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Westin St. John [Master Thread]

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DavidnRobin

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This thread was too long, and some people couldn't access it, so a new thread has been started here: http://www.tugbbs.com/forums/showthread.php?t=213071

This thread is now "read only." - DeniseM


-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Anyway... I am using the suggestion of a Tugger and contacting RedWeek WSJ renters (owners).
Original thread -
http://www.tugbbs.com/forums/showthread.php?t=62138

I wrote the following:
"Hi - I am not looking to rent. I am already an Owner at Westin St John (WSJ) – Week 24, 2Bd in Building 34. Sorry to contact you this way, but I am trying to get hold of other WSJ Owners to hopefully attempt to band together to influence the Management and the HOA at WSJ. Sadly, there have been many reported maintenance and repair issues at WSJ and they seem to more and more as time goes by. The management and HOA have shown little response to those who have recently complained about a variety of ongoing issues. I will not go into detail now, but I encourage you to come to a Starwood Forum on the Timeshare Users Group (TUG). This forum can be found at http://www.tugbbs.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=51 – or if clicking on unknown links makes you nervous – just Google “Timeshare TUG Starwood BBS” and the first link will be this forum. TUG is free, and as a TimeShare Owner it is an invaluable source of information. On this forum there is a thread called “Westin St John Thread” that I have started. I post under DavidnRobin. I am a well-known contributor on TUG. I will be posting WSJ contact info there. Feel free to post, or to just use the various WSJ contacts to write them about concerns. I appreciate your time. - David"

I wrote it quickly, but hopefully enough people will care to find this thread. I posted to as many as I could, but Redweek has a limit per day of contact -I only got thru about 1/3. I will do more tomorrow.

Will it do any good? I guess we shall see. But if we get enough pressure on WSJ?SVO Management and HOA - perhaps we can get action/resolve. Anyone with aRedWeek account want to help? I reached my limit at May 2 rentals.
 
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bfkc

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happy to join up

Hi all

New owner at Westin St John- first stay coming this April. I'd very much like to join any group looking to make WSJ management more responsive to concerns.

Please keep me posted and thanks for taking the initiative to make this happen!

Brian
 

tomandrobin

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Good luck on trying to rally the troops!

I think it will be an uphill battle, but worht the fight. St John, in our opinion, the jewel of the SVN crown. Too bad it doesn't look like the prized property that it should.
 

rocky

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A dark day for the SVO staffers mentioned above. I bet they are so thrilled their contact info is posted on TUG. Look out for changing phone numbers!
 

kenzie

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wsj

Thanks for the contact info i am dialing the phone right now. I own a 3bdr week 17, my cousin owns 3bdr 2weeks in oct, pm me if we can orginize this group and what i might be able to do to help.

THANKS KENZIE
 

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Any thoughts yet on what would be the best approach once a group of owners can be rounded up?
 

DavidnRobin

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Below is the list of members for the St. John Board of Directors:

Mr. Thorp Thomas (President, Treasurer)
Mr. Reginald D. Billups (Vice President)
Ms. Paulette Carter (Secretary)
Mr. Walter DeCastro
Ms. Melissa Brookes

Contact Address:
9002 San Marco Court
Orlando, FL 32819

You may send an e-mail to associationmgmt@starwoodvo.com
Please make sure that your e-mail is to the attention of the Board of Directors. Once we receive the e-mail, it will be forwarded and brought to the attention of the board members.
 
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DavidnRobin

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do you know if those people on the board are owners or starwood employees?
No - I do not know. I believe that they are suppose to be, but not sure. Perhaps someone else here knows HOA board member requirements.

If they are SVO employees - then their email addresses are first_name.last_name@starwoodvo.com.

I would like to comment - that all emails, letters, and/or phone calls should be as constructive as possible - and not vindictive. We are trying to come up with solutions that are as close to win-win as possible. Whining will not get you very far, and complaints should be backed-up.

Please be aware that it is easier to get things done if you put yourself in the others shoes, and try and understand their viewpoints and challenges. In Corporate-speak - this would the similiar as creating opportunities from challenges that are faced. At the same time do not let it become the standard Corporate answer that they are 'working on it'. How are they working on it? What is being planned? When is this going to happen. (etc.)

