WINTER BREAK in the Florida Keys

Is the cold of Winter getting you down?   Need a break in temperatures until Spring makes it’s way to us?  I have two great weeks available for a Winter break in the Florida Keys.

The temperatures will be 70+ degrees, the waters of the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico are right there for your for you to enjoy.  You don’t have to leave the shores of the U.S. to find that tropical paradise with warm breezes and turquoise waters.  It right here in the Florida Keys!  We’re heading to Islamorada shortly and grabbing our Winter break in the Florida Keys.  We’ve been waiting all Winter for this and it’s almost here!

There’s so many great things to see and do during Winter break in the Florida Keys.  We’re heading over to Dry Tortugas National Park by seaplane to experience this remote National Park, just 70 miles off the coast of Key West.  The water is warm and clear, with natural reefs full of corals, sponges and tropical fish.  We have our snorkeling gear ready to go!  There are many great snorkeling spots in the Florida Keys and we hope to scratch several off of our list.

We plan to spend a couple of days exploring Key West.  We were there last year for a day, but really only experienced the “tip of the iceberg”, so to speak.  There’s several tours that we’re considering that should be a lot of fun.  We also plan to spend a day each in Marathon, Islamorada and Key Largo, with a day left to check out other areas in the Keys.

If you are in need of a Winter Break in the Florida Keys, contact us about our two available rentals in fully-equipped condos

Gold Key Resorts is currently accepting deed-backs

Gold Key Resorts is currently accepting deed-backs from timeshare owner.  This is great news for owners that no longer want their timeshares anymore.  Diamond Resorts International’s most recent acquisition was the Gold Key Resorts timeshare properties located in Virginia Beach and Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.

This recent acquisition was a negative for many owners of Gold Key Resorts timeshares.  However, one fellow TUG member has posted that he has been successful in getting Gold Key Resorts to accept the deed-back of his week 39 in Kitty Hawk.  He originally purchased this timeshare from Timeshare Vacations since the Outer Banks was a favorite vacation destination for his family.  The week of ownership was originally in RCI Points; however, being unfamiliar with the program, he chose to remove it from RCI Points.

Later, he became a member of Timeshare Users Group (TUG) and became more knowledgeable about the benefits of the RCI Points program.  Since it usually does not make financial sense to convert a non-RCI Points ownership into the program, he bought a couple more timeshares that were already converted into the program. That left him with his week 39 at the former Barrier Island Station Kitty Hawk (now Gold Key Resort’s Beachwoods) that he no longer needed or wanted.  The problem was that Gold Key Resorts instituted a hefty Special Assessment in 2015 for resort upgrades, making it impossible for him to give away his shoulder season week. He had contacted Gold Key Resorts a couple of months ago about taking a deed-back. No deal.  He continued to try to give it away on the Bargain Forum on TUG.  No takers.

Like me, Chris was not too keen on the Diamond International Resorts (DRI) acquisition of Gold Key Resorts’ timeshare properties. DRI sells a points program and has acquired many smaller timeshare groups, like Gold Key Resorts, over the last several years.  In order to have inventory for their points owners to exchange into, they have been accepting deed-backs of fixed weeks from owners.

Chris received a letter today from Gold Key Resorts that the Beachwoods Week 39 timeshare will be accepted back without any costs to him…..but he must act by September 11, 2015.  Naturally, he is thrilled.  He does not even have to pay off the remaining balance due from the Special Assessment.

The DRI acquisition of the GKR timeshare properties will be finalized on October 17, 2015.  DRI will be able to place the fixed week timeshares that are deed-backs, along will all unsold inventory, into their trust for exchange opportunities for their Vacations For Life points program.

If you’re an owner of a paid-off timeshare week that you no longer want, it would behoove you to contact Gold Key Resorts about the opportunity to deed-back your ownership.

See the link below for the ongoing thread on the Gold Key Resorts acquisition on Timeshare Users Group.

Diamond Resorts International acquires Gold Key Resorts timeshares

Diamond Resorts International acquires Gold Key Resorts timeshares.  It was announced in August that the timeshare holdings of Gold Key Resorts has been purchased by Diamond Resorts International (DRI).   This acquisition will be completed by October 17, 2015.  Gold Key Resorts, headquartered in Virginia Beach, has timeshare properties at the Virginia Beach oceanfront and in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.

“Diamond Resorts International® (NYSE: DRII), with its network of more than 330 vacation destinations located in 34 countries throughout the continental United States, Hawaii, Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean, South America, Central America, Europe, Asia, Australasia and Africa, provides guests with choice and flexibility to let them create their dream vacation, whether they are traveling an hour away or around the world. Our relaxing vacations have the power to give guests an increased sense of happiness and satisfaction in their lives, while feeling healthier and more fulfilled in their relationships, by enjoying memorable and meaningful experiences that let them Stay Vacationed.™ Diamond Resorts International® manages vacation ownership resorts and sells vacation ownership points that provide members and owners with Vacations for Life® at over 330 managed and affiliated properties and cruise itineraries. To learn more about the company, visit”

Owners at the former Gold Key Resorts timeshares have been assured that their ownership and usage will not change.  However, the “Stay Vacationed” DRI Points  Program will be an opportunity for Owners to consider.

Personally, as an owner of fixed Summer weeks in both Virginia Beach and Kitty Hawk, I do not plan to buy into the DRI Points Program.  This program does not fit into my ownership choices, but may offer value to other owners that wish to travel to the over 330 resort destinations in the DRI vacation network.