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Scammed by Gold Crown Resort rep in Mazatlan

In cooperation with: Visit Mexico
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San Jose, California
posts: 3
Scammed by Gold Crown Resort rep in Mazatlan

original blog post: …blogspot.com/2011/08/gold-crown-resort-scam…

My boyfriend and I have been together for over 3 years and decided to finally take a romantic and relaxing vacation alone together, and being the young professionals that we are, our travel budget is not all that hefty. So where can we go where the US dollar remains somewhat strong? Mexico! We decided to travel to Mazatlan and couldn’t be any more thrilled about our vacation. When we arrived in Mazatlan we became completely enamoured with the culture, the people, and the beautiful scenery. On our second day there, we were strolling down the main boulevard where there are lots of hustlers passing out coupons, flyers, et cetera. One of the most prominent promotion is for La Jolla Resort, which is a new developing timeshare resort in Nuevo Mazatlan (north of the touristy area). One very nice Mexican man gave us an invitation to go to one of these “presentations” at La Jolla, and he said even if we don’t buy the timeshare, we’ll get a free bottle of tequila and a free breakfast, so why not? We were picked up in front of our hotel the next day and taken to La Jolla Resort.

Immediately we were awestruck by the beauty of this resort, letting whatever this representative say to us go in one ear and right out the other, because we knew we weren’t interested. After sitting through his pitch and telling him we were not interested, he directed us over to their “developer” to negotiate a better deal or package.

We told “Sam” (I’ve decided to keep his real name private), the “developer”, that we were not interested in his pitch and then he threw a curveball at us. How about an extra 25 “weeks” on top of your 100 that you would be purchasing for $2500, and tell ya what, I’ll waive the taxes and annual fees. He even gave us a bunch of certificates for vacations and airfare that we would supposedly be able to redeem (haven’t looked into those much yet). He told us that each of these weeks had a cash value of $669 that we would be able to use towards airfare, car rentals, attractions, which we’d have to book through their website www.goldcrownresort.com . He even mentioned that if we did not use the full amount of $669, the remainder would be rolled over and we’d have that fraction of a “week” to use at a later date. Suddenly this deal became extremely attractive to us. He made it appear that GCR had pull with all these hotels, resorts, and airlines, and that is how they are able to give us such a great deal.

After much consideration, we decided to pay $2500 for 125 weeks valued at $669 per week. After we agreed, we were rushed through the paperwork and blindly initialed and signed these verification documents. After going through the fine print, nowhere on the contract does it mention the airfare deal. Immediately, we began to sweat about it. Now, we are contractually bound to Gold Crown Resort because the contract says our payment is non-refundable. Also, you cannot reverse your credit card transaction because it takes about 14 days to “process” your new membership, so we couldn’t find out that we were really duped until we received our membership ID. I am not saying that GCR is not a real discount program, it is. It is essentially like hotels.com , but instead of leftover hotel rooms, you get access to leftover timeshares. What I am saying is that this affiliate’s sales pitch is completely false and he lied to us in order for us to sign up.

I’ve called customer service and apparently their Florida customer service department (the only one in the country) is contracted by these affiliates, or developers, so they were not able to assist me. Instead she gave me a contact number and email for the affiliate in Mexico that we signed up with. I’ve written three emails and still haven’t received a response. I tried calling the resort and they said their customer rep and the guy who signed us up have left for the day and to try again tomorrow. We feel absolutely stupid and completely taken advantage of. I am writing this article to hopefully spread awareness about these lying salesmen. I really hope no one else falls for all the sneaky tricks up their sleeves.

Anyone have any advice as to how we could terminate the contract and get our money back?

97 replies to this topic
81. Re: Scammed by Gold Crown Resort rep in Mazatlan

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Removed on: 6:40 am, August 29, 2013
Mazatlan, Mexico
Destination Expert
for Mazatlan
posts: 3,211
reviews: 10
82. Re: Scammed by Gold Crown Resort rep in Mazatlan

I am not sure what advice is in this post, but ALL the time share 'free breakfast' come-ons here are AT the resort. So you are there and seeing the great views, the actual units, etc. The only thing you are NOT seeing is the true, actual, costs and the other 'back end' charges. Most people who have posted about scams got a LOT of paperwork, much if not all in Spanish, only to find out latter that what they were TOLD, and what is written, are two different things.

