• Report: #1076771

Complaint Review: Las Palmas Travel Network (LPTN)

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  • Submitted: Sat, August 17, 2013
  • Updated: Fri, March 14, 2014

  • Reported By: PC1000 — Oakland California
Las Palmas Travel Network (LPTN)
El Pueblito shoppingcomplex, Coco Beach,Costa Rica Not known, Select State/Province Costa Rica

Las Palmas Travel Network (LPTN) Coco Beach Vacation Club; Bahia Turquesas New scam that promises to reimburse your timeshare Maintenance Fees  Guanacaste, Costa Rica

*Author of original report: LPTN - For The Record. Did you get what they promised you?

*Author of original report: LPTN more info

*Consumer Comment: FBI form IC3

*REBUTTAL Owner of company: Filed a Request for Reimbursement with Bank of America

*Consumer Comment: Report the fraud to FBI !

*Author of original report: Another evasive comment, and still no response to Shuping’s question: “Where is my rental income?”

*Consumer Comment: Las Palmas Travel Network Scam

*Author of original report: Scams continue at Las Palmas Travel Network, Omnicorp, Miramar, and Bahia Turquesas

*Consumer Comment: Where is my rental income?

*Author of original report: LPTN: I Filed a Dispute with My Credit Card Company - And They Just Reimbursed Me

*Author of original report: For The Record - Las Palmas Travel Network’s unanswered questions

*UPDATE Employee: It is obvious that this post was created to Confuse Potential Buyers

*Author of original report: LPTN issues press releases -- but still does not provide basic corporate information or answer other awkward questions...

*Author of original report: Las Palmas Travel Network Still Refuses To Be Transparent

*Consumer Comment: My experience with Bahia Turquesa and LPTN

*UPDATE Employee: NON-MEMBER WITH INCORRECT INFORMATION

*Author of original report: Las Palmas Travel Network - Transparency, Please!

*Author of original report: In the Spirit of Transparency – Las Palmas Travel Network

*UPDATE Employee: UNFORTUNATELY NON-MEMBER WITH INCORRECT INFORMATION

*Author of original report: LPTN ... more information ...

*Consumer Comment: Contact LPTN

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 It appears that “Las Palmas Travel Network” (LPTN) may be a new scam connected to what’s going on at Coco Sunset Vacation Club (aka Bahia Turquesas). ** Coco Sunset Vacation Club (aka Bahia Turquesas) in Costa Rica seems to be somehow related to “Las Palmas Travel Network” (LPTN). Here’s my experience, as well as the things I’ve learned about them over the past three days (August 17, 2013). You can decide for yourself if this appears to be a scam. Here’s what happened: My wife and I were initially reeled in by “Jock”, a lively Scotsman who’s turf is Playa Hermosa near the Condovac (a timeshare resort affiliated with RCI). We were turned over to “Matt” who qualified us over breakfast at the Café de la Playa (http://www.cafedeplaya.com/suites.html) in the town of Cocos. [continued below]....

..... Matt took us up to the shark tank where we met sequentially with three other closers, who came at us with ever-decreasing packages for us to buy. We left (without buying), and were taken to the El Pueblito commercial center in Cocos where several timeshare companies have their offices (you’ll recognize the names: Coco Vacation Club, Bahia Turquesas (the new name for Coco Vacation Club as of March 2013), Miramar, and others). We thought we were done for the day and just needed to sign out at the Coco Adventures Travel Agency (which seems to be owned by Bahia Turquesas), but Matt handed us off to “Blake Lindsey”, who said he was with “Las Palmas Travel Network” (LPTN), and who had a “program” he wanted us to look at. Here’s where the story gets interesting. The sound bite is that “Las Palmas Travel Network” doesn’t seem to exist, and there’s no way to reach them once you’re back home. The LPTN “program” has two aspects: (1) It reimburses current timeshare owners for their Maintenance Fees (sounds too good to be true, right?). It refers to this as “Cash Exchange”. (2) It also has other travel booking benefits (some sound remarkably similar to RCI’s), as well as “guaranteed rates” for 1 BDR and 2BDRs at hotels and timeshare locations around the world, including Leading Hotels of the World. Example: 2 BDR at the Crillon in Paris for $545 for a week. Again, those room rates sound too good to be true. Blake offered us membership in this program for $2,299, plus $249 annually (waived the first year). It looks like a no brainer, because it doesn’t take long before you break even on the maintenance fees that they reimburse you for. Six weeks after you sign up LPTN sends you a Welcome Package, which has details on how to get your MFs reimbursed, and how to book the travel deals. Lured by the idea of getting our MF’s reimbursed we let Blake charge our Visa card. He gave us a flimsy looking contract (saying that’s all there is), and we left with mixed feelings. Then went online to do a little due diligence. After doing some research, here’s what I’ve learned about LPTN: Las Palmas Travel Network is invisible – and may not be real at all. The green flier he showed us states that Las Palmas Travel Network been in business since 1993. But if you search for the company on Google you will find nothing.

