As we close on 2018, it’s time to take a look back on the big timeshare industry news stories that happened throughout the course of the year. There were many big announcements made, growth in the industry, brands changing and merging, and much more.
We also want to look forward to 2019 at all the new properties and events coming that have been announce in 2018.
So enjoy this timeshare industry news roundup and we look forward to sharing more breaking stories with you in 2019!
Diamond Resorts started 2018 out with a brand refresh to better improve their message and to encourage members to make the most of their vacations by “making a habit of breaking the routine”. They shortened their name from Diamond Resorts International to Diamond Resorts and immediately updated their website and logo.
More and more resort brands have been embracing new technology to enhance the visitor experience, including Hilton Grand Vacations Club. HGVC is introducing new technology including bluetooth room keys and voice-controlled features en-suite. They are calling this shift to updated rooms the “Connected Room,” basically putting owners in control and giving them more updated opportunities.
Another big-name vacation ownership decided to rebrand. In June, Wyndham Worldwide spun off Wyndham Hotel & Resorts to become Wyndham Destinations. The rebranding works to show owners and travelers that anywhere in the world can be “their” destination. Wyndham Destinations has vacation properties in 100 countries across 220 resorts.
In July, EY and ARDA International Foundation released their State of the Vacation TImeshare Industry: United States Study 2018 Edition, which showed that the timeshare industry has seen eighth straight year of growth. The sale volumes increased four percent in 2017 over 2016, making a 26 percent increase from 2013. Additionally, occupancy rates are up over 80%, proving that the majority of people are visiting the timeshares they own.
In September, Marriott Vacations completed their merger with ILG. Marriott acquired ILG for a $4.7 billion stock and cash deal. They hope to use ILG’s hospitality expertise to better their vacation ownership experiences.
Members of the Disney Vacation Club were excited when Disney announced new club resort this past October. This resort is expected to open in 2022 and will be a nature-inspired property on the shores of Bay Lake. This announcement also came with the news that Walt Disney World Resort will be adding 1,700 more hotels and DVC resort villas over the next four years. In November, the name of this new resort was released as “Reflections: A Disney Lakeside Lodge.”
More good news for DVC fans, new Disney cruise lines are coming out in summer of 2019. They currently have cruises to Alaska, the Bahamas, and the Caribbean. Guests can expect new cruises in several European destinations such as Northern Ireland, Sweden, Denmark, France, and Spain.
Between 2019 and 2020, there are four new resorts opening up in Mexico through AMResorts (part of Apple Leisure Group). Once these four resorts open, AMResorts will have 33 all-inclusive resorts across the country of Mexico. Now Natura Riviera Cancun is the resort expected to open in late 2019. This resort will feature tropical amenities like an infinity pools, waterfalls, a lazy river, grotto bar, and more.
Welk Resorts announced that their property, The Ranahan by Welk Resorts, is set to open up its first phase in late 2019 in Breckenridge, Colorado. The Ranahan by Welk Resorts is set to be situated on the Blue River within the Rocky Mountains, providing an ideal destination for skiers and those looking to explore the best of Breckenridge.
Hilton Grand Vacations has secured a new timeshare property in Los Cabos, a first for the popular vacation ownership brand. They have purchased several dozen units at the existing Hilton Los Cabos Beach and Golf Resort to change into luxury timeshare accommodations. These new units are set to open by the end of 2019. The property is located between Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo, giving guests access to a swimmable beach and other top local attractions.