My best advice is, before you plunk down several thousand dollars FOR ANYTHING, do some research BEFOREHAND. With the time share scams, take a day (Actually about an hour or two will do it) and search the name of the resort on Google. If it is a scam, you will find out very quickly! If you just can't resist the "wonderful deal today only", you were suckered because you deserved to be suckered. In today's world, if you cannot invest an hour or two to do some really easy research, you deserve to get scammed.

Long Beach
posts: 13
reviews: 4
83. Re: Scammed by Gold Crown Resort rep in Mazatlan

excuse me? no one deserves to get scammed. there are a lot of very intelligent & good people who get scammed. the people who make a living off legally stealing are cold hearten professionals who have been very well educated in the art of deceit. it seems like from your statement, falconroger, that if you are not doing that already, it might be a good business for you.

84. Re: Scammed by Gold Crown Resort rep in Mazatlan

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Removed on: 1:07 pm, August 22, 2013
Destination Expert
for Mazatlan
posts: 3,416
reviews: 14
85. Re: Scammed by Gold Crown Resort rep in Mazatlan

No, Elaine. These are desperate time share sellers, not professionals at all. Gift of the gab and persuasion abilities, maybe. This is nothing new in resort areas, sad but true. I run across foreigners in my travels regularly who say they "work" for such and such a resort. It goes without saying they are in time share sales, and I really don't try to get to know them better. There is not much skill involved in taking advantage of naive people. It's not cool at all, but sadly it's reality the world over.

86. Re: Scammed by Gold Crown Resort rep in Mazatlan

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Removed on: 6:35 pm, August 25, 2013
Surrey, Canada
posts: 1
87. Re: Scammed by Gold Crown Resort rep in Mazatlan

I, too was taken advantage of. The problem is, when you're approached on the street and an appointment booked, they did not tell me ahead of time where I was going, so I had no way of "looking in to it". I was totally PRESSURED into buying. As a single women there, I was actually fearful that I couldn't get out without doing so. They played so much on what I wanted to hear. (Now I know better, just pay the $100 for the dune buggy) I was made too many promises (too good to be true, no doubt) but $5,000 too late and don't know what my recourse is. Since sending them my payment, I haven't heard one single word from them. I was promised a certain number of weeks for friends and/or family and no where can find what they promised me or how to find out. I tend to be an astute business women and generally quite intelligent but completely duped...what a fool. Anyone have an idea how to recover what was lost?

Long Beach
posts: 13
reviews: 4
88. Re: Scammed by Gold Crown Resort rep in Mazatlan

was the company Gold Crown Resorts? they will send you info of how to get to their site, but too late to find out you have been scammed & able to stop the money. when you go to their site also, you will find that not much of what the salesman told you was true. the last sentence of the contract you initialed says "I am not relying on any oral or other written representations..." which lets the salesman say whatever he wants whether it is true or not. like me, i am sure they didn't go over that part & rushed you through without reading that. Gold Crown Resort will just tell you they have nothing to do with the salespeople, so there is no recourse. when i filed on Better Business Bural, they would no longer let me on the web site until i retracted the complaint (which i never did) it took me 2 years going through PROFECA to get 25% of my money back. i feel really sorry this happened to you.

Lake Minnewawa, mn
posts: 2,746
89. Re: Scammed by Gold Crown Resort rep in Mazatlan

Well lets look at this.

You went on vacation and this character on the street offers a free breakfast and $200. or 300 hundred dollars and you decide we will scam them and take the goodies and not buy anything.

Then you find out who is the pro scammer and it isn't you and you are out thousands of dollars.

Now you want sympathy.

We have been going to Mazatlan for over twenty years, acted like adults , paid our own way, and need no sympathy because haven't tried to scam anyone nor have given them the opportunity to scam us.

Quite easy!

Edited: 11:12 pm, August 30, 2013
Mi Wuk Village...
posts: 1,602
90. Re: Scammed by Gold Crown Resort rep in Mazatlan

Oaker. To put it in Canadian...you are hosed. If you recover 10cents on the dollar it will be lucky. If you went along out of fear you should instead have started screaming for the police.

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