It’s my opinion that LPTN is a new scam. According to the contract, LPTN’s website domain name is www.thelaspalmastravelnetwork.com. This domain name was purchased just 3 weeks ago, on July 9th, 2013, and only for a one year period. (Go to www.godaddy.com for details). There’s no website. It seems to me that an established ten year old company should have a website, especially in an industry that is short on credibility and trust. Oddly, there is a website at: http://www.laspalmastravelnetwork.com/home/. But that’s not the url on the contract. And it’s a very skinny site, with almost no info on it. Las Palmas Travel Network is unreachable. It’s not possible to contact LPTN when you are back home in the States. So there is nothing you can do if your Welcome Package does not arrive. Can’t reach by phone: The phone number on the contract is in Costa Rica: 506-2670 0357. You can never get through to this number – I tried eight times, at different times of day, over a three day period. There’s an outgoing message – in Spanish only – and unless you know the extension of the person you are calling, you cannot leave a message. Blake does not have an extension number. Why would a company that services Americans not have an outgoing message in English? And why can you never get through to a real person? Blake insisted you can get through, but you can’t. Incidentally, this 506-2670 0357 is the exact same phone number that’s shown on www.Ripoffreport.com – for “Las Palmas VC Coco Sunset Vacation Club” (April 2013). http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Las-Palmas-VC/Playa-Del-Coco-Select-StateProvince-/Las-Palmas-VC-Coco-Sunset-Vacation-Club-I-was-not-shown-the-whole-contract-and-now-they-wi-1046671 Can’t reach by email: There’s an LPTN email address on the contract. But when I sent an email it bounced back. Here’s the error message: Sorry, we were unable to deliver your message to the following address. <info@thelaspalmastravelnetwork.com> Blake Lindsay did not provide his business card with contact info, nor did he have letterhead in his office.

When pressed for the addresses of the Call Center and the company’s HQ in the USA, I was given two handwritten addresses from a torn off yellow legal pad. The addresses seem to be bogus: It turns out that 804 Pine Avenue, Carlsbad, CA 92008 is a house in a residential district. 7690 West Cheyenne, Las Vegas, NV is the office of HSI (Holiday Systems International). LPTN does not have a business relationship with HSI and is not listed at that address. Blake’s office is in the El Pueblito shopping center – a small room immediately adjoining the “Coco Adventures” travel agency, which is where they finally sign you out after your timeshare presentation. Blake did not volunteer this but you might be able to get to him (and to Coco Sunset Vacation Club aka Bahia Turquesas and “Las Palmas Travel Network” through the travel agency. Here’s their email and website: carolina@cocoadventures.com, and http://bahiaturquesaresidences.com/cocoadventures.html. Not affiliated with Carnival. Blake said that LPTN was “a part of” Carnival Cruise Lines. The term “part of” suggests that it’s a subsidiary. But according to Hoovers it’s not.

When I called Carnival’s Trade engagement department (on 800-327-7276) they said they have no ownership of or affiliation with LPTN. In fact they had not heard of it. Unclear business relationship between LPTN and RCI – if any I went online to see if the credit card purchase had posted. It had. The vendor name was Las Palmas VC. But the confusing thing is that the phone number associated with it is 619-683-7440. That number belongs to RCI – not LPTN. So, I wonder – did I purchase something from LPTN – or from RCI? Why is LPTN using RCI as its credit card vendor? The benefits listed on the contract are RCI benefits. The only difference is the “World Famous Cash Exchange Program”. The “World Famous Cash Exchange Program” sounds too good to be true If LPTN has been around for 10 years, and since timeshare owners are desperately looking for a way to not have to pay Maintenance Fees on timeshares they can’t use, how can it be that this truly incredible program is not known, or publicized – and why the black box? Who is Blake Lindsey? Just for fun take a look at Blake Lindsey’s profile on LinkedIn: cr.linkedin.com/pub/blake-lindsey/52/ab/309. None of this inspires confidence. Related posts: There are several forums discussing what’s going on at Coco Sunset Vacation Club (aka Bahia Turquesas). I don’t know, but it appears that LPTN is a new scam. http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Las-Palmas-VC/Playa-Del-Coco-Select-StateProvince-/Las-Palmas-VC-Coco-Sunset-Vacation-Club-I-was-not-shown-the-whole-contract-and-now-they-wi-1046671 http://www.pissedconsumer.com/reviews-by-company/coco-sunset-vacation-club.html (((REDACTED)))http://www.redweek.com/forums/search?query=coco&forum_id=all&search_by=threads&submit=Go http://www.tripadvisor.ca/ShowTopic-g291982-i813-k2956897-o150-Coco_Sunset_Vacation_Club-Costa_Rica.html So where are we? Can someone please post a reply so we all know the status? Thank you, all.


This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 08/17/2013 11:03 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Las-Palmas-Travel-Network-LPTN/Not-known-Select-StateProvince/Las-Palmas-Travel-Network-LPTN-Coco-Beach-Vacation-Club-Bahia-Turquesas-New-scam-that-1076771. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report.

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REBUTTALS & REPLIES:
11Author 9Consumer 1Employee/Owner
Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Author of original report

LPTN - For The Record. Did you get what they promised you?

AUTHOR: PC1000 - ()

Hello Ichu,

It's been a year since you wre waiting for a "package" from LPTN. Did you receive it, and did you get what they promised you?

Please review the report that I filed (which has several unimperssive rebuttals from people at LPTN). Report: #1076771.   There are also reports on another scam reporting site, and Tripadvisor about these people.

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#2 Author of original report

LPTN more info

AUTHOR: PC1000 - ()

Hello Shuping,

Please review the report that I filed (which has several unimperssive rebuttals from people at LPTN). Report: #1076771.   There are also reports on another scam reporting site, and Tripadvisor about these people.

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#3 Consumer Comment

FBI form IC3

AUTHOR: Peggy - ()

You must file a complaint with the FBI in Richmond website:  http://www.ic3.gov/complaint/default.aspx

They will open an investigation if they get enough complaints.  Please mention Coco Bay Estates as well since that is where we were scammed, but the Las Palmas VC was on our visa charge.  In any case that way the FBI will include all of us.

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#4 REBUTTAL Owner of company

Filed a Request for Reimbursement with Bank of America

AUTHOR: Roberta - ()

They told me it was not considered fraud and sent me to the billing diputes department. The billing disputes department asked for a copy of the contract. Since Las Palmas does not have a legal connection with Mercury Property Management, the contract was viewed as valid. My dispute was discounted and my money WAS NOT RETURNED. Now I am stuck.

