Skift Take

Think beyond the beach. Marriott Vacations Worldwide is shaking up the timeshare game by debuting a City Collection of properties in response to growing demand.

Marriott Vacations Worldwide on Thursday launched its first collection of timeshares in cities, a sign of growing demand for timeshares beyond traditional resort locations.

The Marriott Vacation Clubs City Collection has properties in seven U.S. cities, including New York, Boston, and San Francisco.

City timeshares will remain a minority part of the group’s 90-plus portfolio of properties, but executives say the data points to rising interest.

“We knew, for example, before we announced our New York City Marriott Vacation Club that our owners stay in New York about 200 nights a day, on average, by exchanging their points for Bonvoy points and then using those Bonvoy points to stay in New York City at Marriott hotels,” said CEO John Geller.

When travelers use points that way, the company can’t always fill the timeshare units left vacant. Having guests go to timeshare clubs instead is more consistently lucrative.

Marriott Vacations Worldwide has picked Waikiki, Charleston, and Savannah as places to open its next city clubs.

Not Resorts

One complexity of opening timeshares in cities is that it’s impractical to translate the resort concept of a traditional seaside destination into an urban setting. To compensate, Marriott Vacations will try to woo travelers with a few distinctive amenities.

In New York City, for instance, there’s a rooftop bar with a clear, close-up view of the Empire State Building. In Boston, a timeshare building gives guests access to a viewpoint from a public clocktower that’s a city landmark.

In Waikiki, it plans to open a seven-story, 110-guest room timeshare property by year-end. Proposed rooftop amenities include a pool, fitness center and bar and access to two floors of stores.

Another promised amenity is helpful advice. Each property in the network has what’s essentially a concierge, called a city insider, to provide knowledgeable help on the area’s restaurants and travel experiences to owners, members, or other guests.

For Marriott Vacations Worldwide, the city timeshares could lead to more recurring revenues, via management fees charged to owners. Each club will also have a sales center, which could help tap into new urban demographics to find new customers.

Have a confidential tip for Skift? Get in touch

Tags: city development, future of lodging, marriott vacations, timeshare, timeshares

Photo credit: Top of the Strand bar scene at Marriott Vacation Club, New York City source marriott vacations worldwide

Up Next

Loading next stories