I realize that most know this, but wanted to make sure that the goal is that keeping the WSJ resort and units in repair is in everybodies interest. A good way of doing this is to focus on their Corporate Value statement, and use this as an example when discussing issues...

From the SVO Corporate website:
Company Values
Our values serve as the guide for how we treat our customers, our owners, our shareholders and our associates. We aspire to these values to make Starwood a great place to work and do business.

We succeed only when we meet and
exceed the expectations of our customers,
owners and shareholders. We have a passion for
excellence and will deliver the highest
standards of integrity and fairness. We celebrate
the diversity of people, ideas and cultures.
We honor the dignity and value of
individuals working as a team. We improve the
communities in which we work.
We encourage innovation, accept
accountability and embrace change.

We seek knowledge and growth through learning.
We share a sense of urgency, nimbleness
and endeavor to have fun too.


{I can just imagine nodge after reading this... LOL}
Stay-tuned...
 
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LauraS93

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First of all, thanks for the email David... my heart almost stopped because I was thinking "wow, someone wants to rent my unit!" :banana:

Ok, now that I recovered... what I am hoping for is for someone to post a standard type email. What I'd like to do is cut, paste, then of course tweak it and make it my own. That would make our campaign more successful, as I think many of us do not have the time to start from scratch and write an email, but I'd definitely work off of a standard form if someone could put it out there.
 

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First of all, thanks for the email David... my heart almost stopped because I was thinking "wow, someone wants to rent my unit!" :banana:

Ok, now that I recovered... what I am hoping for is for someone to post a standard type email. What I'd like to do is cut, paste, then of course tweak it and make it my own. That would make our campaign more successful, as I think many of us do not have the time to start from scratch and write an email, but I'd definitely work off of a standard form if someone could put it out there.
I just finished emailing you back...

Sorry about that... I have had contact with about 5 RWers so far- hopefully they will at least come to TUG. I have gotten almiost thru the RW rental list - of course, if someone decides to complain to RW - I may get cut-off.

I agree that most will need some type of template - I intend to write one, but have to find the time and inspiration. {perhaps some Vodka and POG will help...}

First, I want to get pertainent SVO/WSJ Management contact info - then I will draft some type of response, and post here.
 

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I'm replying to the email I received. Can someone bring me up to date? Either here or email. Also, we bought a resale. Do we have the same voice that people who brought from the Westin?

Thanks
 

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Hi Katie - Welcome to TUG & the best board and nicest group of people on TUG! :hi:

One of our members, David, (DavidnRobin) is working with other WSJ owners to make some improvements in conditions at the resort. I am sure he will chime in here. This thread kind of got it all started.

And yes, as a resale owner, you have a voice!
 

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thanks. I read the thread you suggested. Last year we had to call to get the floats replaced in our villa but they were very prompt in replacing them. Other than a mix up (their fault) at the spa we didn't have any problems. I do think it could use a bit of updating, especially the furniture. We found the grounds to be beautiful and very well maintained. I'm not sure what the problem was in the complaint. I was concerned with the problem when it rains. That "ain't" a good thing to happen.
We don't usually stay in the villa very much because we're at other beaches or doing things, but I do expect the villa not to leak.

I was absolutely shocked at the price that was quoted in one of the posts. Whoa!

Thanks to David and Robin for the email. I'll keep checking this thread and do what I can to help.
 

DavidnRobin

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thanks. I read the thread you suggested. Last year we had to call to get the floats replaced in our villa but they were very prompt in replacing them. Other than a mix up (their fault) at the spa we didn't have any problems. I do think it could use a bit of updating, especially the furniture. We found the grounds to be beautiful and very well maintained. I'm not sure what the problem was in the complaint. I was concerned with the problem when it rains. That "ain't" a good thing to happen.
We don't usually stay in the villa very much because we're at other beaches or doing things, but I do expect the villa not to leak.

I was absolutely shocked at the price that was quoted in one of the posts. Whoa!