I want to file a class action suit and am inquiring as to how I can organize it and service as the point person for collecting the scammed people's contact information.

 

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#5 Consumer Comment

Report the fraud to FBI !

AUTHOR: Shuping - ()

Hi  Gary W, I have paid my maintenence fee, if you want to know.  The question is where is OmniCorp?  Where is my rental income which is supposed to be paid by OmniCorp?  Playas del Palmas/Coco Sunset/Miramar created this fictitioius Omnicorp and lured us to believe that Omnicorp will pay us the rental income.  This is serious fraud! Hundreds of American citizens fall victim to this fraud.   We should report it to FBI.  We should all contact FBI.  We are the victims and witnesses.

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#6 Author of original report

Another evasive comment, and still no response to Shuping’s question: “Where is my rental income?”

AUTHOR: PC1000 - ()

Gary W’s comment (January 11, 2014) doesn’t address the question asked by Shuping (January 6, 2014), which was: “Where is my rental income?”  Yes, we understand that maintenance fees must be paid, but that’s not what was being asked.

Who are you, Gary W?  If you represent Las Palmas Travel Network, Miramar Residence Club (aka Coco Sunset Club, Playas de las Palmas, now Bahia Turquesa Residence), or Omnicorp…. kindly tell us who you are and address the unanswered questions that are clearly listed below in earlier posts.   Again and again we see either (1) *no* responses from anyone at these companies (if these are in fact companies), or (2) evasive, inaccurate or off-the-point responses designed to string out the discussion pointlessly and to confuse, in the hope that we will all eventually just give up and go away.   So, Shuping’s question remains: “Where is my rental income?”  

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#7 Consumer Comment

Las Palmas Travel Network Scam

AUTHOR: GaryW - ()

Timeshares do not typically pay for themselves, unless the currency you are talking about is memories. Even then, you can still get those memories at a fraction of the overall cost. While the sales agent may not want to divulge this information to you, timeshares are most definitely not just about property payments. They also come with plenty of other costs, hidden fees and taxes. No matter how little you use the timeshare, you are still responsible for its upkeep, sometimes including utility costs and maintenance fees. These extra fees can be hundreds of dollars per year.

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#8 Author of original report

Scams continue at Las Palmas Travel Network, Omnicorp, Miramar, and Bahia Turquesas

AUTHOR: PC1000 - ()

Thanks for posting. When more of us post, and help connect the dots, the better chance there will be of putting a spotlight on these illegal operations.

You can see additional complaints against Las Palmas Travel Network, Omnicorp, Miramar, and Bahia Turquesas (all of which are related in some ways) at:(((REDACTED))) redweek.com, tripadvisor,com and redweek.com

Please be sure to check the box so you can receive updates whenever a new complaint is filed here.

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#9 Consumer Comment

Where is my rental income?

AUTHOR: Shuping - ()

I bought a fractional ownership at Miramar Residence Club (aka Coco Sunset Club, Playas de las Palmas, now Baiha Turquesa Residence) in April 2012.  They had me signed a rental contract with a company called Omnicorp Development.  The person who represents Omnicorp Development was Douglas Jensen.  I was supposed to start receiving my rental income 475 days later.  But I have not seen a penny coming my way, now about 600 days has passed.

Playas de las Palmas still tries to collect maintenance fees.  I called them questioning about the rental income.  They said they didn't know anything about it and it was my responsibility that I signed the rental contract with Omnicorp.  I tried to call Ominicorp.  The telephone line did not exist.  According to the business report online, the company does not even exist.  Did Playas de las Palmas not know that Omnicorp was a fraud when they had Omnicorp's representative sign the contract with me?  

Playas de las Palmas scammed your money, lured you to a too-good-to-be-true profit that was promised to you by a made-up company.  How clever!

I would like Playas de las Palmas (or IPTN) to expalin it to all of us here.  And you are welcome to contact me at (((email redacted))).

If there is any legal action forming to reclaim our loss, please count me in.

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#10 Author of original report

LPTN: I Filed a Dispute with My Credit Card Company - And They Just Reimbursed Me

AUTHOR: PC1000 - ()

Dear reader: If you too have been scammed, you can file a ‘Dispute’ with your credit card company.   My case just got resolved and the credit card company (Visa) just credited my account in full.  Visa’s Fraud Department  researched the transaction and determined that it is in fact a scam, so I got my money back, and Las Palmas Travel Network got nothing except a 100% chargeback and a disappointed scam artist (sorry, Blake!).  Perhaps he’ll barely notice – I’m sure he’s busy working on new suckers every day …

You, the consumer, must call your credit card company to file the Dispute with within 118 days from the date of your transaction. They’ll put a temporary credit on your account (so you don’t have to pay it). Then after they research and find that Las Palmas Travel Network is a scam, they’ll convert it to a permanent credit. 

All: Please post your comments, be sure to get alerted for *new* comments, so we can keep the spotlight on these guys. 

See additional complaints against Las Palmas Travel Network at: pissedconsumer.com and redweek.com.  

 

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#11 Author of original report

For The Record - Las Palmas Travel Network’s unanswered questions

AUTHOR: PC1000 - ()

Actually, most of the questions were NOT addressed.   Just look at the questions one by one – it’s clear that LPTN continues to sidestep and has no intention of answering them.   See the Sept 1, 2013 post for the specifics, but – for the record – here’s the list of the unanswered questions:

Question 1, 2, 3;   8, 9, 10;   13, 14, 15.

