Inspirato

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Old Mar 19, 13, 1:58 pm
  #1  
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Inspirato

Just received a mailer from Amex inviting me to join Inspirato and pay no initiation fee ($17,500 savings), annual membership fee of $2600 ($400 discount) and one annual guest pass each year ($5000 savings). I have no idea what this is and whether it's worth it or not, or what a guest pass is. Anyone else have a clue?
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Old Mar 19, 13, 2:00 pm
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mia
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Have you looked here?

http://www.inspirato.com/
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Old Mar 19, 13, 2:08 pm
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Originally Posted by mia View Post
Have you looked here?

http://www.inspirato.com/
I did, and I figured it out it was some sort of destination club. I also looked through older FT threads about the company, and came up pretty empty-handed.

I guess I'm trying to figure out what the $2600 annual fee gets.
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Old Mar 19, 13, 2:15 pm
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mia
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Originally Posted by bangkokiscool View Post
I guess I'm trying to figure out what the $2600 annual fee gets.
While saving money is not the primary reason for joining Inspirato, our members enjoy significant savings through our members-only nightly rates when vacationing at our Signature Residences. You get it all with the refined, personal services that make Inspirato vacations truly outstanding. Plus, with Jaunt - our drop-everything-and-go, short notice travel program - members get access to outstanding Inspirato Signature Residences for as little as $295 a night.
http://www.inspirato.com/club-benefits
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Old Mar 20, 13, 4:39 pm
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Inspirato is a luxury destination club, founded by the same people who founded Exclusive Resorts, another LDC. Exclusive Resorts, in turn, created a second destination club called Portico. I'm currently a member of ER and Portico.

Explaining how these clubs work would take up more space than I'd care to devote, but they're a pool of homes in vacation destinations that the members share. Sometimes the destination club owns the homes, sometimes it leases them. A guest pass means that someone besides yourself can have one-time access to one of the homes.

Most luxury destination clubs went bankrupt in the housing crisis, leaving their members high and dry (and minus their sizable refundable deposits). Exclusive Resorts was one of the few that weathered the storm-- partly because they were the most expensive-- and Portico and Inspirato were formed after the housing crisis as a less expensive alternative.

Interesting sidenote: Exclusive Resorts is the only company I know of other than AmEx to offer its customers substantial annual Delta MQMs without flying. The company also offers annual United EQMs. Of course, you have to afford to join the club in the first place.
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Old Mar 20, 13, 7:09 pm
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Interesting, I was considering a membership with Inspirato last year, to include paying that initiation fee. Went through a long sales process with them. They had really nice homes in 2 places we were going over the next 12 months which made it (almost...) feasible. But minus the initiation fee I would be very interested, was it a generic offer or targeted? Do you know how you qualified?
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Old Mar 20, 13, 7:25 pm
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The letter said "In celebration of our new partnership, enjoy an exclusive offer for select American Express Cardmembers. Join Inspirato by April 12, 2013 and pay No Initiation Fee."

I assume it was for Plat cardholders but maybe it's more targeted than that?
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Old Mar 21, 13, 11:30 pm
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they are a rental broker
if you are happy finding rentals yourself, there is unlikely any added value

portico is different because it includes some properties owned by ER they couldnt sell (yet?)
there are two destination clubs that are equity with no debt - luxus in canada and rocksure in europe
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Old Mar 23, 13, 10:19 am
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Originally Posted by bangkokiscool View Post
Just received a mailer from Amex inviting me to join Inspirato and pay no initiation fee ($17,500 savings), annual membership fee of $2600 ($400 discount) and one annual guest pass each year ($5000 savings). I have no idea what this is and whether it's worth it or not, or what a guest pass is. Anyone else have a clue?
I went through the Inspirato shpeel & honestly, I find better rates on VRBO for properties that may not be the exact caliber but are very fine in every way. I did not see the value in any membership that has upfront fees PLUS fees per stay. I could see if if they were exclusive Inspirato owned properties, but this is not the case.
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Old Mar 23, 13, 10:20 am
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I hope there is someone from Amex social media monitoring this forum. Mods, if not, and you have contacts, let them see what I am about to say.

All, sorry for the following rant (but if you can't rant on the internet, where can you?).

Inspirato is a destination vacation club as noted above. You buy in, and can rent multiple homes worldwide for your annual fee plus a nightly fee as well). For those of us who travel a lot and want to take our families with us worldwide, it seems like a pretty interesting idea.

I am a US Centurion (for about 8 years) with an annual spend of nearly 200K of which 75% is worldwide travel.

Like many Centurion members, I am concerned over the reduction of benefits (the loss of Continental, whose business class transcontinental service I relied on for years, really hurt, and the pending AA merger with US has me concerned as well). For me, the only reason to keep Centurion is for the travel benefits.

Inspirato has been bugging me for about 2 years to join, but I am put off by the initiation fee of $17,500--I would pay it, but my wife definitely put the kibosh on it. So imagine my delight when I heard that Inspirato was partnering with Amex. Adding an Inspirato benefit to Centurion would be a very natural fit and add value to our membership.

