View Full Version : Non-Smoking Rms at Sheraton Vistana

08-13-2004, 09:37 AM
I was told when I requested a Non-Smoking room through the Diamond Lane, that they do not have units designated as non-smoking. I was shocked! Has anyone had problems with their rooms being smokey? We also could not get into the Cascades or Fountain sections, so we are concerned we are going to get into an old smokey room.

Wishing on a star
08-13-2004, 10:20 AM

We have the same concerns!!!
I think it is standard procedure to tell exchanges that they have no availability in the Cascades and Lakes. We have been told that already, and our trip is not until the first week of May next year. :rolleyes: They probably do keep these units available for actual Vistana Owners. But, I have also heard of time-share exchanges who are placed in Cascades or Lakes. Also, while the other sections are older. I understand that there are units that have been renovated and that are nice.

What I have been told specificly, by Starwood (The company that runs the Sheraton resorts), is that, while they do not have NON-Smoking units, they may be able to provide you with a unit with heavy duty filters. I have heard this from others reviews as well. I think if you make a big, but very nice and polite, point that you need a non smoking room, they may even place a special system in the unit prior to your arrival. They may also be able to do a more thorough cleaning job.

Also, be aware that the bed-covers are not changed every time like the sheets are. Perhaps you could request that they bring you some freshly laundered bedcovers. I think that would really help with any of that lingering smoke odor. You would at least want your bed to smell fresh.

Perhaps you could call personally, or contact diamond-lane again online, and make these specific requests.

Keep your fingers crossed... that is what I am doing!

Good luck!

08-13-2004, 11:01 AM
We just returned from the Vistana Resort (stayed in Falls section ). I HATE smoke. We had a unit that did not have any unpleasant smells. I always pull the comforter off the beds as soon as we go into any hotel room or timeshare we have ever rented. (I put them in the closet for the duration of the stay). I also check the condition of the sheets and blankets (pet peeve of mine). I noticed a stain on one of the sheets on one of the beds in the 2nd bedroom this stay and called housekeeping. They come over within the hour to change the sheets/blankets and were very apologetic. (They also checked all the other beds while they were there - they were fine). I asked for and received new pillows. Some were brand new - still in the plastic. Very nice of the Vistana staff. I think if you are nice to the staff and report any problems, they will take care of things quickly. (Our ice maker also didn't work. Someone brought over a bag of ice within a half hour of our call. Engineering fixed the ice maker a couple of hours later.)

Wishing on a star
08-13-2004, 12:55 PM
Thanks ttfn3 !

I appreciate your info! Have the units in the Falls been renovated any time recently? What did you think of your unit in Falls... The Falls area in general. I hear the FALLS pool is a kids favorite!

We have a Saturday Check-in... They have the resort set up so that some buildings in each section are on the Saturday rotation... Except for the ENTIRE courts section is saturday. I am thinking that it would be better to be most anywhere else than courts! They are the oldest, with no ponds or anything.

I hate to admit it, but I am not an Easy Traveler... If I get a yucky unit, old saggy bed, etc.. It will really put a big damper on our trip! With my bad back and my allergies, To much mold, dust-mites, etc.. and I could really be affected and become sick. Lack of sleep with my back hurting due to a saggy old mattress could also be a big factor.

Please do PM me if you have any tips or information that might help.


08-14-2004, 11:46 AM
Wishing on a Star
The Courts section is the oldest but has been redone and is wonderful. We liked our unit in Courts 2 years ago better than the one we had this year in Cascades. I would be most concerned about having a unit in Fountains or in Springs, after having walked around the entire resort. Courts is in the middle of everything-a great location. Don't worry yet about getting in Courts.
As for non-smoking, I've never seen any signs of smokers in any unit we've ever been in. Never smelled anything, seen burn holes, ash trays, etc. Nothing that would signal a smoker had been there and we've stayed at the Vistana 3 times. These units are immaculate and housekeeping is excellent.
As for dust, I've got severe allergies too, and have never had a problem in the Vistana, in any of the units. Like I said before, housekeeping is excellent and the units are immaculate. My mom and stepdad both have bad backs and had no problems in any of the units, even on the sofa bed in Courts.

08-14-2004, 07:01 PM
we've stayed several times at the Vistana -- we request Springs, which we really love, because the units are so big and "sturdy" in construction, and the landscaping is mature. We request a second foor unit on a pond, rather than facing the pool, and had our own little botanic garden right off the deck.

My DS has SEVERE asthma, and when I've registered for Diamond Lane I've both called and put it into writing that we need it specially cleaned and "O-Zoned" (a big air cleaner that takes 8 hours or so to "turn over" the air).

Even the scent of smoke on draperies can send him to the ER, so I was very nervous the first time we went. We had NO discernable smoke odors at all. I wasn't really sure they actually did the special prep, but last year we were scheduled for 2 weeks. They had screwed up and put us in 2 different units, meaning we would have to move mid-stay. We refused to do that, and requested they find a unit we could stay in for both weeks. The diamond lane person did, but was very worried because the new unit would not have been specially cleaned. We told her we would put our stuff in, then leave so they could O-zone it, but amazingly even with normal cleaning there was no smoke smell.

One advantage to Diamond Lane, the times we've been there, is that often this person is a better english speaker than some of the other clerks, and can help confirm that you have what you need.

I do think that pressure ought to be put to bear on Sheraton to convert some of the units over to dedicated nonsmoking. I called and spoke to the them about this, and got "corporate doublespeak" about not being able to force owners to be nonsmoking who had purchased thinking they could smoke.

