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Which is best: Location or resort amenities?

DaveNV

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Another post got me to thinking about my personal preferences when staying in a timeshare. I'm one of those who is on the go a lot, who likes to explore the area, doing things, and getting a good feeling for what an area is like. So I rarely spend much time hanging around a resort. So the overall amenities are less important, as long as a certain minimum level of quality and comfort is maintained. And some things don't really matter all that much to me. For example, I don't travel with kids, and I rarely cook in a timeshare, so having a full vs. partial kitchen just isn't an issue. A fridge, microwave, and coffee pot are about all I ever use.

How about you? Are you one who wants to hang around the resort all day, using all the amenities and participating in their activities, or are you one who is also on the go all day? Which matters most to you - location or amenties?

Dave
 

Keitht

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As long as the accommodation is clean and comfortable I really don't care too much about the amenities in the resort. Like you I spend my time out and about exploring the area. I don't see the point of travelling to a new area and then spending all my time 'locked away'.
For me 3 things matter - location, location & location. :D
 

barndweller

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That really just depends.

If I've never been before and want to explore the area, then resort amenities are not quite as important. If it's an old favorite that I return to often, I'll be lounging around and want the amenities that I prefer.

Amenities that I prefer are different from yours. We rarely eat out and require a decent kitchen and barbeques. The fancy pools are not my cup of tea and lots of organized activities are usually of no interest.

As long as the resort is clean, has pleasant grounds and I get a kitchen and a nice little pool WITH PLENTY OF SHADEY LOUNGe CHAIRS THAT OTHERS DON'T HOG At 5am, I'm happy. That rules out a lot of supposed high class, high demand resorts. :D
 
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AwayWeGo

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[triennial - points]
Location, Location, Location.

One of the TUG-BBS mainstays to whom I pay serious attention says location trumps everything when it comes to timeshare resorts, citing popularity poll results & resort ratings to bolster that idea -- e.g., lots more people prefer vacationing in season at the beach than spending another week down by some glorified amusement park.

Yet some super-popular non-Orlando vacation destinations like Branson MO & Las Vegas NV & Williamsburg VA also draw big crowds year-round. Plus, those places are timeshare hotbeds. Coincidence? I don't think so.

So where seasonal location is the main attraction -- e.g., The Beach -- then resort activities & amenities tend to take a back seat to the primeness of the location.

But where there are timeshares galore in every direction, as in Orlando & Branson & Las Vegas, then unit quality & resort amenities, etc., take on greater competitive importance.

As for me, I feel very strongly both ways -- just so I can keep on enjoying luxury timeshare vacations wherever I go for Motel 6 & Super 8 rates.

-- Alan Cole, McLean (Fairfax County), Virginia, USA.​
 
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vacationhopeful

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I value an interesting and active location, things to go see and explore. I also like a place where other guest mingle and will make chitchat with others - computer room, pool, hot tub, Tiki bar - neutral territory, but outgoing people - almost like TUGs.

As for the unit - it must have natural light. I perfer being able to see outside. Balcony desired. Quiet in the unit - don't want to have to turn the TV up to hear it or TV on to try and sleep. Clean is a big must. Jetted tub, not a deal breaker. Partial kitchen is ok. A nice TV in LR and BDR, not a almost ready for the dumpster TV (strange, an LCD is a plus, while I won't spend the money for one at home).:doh:

I might spend a day or two running around, but then I like a day or long afternoon to chill. So resort activities are checked, but on my slow days, not as the basis of "my vacation".
 

Fern Modena

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I think everybody likes to stay in upscale resorts whenever possible. But you know what? I'm a location kind of gal. As long as its neat, clean, and I don't have to climb stairs (that is recent), if its in an area I want to go to, I'm fine with it.

For example, we have friends in Tucson. The Varsity Club is the closest resort. Many complain because it is on a main street with a lot of traffic and a Mickey D's across the street. But it isn't noisy to me, and its in the location I want. Starr Pass, which is reputed to be much nicer, is many miles away from our friends, so I wouldn't want to stay there, even though it is better rated.

Fern
 

Mel

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It really depends on the vacation experience I'm looking for that week. We usually travel with our kids, so I prefer something with either amenities to keep them occupied, or enough local activities to do the same.

