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Universal Vacation Club / They screwed me

United States Review updated:
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Bought time share at new hotel, have not been able to stay at new hotel for 3 years. UVC tells me only a portion (35%) of the hotel (via del arco) is open to the time share holder. oops, forgot to mention that during the sales pitch. totally poor customer service...don't stay at a villa resort / or a uvc property... they will try to suck you dry.

Rhonda Mayer / director of customer service is helpless / worthless in helping out. They gave me an "equivalent" room at Villa del Palmar which was not even close to what i bought. The room had mold on the walls. You can't walk around the hotel without someone trying to get you to spend money. It verges on harassment. Don’t go there.
Va
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Db
  14th of Jan, 2009
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Below you will find the letters I sent to the email addresses for the owners of the Villa Group. The Villa Group is the company that builds the hotels in Mexico and should be named on your contracts. They are based out of Mexico (conveinent) but have offices at the same address as UVC and ResortCom international. UVC is just a front and only handles the timeshare portion. We all have exactly the same complaint about unethical sales practices and lack of disclosure. The Villa Group is the party we should be talking to. Urge the people who visit your site to contact the Villa Group and the owners at the following email addresses:

FGONZALEZ@VILLAGROUP.COM

LUZMARIATORRES@PRODIGY.NET
Db
  10th of Feb, 2009
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My complaints against UVC have been resolved. Thank you UVC.
Go
  30th of Jun, 2009
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Hi Diane and Cristine,
We would really appreciate if you give us the opportunity to contact you and clarify your issues with our firm, as the personnel for Gonzalez & Gonzalez is highly trained and supervised; and we can assure you that none of our customers have been attacked in any way.
Looking through the files and data base of our company we do not show any record under the name of ¨Diane Jersey¨ and/or ¨Cristine ----¨, who are the people complaining and defaming against the firm.
After 15 years of experience we knew some day this will happen, being conscious of this we back up ourselves by recording every incoming and outgoing telephone call.
In case of the existence of a recorded conversation with you under another name, we would like to expose it to the internet community to prove the opposite of the complaints made on June 30th against Gonzalez & Gonzalez to discard the fact that the post was exposed by our competitors or from the timeshare developers full of frustration by our advocacy and success on the resolution of the cases handled at Gonzalez & Gonzalez.
Also, Gonzalez and Gonzalez has never charged such exaggerated retainer fees, we have a long list of satisfied customers who support our firm, with identifications to validate their existence and able to show their satisfaction by the success in the resolution of their cases.
Gonzalez & Gonzalez counts with ample evidence, to show the Internet community and guarantee that there is no existence of this type of situation in our firm.
Respectfully,
Jose Gonzalez
Ts
  8th of Jul, 2009
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We share your grief and have to agree that the Villa Group or UVC does not seem to care about their existing customers and they do not tell the truth in their sales presentations. We need to get the word out before more innocent people get scammed. They are in the process of building 2 new resorts and you know what that means, they need more timeshare owners. If only they honored what they sell...

We have tried to fix our issues with just about everyone with the Villa Group and UVC and they have done absolutely nothing. Below is our original complaint sent to UVC and the Villa Group. Since complaining, all 3 of our referrals that are joining us next week at the property were called within the last day and informed that they are "ineligible for the referral program because they are traveling with us" - so they are no longer being offered the round-trip transportation to/from the airport/resort or the $300.00 in resort credit - retailiation? Does anyone know what the heck is going?

To make matters worse, today I get my UVC newsletter in the mail where they are promoting their "referral program" and claim that referrals can stay for $25.00 per night. So why was I charged $987.00 to upgrade my unit to accomidate our "referrals" that are joining us and why did we have go through a travel agent to book an additional night at the resort when our flight was cancelled and we were booked on a flight a day later? (UVC said they were sold out and couldn't help. So what exactly are we getting for the $17K we've spent plus yearly maintence?

