Azure X & XP: What is it?

Azure Resorts is yet another of the infamous late Bob Trotta companies under the umbrella of Limora Group. The products sold were the same as those peddled by their sister company in Tenerife, Silverpoint. They operate out of the Golden Sands Resort in Malta and as we reported some time ago they laid off around 70 staff from their sales team. Since then they have launched new products Azure X and Azure XP. So what are these products?

Azure X is a new kind of membership product which uses a “digital leisure currency” called XP, this “currency” can according to Azure be used across all the leisure products offered by Azure. This according to Azure means that members do not have to purchase into each new product that they come up with.

They way they explain it is that weeks from any time of year or even accommodation units can be used across all the classes of their membership. In theory, this gives members access to boats, cars, motorhomes, lodges, cruising and hotels from their “ever-expanding portfolio”.

The duration of membership is 25 to 30 years, yet they claim it is also flexible. Apparently, members who decide to use more XP each year, the membership can be accelerated with the duration and end date being brought forward. They also claim that with Azure X you are in control. The question here is what about availability?

They also claim that members of other products who are happy with what they already have need not acquire Azure X membership. This product was not available to upgrade by members of other products without payment, yet they will accept trade-ins of previous products purchased as part payment.

Over the years we have seen many products similar to this such as Leisure Credits, Monster Credits and of course the original points systems, all have promised so much yet, in reality, they do not deliver on those promises.

As with all these “club memberships,” availability will always be a problem, there will always be more members than what is available on the inventory. To give an example, a resort using the traditional timeshare concept of fixed weeks and apartments, the resort is only able to sell 51 weeks in each apartment, once these are sold that is it, no more new members. By changing to these “virtual currency” systems they can increase their membership base. This is where we end up with that old scenario of “no availability”.

Azure are also still offering other products alongside Azure X & XP membership, these include timeshare weeks, fractional yacht ownership (Silverpoint also sold this product in Tenerife), UK lodges and UK lodges freehold. The last two we have seen as the Excel Lodges Participation Scheme which is very similar to the Company Participation Scheme sold by Silverpoint.

As with all these types of products, there will also be an annual cost, the dreaded maintenance fees, yet Azure does not mention this in their X magazine called WOW Living, which is sent out to all members.

As always, it will be some time before “members” realise they have not purchased what they were promised, then it will be too late!

If you have purchased Azure X or XP Inside Timeshare would like to hear from you and your experiences, use our contact page and get in touch.

Start the Week

Welcome to the start of another week with Inside Timeshare, it has been a rather quiet weekend with not many emails with the usual horror stories of scams and more scams with new names being added to the ever-growing list. At the end of Friday, the following news came in with the latest court cases for that week.

Once again Canarian Legal Alliance had a very successful week in the courts, they received 18 rulings in favour of their clients with 4 of these being firm sentences from the High Court.

To explain, a firm sentence from the High Court is where one party usually the timeshare resort has not accepted the ruling of the Court of First Instance and lodged an appeal with the High Court. The High Court can either reject the appeal and send it straight back for execution of sentence or it may hear the case and either confirm the sentence or overrule it. Due to the Supreme Court rulings, it is very unlikely that they will change the original sentence.

CLA Legal Team

Once again it was Anfi Sales SL and Anfi Resorts SL who had the highest tally of cases found against them with 13 in total. The cases placed before the courts were all the usual infringements, contracts with over 50 years in duration, floating weeks and points systems and not to forget the illegal taking of any payments within the statutory cooling-off period. Contracts were all declared null and void with a total of 689,117.15€ being returned to the happy clients.

Silverpoint came in second place with 3 victories for the clients, again the contracts were declared null and void with the usual variety of infringements, points, floating weeks, length of contracts and the taking of payments during the cooling-off period. In total, the courts awarded 240,687.12€ back to the clients.

Holiday Club Gran Canaria received yet another ruling declaring the contract null and void and the client being awarded 16,310.10€.

The last company is Regency Resorts and Tenelosa SL, with the court’s ruling that the contract is illegal and declaring it null and void, the lucky clients, in this case, will now receive 29,877.15€.

These cases do show that the courts are consistently ruling in favour of the clients and following the rulings laid down by the Supreme Court in the 130 cases which they have heard over the past few years. This should leave clients and timeshare operators that the courts will uphold the law and protect consumers from the type of illegal contracts which have been sold for many years.

Moving on from the courts, it has been noticed that mindtimeshare has not been very active recently, the last post they published is dated 14 November 2019. Now considering that they tended to post on an almost daily basis this lack of articles is very noticeable and we find it to be very unusual.

