much more comprehensive then say trip advisor.
 

blueskys

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Best money ever spent. Get a membership and access the reviews. Reviews are usually much more comprehensive then say trip advisor.
Thanks Sandy, that's what I was hoping for. I've read reviews on tripadvisor in the past, and I have to say I don't always find them helpful.
 

itradehilton

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We rented a car and drove up after spending a few days in Vancouver. We really didn't need the rental car but we like to have the option to use it if we want. We did not use a car rental while in Vancouver, the public transportation was great. The people and city is so friendly Vancouver/Whistler our trip was ranked one of our best vacations ever.
 

icul8rg8r

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We live in the Seattle area, so Whistler is only about a 5 to 6 hour drive for us (depending on the border traffic). We **LOVE** Whistler and go at least once a year - sometimes twice at different seasons. The drive between Vancouver and Whistler is breath-takingly beautiful; if you have a car you can stop for pictures and enjoy the views and fresh air.

By far, our FAVORITE place to stay is Club Intrawest (and this was long before we ever knew about HGVC and it's association with Club Intrawest properties).

The Club Intrawest has that North West Lodge feel, so appropriate for a ski village. So much to see & do no matter what the season! The main village is a short walk away and is very quaint - lots of shops & restaurants. There is also a free bus system that will take you to all over - especially nice if you're wearing ski boots and/or carrying gear.

Highly recommend Whister as well as the Club Intrawest!
 

blueskys

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We live in the Seattle area, so Whistler is only about a 5 to 6 hour drive for us (depending on the border traffic). We **LOVE** Whistler and go at least once a year - sometimes twice at different seasons. The drive between Vancouver and Whistler is breath-takingly beautiful; if you have a car you can stop for pictures and enjoy the views and fresh air.

By far, our FAVORITE place to stay is Club Intrawest (and this was long before we ever knew about HGVC and it's association with Club Intrawest properties).

The Club Intrawest has that North West Lodge feel, so appropriate for a ski village. So much to see & do no matter what the season! The main village is a short walk away and is very quaint - lots of shops & restaurants. There is also a free bus system that will take you to all over - especially nice if you're wearing ski boots and/or carrying gear.

Highly recommend Whister as well as the Club Intrawest!
thanks for the comments re: Whistler and Club Intrawest. Did you find the highway from Vancouver to Whistler ok to drive on in the winter? We may just take the bus up, just to take a break from driving. Though I do like the thought of stopping for photos.
 

itradehilton

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We drove from Vancouver to Whistler and the drive was so easy, they made improvements to the road when they held the winter Olympics.
 
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