Background:

On August 4, 2006 while we were in Cabo San Lucas, we were approached by a Villa Group Senior Sales Representative, Linda Salisbury, about an exciting opportunity to purchase a timeshare at a soon to be developed premier resort called Villa Del Arco. She invited us to tour the property and hear about the exciting pre-development discount pricing being offered by the Villa Group/ResortCom International. Ms. Salisbury then drove us to the property where we were shown the future layout of the resort (still under construction) and an already built and furnished 1-bedroom unit. Liking what we saw, we then sat down with Ms. Salisbury to discuss the details of purchasing a 1-bedroom unit at Villa Del Arco. Following are the contract terms we were promised if we purchased and became owners of a 1-bedroom unit during the summer season (weeks 18 - 43) for the purchase price of $16, 995.00:


1. Two 1-bedroom ocean view/pool view units for the price of one unit - second unit was called a "Gold Week"

2. Guaranteed use of 1 1-bedroom unit for two weeks each year or 2 1-bedroom units for 1 week each year.

3. As a "Gold Member/Property Owner" we would have the right to use our "Gold Week" anytime during our summer season.

4. Guaranteed stay at Villa Del Arco during our time slot or the option to use Interval International to travel elsewhere.

5. Guaranteed owner priority reservations.

6. Guaranteed owner priority upgrades to larger units if available at no additional cost.

7. Guaranteed extended stay at maintenance fee rates.

6. UVC and Interval International membership.

7. Maintenance fees not to exceed $602.00 per unit per year.

8. Complimentary resort shuttle service to and from the airport to the resort.

9. Resort use is exclusive to timeshare owners and will not be available to the open market. This was explained to ensure member use, unlike other timeshares.

All sounded wonderful to us and we entered into a contract and became timeshare owners, paying for our purchase in full.


Issues from the beginning:

Our problems began with our first attempt to stay at the property:

We wanted to use 2 units for 1 week in June 2007 and were told that because of the high demand from owners, the Villa group could not honor the 2nd unit. After a lot of complaining and run around, we were finally granted the use of the second unit. We were also informed that the complimentary shuttle service was not yet being honored and we had to rent a car for the week at a cost of $875.00 Upon arrival at the property we were put in units that faced the swamp next door (no ocean/pool view) and in the middle of very noisy construction. We complained to member services and they informed us that there was nothing they could do - the resort was sold out.

After being at the resort for 2 days and constantly going to the front desk to see about being moved, we learned from the hotel manager that the resort was not sold out and in fact units with views were available but not for "timeshare owners" - the Villa group only owned 35% of the resort and those were sold out. If we wanted to purchase units with better views we could directly from the hotel at a cost of $425.00 per night. This was clearly not acceptable and we immediately went to the member services desk where we literally made a scene. We were quickly moved into the type of units we purchased.

2008 reservation issues:

We elected to not vacation at the resort in 2008 when we were told there was no availability for 2 units - clearly a breach of contract.

2009 reservation issues:

Over a year ago we booked 2 1-bedroom units for the week of 7/12 - 7/19, 2009 - we originally wanted to vacation in June (not July) but even booking a year in advance we were told it wasn't available - so we adjusted our plans and made a reservation in July.

Shortly after two different couples we know were interested in vacationing with us and to possibly buy into the resort. We contacted member services to see about upgrading one of our units to a 2-bedroom so that we could all fit. We were told that the resort was sold out and there was nothing member services could do about an upgrade. We then called the hotel and learned that was not true and 2-bedroom units were available (again through purchase direct from the hotel) we also checked Expedia and Travelocity and sure enough there is availability. We contacted UVC and were told those units were not available to us - the Villa Group only owns 35% of the property. We then called the on-site Villa Group reservation manager, Blanca Montes, who confirmed the same. After many phone calls and threats, we were able to upgrade 1 of our units to a 2-bedroom at an additional cost of $987.00. So much for your referral program. 2 days later we saw on your Villa Group website that we could of and should of been able to upgrade that unit for only $25.00.

Then in early June we we received a call from Alaska Airlines informing us that our return flight on 7/19 was canceled and we were moved to a flight on 7/20. We immediately contacted UVC about adding an additional night for each unit and were told that we could not - the resort is sold out. Knowing this was not true (we called the hotel and looked on-line) we began making phone calls everywhere. To this day this additional night has not been resolved and we have no idea where we are staying the night of 7/19.

Class-Action Law Suit

Clearly we are not alone in being misrepresented by your company/company representatives. We were contacted recently by an attorney representing 48 other Villa Group/Villa Del Arco property owners about a class-action breach of contract law suit that will seek full purchase price refunds. We have our own file documenting everything as well as the video tape from the sales presentation.

