Napa, CA – May 2008 – Expedia® travelers have ranked Shell Vacations’ Vino Bello Resort® in the Napa Valley as number five among the world’s best hotels on this year’s Expedia Insiders’ Select™ list. Currently in its second year, the list formally recognizes individual hotels worldwide that consistently deliver excellent service, a great overall experience and a notable value. The full list represents about one percent of the nearly 80,000 hotel properties offered on Expedia and will remain in effect for a full year.
“Delivering our guests superior service is a top priority at the Vino Bello Resort®, as well as at all of the properties we manage,” said Tracy Sherles, President of Shell Vacations LLC. “We are delighted that our continuous efforts at Vino Bello have been acknowledged by Expedia travelers and we look forward to extending our high level of service to even more guests.”
Expedia has collected the insights of more travelers than any other online travel agency in the world. Drawing on Expedia’s hundreds of thousands of Traveler Opinions, combined with a value rating and the local market expertise of more than 400 Expedia employees, Expedia Insiders’ Select™ is a list that provides travelers with a powerful way to find the perfect hotel using the trusted insight of other travelers. The list showcases a diverse selection of travel destinations and hotel properties.
Developed as a vacation ownership property by Northbrook, Illinois-based Shell Vacations, the Vino Bello Resort first opened in 2006, representing the culmination of nearly 40 years of extensive development knowledge. Of Shell Vacations’ 23 resorts Vino Bello is the most expensive property the company has built on a per-suite basis. Vino Bello is the masculine version of the Italian words “beautiful wine”. The property will soon begin its second phase of development. Upon completion in 2009, there will be a total of 182 guest suites available.
Expedia guests are the result of an extensive rental program created on behalf of the developer and Shell Vacations Club (SVC), the company’s points-based vacation ownership club. The rental program is totally facilitated and administered by Shell Vacations Hospitality, responsible for all marketing and room night generation. Expedia is one of the key distribution channels for the company.
“As more and more timeshare companies realize the importance of rental programs,” says Susan Kelley, President of Shell Vacations Hospitality, “strong web-based marketing is as important in the timeshare industry as it is with traditional hotels and resorts due to the tremendous volume of travel transactions taking place online.”
According to Karen Johnson, Vice President of Sales & Marketing for Shell Vacations Hospitality, “The Expedia award proves that a well balanced approach to multiple online distribution channels positively impacts the company’s marketing and distribution efforts.” Located in the midst of California’s wine country in Napa Valley, the Vino Bello Resort is considered Shell Vacations’ flagship property, currently offering 116 guest suites. Each accommodation is appointed with custom-designed furnishings complete with fireplaces, flat-panel wall-mounted TVs, a CD/DVD player and luxurious bedding. Modern, contemporary kitchens are equipped with granite countertops and stainless steel appliances. Master bedrooms include jetted-tubs and private balconies feature a variety of views with some overlooking a growing vineyard on the property. Guests can enjoy a state-of-the-art exercise facility, swimming pool, whirlpool and a children’s water spray playground, which is especially popular with families.
Each guest room displays both originals and reproductions of artwork commissioned by local artists. Original artwork from many other local artists is on display throughout Vino Bello, including small galleries at each building entrance, showcasing new art collections on a regular rotation.
Reminisces Shell Vacations CEO Sheldon Ginsburg, “As far back as I can remember, I have always loved the wine country. When I lived in northern California in the early 90s, I was there every other weekend. I loved the beauty of the rolling hills and the entire atmosphere of the area. I envisioned having one of the finest timeshare resorts in the wine country and sharing that special feeling with our owners and guests. With Expedia travelers honoring us as one of the nation’s top resorts, clearly we have achieved our goal.”
Vino Bello shares its eight-acre property with a neighboring hotel, where guests enjoy access to Spa Terra at the Meritage Resort, a sanctuary located 40 feet below Napa’s famed Grape Crusher statue and 50 feet below ground level. Authentic cave walls are the backdrop for the new $7.5 million, 9,000-square-foot oasis. Steam grottos, soaking pools, waterfalls and lavishly appointed treatment rooms for individuals and couples create the ultimate escape.
Vino Bello guests also enjoy The Meritage Resort’s signature restaurant, Siena, featuring a traditional Tuscan menu with alfresco patio seating with vineyard views and for those who desire to explore Napa Valley, the concierge will arrange wine tours for guests. Headquartered in Northbrook, IL, Shell Vacations is one of the nation’s most respected independent vacation ownership developers with more than 2,500 employees. The company specializes in the sales, marketing, and hospitality management of its vacation ownership resorts as well as the servicing of over 120,000 owners/members.
Visit www.ShellVacationsClub.com and www.ShellVacationsHospitality.com for more information.