River Wissey Lovell Fuller


May 2011

Ian looks at Time Share opportunities and has his usual piece of humour

Would you like an inexpensive week in a luxury Madeira studio apartment?

For about 15 years, Head Office and I have owned two weeks in a luxury apartment on the beautiful island of Madeira. Technically, this is a timeshare but the whole experience is so far removed from the usual image of timeshare, with aggressive selling, rapidly increasing maintenance charges and virtually zero re-sale value, as to be part of a different world.

The Pestana Group is a Madeiran company who have developed a dozen or so 4 and 5 star resorts on the island, mostly in and around the main town of Funchal. The Pestana family lives in Funchal, next door to one of their developments, The Pestana Carlton Village. All of the resorts are built to an extremely high standard and all the accommodation is spacious and luxurious. When we first bought at The Village 15 years ago, the sell was extremely gentle and we were assured that the reasonable maintenance charges would only rise with Portuguese inflation. This has proved to be the case, with absolutely no hassle. When we decided to move to a new development being built on the sea front, Pestana actually gave us more for our old apartment than we had paid for it!

Anyway, to the point. The company has started a programme to give guests a taste of Madeira. For 150 Euros (£132) per week, they will put you up in a studio apartment which will sleep four and has a kitchen area, a bathroom, a dining / lounge area and a large balcony. (If Deannie and I, as owners, wanted to stay in one of these, the charge would be £130 per night!). All you have to pay would be the air fares. Easy Jet fly every morning at 7.15am from Stanstead and cheap flights are usually available on the website. You have to agree to meeting a member of the Pestana team for half an hour or so but there will be absolutely no pressure to buy anything. Obviously, Pestana are offering empty apartments at cost in the hope that some folk visiting will love the place and may buy something but, I repeat, there will be absolutely no pressure. You do have to be over 35 years of age and in employment or retired to partake in this offer. The choice of dates is up to you.

Access to this programme has to be through an owner so, if you are interested or need more information, Email me on ian@drnisbet.plus.com or telephone on 01842 828956 and let me know your names, address, Email and telephone number. If you want to look at a website, put Pestana Madeira Hotels in your search engine and have a look around. You will notice that the rooms cost about £150 per night, so this offer is well worthwhile.

Let's have some fun: I am grateful to Barry Jones for reminding me of an experience a GP colleague of mine had a few years ago. A couple in their mid sixties came in and asked the doctor to watch them having sexual intercourse. Obviously, the NHS does not cover this so the GP charged them a private fee of £32 and told them that there was nothing at all wrong with their performance. This happened weekly for several weeks and, eventually, the GP asked them "Just what, exactly, are you trying to find out?" "Well," said the man "we are not trying to find out anything. She is married so we can't go to her house. I am married so we can't go to my house. The Holiday Inn charges £70 and the Hilton £110. If we do it here, we pay £32 and I get £28 of that back from BUPA for private medical treatment".

Padorski and Micorowski had settled in England and had been here for several years when they saw a turf delivery lorry going past. Pad said to Mic "When I have more money, I shall use that service". "What" said Mic "You are going to lay a new lawn?" "No, when I am rich, I shall send my linen to the laundry, my clothes to the dry cleaners and, every week, I shall send my lawn away to be cut".

The friendly duo went to see a cowboy film. Before the film, Pad says "I bet you John Wayne falls off his horse during this film" Mic replied "And I'll bet you £10 that he doesn't". Sure enough, before the end of the film, John Wayne falls off his horse and Mic has to give Pad £10. Eventually, Mic confessed "Actually, I've seen the film before and I knew he would fall off" to which Mic replied "Well, actually, I've seen it before as well and he did fall off his horse. I just couldn't believe he would be stupid enough to do it twice!"

Best wishes to you all

Ian Nisbet

Copyright remains with independent content providers where specified, including but not limited to Village Pump contributors. All rights reserved.