History & Achievements
Canada’s developers chose to purpose-build.
The first timeshare resorts in Canada were launched two decades ago. Their developers wisely avoided the limitations (that had marred the industry’s reputation elsewhere) of converting existing vacation accommodation into timeshare use. Instead, Canadian developers chose to create “purpose-built” timeshare resorts from the outset.
The industry soon dealt proficiently with the many complexities of operating within various different provincial jurisdictions, as well as addressing the concerns of local communities, environmental groups and other interested bodies dedicated to access and preservation.
Resort Timesharing’s Rapid Growth
In 1980, developers and industry consultants formed “The Resort Timesharing Council of Canada” (RTCC) as a not-for-profit national organization with lawyer Allan Rose serving as its first President. They chose to pool their knowledge to inform the media and the public what this new, highly beneficial and cost-effective form of vacationing was all about. Developers’ strong promotion and well-attended seminars soon set Canadian resort timesharing on a rapid growth pattern which continues to this day, effectively resulting in a compound increase in sales of approximately 15% annually.
RTCC Becomes CRDA
In 1991, RTCC changed its name to become The Canadian Resort Development Association (CRDA). The organization is governed by an elected Board of Directors and bi-annually elected Chairman. It is operated on a day-to-day basis by a full-time Executive Director who reports to the Board and the Members as a whole.
CRDA Helps to Raise International Awareness
In 1999, CRDA became one of the first signatories to GATE (The Global Alliance for Timeshare Excellence); a multi-national organization dedicated to establishing exemplary standards for the vacation ownership industry throughout the world. GATE members meet annually to discuss issues relevant to both their own countries and to the global industry as a whole.
Wide Support for Vacation Ownership Resorts
As the industry evolved, CRDA’s efforts began to take effect. Top developers, marketers, financial institutions, legal firms, consultants, specialists and suppliers to the industry were all enthusiastic supporters of CRDA’s goals of creating new, high quality resorts in prime vacation locations, complete with top recreational facilities the finest standard in accommodation.
Local communities also became very supportive when they realized vacation ownership’s ability to attract (and guarantee) a residual base of affluent annual vacationers to their resort areas.
CRDA Publications Spread Industry News
CRDA undertakes research surveys (such as the 2002 Ragatz Study) and publishes general facts about the industry, its many products, the roles of exchange companies and the substantial savings realized from the consumers’ prepayment of their future vacation accommodations. CRDA’s in-house publication, “The Resort Report”, keeps vacation owners abreast of worldwide tourism growth, statistics, changes offered in programs offered by the exchange companies and much more. CRDA members also distribute the publication as part of their ongoing service to their existing members/owners, and to attract new vacation owners.
CRDA’s Contributions to Public Reassurance
On a daily basis, CRDA fields enquiries from the public, consults to Government, responds to media and assists developers in getting their projects started on the right foot. It acts as a “clearing house” for industry personnel and developers, and it provides both new and established members with great opportunities to network at its seminars and national conferences.
Perhaps CRDA’s greatest contribution has been the development and enforcement of a strict Code of Standards and Ethics; a comprehensive set of guidelines that govern the conduct and practices of all CRDA members. Additionally, CRDA’s “Quality Assurance Gold Seal Program” provides a reassurance factor in the purchasing process that was widely approved (and has been subsequently adopted) by other countries.
CRDA also works closely with various government bodies in efforts to evolve a “level playing field” to benefit all resort developers, clubs, timeshares, points-based programs, fractionals and condo hotels across Canada.
CRDA’s initiation of a voluntary rescission program provides purchasers with ample time for reconsideration and cancellation of contractual undertakings without penalty, a measure that has since been embraced by various Provincial Governments as the optimum in consumer protection. As a result of CRDA’s proactive efforts in protecting the consumer, the media has become increasingly supportive of the Canadian Vacation Ownership industry.