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Old Wednesday, February 2nd, 2011, 06:05 PM
PirateKing PirateKing is offline
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Default Am I in Cancun (2)?

So, when you go to the Caribbean, you sort of like to think you are somewhere othe than back home, right? OK, the weather certainly lets you know that (I always think of Cream's "Tales of Brave Ulysses": "You thought the leaden winter would bring you down forever; so you rode upon a steamer [OK, a plane in this case] to the violence of the sun"), but in some ways, like in that place in Mexico, you could be in Ocean City, Maryland, or Seaside Heights, New Jersey. How so? let's start with the music. While steel drums are not indigenous to Aruba (they came there from Trinidad), they've been there for a long time. Colombia and Venezuela are not far away, so salsa might also be expected; or reggae, perhaps? Something "islandy", you might hope for, right? Why, then, does the Phoenix tend to book basic American bar bands for PureBeach? One night there was a Latin trio; the rest was what you'd hear at the Chatterbox in Seaside. Never a steel drum band or reggae.
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Old Wednesday, February 2nd, 2011, 10:25 PM
Arubasun Arubasun is offline
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Default Re: Am I in Cancun (2)?

Geez, the Chatterbox is still on the beach in Seaside? Used to party there back in 74-75 and really saw some great bands there. As for Pure Beach, havn't been there since last May but there were bands and singers with "Caribbean" or "Latin" sounds.. Not sure what happened to them.
Guess we"ll find out soon.

Phoenix 4/22-5/7 TO MUCH SNOW HERE THIS YEAR!!!!!!!!!!!! NEED A VACA FROM IT..LOL
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Old Monday, February 21st, 2011, 10:52 AM
JohnL JohnL is offline
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Default Re: Am I in Cancun (2)?

And when the bands are playing, you can barely hear yourself talk. Having a conversation is out of the question when they are playing. I liked the background music of Caribbean and steel drum bands in the good ole days..... if you want dance and 2 beat stuff, go to a nightclub.
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Old Monday, February 21st, 2011, 11:21 AM
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Default Re: Am I in Cancun (2)?

Have you expressed your views to the Divi Phoenix management about beach bands, noise etc.? Presumably you are all owners and as owners someone should be listening to your points of view especially if enough people think the same way...
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Old Monday, February 21st, 2011, 01:53 PM
JohnL JohnL is offline
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Default Re: Am I in Cancun (2)?

Hi Mark:

Let me tell you a story about DIVI Phoenix management in Aruba. They are reactive and not pro-active in taking care of things. In other words, they give the grease to the wheel that is squeaky...but they really don't care much about the member's concerns IMO. This has been our experience. We have complained, completed questionaires, and the Guest Comments & Suggestion Sheet. Still there is little or no action. When you are gone and not there, then there is no problem for them. When you are there and complain, they repair the most obvious problems (mostly involving safety) and tell you the other problems will be fixed at some point in the future. It's called lip service. Then you come back to your unit the following year, and there they are-the very same problems; repairs haven't been done to the things you complained about a year ago.

Every year, DIVI has raised the maintenance fee for the new unit owners, even the very first year when we were unable to stay in our unit because it was not completed. Now it's becoming too expensive for some.

There is lots to be done at DIVI Phoenix for it to be even close to the best on the island. Make no mistake, the location is superb, it's private, yet near all the action. That's why members and guests put up with the management BS, inaction, and increases in maintenance fees.

And how about this: we own a 2 BR penthouse unit weeks 3 & 4. My wife and I wanted 2 extra towel cards and we were denied by the front desk. I paid 54 grand for those units. Is that the way you treat your members? I was thinking of purchasing in the Phoenix Villas, but that put me off so it cost them a sale.

They are trying to sell out the new units and they're being aggressive about it. If they were as aggressive in addressing the unit issues and member complaints, then it would be a recommended buy. If I had to do it all over again, I'd look elsewhere.

Sad but true.
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Old Monday, February 21st, 2011, 06:17 PM
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Default Re: Am I in Cancun (2)?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnL View Post
Hi Mark:

Let me tell you a story about DIVI Phoenix management in Aruba. They are reactive and not pro-active in taking care of things. In other words, they give the grease to the wheel that is squeaky...but they really don't care much about the member's concerns IMO. This has been our experience. We have complained, completed questionaires, and the Guest Comments & Suggestion Sheet. Still there is little or no action. When you are gone and not there, then there is no problem for them. When you are there and complain, they repair the most obvious problems (mostly involving safety) and tell you the other problems will be fixed at some point in the future. It's called lip service. Then you come back to your unit the following year, and there they are-the very same problems; repairs haven't been done to the things you complained about a year ago.

Every year, DIVI has raised the maintenance fee for the new unit owners, even the very first year when we were unable to stay in our unit because it was not completed. Now it's becoming too expensive for some.

There is lots to be done at DIVI Phoenix for it to be even close to the best on the island. Make no mistake, the location is superb, it's private, yet near all the action. That's why members and guests put up with the management BS, inaction, and increases in maintenance fees.

And how about this: we own a 2 BR penthouse unit weeks 3 & 4. My wife and I wanted 2 extra towel cards and we were denied by the front desk. I paid 54 grand for those units. Is that the way you treat your members? I was thinking of purchasing in the Phoenix Villas, but that put me off so it cost them a sale.

They are trying to sell out the new units and they're being aggressive about it. If they were as aggressive in addressing the unit issues and member complaints, then it would be a recommended buy. If I had to do it all over again, I'd look elsewhere.

Sad but true.