08-14-2004, 09:18 PM
I feel much better now. Thank you for everyone who has responded. I was really worried before that I'd be spending a week in a smelly mess, listening to my family complain. Now I'll just have to listen to them complain about something else, like the heat and sore feet!

Wishing on a star
08-15-2004, 05:29 PM
Well, I just looked at my confirmation from RCI... And, while I do not know if this is written in stone, it says that we are in COURTS unit number 4. I can just see it now. The oldest buildings in the whole place.. no nice ponds or gazebos or anything at courts. -sigh- I had looked forward to being able to step outside with DS and maybe he could feed the ducks, etc.

I am telling myself that I should just be happy to be there, but I have heard too many horror stories about these older units, with their circa-1970 garish, outdated, decor. I am just completely disappointed.

Hey, Monarchsfan... was the unit you had in Courts a 2 bedroom Loft unit. I am wondering if the second bedroom is completely enclosed, or is it an open loft area. Does Courts at least have a lot of mature trees and landscaping?

I would be happy if anyone here who has stayed at Vistana recently could PM me with more information. I am trying to decide if I should start trying to request to change our location. Very interesting that one says to avoid Springs while one requests Springs???


08-15-2004, 07:57 PM
Wishing on a Star:
unless I'm mistaken, the Courts units do not have jacuzzi's.

Also unless I'm wrong, I think the lofts are at least semi-open.

If your DS is younger, you might write expressing a safety concern and request being assigned to another unit. If you'd be satisfied in one of the "older" units on the "old" side of the development ) (everything but cascades, fountains, and lakes) I think there'd be a good chance they'd locate something for you. Again, we appreciate Springs, which has a retro turquoise/peach thing going because we've found it perfectly adequate for our needs, and the master bath is big enough to live in. again, as I said, if you get a "pondview". Springs is the newest of the older units. I've heard that Falls and Spas are also nice, and they are close to some of the pools.

You might ask the other poster what they don't like about Springs. The carpet might be a bit spotty and they're not earthtone. Most of the objections I've read are that they are less "plush". My view of Cascades, which is counter most people, is that they look more lush, but the walls are thinner, the units are smaller, and they are stacked 5 high rather than the 3 story of the older units. So my preference is to go for the space and landscaping and then to deal with housekeeping/maintenance if something needs to be addressed (and on the last visit we did have to call when a cupboard door fell off and the time before for a cleaning of a large spot on the rug). Both concerns were attended within an hour. Feel free to email or PM me with any other questions from my POV.

08-30-2004, 10:52 PM
We stayed in the Fountain section, and the room was not smelly. Housekeeping was a joke, as it took them 8 hours and 3 telephone calls to bring pillows and a mattress cover for the sofa bed to our room. Also, the midweek maid service was a waste. I'm not sure they even gave us fresh towels. They were smelly, so I went ahead and washed them again, just in case.

I can't figure out why people pay so much extra for this resort. Our unit was large and had been remodeled (I think), but after staying at Cypress Pointe GV last year, I think they are equivalent. The master bathroom at Cypress was much nicer, but the 2nd bedroom was larger and had a TV in Vistana. Also, the room was much noisier at Vistana. Everytime the people upstairs walked, our pictures and ceiling fan rattled.

I liked the resort, but I got it on skyauction for 325.00 for the week. Dollar for dollar, I don't know which resort (Cypress or Vistana) I would choose next time. The Vistana pool with the slide was downright dumpy. I was afraid to even get into it. It took me three days to get brave enough to try another pool with the kids. The Cascade pool was much nicer.

08-31-2004, 09:15 AM
I'm sorry you didn't have a great stay at the Vistana. The Fountains section is one of the older ones and is one of the worst from everything I have read. It is unfortunate that you were put there; not all of the sections are like that.

08-31-2004, 09:58 AM
:bounce: Hi stayed at Vistana last two years and have 4 weeks booked this year 2005 in Feb. Have always stayed in Lakes on Sat to Sat (I request it) Once I did stay in Fountains and it was showing some wear but it was sheduled to be redone that year. Never had problems of 3MGIRLS. Very surprised as always found staff very helpful. Also not sure why she went to slide pool (unless with kids as it is only one with slide) as the Fountains pool is one of the nicest at resort (next to Cascades) in our opinion. I also have asthma and can't take smokey rooms. What ever they use to disinfect and clean with is great as I have never had any odours.

Don't worry in my opinion it is still one of the best in area.

Wishing on a star
08-31-2004, 10:52 AM
Thanks Iluvflorida!

There are indeed buildings at Lakes which are designated for Saturday checkin. But they do seem harder to get. You have been lucky!

I have read both good and bad reviews of Fountains. There is Fountains I and Fountains II. Nobody ever seems to mention which one??? I am thinking that perhaps one of the Fountains have been remodeled, as mentioned... and the the other has not?

I plan on arriving early before all the units have been checked in, and viewing our unit right away before we even carry up the first bag. The last trip we were on, we arrived in the evening and then had to really run to make our dinner plans.... The hotel had put us in one of the rooms without a balcony. (most had them.) And, of course the windows do not open. Well, we LOVE having a balcony. I just HAVE to have my fresh air. And, it is like having twice the space for DS. (I would much rather have him playing and watcing everything going on outside than cooped up in the room jumping on the bed!!! ;) ) If balconies are available, that is a real must for us. If I had been smart, I would have switched rooms first thing the next morning. But once you are checked in and moved in, that is difficult!