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WKORVN EOY Questions (Long)

shockdoct

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First time poster, long time lurker. You guys are a great source of information!

So to make everything clear, we currently own a 1 BR Premium Platinum week at the Westin Kierlands (81k StarOptions and 37.5k StarPoints). We have traded into Harborside (albiet in August) and are currenty at WKORV for the next week. So we have been extremely happy with our trading and enjoy visiting other resorts.

I am the son and pretty much in charge of finding out how buying and trading works for my parents. Since I am almost out of college it is time that we buy a unit that is 2 BR since I am also kind of tired of sleeping on the couch :p. So we went through the owners update yesterday and this is what they offered us: a 2 BR Lockout in the North EOY (148.1k StarOptions and 80k StarPoints) for 22.5k. Since it is not opening until 2008 they were going to give us 80k StarPoints AND the option until June 2007 to purchase 80k StarPoints for $1675. We would like to stay under 25k so we can't do the EY here but....

I did some research on some resales and have seen several platinum 2 BR Lockout at Kierland EY (148.1k StarOptions and 72k StarPoints, but that doesn't matter as we can't convert) for around 20k. From reading the boards it seems the developer is asking 34k for similar units, not available until 2007. The maintenance fees are cheaper at Kierland and have a history (it seems) of not escalating at the same rate as the units in Hawaii. Of course I realize that we will not be able to convert to StarPoints, but we will be 3 Star Elite AND have 148.1k StarOptions EY rather than EOY.

What my question is, it seems like a no brainer to go with the Westin Kierland since it is an EY vs EOY at very similar prices. I am in College so my parents travel whenever and since we live in Maine (and it took a 20+ hours to get here) we won't be coming back to Hawaii every year. Although StarPoints value are debated it seems that not being able to convert EVER is easy to do now, but may be tough to swallow in the future. I am wondering what you guys experience as Elite (would 3 Star really make a difference?). Also it seems easy to trade our 1 BR, but is it tougher to trade around 2 BR units? We definitely wouldn't be travelling in the Thanksgiving/X-Mas/New Years times.

Quick question for those who have been to kierlands lately, are they offering any deals for owners to buy an EY 2 BR lockout? It seems they are giving quite a discount to owners here for EOY (50% off EY).

And lastly to keep this brief, my only complaint is the pool is entirely too cold. They were heating the water in Harborside and it was mid August and 90 degrees. In fact we told the lifeguard and they turned it down. Why don't they just turn on the heat of the pool! It feels like the ocean is warmer!

PS- For those who are wondering what we got at WKORV, 4th floor in the building that is parallel to the highway facing the ocean. We are pleased with our trade even though there is a parking lot between us and the ocean.

Sorry this is so long! Thanks for any help!
 

Pedro

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shockdoct said:
What my question is, it seems like a no brainer to go with the Westin Kierland since it is an EY vs EOY at very similar prices. I am in College so my parents travel whenever and since we live in Maine (and it took a 20+ hours to get here) we won't be coming back to Hawaii every year. Although StarPoints value are debated it seems that not being able to convert EVER is easy to do now, but may be tough to swallow in the future. I am wondering what you guys experience as Elite (would 3 Star really make a difference?). Also it seems easy to trade our 1 BR, but is it tougher to trade around 2 BR units? We definitely wouldn't be travelling in the Thanksgiving/X-Mas/New Years times.
First of all, welcome to the board. You always can find a lot of valuable information here!

I remember somebody posting a few months ago that resale units do not qualify for Elite status - only developer units do. As far as trading is concerned, you are better off with the resale at Kierland if you don't intend to go to Maui too often since there is no guarantee you'll be able to get a unit at the 8-month mark. Of course, owning at WKORV gives you a 4-month advantage over owners at other SVN properties.
 

seenett

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Also, don't worry too much about the "elite" status. I am not convinced there is any real benefit to this. Sure, you casn trade for points every year, but that is usually a poor use of your investment. I would go for the Kielrand resale myself!
 

vic714

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seenett said:
Also, don't worry too much about the "elite" status. I am not convinced there is any real benefit to this.
I'll find this out the end of this month. I was told that 60 days out I can get upgraded for my week in Orland in March. We used our options for a studio so we'll see if we can get it upgraded to a 2 bedroom ( non-lockoff )

I have my doubts it will happen but who knows.

