March 13, 2019 | Gary Feldman Group

Insider's Guide to Private Residence Clubs in the Aspen Market

At the Gary Feldman Group at Aspen Snowmass Sotheby’s International Realty, we have strong connections with some of Aspen’s foremost experts. Below is Gary Feldman’s Q&A with Amy Feldman, associate partner with the Gary Feldman Group, who specializes in private residence clubs, and works out of The Timbers Club in Snowmass under the Aspen Snowmass Sotheby’s International Realty banner. Amy gives her industry insider’s views regarding private residence clubs in the Aspen market:
 
1.  What is a fractional property, as opposed to a whole-ownership property?
 
Today’s fractional properties are deeded and have evolved from the old timeshare model that provided a license to use a fixed time period annually. Private residence clubs (PRCs) are the highest, most luxurious form of fractional property. PRCs offer shared/deeded ownership in luxury properties and are intended for owners who can only spend a limited time in the desired resort location. The concept is: “Why not pay only for what you use”? Typically, PRCs are in enviable locations, offer 5-star amenities and service, and provide maintenance-free (or headache-free) vacations.   
 
2. Why is it a common trend with luxury buyers in the Aspen/Snowmass area to purchase fractions of multiple vacation homes in PRCs, rather than a single vacation home?
 
Owning multiple PRCs in locations such as ski, golf, or beach resort areas ensures an owner a diverse vacation portfolio and luxury experiences, which they would not have by owning a single vacation home. This buying trend is featured in The Wall Street Journal article “These wealthy nomads are buying fractions of several high-end homes,” which THE REAL DEAL shared on Dec. 26, 2018.
 
3. What type of reciprocity do PRCs offer?
 
Some PRCs offer the opportunity to trade with owners from sister or developer-related properties. Others allow a certain number of owner weeks to be given or traded with friends who might have a second home in another resort destination.
 
4. What is the average time period per year that PRC owners spend at their vacation property?
 
While fractions vary from as little as 1/12 to as large as 1/4, the most common is a 1/8 that affords the owner six weeks’ usage each year. At many PRCs, there is no limit to the use, except for availability and the owner is not charged for the extra usage. A nominal housekeeping fee is typically the only associated cost for extra usage.
 
5. How does a buyer calculate if purchasing a fractional property/properties or year-round property at a private residence club is a smart financial decision?
 
Ownership in a PRC is an investment in a lifestyle; not necessarily a financial investment. A buyer will typically weigh the pros/cons of having a whole ownership home sit vacant for a majority of the year and tying up capital for so little use versus a much smaller investment to use only what they need. It’s the premise of paying for only what you use.
 
6. Are the number of PRCs/luxury fractionals increasing?
 
PRCs continue to pop up in new and different locations, offering wider experiential opportunities. The first PRCs were primarily in the U.S. and in resort locations. Now, you can find private residence clubs throughout the world and in major cities.
 
7. Why purchase an interest at The Timbers Club at Snowmass?
 
The Timbers Club offers the best ski-in/out location on Snowmass Mountain, combined with the renowned service and amenities of a 5-star resort. With a $6 million renovation in 2018 out of reserves, the Club is brand-new and the longtime staff members provide a warm welcome each time an owner returns to their vacation “home.” Staff members remember and recognize owner birthdays, anniversaries, and other special occasions. They know owners’ favorite ski instructors, tables at restaurants, and wines upon arrival.
 
Previously, as a senior sales executive for Timbers Resorts for 12 years, Amy helped sell out The Timbers Club in Snowmass in a record two years from date opening. She went on to sell the company’s crown jewel, Castello di Casole, in Tuscany, which has been anointed with numerous awards, including the No. 1 resort in Europe several years in a row.
 
 
If you or anyone you know is interested in learning more about fractional ownership, contact Amy at 970.948.1046 or afeldmanzg@gmail.com. The year-round Aspen lifestyle ― as well as fractional ownership at luxury properties throughout the world ― is not to be missed.  

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