This also jumps out:

On Sept 10 the LPTN rep wrote: “LPTN is a product.  Not a Company.”  On August 28, 2013 the LPTN rep wrote: “Las Palmas Travel Network is a Joint adventure.”  On August 28, 2013 the LPTN rep wrote: “Since it is a new product that enhance our member benefits, yes it is a new website, however the parent company has being in business since 1993.” So – forgive me for asking – what is the name of the parent company – and what is its physical address!?

On August 28, 2013 the LPTN rep wrote: “It is not a coincidence that Coco Sunset Vacation Club and LPTN has the same number, as stated before, Coco Sunset was renamed Bahia Turquesa, and LPTN is the newest and enhanced product, we cannot denied access to service to old members.”  So, since Coco Sunset Vacation Club and LPTN have the same phone number, what is the relationship between them?   

New question 16: Coco Sunset Vacation Club (now known as Bahia Turquesa) is the parent company of LPTN, is that correct?

New question 17: Does LPTN have any comment on the flurry of recent Press Releases?

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#12 UPDATE Employee

It is obvious that this post was created to Confuse Potential Buyers

AUTHOR: memberservicesLPTN - ()

All the answers were correctly addressed with the previous rebuttal.  It is very obvious that you are trying to damage our business more than a real “consumer interest”.   Your “detailed analyses” to our answers is incorrect.

In case that you missed it (or overlooked): LPTN is a product.  Not a Company.

The only real concern that we found, it was about the address, I personally walked to the salesperson and asked him about this, his words were: “I don’t recall anybody asking me about LPTN address, if somebody did and I gave HSI answer, most probably was because before LPTN was launched I sold HSI for several years, anyway, it is impossible to gave the exact address, all that I know is that HSI is in Las Vegas”.

So, once again, we invite you to leave a name and a ph number to help you with any other concern, or to visit us and help you even better.

You are being provided with an email to contact us.

Thanks

Member Services Representative

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#13 Author of original report

LPTN issues press releases -- but still does not provide basic corporate information or answer other awkward questions...

AUTHOR: PC1000 - ()

It seems that LPTN is trying to minimize damage by running press releases instead of squarely addressing consumer concerns/questions about its credibility.   About three days ago (at the end of August 2013) LPTN apppears to have hired an online “Reputation Management Company”, called JW Maxx Solutions (http://www.jwmaxxsolutions.com/online-reputation-management), to try to gloss over the damage from the scam reports on RipoffReport, on PissedConsumer, and on Redweek.  A week ago if you searched for Las Palmas Travel Network on Google (as some of us did) you would not find much – just a handful of scam reports, but no corporate information.  By using Search Engine Optimization (SEO) it’s possible to show glowing verbiage (such as press releases) at the top of the page and bury the negative comments from consumers farther down the page.  But all you have to do is scroll down.  

LPTN has *no* press coverage before September 1st (which is perhaps odd for a company that claims to be 20 years old…), but suddenly there is a flurry of three press releases, dated Sept 2nd, 3rd and 4th.  Obviously, these releases are not written by consumers, but by the company itself.  

One of these releases claims: “Las Palmas Travel Network is known as the golden standard in the travel industry.”  Here it is: http://online.wsj.com/article/HUG1727083.djm.html.  Forgive the grammatical errors and the heavy-handed repetition, and note the disclaimer from WSJ: “The Wall Street Journal news department was not involved in the creation of this content.”  This all makes me wonder: Was this release based on a published travel industry survey?  When?  Who conducted it?  Or are there online forums consisting of respected industry associations where LPTN is discussed and praised by its peers?  Which associations?   Bottom line: is there actually any data to support these claims, or is this just all unsubstantiated PR?  

Another release presents LPTN’s “packing tips”, which isn’t quite as compelling, say, as telling us concerned citizens where LPTN’s corporate headquarters are.  

The company has still not responded to the request for their basic corporate information, and the other awkward questions (see above) that are clearly very difficult for them to answer.   

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#14 Author of original report

Las Palmas Travel Network Still Refuses To Be Transparent

AUTHOR: PC1000 - ()

September 1, 2013:

Las Palmas Travel Network Still Refuses To Be Transparent

What are we supposed to believe about Las Palmas Travel Network?

In my last posting (August 28, 2013) I gave Las Palmas Travel Network an opportunity to “set the record straight” and to reassure those of us who are skeptical about its legitimacy – by providing basic corporate information, and by addressing questions that have caused me to have serious doubts that LPTN actually exists.  Instead, the person who responded to my posting (Blake? Brent? Steve?) gave *selective answers*, as follows:

Questions 1, 2, & 3: Did not provide info about the corporation itself, such as its address and basic contact information.

Questions 4 & 5: Answered in a way that I believe creates further mistrust (see “disconnects” below)

Question 6: Responded that the “Cash Exchange Program” is new, which I believe it is.

Question 7: Responded that one must be a member to get the name of the contact person, which sounds reasonable.

Questions 8, 9, 10 & 11: Did not respond.

So, for the most part LPTN did not respond to these eleven questions, but instead, tried to shift the focus onto “conspiracy theories.”   That was a bad move – all that does is build a public record of evasive answers that creates further mistrust in the minds of anyone who reads this thread.

I have no interest in “conspiracy theories”.  I’m simply sharing my experiences, providing the findings from my online research, and pointing out the inconsistencies and lack of public information about Las Palmas Travel Network.   I encourage anyone do their own research, and to check the inconsistencies that I mentioned in my original post (August 17, 2013). For example: look up Las Palmas Travel Network on Google and see if you can find an address and the name of the company’s President; try to find LPTN on Hoovers or the BBB or Dun & Bradstreet, or see if they have “good standing” membership in any timeshare or travel industry associations; etc.); check the links in my original post; call the phone number in Costa Rica: 011-506-2670 0357; send an email to info@thelaspalmastravelnetwork.com; ).

