The timeshare sector is underway with overdue change. Chasing changing traveler tastes, millennials, and eventually Gen Z buyers means pushing into cities and offering more flexibility.
It’s no longer your grandparent's timeshare market — just in time for millennials and Gen Z to be in the buyer's seat.
Timeshares were rare growth opportunities for the hospitality industry over the last year of cratered demand amid the global pandemic. Hilton Grand Vacations acquired Diamond Resorts for $1.4 billion. Wyndham Destinations became the Travel + Leisure Co. as part of a $100 million takeover of the media and travel club brand.
It may just seem like a typical round of hospitality brand mergers and acquisitions until you look closer at the changing face of this overlooked travel sector.
“As companies have grown, they've gotten very sensitive to where to owners want to go and what kind of experience do they want to have,” Gordon Gurnik, chief operating officer at Hilton Grand Vacations, told Skift. “Timeshare is also a very attractive product for an urban market where someone may want to come experience the city, but they maybe can't or don't want to invest in a whole condominium.”
Hilton Grand Vacations wrapped up a $50 million renovation this summer on the Quin, a 212-unit timeshare club the company bought in 2018 for $175 million. HGV is calling the property one of its flagships following the renovation.
It also plans to open another New York property, the Central at 5th, later this year. The company was one of the first to open a New York City timeshare when it opened the Hilton Club — New York in 2003.
HGV isn’t the only brand pursuing city timeshares. Travel + Leisure Co. has pushed into markets like Nashville, Portland, and Austin in