Remarkably convenient property, completely betrayed by the conflict of running a timeshare/fractional ownership property as a hotel.
Basically, Marriott's hotel room reservation system is incompatible with the unit-specific scheduling demands of a timeshare operation. Meaning, you may have to move from room to room during your stay.
The lodging is a relatively newly-built property that is essentially connected to the Gondola at Heavenly Village: Rental shops and ski school check-in is essentially downstairs, with the Gondola station 10 yards away. Furnishings are well-kept, the full-size kitchen is great for families, and the staff are friendly and professional. Comfy beds and nice mid-grade sheets.
But all of that may be for naught, as we discovered during a peak ski weekend: Upon check-in, we were told that our 3-night stay would be broken up into two different rooms. Why? Because owner A of the first unit is scheduled to use the unit after the first night, and the second unit doesn't become available until tomorrow, because owner B is still in there. Please have your things packed and leave them with the bell captain when you go skiing tomorrow morning, and you can unpack them in the second room after 4pm check-in tomorrow.
Maybe this is a minor inconvenience for a lightly-packed trip to a tourist city, where you might be outside from 9am-5pm anyway.
At a ski resort, where you may have paid the premium to stay close to the village, so maybe the small kids in the family can wrap up skiing early and come home, right after lunch, this is a disaster.
If you have babies small enough to need naps mid-day, in a warm place, this is a disaster.
And, if you were looking to place a weekend's worth of keep-cold foods in the refrigerator, this is a disaster.
The front-desk staff was friendly and sympathetic, but completely hamstrung at the lack of continuous room availability. And thus, unable to help this shocked family. We both nervously smiled at each other and each recognized that "Well, during peak periods, these things happen."
In our particular case the situation was resolved when owner A chose to cancel at the last minute. Thanks, I guess, but I think we just got extraordinarily lucky and dodged a bullet.
But even the possibility of such things happening on a regular basis, has me forever avoiding reserving this property through the Marriott website, and warning others to do the same. Instead, seek VRBO sites like HeavenlyVillageCondos, which feature reservation engines that display continuous availability for specific rooms.
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- Also Known As:
- Marriott Grand Residence Club Tahoe Hotel South Lake Tahoe
- Marriott Lake Tahoe
- Lake Tahoe Marriott