LPTN’s response dated August 28, 2013 raises some *new* disconnects, which I’ll pose here as four additional questions:

Question 12: LPTN stated: “LPTN has no relation with HSI.”  My original post (August 17, 2013) stated the same: “LPTN does not have a business relationship with HSI and is not listed at that address.”  Why then, did Blake Lindsay tell me that LPTN’s HQ address is 7690 West Cheyenne, Las Vegas, NV?  In fact, that is the office of HSI (Holiday Systems International).  Can LPTN explain?

Question 13: LPTN stated: “Every salesperson always exaggerate it benefits.”  This was in reference to my original question 4 – LPTN’s relationship with Carnival Cruise Lines.   Is LPTN saying that its sales representative, Blake Lindsay, stretched the truth? 

Question 14: LPTN stated: “… the number here mentioned is not from RCI, it is a credit card processing company, that offer similar services not only to us, but to many other companies in the industry.” Actually, that’s not the case: Look at any charge on your own credit card statement and you’ll see the name and phone number of the vendor.   The vendor name on my credit card statement was Las Palmas VC and the phone number associated with that specific vendor was 619-683-7440.  619-683-7440 is one of RCI’s main numbers – just call it to see.   Would LPTN care to comment again on that?

Question 15: LPTN stated: “… The cash exchange program is very easy to use, we reimburse the maintenance to the members to choose to use it on qualified properties,…”.  We asked Blake Lindsay specifically if the cash exchange program reimburses maintenance fees for *all* properties or if there are any exclusions.  He was very explicit that it covers *all* properties.  “Even the less desirable ones?,” we asked.  “Yes, even the less desirable ones,” he replied.  Again, is LPTN saying that Blake Lindsay misrepresented the facts? 

**

Transparency is a good thing for consumers.  With that in mind:

(1) I invite anyone to do their own research and to post their own experiences and findings about Las Palmas Travel Network.

(2) I’d like to again provide an opportunity for LPTN to dispel skepticism and mistrust by *fully*and publically addressing the questions I posted on August 28, 2013, as well as these four new questions.   If Las Palmas Travel Network continues to dance around these questions  – for the public record – what are we supposed to believe?

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#15 Consumer Comment

My experience with Bahia Turquesa and LPTN

AUTHOR: John And Mary - ()

 My family and I stayed at Bahia Turquesa in Playas del Coco in February of 2013. We went on the sales presentation and they told us they would be able to sell our timeshare in Kissimee, Florida. We were thrilled with the price they had offered and were honestly quite skeptical that we would ever receive the money. It just seemed to good to be true. However, we decided to take a leap of faith and invest in Bahia Turquesa and switch from Interval to the Las Palmas Travel Network. Let me tell you sitting in New York almost 7 months later that this is the best decision we have ever made. Our timeshare was successfully liquidated and the Las Palmas Travel Network is a dream compared to Interval International. No exchange fees, no mandatory maintenance fees. If we use it we pay for the weeks, if not, we pay nothing. My wife and the kids stayed at the Four Seasons in London at Park Lane in July for a week. It was absolutely spectacular and at a fraction of the cost with LPTN. Believe me, we felt the same way as the other posts I'm reading here. However, some 7 months later we now know that our fears were unfounded and that the sales person who in our case was Todd Deen was completely forthcoming. We are going back to Costa Rica in November with a bottle of champagne to say thank you. We were a little amazed by the posts we had read here and wanted to share a different experience with you. Maybe you didn't give it a chance to work?

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#16 UPDATE Employee

NON-MEMBER WITH INCORRECT INFORMATION

AUTHOR: memberservicesLPTN - ()

Please read my answers below:

This report is about the Las Palmas Travel Network (LPTN) and its relationship to Coco Sunset Vacation Club (aka Bahia Turquesas).  This report is not about the Playas del Coco area in general.

Unfortunately you are a non-buyer that is trying to distract our real members and potential buyers with false information.  In your post you are pursuing the same conspiracy theories that are posted it all over the internet about the whole relationship between our company at Playas del Coco

I’m simply sharing my personal experience with LPTN.  I invite other troubled readers to do their own due diligence (e.g., look up LPTN on Google, check the links in my original post, call the phone numbers), come to their own conclusions, and publish what they have learned. 

Your experience was very simple: you purchased, another resort pointed at you the conspiracy theory in which you fall in very easy and ask for a cancellation in which –as your right- we agreed.  You wanted more explanation in a very mean way, in which as a non-member was not necessary.  You still are looking for answers that you will not find in the internet.

In the spirit of transparency, let’s keep the discussion open for viewing.  If everything about LPTN is legitimate, and there’s nothing to hide, it should all work out fine. 

We will answer you original post, we will not continue with this, since -again, - there are other ways that we will invite you to do it, and that most probably –like the others in the conspiracy theory- you are not going to pursuit.  If you post your name and a number, we will have somebody to contact you to help you with the rest of your questions as a courtesy.

Here is the answer to the original post.

 It appears that “Las Palmas Travel Network” (LPTN) may be a new scam connected to what’s going on at Coco Sunset Vacation Club (aka Bahia Turquesas). ** Coco Sunset Vacation Club (aka Bahia Turquesas) in Costa Rica seems to be somehow related to “Las Palmas Travel Network” (LPTN).

To be a “new scam” there has to be and “old scam”.  Please show us the paper work of the  “old  scam” from Coco Sunset Vacation Club now named (not aka) Bahia Turquesa.