Thanks to David and Robin for the email. I'll keep checking this thread and do what I can to help.
To those WSJ folks who found this link from the contact emails that I sent out:

First - Welcome to TUG. As you will find out - TUG and the Starwood Forum are a fantastic source of information that you will not find anywhere else - definitely more so than what Starwood will tell you. TUG contributors do this on their own time and w/o compensation - other than the satisfaction of helping others. We have all been newbies at one time, and most found TUG after they bought a Timeshare(s) from the Developer (Starwood) - so we all have been in the same boat when it comes to Timeshare ownership.

For those WSJ Owners - I realize that you cannot post here unless you sign-up first (it's free btw), but if you are not so inclined to do so - it is perfectly okay to lurk and use info that you come across.

I have started to post WSJ contact info for WSJ owners to write/email/call and raise issues of concerns for both the unit and resort. I am sure, like Robin and I, we all love STJ, and we bought into WSJ so we could have a great vacation - to the standards that appealed to us buying there in the first place. (vs. getting campgrounds at Maho or Cinnamon Bays)

It seems from a variety of sources (and my personal experience) that WSJ has been getting slack in making sure the villas and resort grounds are well-maintained. What I am attempting to do is band together WSJ Owners - so our voices are heard, and those responsible for maintenance/repair of WSJ are held accountable.

To this end - and if you have also have issues or concerns - I ask you to contact WSJ/Starwood Management and the members of the WSJ HOA and express those issues/concerns in a constructive fashion.

I haven't had a chance to compile complete contact info for WSJ/SVO management yet, but will do so when I get a chance.

If you are so inclined - please sign-up for TUG so you can also post here and state any issues that you may have. If not - please feel free to contact me directly - and I will post. Thi sway we can get a general consensus of the issues at hand.

I will also be drafting an email stating my concerns/issues - that I plan to send into everyone at SVO and WSJ that I can. I will post that draft here.

Anyway - in the meanwhile - thanks for making the time.

Stay tuned...
David
 

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As I expected - I got an email from Redweek asking me to stop, and to use another venue - oh well - who can blame them. I guess there must be at least one WSJ Owner who doesn't care about their investment. :(
 

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Here are some of the pertainent contact info for WSJ/SVO:

Kim Chappell
Interim General Manager
340.714.6096
kim.chappell@starwoodvo.com

Gregory Gray
Director of Sales & Marketing Operations
340-714-6086
greg.gray@starwoodvo.com

James ‘Jimmy’ Dalmida
Director of Operations
james.dalmida@westin.com
{note: svo email extensions bounced back - but not this one}

Graeme Davis
Area Managing Director, South Florida and Caribbean
graeme.davis@starwoodvo.com

Hannah Jones
Villa Guest Relations Manager
hannah.jones@starwoodvo.com

I have not checked all of these email addresses, nor the current status of titles, but these should be pretty much correct.

If anybody receives a response, or a bounceback (undeliverable email) - please let us know. I am using the standard email addresses for SVO employees.

Thanks.
 
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David,
Just a follow up to our emails to let you know I showed up here. Thanks for your efforts.:)
 

DavidnRobin

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David,
Just a follow up to our emails to let you know I showed up here. Thanks for your efforts.:)
Welcome aboard - hopefully we can get some action.

If anybody has other WSJ/SVO contact info (esp email addresses) - please let us know.
 

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Dear DavidnRobin,
Thanks for taking this initiative! We have been owners of a 3bdr. unit since 2001. We love coming to the island, but have been somewhat disappointed in the upkeep of the villa. It has always been very clean, but it is looking dated and tired. We were very disappointed that the voting did not pass to update and renovate some of the 3bdr pool villas as well as some of the hillside villas.
Mostly everything in our villa is below its 50% life expectancy. We feel our maintainance fees are quite high (over $1600.00 per year now) and should see more updates. Please let me know what we could do to help.
 

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Below is the list of members for the St. John Board of Directors:

Mr. Thorp Thomas (President, Treasurer)
Mr. Reginald D. Billups (Vice President)
Ms. Paulette Carter (Secretary)
Mr. Walter DeCastro
Ms. Melissa Brookes

Contact Address:
9002 San Marco Court
Orlando, FL 32819

You may send an e-mail to associationmgmt@starwoodvo.com
Please make sure that your e-mail is to the attention of the Board of Directors. Once we receive the e-mail, it will be forwarded and brought to the attention of the board members.
David,

I am a little confused. Should we just e-mail the group above or some of the other Starwood folks mentioned in a previous post? Thanks for all your help.