I agree with pretty much everything you've said here. Perhaps the reason it bothers us less it that we have a one bedroom unit in the Tower which was purchased when Divi first took over. Because of the time frame (and smaller size of course), we didn't pay anywhere near 54K & we've enjoyed the Phoenix since before the beach had a palapa or a palm tree on it.

Once we decided to stop worrying about what was wrong & started focusing on the good stuff, we were fine. You need to remember that all that 54K got you is a guarantee that, if you pay your fees on time, you can spend weeks 3 & 4 in that penthouse unit for the next 40 years.

You (we) don't own anything. Divi management is going to do what they want, when they want & making a lot of noise isn't going change that. It might give you heartburn, but that's pretty much all you'll get out of it.

FWIW............... If you did not have the maximum number of people in the unit, your wife should not have had a problem getting more towel cards. That's probably one of the few times that a conversation with management would have gotten immediate, satisfactory, results.
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Old Monday, February 21st, 2011, 06:45 PM
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Default Re: Am I in Cancun (2)?

Droykelly:

If no one complains, then nothing gets done. I will complain. And a verbal towel complaint did no good at the front desk! But Carmen, God bless her, took care of us.

I also purchased the entire month of Feb. I laid out substantial cash. And there is a contract. I know I'm a lessee, and not an owner. ANd I do know the difference.

Now that being said, my wife and I still had a great time. I don't let it bother me while I'm in Aruba. I sleep in the room. But I will not let issues of unit safety go unresolved.

Because I am a lessee does not take away my right as a DIVI member to register a complaint. They don't want people posting stuff like this on the BB because it causes problems for potential sales and rentals. They want happy members. Today I sent a formal letter to DIVI headquarters in NC. Let's see what that brings.

Thanks
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Old Monday, February 21st, 2011, 07:17 PM
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Default Re: Am I in Cancun (2)?

Sorry John...............

I didn't realize you were referring to safety issues not being immediately addressed.

Going forward, I'll keep my thoughts to myself. Good luck with your letter. The standard response is generally more lip service & a "free" week. I hope you get more than that................
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Old Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011, 08:59 AM
JohnL JohnL is offline
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Default Re: Am I in Cancun (2)?

No need to apologize and absolutely no reason not to voice your opinion Droykelly. I certainly respect that. It sounds like you went through this once or twice. I now know what to expect. I'll keep you all posted.

Thasnks
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Old Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011, 10:12 AM
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Default Re: Am I in Cancun (2)?

Its demoralizing when issues like this fall on deaf ears, especially after an investment the likes of what members put in. Seems management tend to tackle only the immediate issues and then once members are out of sight they're out of mind. In December 2010 I recall seeing ads placed for a General Manager for Divi Phoenix. Not sure if that position was filled. Hopefully the new person will read things like this from members and listen to them. Aruba's tourism success depends on the service people receive from the moment they get here (even before) to the moment they leave, and in the case of timeshare owners it goes beyond that also.

This type of management lag is not limited to Divi Phoenix. In another case I know about it was also an issue of safety, not just embellishment or beautifying. I think it must have taken the management there about a year or more to get the decrepit gym equipment replaced. I have personally seen people almost break their necks on a treadmill that suddenly stopped dead while they were running on it, and there were machines that had snapped cables that were never replaced, not for a very long time anyway. Eventually they got replaced thankfully but it took a very long time!

I agree with you droykelly - if noone ever complains nothing will get done. I think it took a lot of complaining in the above case I mentioned. A dear friend of mine from New York once mentioned to me that back home complaining is a "time-honored tradition", perhaps a lot of people in that particular resort were from New York
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Old Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011, 11:45 AM
JohnL JohnL is offline
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Default Re: Am I in Cancun (2)?

Mark:

I think it was me that said, "If no one complains, then nothing gets done."

I think a major problem in Aruba is it is difficult to hold responsible parties accountable. Most members leave every week, or every few weeks, and forget about it when they get home; they get back to work trying to make more money to come again next year, or buy a TS. What was a priority now becomes secondary.

With the economy the way it is, the unrest in the middle east causing oil prices to skyrocket, and Aruba being overbuilt, I think we might see some interesting developments in tourism in Aruba and elsewhere. This might force resort owners and service providers to be more sensitive to the needs of their market and members.

As I said, I have sent a letter of complaint to Member Relations at DIVI Resorts in North Carolina. We'll see what happens, if anything.

Best,
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Last edited by JohnL; Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011 at 11:51 AM.
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Old Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011, 12:13 PM
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Default Re: Am I in Cancun (2)?

You're right JohnL, it was you who said that - my reading error!

I think you've hit the nail on the head re possible effects on tourism due to global events. Flight costs to Aruba are already pretty steep to start with, with oil shooting up again now, it can't be good news for any longer-haul destination. Airlines have already been raising prices and charging extra for all sorts of things that used to be included, so fuel surcharges or straight price hikes should not be far off. I'm hoping that the government here sees some light as far as overbuilding is concerned, there definitely is a lot of concern by Aruban people themselves about it.

I hope you get a positive reaction on your letter, with some tangible results!
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Old Wednesday, March 16th, 2011, 07:36 PM
JohnL JohnL is offline
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Default Re: Am I in Cancun (2)?

Today I received a phone call in the states from management. They promise to repair my unit top to bottom. We'll see. Pedro Vargas, Phoenix GM, is accommodating and I believe he will take appropriate action as he says will occur when the unit is unoccupied. Customer service issues have been addressed so I'm told. So I want to hear about your experiences. Please post and keep us updated on unit condition and customer service, especially at the front desk. Thanks.
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Old Thursday, March 17th, 2011, 06:35 AM
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Default Re: Am I in Cancun (2)?

That's great to hear JohnL - at least the response is a first step!
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