It was a Pretty Picture, but Disconcerting at the best, disheartening at the worst. As a corporate attorney for 20+ years and having an MBA and a BBA in business Lynn and I were quite interested when we went to check out the BlueGreen timeshare sales pitch. We have long shopped Bass Pro and are both impressed by the quality and high standards of the corporation. We have both been approached by a sanctioned salesperson in Bass Pro about the BlueGreen timeshare solicitations. Over this years MLK Holiday we decided to go down to Florida and check out the sales pitch.
Woo Hoo what a story. For a corporation listed on a national stock exchange, BXG, you would think they would meet you with an employee of the corporation with a name tag and business card right off the boat. Alas even thought the sales glossies discussed a first class destination on Daytona Beach The Casa Del Mar and we liked its presentation and ambiance - upon arrival we were shunted to the nearby Holiday Inn by the front office staff.
Hmm a national firm with dozens of locations in a site where the parking lots are empty and the lobby nearly deserted sending us to a Holiday Inn rather that putting us up in the Casa Del Mar? Well, Lynn was bothered by the fact that the verbal representations and e-mails she had received had to all intents and purposes indicated that we would be staying at the Casa Del Mar. But we remembered thinking at the time wasn't it strange the employees had no name-tags and no descriptive accommodations booklets were on display?
Upon arrival at the Holiday Inn we were shown the normal courtesy and service you expect from a national hospitality organization. However, I tried to upgrade the room from a back window facing room to an ocean facing room. I was told that no upgrades were available. Hmmm - this despite the Priority Club membership which I enjoy due to years and years of business travel. Later during our stay we noted that many rooms on the ocean side were dark and unoccupied.
So we decided to be troopers and go the next morning to the sales pitch. We spoke to a couple of locals who were of the hefty persuasion and settled on a local restaurant Charlie Horses Restaurant. It was excellent! It's located next to Bonefish grill, the Carrabas sister restaurant, and we recommend it for good food and local dining. OK here is the rest of the story.We show up the next morning and are introduced to our sales pitch representative a genial 30ish fellow named James. Our James is an ex-law enforcement officer and highly articulate. He has obviously done his homework and is quite a good salesman. Having been involved in sales for years I saw through the act but absolutely & thoroughly enjoyed the show. James is a likable and competent sales person.
1)No one there had a name tag,
2)James did not have a business card,
3)James did not have an e-mail,
4)We were not introduced to the sales manager until we asked to meet him after the pitch,
5)The administrative secretary had leather pants and 2 inch Asian nails with filigree designs,
6)The sales manager made reference to imbibing in alcohol the night before with the second sentence out of his mouth,
7)When we asked for contractual agreement documents to take home and study we were denied the opportunity to examine the 40+ page document at home,
8)We asked for an Owners packet and were told we were not allowed to have one until after purchasing the timeshare. We then offered to PAY for the brochure This was not allowed,
9)We then asked if, after reviewing the internet, the better business bureau, and corporate statements if we could call James back up and purchase from him. We were told we could no longer deal with James directly,
10)After checking the BlueGreen internet site it is apparent that there are no numbers to call to talk to real people and the electronic curtain is obviously a thick one.
Needless to say as an attorney and businessman I find all of this highly irregular and will not be purchasing a timeshare from this outfit.
My words to anyone considering doing business with this group are the old legal axiom CAVEAT EMPTOR. (Buyer Beware!)