If it does happen it will certainly boost the amount of options I have to use if we travel in off peak times. ( 44,000 for a studio and we get a 2br worth 81,000 )

Victor
 

Pedro

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vic714 said:
I'll find this out the end of this month. I was told that 60 days out I can get upgraded for my week in Orland in March. We used our options for a studio so we'll see if we can get it upgraded to a 2 bedroom ( non-lockoff )

I have my doubts it will happen but who knows.

If it does happen it will certainly boost the amount of options I have to use if we travel in off peak times. ( 44,000 for a studio and we get a 2br worth 81,000 )

Victor
When I asked about the upgrades last time I attended an "owners update", I was told the upgrades are from a small 1 br (studio) to a large 1-br and not to a 2 bedroom unit. I'd be interested in finding out if anybody has ever got the upgrade from a 1 to a 2 bedroom.
 
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shockdoct

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Could anyone confirm or deny the whole elite via resale? The upgrades are nice, but I was thinking more along the lines of the pecking order for room selection (views).

I am thinking the Kierland is the option we would go with, does anyone have any experience on how long it takes for closing and if the people on redweek and other sites are firm on their prices?
 

azsunluvr

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If nothing else, I think I'd ask for more starpoints upfront. When we purchased our developer Sheraton's Desert Oasis, even being ignorant, we received 90k starpoints. I think you can hold out for more on that front.
 

luvmyboys

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Elite Status

shockdoct said:
Could anyone confirm or deny the whole elite via resale? The upgrades are nice, but I was thinking more along the lines of the pecking order for room selection (views).

I am thinking the Kierland is the option we would go with, does anyone have any experience on how long it takes for closing and if the people on redweek and other sites are firm on their prices?
I just bought resale and spoke with a number of starwood representatives -all told me that resales do not qualify for elite status :( - I also believe there was a thread about folks who were elite with resales and starwood tried to take the status away when they realized it was resales (she got to keep elite status but that was a fight and I doubt they will let new owners do so). On timing - I have two closings Florida and Bahamas - I have been told 6-8 weeks but have just started the process so don't really know what the actual time will be.
 

shockdoct

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Could any current owners clarify what the trading power on II is for the WKORV? We haven't used our Kierland 1 BR yet, as we are still exploring the SVN, so i am not sure of the power Kierland has. I would think a 2 BR in WKORVN would command more power than a similar unit at Kierland.

Normally they would prefer to stay within SVN (no fees), but my parents have no interest in Cancun and Hawaii is just too far (2 days of travel r/t from maine) so even Princeville would be a tough sell. I read Westin is developing a hotel and "residence" on St. Maarteen, but thats many years away. They also are two explorers who are not big on returning to the same places year after year (loved Atlantis, but can't see them going back every year); this is why the conversion to StarPoints (for the option of hotels and suites, since they are big into cooking and not eating out which is admittidly hard in hotels) and trading power on II is important.

It is just a pain when they say they love the caribbean (warmer in winter and easier flights) but refuse to buy there with the fear of hurricanes and damage to the resort, especially after visiting Morritts on vacation and then seeing the devestation in pictures.

I am sorry if I have seemed to hijack multiple threads with 1 problem, I should just have a thread for "timeshare for picky parents, any help appreciated." haha
 

skim118

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shockdoct said:
Could any current owners clarify what the trading power on II is for the WKORV?
Actually the trade power of WKORV in II is probably the same or worse as Westin Kierland. The problem is when you deposit WKORV in II, Starwood has the right to deposit other SVN weeks instead.

Moreover Interval penalizes the Maui studio lock-off, whereas at least Kierland splits into two 1-bed-rm units.

Based on your travel patterns I would never buy into WKORV(resale) or WKORVN, due to the high maintenance fees in addition to the large initial outlay.

Sara
 
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