On October 26th, hotel and resort developer Festiva celebrates its fifteenth anniversary with its employees at the first property it acquired, Ellington at Wachesaw in Murrells Inlet, SC. Workers will be treated to festivities designed to further engender the feelings of family that has permeated the staff since the company’s inception. Founded in 2000 by Don Clayton and Herbert “Butch” Patrick, Festiva has grown to encompass 24 resorts in the U.S. and Caribbean, a fact Patrick attributes to his employees. “While hard work and some smarts were critical to our success, there were numerous partners and wonderful employees who played a large role in making Festiva what it is today,” Patrick said.
That success is partially due to a guiding philosophy of treating everyone like family, a courtesy which is extended to both staff and resort guests. As a veteran of the company since its earliest days, Ellington front desk manager Caraline Bledsoe’s fondest memories are of guests who would come back year after year with whom she enjoyed talking to as well as catching up and swapping stories with on each visit.
Festiva operates several subsidiaries to strengthen its core business of vacation club ownership, servicing nearly 100,000 members and their families. These subsidiaries include Resort Travel & Xchange, Festiva Adventure Club, ETourandTravel, and Festiva Sailing Vacations.
“Only 24% of all business startups from 2000 remain in operation today,” said Patrick. “Considering this sobering statistic, we should all be proud of our staying power and look forward to the next 15 years. To all of our past and present employees, I want to personally thank you for a job well done.”