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Pinellas vacationer promised resort, directed to motel

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ST PETE BEACH, FL (WFLA) -

Alice Gordon thought she found the perfect deal: three nights at the Tradewinds Island Resort on St. Pete Beach for just $199.

She says she signed up for the package at the Bluegreen Resorts booth at the Florida State Fair. All she had to do was attend a seminar about Bluegreen Resorts during her stay at the Tradewinds.

She chose Memorial Day weekend for her stay but says earlier this week she learned the Tradewinds was full and her reservation had been moved down the road to the Post Card Inn, a small hotel.

"I get a very nice phone call confirming I'm coming," Gordon said. "Then the next sentence is, "At the post Card Inn." And I said, "absolutely not."

Keith Overton, president of the Tradewinds, says his resort has partnered with Bluegreen for about three months. Under the deal, Bluegreen gets some rooms for its timeshare program, but most rooms are acquired for guests like Gordon when business is slow. Overton says no one should have promised Gordon Memorial Day weekend.

This weekend is the third busiest holiday weekend of the year, Overton said, and rooms sell for more than $300 a night. Bluegreen's policy, he said, is to move guests to nearby hotels if they don't have enough rooms available at the Tradewinds.

Gordon says that wasn't explained to her.

After calls from 8 On Your Side, Bluegreen called Gordon Friday morning to say they've found room for her at the Tradewinds after all.

Tradewinds representatives say they had nothing to do with the misunderstanding, but say they advise consumers of these types of programs to avoid holiday weekends.  Otherwise, they say, you should be willing to change locations.

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