Here’s my experience, as well as the things I’ve learned about them over the past three days (August 17, 2013). You can decide for yourself if this appears to be a scam. Here’s what happened: My wife and I were initially reeled in by “Jock”, a lively Scotsman who’s turf is Playa Hermosa near the Condovac (a timeshare resort affiliated with RCI). We were turned over to “Matt” who qualified us over breakfast at the Café de la Playa (http://www.cafedeplaya.com/suites.html) in the town of Cocos. Matt took us up to the shark tank where we met sequentially with three other closers, who came at us with ever-decreasing packages for us to buy. [continued below]....

Report Attachments:

..... We left (without buying), and were taken to the El Pueblito commercial center in Cocos where several timeshare companies have their offices (you’ll recognize the names: Coco Vacation Club, Bahia Turquesas (the new name for Coco Vacation Club as of March 2013), Miramar, and others). We thought we were done for the day and just needed to sign out at the Coco Adventures Travel Agency (which seems to be owned by Bahia Turquesas), but Matt handed us off to “Blake Lindsey”, who said he was with “Las Palmas Travel Network” (LPTN), and who had a “program” he wanted us to look at. Here’s where the story gets interesting. The sound bite is that “Las Palmas Travel Network” doesn’t seem to exist, and there’s no way to reach them once you’re back home. The LPTN “program” has two aspects: (1) It reimburses current timeshare owners for their Maintenance Fees (sounds too good to be true, right?). It refers to this as “Cash Exchange”. (2) It also has other travel booking benefits (some sound remarkably similar to RCI’s), as well as “guaranteed rates” for 1 BDR and 2BDRs at hotels and timeshare locations around the world, including Leading Hotels of the World. Example: 2 BDR at the Crillon in Paris for $545 for a week. Again, those room rates sound too good to be true. Blake offered us membership in this program for $2,299, plus $249 annually (waived the first year). It looks like a no brainer, because it doesn’t take long before you break even on the maintenance fees that they reimburse you for. Six weeks after you sign up LPTN sends you a Welcome Package, which has details on how to get your MFs reimbursed, and how to book the travel deals. Lured by the idea of getting our MF’s reimbursed we let Blake charge our Visa card. He gave us a flimsy looking contract (saying that’s all there is), and we left with mixed feelings. Then went online to do a little due diligence. After doing some research, here’s what I’ve learned about LPTN: Las Palmas Travel Network is invisible – and may not be real at all. The green flier he showed us states that Las Palmas Travel Network been in business since 1993. But if you search for the company on Google you will find nothing.

 

All this rates are available to members trough LPTN website, yes it may sound too good to be true, that is why this is an exclusive benefit to the members that choose to trust in us.  Las Palmas Travel Network is a Joint adventure (not a DBA as you suggest) between us and many other associated companies.  The truth is that any member will receive all the benefits as they are stated at their contracts.

It’s my opinion that LPTN is a new scam.

We invite you to prove it thought the right channels, not on the benefit of confusing costumers throughout the internet.  Invest 3000 USD in this website and you will be very surprised with the result.  I can tell you, for us to invest that kind of money on the internet It is not of our interest.

According to the contract, LPTN’s website domain name is www.thelaspalmastravelnetwork.com. This domain name was purchased just 3 weeks ago, on July 9th, 2013, and only for a one year period. (Go to www.godaddy.com for details). There’s no website. It seems to me that an established ten year old company should have a website, especially in an industry that is short on credibility and trust. Oddly, there is a website at: http://www.laspalmastravelnetwork.com/home/. But that’s not the url on the contract. And it’s a very skinny site, with almost no info on it. Las Palmas Travel Network is unreachable.

Since it is a new product that enhance our member benefits, yes it is a new website, however the parent company has being in business since 1993.  All the pertinent information is for the members, and you have to log in to get access.

 It’s not possible to contact LPTN when you are back home in the States. So there is nothing you can do if your Welcome Package does not arrive. Can’t reach by phone: The phone number on the contract is in Costa Rica: 506-2670 0357. You can never get through to this number – I tried eight times, at different times of day, over a three day period. There’s an outgoing message – in Spanish only – and unless you know the extension of the person you are calling, you cannot leave a message.

There are other options to contact us, the phone number here has very limited time access, since 95% of our members are foreigners, they receive VOIP numbers and emails to contact us.

Blake does not have an extension number.

He will never get one, he is a commissioned sales person.

Why would a company that services Americans not have an outgoing message in English? And why can you never get through to a real person? Blake insisted you can get through, but you can’t. Incidentally, this 506-2670 0357 is the exact same phone number that’s shown on www.Ripoffreport.com – for “Las Palmas VC Coco Sunset Vacation Club” (April 2013). http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Las-Palmas-VC/Playa-Del-Coco-Select-StateProvince-/Las-Palmas-VC-Coco-Sunset-Vacation-Club-I-was-not-shown-the-whole-contract-and-now-they-wi-1046671 Can’t reach by email: There’s an LPTN email address on the contract. But when I sent an email it bounced back. Here’s the error message: Sorry, we were unable to deliver your message to the following address. <info@thelaspalmastravelnetwork.com> Blake Lindsay did not provide his business card with contact info, nor did he have letterhead in his office.

It is not a coincidence that Coco Sunset Vacation Club and LPTN has the same number, as stated before, Coco Sunset was renamed Bahia Turquesa, and LPTN is the newest and enhanced product, we cannot denied access to service to old members

The email info@thelaspalmastravelnetwork.com is valid, it must be that the server that we use was down or a simply mistyped at your end and then corrected it for the purpose of this post, we don’t know.  Blake Lindsay is a commissioned sales person that offers other products as well, unless he purchase his own cards, the company is not entitled to provide them.

