Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN

Area News

September 2, 2013

Wyndham committed to Fairfield Glade's continued success

CROSSVILLE — Each year, more than 90,000 guests travel to Cumberland County to enjoy a vacation at the Wyndham Resort at Fairfield Glade. Now, those guests will be greeted at a new, state-of-the-art facility following the celebration and opening ceremony of the Wyndham guest check in and timeshare sales offices.

"We want nothing but success for this place," said Franz Hanning, president and CEO of Wyndham Vacation Ownership. "Our company started here. It thrives here. It is dear to the company. We want people to have the happiest moments of their life at Fairfield Glade."

Fairfield Glade is one of Wyndham's more than 185 resort locations, which are located across the United States and around the world. The company is a recognized leader in hospitality, with brands that include Dream Hotels, Planet Hollywood, RCI and other hotel, exchange and rentals and vacation ownership brands.

But much of the success of Wyndham has roots in the culture of creativity, innovation, work ethic and hard-working, reliable people formed more than 30 years ago at Fairfield Glade, TN.

"That culture formed in the late '70s and early '80s set the foundation for this company," said Dave LaBelle, regional senior vice president for Wyndham Vacation Ownership. "It happened right there," he added, pointing to the site of the new guest check in office that stands where the original timeshare sales office once stood.

That old sales office was where Hanning got his start with the company. He recalled the difference in Fairfield Glade from when he arrived in 1982 to today. Back then, he noted, he drove into the resort as it was beginning to sell timeshares within a "sort of" job. He had an interview, but that was it. He was hired and started taking tours around the developing resort, but he didn't make any sales that first week on the job. Or the second. Or the third. By the end of June 1982, he still hadn't made a sale and was in danger of being BOI — back on the interstate, he said.

"I tell this story to all our sales reps," Hanning said. "You can really start with this company, go 0 for June and end up CEO."

"You probably can't go 0 for June and July and end up CEO of this company," he added, laughing.

His two and a half years at Fairfield Glade were an important time in his career, he said, and why he wanted so much to be a part of the event Wednesday. In fact, he'd just gotten home from a business trip and was preparing to leave for Cumberland County when his son asked why he had to go away again.

"I said I was going to a special place," Hanning told those gathered Wednesday. "Without Fairfield Glade, there is no way I would have gone on to the success I've had. You just don't forget your first love."

Construction on the 14,823-square-foot facility began Nov. 16, 2012, with a groundbreaking ceremony. It actually opened May 31, about a month ahead of schedule. It boasts several environmentally friendly components, such as energy-saving lighting and flooring made from recycled materials, which are expected to increase efficiencies at the resort.

Julie McPherson, vice president of facilities for Wyndham Vacation Ownership, worked with Sr. Project Manager Lindsay Baines-Bossert to plan the project with Fairfield Glade personnel. Sara King, executive vice president for the company, praised the team and added, "They understand how intentional design and how the environment can drive sales and drive revenue."

Resort Manager Dana Hartle said, "This new facility has provided a whole new atmosphere, bringing a sense of excitement to our owners and guests and a revitalized sense of pride to our associates. The ribbon cutting and grand opening events brought a feeling of excitement among our associates, the community and our board of directors that was beyond anything we had anticipated."

That environment is important to families that have made the decision to invest in a vacation ownership, said Diane Chalfant, timeshare representative to the Fairfield Glade Community Club and herself a timeshare owner.

"When families make the decision to invest in a vacation ownership, they do so to ensure they'll have quality time with their families and those they love," she said. "They also look for a resort they would feel proud to take their friends."

Fairfield Glade has more than 23,000 time share owners.

"And the largest timeshare corporation in the world is making investments in our community," she said. "It's been exciting to see the enthusiasm of the residents, the guests and the businesses."

Each year, she said, more than 90,000 guests stay in the more than 450 available units. Using an estimate of just $50 per day per guest spent in the community, Chalfant said those guests would contribute upwards of $18 million to the local economy each year.

"That is in addition to the $800,000 in dues they pay to the Fairfield Glade Community Club," she said.

Cumberland County is the top county for tourism spending in the Upper Cumberland, recording $100.3 million in tourist expenditures in 2011.

In addition to local spending that helps to alleviate local taxes for residents, the Fairfield Glade resort also acts as an introduction to a community many timeshare owners go on to call home following their retirement. Chalfant was one of those, as well, saying she and her husband decided on their second visit to Fairfield Glade they wanted to stick around a while. They've lived in the community for six years now.

Wyndham also employs more than 160 people through its resort operations, timeshare sales, marketing and home sales. Another 60 or so are employed through housekeeping vendor MasterCorp, which is headquartered in Crossville.

