Thursday, June 19, 2008

Starwood Vacation Ownership

A few years ago we purchased a timeshare through Starwood (Westin, W Hotels, Sheraton, Four Points, A Loft, St Regis, Element, La Meridian and the Luxury Collection). It all started when I was planning sales meetings for work and I fell in love with the Westin hotels and the heavenly bed. I was also deeply in love with the W Hotels. We received an invitation (I'm sure you have gotten one from some hotel chain) to stay at the Westin Kierland hotel in Scottsdale Arizona for 5 nights for super cheap. So we went and if you wanted an extra $100 gift certificate you could take a tour of their villas (which are the timeshares). We did the tour and sat through the sales part and we couldn't say no, so we bought one! I love to stay in nice hotels and we couldn't always afford to when we went on vacation so this was an assurance that I could always stay at the hotels that I wanted to. Plus, we now would have a definite vacation every year at any of the 19 villas resorts in places like Hawaii, Colorado, the Bahamas and Palm Springs. The program can be confusing if you don't learn the details on how to convert your timeshare to resorts that are not the one you purchased at and how you can earn Starwood Preferred Guest points (which are different than your timeshare options) to get free nights at any Starwood hotel in the world. But, once you get that down it's easy to plan vacations and earn extra nights by using your Starwood Amex. Since we purchased it two years ago we have been to Arizona twice, San Francisco, two islands on Hawaii, New York and Palm Springs and we have not paid a cent for our room. We travel freely and cheaply and we only have to worry about airfare or gas and food. It was a big investment at first but worth it and we will have it our whole lives and can pass it on to our kids. We are going to stay at the St Regis in Dana Point for our 5-year anniversary for free this October. I definitely recommend this program to anyone interested. Let me know if you are interested and I can get you an invitation to stay at the Arizona location for 5 nights for around $450. For more info go to

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