Villa Group Update – Spring 2014

As we close the first quarter I want to keep each of you updated on the importance of the gratuity program

The gratuity program was implemented as a motivational tool and used to provide fairness in the gratuity process so that associates who do not interface directly with members and guests have the opportunity to participate equally in gratuities like those associates who do interface directly with members. The gratuities are split among staff such as kitchen, laundry, maintenance and landscaping staff with the exception of those who typically receive gratuities directly from members and guests such as waiters, bartenders, bellmen and concierge staff. Executives do not participate in this gratuity program.

Last year nearly $519,000 was distributed directly among the eligible associates. None of those gratuities are used to pay administrative fees. None of those gratuities are used to pay administrative fees. And in no way is your maintenance fee amount raised to support this program or subsidize wages. Please note that the operating portion of your maintenance fee – the portion that goes directly towards the daily operations of the resort – has not been raised in three years.VG blog image

Our gratuity program directly benefits the employees, helps the resorts to reduce turnover, run more efficiently, and translates into higher levels of customer service to benefit you, the member. It’s a win-win all around and we want to encourage as many members and guests as possible to participate in the program.


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    • Hi Lisa,

      Thank you for your inquiry. I apologize for our late response as we have had some trouble logging in.

      The gratuity is dispersed to the staff on the 15th of every month for the previous month’s tips. For example, an employee gets compensated on August 15th for their tips for the month of July.

      Have a wonderful day!

  • Two questions :

    1. What is the recommended tipping policy in the resort for employees who are interfacing with the guests, restaurant, concierge, bell desk etc?

    2. Why don’t you put together the two and charge members on the bill for both. I hate the tipping in the resort as l am always wanting to tip consistently and fairly. With participation in the program so high, why don’t you just combine it and be done with it?

    Michael Fountain

    • Hi Michael,

      Thank you for for suggestion. We are always looking for ways to improve our members experience at the resort, and will keep this in mind moving forward.

      Stephanie Benton

    • Hi Michael,

      We apologize for the late response as we have been having some trouble logging in.

      The recommended tip amount to give to staff is 15-20%. $2-$5 for valet, drivers, and doormen. If the weather is bad, we recommend tipping on the higher end of the scale. $2 a bag is recommended for the bell hop. We recommend anywhere from $5-$20 for concierge, depending on how much information they provide.

  • Has it been established that the employees have accepted this program? Is it expected that the guest would also tip the the employees in addition to the $3.50 per day charge? I ran into a problem at Puerto Vallarte when the employees got upset because we were not tipping them all the time and their service to us reflected it.

    • Hi Jacquline,

      We apologize for any confusion about this gratuity program. This program is designed for the staff that you do not encounter on a daily basis at the resort including the maintenance staff, grounds keepers etc. It doesn’t include the bell men or the waitstaff or housekeeping that you normally would have interactions with. This $3.50 gratuity for the “behind the scenes” operation at the hotel is completely optional and you can remove the charge upon check out. Just be aware that this gratuity is not distributed to the waitstaff/bellmen/housekeeping. That may be where the confusion has come from. We apologize about that.

  • We have felt this is a more than fair amount for the “unseen hero’s”, making our resort a well greased wheel of cleanliness & perfection! As far as regular tipping…absolutely!!! These people depend on our tips, as does every person in the service industry! This goes for the “all inclusive” as well!!

  • The service has always been very good. We feel it is a wonderful idea to support the people behind the scene by tipping $3.50 a day. The resort is a pleasure, it will be our 14th year and we look forward to seeing many of the same people.

  • The service we have received at Flamingos and Loreto from all staff has been out of this world fantastic, from ALL staff including those behind the scenes. I am very pleased to participate in both the gratuity program, and in tipping staff generously who provide me a direct service such as the cleaning staff, aqua instructors, waiters, etc. I have never been more pleased at giving $’s for genuine heart-felt warm service provided by quality individuals. Whatever VDP is doing, it is encouraging a tremendous level of service. Sincerely.


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