Carolyn
 

DavidnRobin

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David,

I am a little confused. Should we just e-mail the group above or some of the other Starwood folks mentioned in a previous post? Thanks for all your help.

Carolyn
Good question - the HOA board shoul be contacted as a group by sending an email to the management association email address - to the attention of the WSJ HOA Board members - names listed.

and then separately - email the WSJ/SVO Management group.
 

Carolyn

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Welcome aboard - hopefully we can get some action.

If anybody has other WSJ/SVO contact info (esp email addresses) - please let us know.
Although this isn't contact information, I found this Question under FAQ on the WSJ area of mystarcentral.com There are many FAQ, but this is the FIRST question listed which I thought was interesting:

Q: How do you decide what items need to be replaced at the Virgin Grand - St. John Condominium Owners Association?


A: This is a complex task that involves many different considerations and has a significant impact on the amount of funding required due to the varying life expectancies of fabrics, furnishings, etc.
Westin Vacation Management Company has a Specifications Committee with representatives from a cross-section of operational departments. Its goal is to target the most cost-effective replacement items for the units and common areas and to evaluate opportunities to streamline processes and systems for the long-term benefit of the resort. This includes specifications for minimum fabric rub counts and improving the specifications for carpeting, bedspreads, drapes, appliances, wall covering, roof material, cookware and pillows to name a few.

Westin Vacation Management Company believes that buying quality items on the front end and properly maintaining them is the key to ensuring the economic benefits of the replacement reserve program and maintaining the quality of your unit.



Maye we need to find out who this "Specifications Committee" is comprised of.

Carolyn
 

DavidnRobin

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Yes - this is a standard FAQ on MSC. What is funnier is the FAQ that says you can volunter to be on the HOA Board and states to look for the form on a link that doesn't exist.

I am thinking of running for the HOA Board at WSJ next vote with all my new found WSJ friends. :rolleyes:

To all lurking - this is an ongoing process - please take the time to zip off an email to WSJ/SVO/HOA. I am still in the process...
 

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Just returned from WSJ

Hello everyone! My family just returned from WSJ last night. While we were there we encountered several issues with our unit. Last year we didn't notice anything wrong, but this year it seems to have deteriorated quite a bit. The big issues appear to be a leaking roof (which has been going on for a while since there is mold!) and a sopping leak through the carpet by our balcony door...which we still can't figure out how it is happening since it is in the middle of the carpet and not around the edges by the actual door. Unfortunately, we had quite a bit of rain while we were there and had the pleasure of dealing with the leaking, dripping roof and the large wet area in front of the door. The other issues were simple maintenance issues like broken lamps, broken toilet paper holder, disgusting stains on mattresses and bedcovers, etc.

Needless to say after paying what we paid for our week and then the high MF we expect these issues to be resolved and the units to be maintained properly. I can handle a few asthetic issues, but dirt, mold and leaks are not acceptable.

My husband promptly called engineering and then Greg Gray. Engineering came and took care of a couple easy issues, but not the big ones. Greg Gray never called us back. Then I went on this forum to see if there were other complaints and ran across this post. This just added fuel to our fire!

We did not let this ruin our vacation and the grounds were still very beautiful. Plus, the beaches make up a little for any grumpy feelings we have about the villas. The last day we stopped at the office and my husband asked for Greg again and was told he was at lunch and they did not know when he would return. Yeah right!

Right now if we would want to rent our week or sell it we don't feel that we could do it ethically knowing that the unit has these issues. It makes us very angry that we are paying such high MFs and we get blown off.

My husband already followed up and sent an e-mail to Greg Gray and we will do whatever else we need to do to help others and get our own issues resolved.

Keep us posted and hopefully if we all come together something will happen.

Melissa

P.S. We took pictures of everything and plan to forward with any e-mails we send.
 
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