So now on this forum I find out that "targeted" invitations to Inspirato, waiving the annual fee, are going out to various Platinum and (potentially) Centurion members. If someone should be targeted by Amex marketing for this, I fit the profile perfectly.

So I call Inspirato two days ago (in response to yet another email bugging me to join), and tell them about the promotion. They say "it's in Amex marketing hands, we can't do anything about it."

So I call Centurion. After getting shunted around for a day or so, I send an email to their website. This results in a call this AM, where basically they say that "the offer is targeted" and offer nothing.

I am fine with targeted offers, and I don't expect to get every one of them. However, something is wrong when someone who fits the targeted profile perfectly, wants to join if given a benefit, and will spend lots on his Amex Centurion card at Inspirato homes, is blown off in this manner.

Hopefully someone in Amex Centurion will figure out that the easy way to piss a lot of us off (and have us take our spending to Chase or other competitors) is to keep reducing our benefits, and not offering obvious ones like some sort of Inspirato benefit to Centurion (and perhaps Platinum) members.

Sorry for the rant.
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Old Mar 23, 13, 10:40 am
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Originally Posted by PittAir View Post
I hope there is someone from Amex social media monitoring this forum. Mods, if not, and you have contacts, let them see what I am about to say.

All, sorry for the following rant (but if you can't rant on the internet, where can you?).

Inspirato is a destination vacation club as noted above. You buy in, and can rent multiple homes worldwide for your annual fee plus a nightly fee as well). For those of us who travel a lot and want to take our families with us worldwide, it seems like a pretty interesting idea.

I am a US Centurion (for about 8 years) with an annual spend of nearly 200K of which 75% is worldwide travel.

Like many Centurion members, I am concerned over the reduction of benefits (the loss of Continental, whose business class transcontinental service I relied on for years, really hurt, and the pending AA merger with US has me concerned as well). For me, the only reason to keep Centurion is for the travel benefits.

Inspirato has been bugging me for about 2 years to join, but I am put off by the initiation fee of $17,500--I would pay it, but my wife definitely put the kibosh on it. So imagine my delight when I heard that Inspirato was partnering with Amex. Adding an Inspirato benefit to Centurion would be a very natural fit and add value to our membership.

So now on this forum I find out that "targeted" invitations to Inspirato, waiving the annual fee, are going out to various Platinum and (potentially) Centurion members. If someone should be targeted by Amex marketing for this, I fit the profile perfectly.

So I call Inspirato two days ago (in response to yet another email bugging me to join), and tell them about the promotion. They say "it's in Amex marketing hands, we can't do anything about it."

So I call Centurion. After getting shunted around for a day or so, I send an email to their website. This results in a call this AM, where basically they say that "the offer is targeted" and offer nothing.

I am fine with targeted offers, and I don't expect to get every one of them. However, something is wrong when someone who fits the targeted profile perfectly, wants to join if given a benefit, and will spend lots on his Amex Centurion card at Inspirato homes, is blown off in this manner.

Hopefully someone in Amex Centurion will figure out that the easy way to piss a lot of us off (and have us take our spending to Chase or other competitors) is to keep reducing our benefits, and not offering obvious ones like some sort of Inspirato benefit to Centurion (and perhaps Platinum) members.

Sorry for the rant.
I travel much too, and have been a Cent for about 8 years also. VRBO is a much better value for family travel without the front end fees. IMHO Also, I have a larger family(7), we usually look for a three or four bedroom place. VRBO rates are significantly less than Inspirato for comparable properties. I just confirmed this by checking destinations on seven mile beach in GCM.
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Old Mar 25, 13, 10:29 am
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I just got the mailer, but it offered me only $2,500 off the $17,500 initiation fee and no other benefits. I have the Gold card. Anyone seriously considering this offer should probably see if they can get a better offer by upgrading to Plat or even Cent.
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Old Mar 25, 13, 1:22 pm
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My platinum card's (it says on the Inspirato mailer "special offer inside for select platinum card holders") offer was for $2500 off initiation and $400 off annual fee of $3k. Spent about $260k on Amex last year (between platinum card and Hilton Surpass card).

Last edited by r.brown; Mar 25, 13 at 1:29 pm
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Old Mar 26, 13, 12:05 pm
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Hi Bangkokiscool -

First of all yes, Bangkok is cool (but I liked Krabi more

Secondly, great discussion....have you considered using companys that don't charge membership fees? I don't see why you guys need to pay a membership for a quality luxury villa, just seems like a waste of cash. I'd rather spend it on beers, but hey, that's just me.

Jazz
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Old Mar 26, 13, 7:28 pm
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PittAir, great email. Like I said, I've been thinking about Inspirato as well, no mailing for me either. But, I booked an amazing 8-bedroom villa in Costa Rica for the extended family last November, on my own - and as this becomes easier the Inspirato value proposition will continue to decline. I'm kind of hoping they don't call me...
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