I think location has to come first in most cases. Even if we're going someplace to just relax and hang out, location comes into play - though in that case it might be a question of how far from home.

As Fern hints, once we have a general location, we look at the amenties and local attractions, and weigh them. If one plush resort is next door to an average resort, I want the plush one, but the maybe the average one has something else going for it.

Our 2 vacations this summer (just returned from the second) illustrate this well. Both were driving distance - 6 hours to northern Vermont for the first, and 8+ hours into Canada for the second.

The first was a resort with very few summer amenities, the pool/athletic facility was closed during the week, and the place was deserted. There were many things to do in the area, but it rained constantly and we were having trouble with our brakes (and, staying on top of a mountain, were hesitant to venture out in the rain when we didn't need to). Lousy vacation experience, our 6YO asked why we had to go on vacations, they're no fun!

The second required 8 hours in the car with the kids (ages 6, 10, 13 all girls) each way. This was helped by the purchase of a small portable DVD player, but it's still a long trip, and difficult to get 3 kids to agree on movies - they never did. We staying in a cabin, there was a small lake for swimming, and outdoor pool that closed at 6pm, and a very small indoor pool. The units were not plush, and there were small maintenance issues, but the experience was good overall. Other than our home resort (Orange Lake), this was the first resort one of the kids has asked to return to the following year, even with the 8-hour ride. OK, the best part for them was the water-park, too big to fully enjoy in a single day, but that wouldn't normally be enough to warrant a return trip on its own. This was the type of place, given a slightly shorter drive, that I could see us returning to, meeting up with the same friends each year, getting to know the resort staff on a first-name basis.

So I would rank: location, friendliness, amenities, unit quality, assuming each met certain minimum standards.
 

Texasbelle

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We just returned from a Sun-Fri stay at Escapes! in Galveston. Daughter asked what we did--well, we had coffee and wine on the balcony looking at the Gulf, ate lunch in Galveston mostly at soup, salad, sandwich cafes, though DH enjoyed our Hooters visit [right on the water, but did he notice?] We used the pool and hot tub, walked the beach, read books and watched the Olympics and Astros on TV. We mostly ignore the planned activities, usually go to the breakfast on Monday though and shop for food after lunch. Location is important. We want the Gulf, a lake or a river. After that, we like clean, gold crown type units. Daughter had a timeshare right in the main part of Branson; we would have chosen one on the lake away from the hubbub. So great location has a different meaning for different people.
 

ginnylbs

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Location-location-location

However, I also like having AC in the hot locations, a washer and dryer for any area having beaches and especially a clean unit with comfortable beds.

The kitchen does not have to have tons of appliances, but a coffee pot, toaster and dishwasher.........as we do cook breakfast and some meals.
 

swift

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It all depends on where I am going. If I am going somewhere where I will be doing a lot of hiking, go to the beach, or out and about doing things like Disney then the place where I am staying doesn't need a lot of amenities for me. A pool is nice for the down day but mainly I am looking for clean and well kept maintenance wise. However, if I am going somewhere where I expect to spend more time hanging around the timeshare, like Mexico where I will do less outings, then I like the timeshare to be more like a resort where I feel pampered and everyone is happy.
 

Jbart74

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Location, Location, Cleanliness

A bunch of my timeshares are SCUBA related. So location is key. I don't like dirty rooms, mold, or dampness in the carpet, bedding, etc...

Another bunch of my timeshares are Ski related. So location is key. I don't like dirty rooms, mold, or dampness in the carpet, bedding, etc...

I just booked an AI for the first time and I want to be pampered. So location is key. I don't like dirty rooms, mold, or dampness in the carpet, bedding, etc...
 

Glynda

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Brewster Green (two weeks).
Both

When I'm on vacation, I want both!

I bought a RCI cheap extra vacation week (can't remember the name of the resort) in Hilton Head and even though the property was beach side, the unit was just horrible. We left after two nights. Fortunately, it was just a short drive back home. I've been spoiled by the Gold Crown resorts and it would take a lot of convincing to get me to less again.
 

caribbeansun

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Oceanfront before garden view or inland every single time, no exceptions.
 

jlwquilter

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I was going to say location, no question.

