The world's largest vacation rental property manager has made its first foray into the Canadian market with the recent purchase of ResortQuest Whistler, adding nearly 600 condo units to its portfolio.
Wyndham Vacation Rentals is a New Jersey-based company that manages more than 105,000 rental properties in 33 countries worldwide, and has picked Whistler to join its list of vacation destinations.
Mary Lynn Clark, the company's North American president, said Whistler's top ranking as a mountain destination played a big role in moving ahead with the deal.
"Whistler is a great fit for our brand and for our customer base as a premier ski and mountain destination," she wrote in an email. "Whistler is world-renowned for its skiing, as well as its numerous hiking and biking trails in the summer months, which is why it attracts more than two million people each year."
Clark also noted how ResortQuest Whistler, the resort's largest vacation rentals manager, is "a great complement to our current North American ski portfolio," which includes properties in Aspen, Colo., Beaver Creek and Sun Valley, Idaho.
ResortQuest Whistler president Paul Sanderson said with more homeowners moving to largely unregulated home-sharing services like Airbnb and HomeAway in recent years, he decided to focus his business primarily on Phase 2 units, which limits the number of days a year an owner can rent out their property.
Without as many Phase 1 units in the portfolio, Sanderson said it only made sense to look for ways to expand the company. This is where Wyndham, which purchased the U.S. division of ResortQuest several years ago, came in.
"For the last four or five months we've been dating and dancing before (Wyndham) finally purchased ResortQuest Whistler," said Sanderson, who added that all 150 ResortQuest staff and management would be staying on.
"I wouldn't have sold the business unless I felt comfortable with that because this team has helped us grow to where we are now," he added.
Clark also touched on the impact home-sharing sites have had on the industry and outlined the efforts Wyndham undertakes to ensure their vacation rental properties follow local zoning laws.
"We make sure that all our rentals are vetted and comply with all appropriate rules and regulations," she wrote. "We offer certain services and standards that come with a trusted hospitality company... that you won't necessarily have when you rent through a homeowner directly. These include true-to-life photography, real-time availability, online payment methods and a team to turn to if something should go wrong before, during and after your stay."
Visit www.wyndhamvacationrentals.com for more information.