Could it be that they are now so low on funding that the staff have been laid off?

It was a very rough ride for that particular blog site especially when Alberto Garcia was disgraced, having to resign his role as director and then they lost all their funding from the RDO (Resorts Development Organisation).

So could this be the last of mindtimeshare, only time will tell?

It has also been noticed that the TCA (Timeshare Consumer Association) has improved the articles they are publishing, obviously, this is due to the fact that ECC has now taken control from Mark Rowe.

Under Rowe’s control, the TCA lost all credibility and it became just a wagon to promote his own companies, that is not what the TCA was intended to do when the late Sandy Grey began operating many years ago. It does look as though under the ECC we will see this publication going back to its roots and providing consumers with genuine facts and information. Inside Timeshare welcomes this change and hopes to collaborate with them in identifying the growing number of scam companies.

That’s all for today if you would like further information on your timeshare, whether you have a valid claim, just want to know how to get out or would like to know if a company is genuine then please use our contact page and Inside Timeshare will get back to you.

SPS Claims Ltd: Yet Another New Claims Company

It is the end of another week and Inside Timeshare has received further information on SPS Claims Consultants Limited which was the subject of the article published on 3 February. In an email received, one concerned reader has explained that her parents-in-law are in a similar situation as the one reported in the previous article, yet now they have been contacted by another “company” called SPS Claims Ltd requiring even more money to secure their claim.

On searching for information on SPS Claims and SPS Claims Consultants we have two other companies, SPS Consultants Ltd, registered at the same address as SPS Claims Consultants Ltd, with the same directors, Stephen Saunders and Donna Teresa McCafferty. This company is now dissolved.

The second is SPS Properties (Nottingham) Limited, again this company is now dissolved, it was also linked to SPS Consultants and SPS Properties and Consultants all offering “claims and relinquishment” services.

This is certainly looking like these companies are linked together and may possibly be under the same controlling mind.

Now SPS Claims Ltd is registered at Company House, it was incorporated on 17 July 2019, Company Registration 12107246. The named director is Kris Malcolm Cobb, but that doesn’t mean he is the owner of the business.

Address: 

Units 8 & 9 Parsons Court Welbury Way  Aycliffe Business Park Newton Aycliffe  Durham England DL5 6ZE

Our reader has explained that her parents-in-law have a claim in Tenerife and have been assigned a lawyer, the call from SPS Claims Ltd seemed to know all about this and have asked for a very substantial amount of money to secure their claim or they would lose it. The reason is that the timeshare company is in liquidation and it would seem that clients need to register with the administrator and the courts.

Our reader decided to contact an independent lawyer in Tenerife for advice after reading our first article, the news was not what you can call inspiring confidence in the demand for more money.

This is an extract from our reader’s email:

“We heard back from them today and we are shocked by their findings.”

“Firstly, after reviewing the timeshare lawyer’s paperwork they confirmed that he is a registered lawyer so that came as a relief, however this was the only good news.”

“Given the amount my in-laws have already paid to SPS and the lawyer for their compensation claim, they are astonished by the amount they are requesting to secure their claim given this should be covered in the fee they have already paid.”

“These lawyers are aware of the timeshare company they are pursuing for compensation and they have confirmed that they are in the hands of the administrator and all the appointed lawyer has to do is to present their case to administrator for no extra fee as they have already paid the lawyer to cover all aspects of their compensation claim which allows for these circumstances.”

The independent lawyer also asked if SPS Claims Ltd has sent an invoice or even confirmation from the lawyer or the courthouse requesting the extra amount, this is a massive £10,000!

The answer was just as you would suspect, no invoice or confirmation from the lawyer or the court has been received, the payment was requested by SPS Claims Ltd.

The independent lawyer advised that no lawyer would charge such an “extortionate” extra fee for something that should be included in their original case, he also advised that if their case lawyer did not present their case to the administrator, they would be able to sue for negligence.

Needless to say, our reader’s in-laws will not be paying any further fees to this company, this story does go to show how important it is to get the correct information and advice. This case certainly looks like SPS Claims Ltd are just out to grab as much money from unsuspecting and vulnerable timeshare owners. It also now begs the question if the lawyers contracted by these types of companies are actually aware of what is going on behind the scenes between the client and the company?

If you have had any dealings with this or any other company regarding your timeshare claim or relinquishment and are concerned that they may not be genuine in what they are asking for, then please use our contact page and Inside Timeshare will get back to you.

Have a great weekend.