There has been much coverage in this space regarding the foreclosure of the Pelican Resort and the owner/operators of the new Simpson Bay Resort choosing to cease operations until, as they claim, they can negotiate labor terms that would end the deficit situation that played a part in the original financial crisis.
I am grateful for the comments and emails I have been receiving, and hope they have played a part in bringing this situation to light. Many have been informative, and many have taken one side or the other in the debate. Many have agreed with conclusions or opinions that they have perceived I have expressed, many have disagreed. I welcome them all.
Some have questioned my motives or agenda. While not making this about me, I want to be clear, I do not have an agenda or deeper motive in this, or any other story.
I come from a position, well established in a decade of covering the timeshare industry, of reporting on what’s going on, as objectively and evenhandedly as possible, with the best information available to me.
In this particular story, without having been involved in the situation for years, as have some of the passionate advocates from both sides have been, I can simply parse the information available to the best of my ability, and base my output on the “smell” test. If something doesn’t make sense, it’s probably not true.
In any dispute, each side is going to make claims, and the truth is usually somewhere in the middle.
I do see timeshare owners, both at Pelican and those who had made exchanges to visit the popular resort, concerned about the sudden uncertainty effecting their planned vacations, as well as the impact on money’s already spent.
The issue also creates a gnawing concern and doubt for timeshare owners everywhere. We pay our mortgage, we send off our maintenance fee check, and we expect that our resort will be there to use or to trade every year. Do we question that every penny goes exactly where it’s supposed to go? I guess many of us are at least a little cynical, but as long as the lights are on, the sheets are clean, it’s like any city or town, we expect some “waste”.
If something doesn’t make sense, it’s probably not true
Do I believe that the management company or any individual engineered this whole thing so they could shut the resort down? So they could eliminate the rights of people who have called this their second home for more than two decades? Not hardly. It is not the management company that is responsible for the defaulted loans, or the years of financial mismanagement that even the most strident defenders of the old model have acknowledged.
Do I believe they want to begin selling the resort to new owners, entirely from scratch? Of course not; one look at the state of the secondary market in timeshare would make it clear the folly of that strategy, especially in today’s market.
I have seen accusations without any credible proof or suggesting Machiavellian motives.
If I have any bias or predisposition, I will own up to a long held belief that, in general unions have gone too far, to the long term harm of their constituency, in protecting every inch of turf, every benefit. By protecting every job, they risk all jobs. This is a general statement, I have no first hand knowledge of the specifics on a property thousands of miles away, that I’ve not had the pleasure I’ve visiting.
But I can form an opinion by the affection that long term frequent visitors have expressed, and I know they would not have such positive feelings if these same union employees hadn’t provided such a warm and welcome vacation experience.
We will continue to watch the saga unfold, because, as I’ve said, it shines a light on a concern perhaps more of us should have. The fact that this is a relatively isolated event points to the overall stability and integrity of the product.
Agree or disagree, please continue to write and comment.