 

When pressed for the addresses of the Call Center and the company’s HQ in the USA, I was given two handwritten addresses from a torn off yellow legal pad. The addresses seem to be bogus: It turns out that 804 Pine Avenue, Carlsbad, CA 92008 is a house in a residential district. 7690 West Cheyenne, Las Vegas, NV is the office of HSI (Holiday Systems International). LPTN does not have a business relationship with HSI and is not listed at that address.

LPTN has no relation with HSI.

Blake’s office is in the El Pueblito shopping center – a small room immediately adjoining the “Coco Adventures” travel agency, which is where they finally sign you out after your timeshare presentation. Blake did not volunteer this but you might be able to get to him (and to Coco Sunset Vacation Club aka Bahia Turquesas and “Las Palmas Travel Network” through the travel agency. Here’s their email and website: carolina@cocoadventures.com, and http://bahiaturquesaresidences.com/cocoadventures.html. Not affiliated with Carnival. Blake said that LPTN was “a part of” Carnival Cruise Lines. The term “part of” suggests that it’s a subsidiary. But according to Hoovers it’s not.

Every salesperson always exaggerate it benefits and takes property of, as part of LPTN the benefits include travel through all major cruise lines.

When I called Carnival’s Trade engagement department (on 800-327-7276) they said they have no ownership of or affiliation with LPTN. In fact they had not heard of it. Unclear business relationship between LPTN and RCI – if any I went online to see if the credit card purchase had posted. It had. The vendor name was Las Palmas VC. But the confusing thing is that the phone number associated with it is 619-683-7440. That number belongs to RCI – not LPTN. So, I wonder – did I purchase something from LPTN – or from RCI? Why is LPTN using RCI as its credit card vendor? The benefits listed on the contract are RCI benefits.

The benefits of LPTN includes some similar benefits to RCI’s program, the number here mentioned is not from RCI, it is a credit card processing company, that offer similar services not only to us, but to many other companies in the industry.

 The only difference is the “World Famous Cash Exchange Program”. The “World Famous Cash Exchange Program” sounds too good to be true If LPTN has been around for 10 years, and since timeshare owners are desperately looking for a way to not have to pay Maintenance Fees on timeshares they can’t use, how can it be that this truly incredible program is not known, or publicized – and why the black box? Who is Blake Lindsey? Just for fun take a look at Blake Lindsey’s profile on LinkedIn: cr.linkedin.com/pub/blake-lindsey/52/ab/309. None of this inspires confidence.

The cash exchange program is very easy to use, we reimburse the maintenance to the members to choose to use it on qualified properties, elaborate all this post after this program only increases the confusion to all current and potential members and add spicy to the conspiracy theory around us.

Related posts: There are several forums discussing what’s going on at Coco Sunset Vacation Club (aka Bahia Turquesas). I don’t know, but it appears that LPTN is a new scam. http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Las-Palmas-VC/Playa-Del-Coco-Select-StateProvince-/Las-Palmas-VC-Coco-Sunset-Vacation-Club-I-was-not-shown-the-whole-contract-and-now-they-wi-1046671 http://www.pissedconsumer.com/reviews-by-company/coco-sunset-vacation-club.html http://www.pissedconsumer.com/reviews-by-company/coco-sunset-vacation-club/fraudulent-representative-20130322395040.html http://www.pissedconsumer.com/reviews-by-company/coco-sunset/fraudulent-sales-resell-and-rental-program-coco-sunset-20120712331313.html http://www.redweek.com/forums/search?query=coco&forum_id=all&search_by=threads&submit=Go http://www.tripadvisor.ca/ShowTopic-g291982-i813-k2956897-o150-Coco_Sunset_Vacation_Club-Costa_Rica.html So where are we? Can someone please post a reply so we all know the status? Thank you, all.

All these mentioned websites, fell into the conspiracy theory against us, up to date, every invitation from us to the people responsible of them, has being turn down, and they have chosen to continue with their vendetta instead of looking at the legal paperwork that will end with this.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 08/17/2013 11:03 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Las-Palmas-Travel-Network-LPTN/Not-known-Select-StateProvince/Las-Palmas-Travel-Network-LPTN-Coco-Beach-Vacation-Club-Bahia-Turquesas-New-scam-that-1076771. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report.

So, in closing, if you still want answers, like we mentioned before, leave your contact information and we shall contact you.

Thanks

LPTN

Member Services Representative

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#17 Author of original report

Las Palmas Travel Network - Transparency, Please!

AUTHOR: PC1000 - ()

Las Palmas Travel Network - Transparency, Please!

This report is about the Las Palmas Travel Network (LPTN) and its relationship to Coco Sunset Vacation Club (aka Bahia Turquesas).  This report is not about the Playas del Coco area in general.

I’m simply sharing my personal experience with LPTN.  I invite other troubled readers to do their own due diligence (e.g., look up LPTN on Google, check the links in my original post, call the phone numbers), come to their own conclusions, and publish what they have learned. 

In the spirit of transparency, let’s keep the discussion open for viewing.  If everything about LPTN is legitimate, and there’s nothing to hide, it should all work out fine. 

To encourage transparency, I’d like to give an opportunity to LPTN to “set the record straight” and to reassure those of us who are skeptical, by responding to these questions.  This kind of info should be publicly available anyway:

  1. What’s the headquarters address and phone number for LPTN?
  2. Who is LPTN’s President/CEO?
  3. When I told Blake Lindsay I could not get through to the phone or email address on the contract, and asked him if there was any alternative contact info he said “No”.  So where does this new address come from: memberservices@thelaspalmastravelnetwork.com
  4. What is LPTN’s business relationship with Carnival Cruise Lines?
  5. What is LPTN’s business relationship with RCI?
  6. Since what year has LPTN been operating its “Cash Exchange Program”?
  7. What is the name and phone number for the contact person for LPTN’s “Cash Exchange Program”?
  8. Any comments on the Customer Service rep “Steve” who called me from his Magic Jack number in Florida?
  9. Any comments on the www.thelaspalmastravelnetwork.com domain name that was registered just a few weeks ago (July 9, 2013) at godaddy.com?
  10. Any comments on the address at 804 Pine Avenue, Carlsbad?
  11. 7690 West Cheyenne is HSI’s office.  Any comments on that?