While visiting Fairfield Glade, guests enjoy the 11 lakes, two marinas with beaches, fishing, boating, tennis, biking, swimming, hiking and, of course, golfing at the five on-site courses. The on-site concierge helps guests find activities they enjoy in the area, as well as directing them to local eateries and shopping opportunities. The facility also has a membership area that helps the owners learn how to get the most out of their vacation ownership.

The celebration event included a golf tournament benefitting Victory Junction, a year-round camp for chronically and terminally ill children located in North Carolina.

Text Only
Area News
  • City OKs HCP contract extension

    While a small group of people have opposed the Cumberland Habitat Conservation Plan process, a majority of city council members voted to extend the contract to continue the development of the plan for at least an additional year.

    April 24, 2014

  • Prichard to host summer camps

    CCHS Jet head baseball coach Dave Prichard will be offering the following camps this summer, if there is enough interest.

    April 24, 2014

  • Citizen wants to raise funds for new animal shelter

    A local woman wants to raise funds to build a new animal shelter for the county, but the building and grounds committee of the Cumberland County Commission has questions about how public donations for that purpose would need to be handled.

    April 24, 2014

  • Drasal et CG.jpg Drasal awarded Legion of Honor

    About 10 years ago, the French government decided to recognize all of the veterans who contributed to the liberation of France during World War II. Since then, hundreds of veterans from across the U.S. have received the Legion of Honor, which is the highest award France can bestow. It recognizes those who served their country with distinction.

    April 24, 2014 2 Photos

  • trail 1.jpg Working on the trail

    Volunteers were out Saturday morning constructing a trail at Meadow Park Lake. This was phase one of trail building, explained John Conrad, Crossville Trails organizer, with volunteers clipping twigs and branches and raking a path. Bruce Whitehead, George Schlenker, Lee Skinner and Pat Schudiske rake a path about three feet wide. Later, larger obstacles, such as fallen trees, will be removed, and topsoil removed on the trail to aid in trail maintenance. The trail will be about 1.5 miles in length.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Panel waives ticket charge for boosters

    The building and grounds committee approved a request to waive a portion of the ticket fees for a school sports booster group planning a truck and tractor pull at the Cumberland County Community Complex, but the committee cautioned the group it would take action by the full Cumberland County Commission to relieve them of the obligation to return 10 percent of the gate charge to the county.

    April 23, 2014

  • Jury seated in Batty slaying case

    A jury plus alternates has been seated and began hearing evidence in the trial of John Russell Giles of Hampshire Lane, Fairfield Glade, charged in connection with the Nov. 7 death of Kimberly Ann Batty, 58, of Dovenshire Dr., also Fairfield Glade.

    April 23, 2014

  • New site sought for convenience center

    An expansion at Colinx and the improvement of a city street will require Cumberland County to move a convenience center. The city of Crossville has proposed a site in the same general area, but commissioners on the county's building and grounds committee were concerned about the cost to make the site suitable for a convenience center and the proximity of the Little Obed River.

    April 23, 2014

  • Hwy. 70 crash.jpg CCHS student dies in car crash

    Crossville Police have identified the victim of a two-vehicle collision that occurred Tuesday morning on Hwy. 70 W at the intersection of Dillon St. as a sophomore at Cumberland County High School.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • IMG_0783.JPG Visitors center now open to the public

    A ten-year effort to establish a gateway to the Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area, as well as to point tourists and visitors to the many other area parks, historical sites and points of interest, concluded Thursday as the community gathered with officials from the city of Crossville, Cumberland County, the Crossville-Cumberland County Chamber of Commerce and the National Park Service to dedicate the Crossville-Cumberland County: Gateway to the Big South Fork Visitors Center on River Otter Dr.

    April 22, 2014 2 Photos

Marketplace Marquee
Must Read
Section Teases
Seasonal Content
AP Video
US Proposes Pay-for-priority Internet Standards Wife Mourns Chicago Doctor Killed in Afghanistan FDA Proposes Regulations on E-cigarettes Kerry Warns Russia of Expensive New Sanctions Mideast Peace Talks Stall on Hamas Deal Cody Walker Remembers His Late Brother Paul Grieving South Korea Puts Up Yellow Ribbons Raw: Kerry Brings His Dog to Work Raw: Girls Survive Car Crash Into Their Bedroom Three U.S. Doctors Killed by Afghan Security Yankees' Pineda Suspended 10 Games for Pine Tar Colleagues Mourn Death of Doctors in Afghanistan Ukraine Launches Operation Against Insurgents Obama Reassures Japan on China Raw: Car Crashes Into San Antonio Pool Time Magazine Announces Top Influencers List Raw: Angry Relatives Confront SKorea Officials Bigger Riders Means Bigger Horses Out West Yankees Pineda Ejected for Pine Tar Deadly Fungus Killing Bats, Spreading in US
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Weather Radar
2014 Readers' Choice