This has become the biggest nightmare and possibly the biggest investment mistake we have ever made. We have spent numerous hours trying to work with your company and have no choice but to keep our reservation this year, but still need an additional night. We also do not feel we should have had to pay the additional $987.00 for the upgraded unit since we are bringing people who are set up to hear your sales presentation. We also do not yet know how we are getting to/from the airport to the resort - apparently your shuttle service is "still not available." (current status: we booked on own final night through a travel agent - UVC still couldn't help us)


We look forward to hearing what your/your company plans to do to rectify this situation and ask that we receive an email back within 24 hours. We would also like to inform you that our family attorney will also be in Cabo San Lucas the same week we are there to do his own investigation on our behalf. We refuse to be taken advantage of and also feel an obligation to ensure this never happens to anyone else.


Sincerely,


Ernest and Terri Silva

Member #: 16-25063
Bi
  25th of Jul, 2009
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Please be advised, this letter serves as documentation for a DECEPTIVE AND FRAUDULENT TIMESHARES SALES PRACTICES which we were victims of during our trip to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.

We inquired at the concierge desk about how to arrange a jungle zip line tour. We were told the hotel could arrange a “FREE” jungle tour if we agreed to meet a salesperson for a “FREE BREAKFAST”. We explained we were not interested in Timeshares, the concierge insisted that the best way to enjoy a zip line was to first to listen a Timeshare Seminar.

The next morning met a sales representative, Abe Gardner. He was promising many, many specials deals that we were inaccurate and very misleading. We tried to walk away from the discussion with Abe several times, but he insisted to stay and hear the special deals he was able to offer us as “GOLD MEMBERS OF UNIVERSAL VACATION CLUB”.

These “special” offers made by the salesman on behalf of UVC turned out to be MISLEADING, DECEPTIVE AND FRAUDULENT LIES SUCH AS:

1.-As Gold Members we could receive a special offer getting LOW COST AIRFARE RATES.
UVC gave us a lot of excuses why were could not lock in this travel such as their “SYSTEMS WERE DOWN AND WE NEEDED TO CALL BACK”.

2.-As Gold Member we would get 2 weeks for the price of one.
We were told we would need to notify UVC 14 months in advance of our desire to rent the 1st week and it was not guaranteed.

3.-We were told this was a good investment which could be sold if we ever desired to do such.
When we were unable to rent the 1st week, we looked into selling out timeshare, but we found there was essentially no market for the sale of such a unit without taking a loss of more than 90% on the sale.

My family really enjoyed the city of PV and we would really like to keep taking trips to Mexico in the future, we also would like to recommend Mexico as a vacation destination to our friends and extended family. However, we feel betrayed and mislead by our bad experience at the VILLA DEL PALMAR AND WITH UVC.

Big J.
Bi
  25th of Jul, 2009
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Check this page and leave your comments

http://villapalmarfraud.blogspot.com/

Big J.
Bi
  28th of Jul, 2009
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
My concerns have been clarified and my situation with UVC have been resolved to my satisfaction.


Big J.
Je
  21st of Mar, 2010
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I would like to direct any readers of this posting to go to a website I just published www.universalvacationclubmembers.com and read to your heart's content. It is addressing many issues and concerns with the Villa Group (Developer) and the UVC. If you are a UVC Member and would like to add your name to my UVC Member mailing list, please contact me via the “Contact Us” page on the site or send an email to jeffsuomi1@msn.com. Jeff Robbins.
Sa
  31st of Dec, 2013
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
I know how you feel, and it seems like this is a common problen in Mexico. I purchased a travel program through Sandos Playacar at Royal Elite Timeshare Resort in Playa del Carmen last March and I requested to cancel within the 5 day grace period but they still have not refunded my down payment of over $9000 US dollars. I have been in touch with people there and they say they are working the process but it takes time. It has now been almost 5 months and I am losing faith they will ever pay me back. This is another forum with more complaints about this company:

http://www.timesharescam.com/timeshare-complaints-resorts-black-list/6-royal-elite-sandos-timeshare-complaints/

I believe we should do something about it, as I understand Mexican regulations forbid the offering of gifts, free vacation certificates or any other promotion strategies without informing the consumer the specific purpose of the offer. I want to complaint with PROFECO about this, and get my money back

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UVC International (Universal Vacation Club) Logo UVC International (Universal Vacation Club)
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6850 Bermuda Rd
Las Vegas
NV
United States - 89119-3615
+1 619 683 2470
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