 I’m curious to see LPTN’s responses to the above questions.    Thanks. 

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#18 Author of original report

In the Spirit of Transparency – Las Palmas Travel Network

AUTHOR: PC1000 - ()

In the Spirit of Transparency – Las Palmas Travel Network

This report refers to the Las Palmas Travel Network (LPTN) and its relationship to Coco Sunset Vacation Club (aka Bahia Turquesas).  This report is not about the Playas del Coco area in general.

I’m simply sharing my personal experience with LPTN.  I invite other troubled readers to do their own due diligence (e.g., look up LPTN on Google, check the links in my original post, call the phone numbers), come to their own conclusions, and publish what they have learned.  

In the spirit of transparency, let’s keep the discussion open for viewing.  If everything about LPTN is legitimate, and there’s nothing to hide, it should all work out fine.  

To encourage transparency, I’d like to give an opportunity to LPTN to “set the record straight” and to reassure those of us who are skeptical, by responding to these questions.  This kind of info should be publicly available anyway:

  1. What’s the headquarters address and phone number for LPTN?
  2. Who is LPTN’s President/CEO?
  3. When I told Blake Lindsay I could not get through to the phone or email address on the contract, and asked him if there was any alternative contact info he said “No”.  So where does this new address come from: memberservices@thelaspalmastravelnetwork.com?  
  4. What is LPTN’s business relationship with Carnival Cruise Lines?
  5. What is LPTN’s business relationship with RCI?
  6. Since what year has LPTN been operating its “Cash Exchange Program”?
  7. What is the name and phone number for the contact person for LPTN’s “Cash Exchange Program”?
  8. Any comments on the Customer Service rep “Steve” who called me from his Magic Jack number in Florida?
  9. Any comments on the www.thelaspalmastravelnetwork.com domain name that was registered just a few weeks ago (July 9, 2013) at godaddy.com?
  10. Any comments on the address at 804 Pine Avenue, Carlsbad?
  11. 7690 West Cheyenne is HSI’s office.  Any comments on that?

 I’m curious to see LPTN’s responses to the above questions.    Thanks.  

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#19 UPDATE Employee

UNFORTUNATELY NON-MEMBER WITH INCORRECT INFORMATION

AUTHOR: memberservicesLPTN - ()

The point of view and information here is only one sided, and it follows the conspiracy theory that has been unsupported and incorrectly followed in the past, even that some information here is right, it is presented in a negative way and with false premises, linking a legitimate business with false accusations.


We don’t want everybody that reads this answer to understand that we do not appreciate the efforts that the consumers put into this, unfortunately it falls in the conspiracy theories around Playas del Coco, that has been correctly answered through legal channels in the past.
To be anonymous allows anybody to write anything they want, whether it is true or not, and it helps to impact in a wrong way. Most of this type of irresponsible complaints also damages a whole industry, business and persons that believe in this and that have supported it correctly.
We are not seeking compensatory damages or to prevent anybody to put their efforts into this, but if you want to clarify your investigation or add the truth to all these facts, we invite you or anybody that would like to do it through the correct channels, please contact us with your questions at the email memberservices@thelaspalmastravelnetwork.com.

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#20 Author of original report

LPTN ... more information ...

AUTHOR: PC1000 - ()

Hello Ichu,

I’m glad to see my report already has a response. Like you I’d like to get to the bottom of this. Here’s my response to your rebuttal: The website listed on the contract is www.thelaspalmastravelnetwork.com. It is NOT laspalmastravelnetwork.com. Like you I too went to laspalmastravelnetwork.com, and called (800) 450-9204 and spoke to someone there and was told the same thing. But note that that is the number for a company called Vacation Fulfillment. They are a big agency that fulfills travel-related needs for several different companies (like booking a hotel for you), but (according to the person I spoke to) they are NOT responsible for LPTN’s “Cash Exchange” program that supposedly reimburses maintenance fees. It’s some sort of “concierge” that does that.

In addition to talking to someone there I also left a message for the “Member Service” rep (“Shawn Clay” on 1.800-450-9204, ext. 107 – the same phone number and extension you mentioned). After I returned to the USA on august 19th, I received a voice mail from somebody named “Steve”, who said I’d receive my member package within 4 - 5 weeks. He also left his phone number (386-626-4409). I called this number twice and got an automated message: “The Magic Jack number you are calling is not available.” So, this person claiming he is a customer service rep from LPTN, is using a Magic Jack number in Florida. It appears that this may just be an individual who called me from his home – not a call center. And, wait, Blake told me their call center is in Las Vegas (see my original posting). Here’s a pissed consumer report that someone filed about Brent Welch in March 2013: (((ROR redacted)))

Please continue to post any progress/new findings here. Let’s help others to know what they are getting into.

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#21 Consumer Comment

Contact LPTN

AUTHOR: lchu - ()

My husband and I purchased the membership on August 12, 23013 while vacationing in Costa Rica.  We stayed at the Las Palmas Condos.  Through the website laspalmastravelnetwork.com, there's a contact us link.  For membership assistance call (800) 450-9204 press 7.  We are told by our sales rep Brent Welch that it'll take up 2 weeks to receive the welcome package. If not received within 6 weeks, you can call the number.  I'll try to call them tomorrow to double check on our membership.

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