State timeshare properties prove popular with one rental Web site


POSTED: Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Six Hawaii timeshare rental resorts made the Top 25 list compiled by RedWeek.com, a timeshare rental, resales and exchange Web site based in Seattle.




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Two Disney properties at Lake Buena Vista, Fla., top the list this year, knocking the Manhattan Club in New York City, No. 1 last year, to No. 3.

Disney's upcoming Ko Olina property could well wind up on the list someday.

Hawaii's 2009 listees are, at No. 5, Hilton Grand Vacations Club at Hilton Hawaiian Village (it was No. 4 last year); Marriott's Maui Ocean Club in Lahaina at No. 6, same as last year; at No. 10, the Westin Kaanapali Ocean Resort Villas, also the same as last year; and No. 12, Marriott's Ko Olina Beach Club in Kapolei, up from No. 13 last year, which is where Marriott's Waiohai Beach Club in Poipu is ranked this year. It was at No. 19 last year. Ranked at No. 17 this year is the Kaanapali Beach Club - a bit of a tumble from last year's 11th-place finish.

The ranking was determined by RedWeek.com officials using e-mail alert preferences from some of its 1.3 million registered users. The company has no affiliation with any of the companies listed, according to a statement.

The timeshare industry used to be an industry of ill repute in travel and tourism circles, but its image has soared and is now seen as an important player.

The reason is “;pretty simple,”; according to John Locher, vice president of marketing and sales.

“;About 15 years ago, more or less, many of the major brands got into the vacation ownership or timeshare business, and when you have Hyatt, Marriott, Wyndham, Hilton, Starwood, all with their names on the line with these resorts, certainly the credibility and practices became very important.”;

The business model is also different, as timeshare owners “;are committed to vacations and resorts and are going on vacation,”; he said.

Timeshare resorts “;in times like these, can do so much for a region,”; as owners come in and spend money in the local economy. “;Timeshare owners vacation more often.”;

The Hawaii Chapter of the American Resort Development Association reported in August that timeshare occupancy statewide outperformed hotel occupancy by nearly 20 percent in the second quarter of last year.


Erika Engle is a reporter with the Star-Bulletin. Reach her by e-mail at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).