If you are ever in Westfield Fox Valley Mall in Aurora, Illinois you will see advertisements for "winning" a new car. If you fail to take the time to read the fine print on the back you will not notice that you are not entering to win a car, you are entering to be cold called for a timeshare at Silverleaf in Fox River Resort, located in Sheridan, Illinois (yes it's in the middle of nowhere, west of Chicago).
So we were notified we were selected to listen to a 90 minute talk about this timeshare. We were told that we also had some other prizes we won. One was a $90 gift card which never worked when we tried to activate it. Two was a trip for two to Las Vegas which we never heard back from when we sent in the notification card. Three was a 3 day/4 night trip to Florida, which amazingly we also never heard back from after sending in the registration card. The fourth gift was a scratch off card for our chance to win a car. Of course we never won, I wonder if anyone ever does.
So, even with their scam of a marketing ploy to get us to drive up to Sheridan we found out after buying that we were lied to on MANY fronts. One, we were shown presidential suites instead of the regular suites which we were put in to. The presidential suites are brand new, have the nice HDTV televisions and nice accomadations (look on their website and you will see what I mean) while every single one of the regular suites have had worn carpeting, puke on the floor and infested with bugs every time we went.
Now we bought not because we wanted to go to the local Chicago resort. We were told we could go to any of the resorts as long as they had one of our regular suites open, thought we couldn't go to the presidential suites until after the our first year was up and we could upgrade. The first year we spent our "free" week at a nice resort in Branson, now we are being told that was a one-time thing only and that we can't go to any of the "destination" resorts, this cuts the number of available resorts from 14 down to 7. And of those 7, only 3 are within 12 hours driving time of Chicago. The rest are in Texas, Colorado and Florida all of which are 18-20 hours driving time.
To make matters worse, the local resort amenities we were lied to about. We were told there was horseback riding included, but then came to find out it was going to cost per hour and had limited trail times. We were told there were video rentals included, but that was also a lie because rentals are only included with the presidential rooms. They claim to have WiFi, but only in the clubhouse, NOT in any of the rooms. They keep saying they are going to add it but haven't. We were told they were expanding the resort to include a full size golf course instead of just the 5 holes of par 3 play. The only redeeming fact is that they did honor their "free" days Monday-Thursday.
That was the only reason we opted in to the program, we kept trying to end the conversation but the "high pressure" salesman kept pushing and pushing. The 90 minute talk took 4 hours including a tour of rooms and amenities we were told were included but weren't. Figured that for 4 free days each week it was worth it, even if we didn't like the local resort. Though it would have been nice to be able to go to Branson instead.
So basically we have a getaway resort that costs us $50 a month in maintenance. We can pay to go horseback riding in season, they have indoor and outdoor pools, minigolf, par 3 golf course of 5 holes and a small lake with canoe rentals and fishing, they also have a small indoor movie theatre with new'ish rentals playing during the day. Weekends cost us $50 a night.