The I thought... would I REALLY pick to stay at a place that was a better location but didn't have a washer/dryer on site (in unit is not required but certainly preferred)? We'd have to pack way more clothes to get us thru an active week, we go-go-go!) without doing laundry. Heck, the fact of the matter is I do laundry just about every day when on vacation, although it's quick loads.

And we really do want a pool (especially DD) and a hot tub (all of us, especially my elderly dad). But I would trade those out for a MUCH better location, just haven't had to yet.

But I would trade out, and have done so already, fancy decor and landscaping in a heatbeat for a better locaion. If the unit is clean and maintained and comfortable and in the best location, I don't care a whit that it has 70's wood paneling, formica counters, and a standard tub.
 

borntotravel

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For me, it depends on where I'm going and why. For instance, if I'm going to Vegas, Branson, Gatlinburg, or Williamsburg - I'm looking for a clean, comfortable unit with a good kitchen and a pool, because we will be out all day "seeing the sights".

If I'm going to Orlando (been there dozens of times), or somewhere with friends or family to spend quality time, or somewhere just to chill and relax, then I want a resort that is five star, with great amenities, activities and large, comfortable, modern units because we'll be spending more time at the resort.
 

bogey21

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I look at this as one purchasing rather than exchanging. It is location, location, location. With careful inspection I will go for a less expensive, but acceptable Resort over one of the overpriced majors. Eaxample: I bought a small well maintained Summer Week at Peppertree by the Sea for $600. It is right next to one of the majors where I guess I would have to pay somewhere around $10,000 for the same Week. Sure it is smaller and the pool is not as nice.......but I'm ok with $9,500 in my pocket and the ability to walk right out of my unit onto the exact same (very nice) beach. To each his own, I guess

George
 

ciscogizmo1

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LOCATION is my #1 choice. Right now in my life with 2 kids location is important. Are there lots of things to do? Whether it be theme park related, beach, snorkeling, hiking, museums, etc...

KITCHEN-- It must have a full kitchen. We don't want to waste our vacation time trying to find something to eat, waiting for a table and sitting through a 2 hour meal. It is just not our cup of tea. We much prefer to BBQ something easy like burgers and watch the sunset from our balcony. By nature, I'm a gourmet cook so, cooking takes like very little time. We do eat out on a trip occasionally but it isn't the main focus of our trip. We do about 4 weeks worth of timesharing a year. If we ate out every meal (28 days worth), the vacation wouldn't be fun for us.

RESORT-- Mainly we look for kid friendly resorts. My kids want to play with other kids. The activities aren't important but amenities like an onsite bar, counter service and nice pool are a plus.
 

pjrose

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Clean, clean, clean. Comfy beds, nice kitchen. Great pools, good reasonably priced food. Friendly people and nice kids. Great staff. Lots of shade and fresh clean air to just veg out and relax by the pool.

Also, a variety of interesting things to do, though they can be low-key, just pleasant things, no need for sports or active physical stuff. History, science, and natural scenery are preferred.

The most important, though, are clean, comfy, great pools or other water, good food, and relaxing.
 

pammex

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Guess for me it really depends on the vacation....if it is a new destination then I will spend less time at reosrt so not as particular, but if going to a repeat area like in Mexico ie: PV or such...well then spend a lot of time at resort so want lots of amenities.

I do not do laundry on vacation nor rarely do I cook...although I do like having a kitchen, at least a microwave, coffee maker, blender and refrig.

When I vacation I really want nothing less than what I have at home..I guess that is why I timeshare, so I can have spacious accomodations. I want comfy beds ( not always possible in Mexico but most places I stay repeatedly have comfy beds) , no mold or musty smell, ocean and pool, sitting area in unit and balcony if possible, nice view.

Most important is clean, well maintained and the service. To me the service at a resort can make or break a facility, and my vacation.

The resort does not have to be brand new, but well maintined and love it to have some Mexican touches.

I really enjoy being pampered on vacation....so I do like AI if staying a lot of time on site...good food, safe water, good service, a spa and a gym....

Yeah I guess timeshares have spoiled me I like the amenities and meeting new people and such and making friends with the staff for repeat visits etc.

The location can be important but we only go to one new place per year usually, so then the unit is not as important...cause we need to take in the area.

My favorite vacations are repeat trips to our owned timeshares in Mexico and just being pampered and relaxing.....that is a vacatio to me...relaxing!!!
 
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