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The Essentials of a Small Hotel

Jan 8, 2017

Assuming of course, you have the perfect location, a small hotel has tremendous potential. Whether or not it is in a tourist area is not an issue, as a 15 bedroom hotel would accommodate a range of people, all looking for a comfortable short term stay. The chances are, you won’t be alone, as accommodation has always been in demand, and always will be, so your hotel needs to be a place where people feel comfortable, and above all, it must be spotlessly clean.

A Concept

Your hotel should have a concept, which might be affordable accommodation, or a luxury experience, and whatever the theme, you should always strive to keep the concept at the forefront of your mind. Analyse your target group and ask yourself what these people are looking for in a hotel, and this should give you an idea of what, if anything, is lacking. Here is some more information about the role of a hotel manager, which details the manager’s role and responsibilities.

Impeccable Service

When asked what they liked about a certain hotel, a majority of guests make good service a priority, so focus your attention on providing the best service. Your staff should be well trained, and this needs to be ongoing, with regular motivational sessions. So important is good service that you should consider making this your strong point, and when you consider it could be the difference between success and failure, it is worth investing in. Reception staff are particularly important, as they have more contact with the guests than anyone else, and your restaurant / coffee shop should be a place where your guests feel welcome. Repeat business is the core of any small hotel, and making sure your regular customers are happy should be your number one priority.

One Vision

It is worth spending both time and money creating a team spirit, for only then will your staff go that extra mile to ensure customer satisfaction, and this is what really makes an establishment stand out from the crowd. As with any business, the people make it what it is, and with a happy team, things will be a lot smoother, and your common goal of excellent service will always be at the forefront of everyone’s mind.

Linen Hire

Towels, bed linen, tablecloths, napkins, the list is endless, and to be honest, linen hire is the way to go. If your hotel is in the UK, Stalbridge Linen hire services can provide the ideal solution, and one of your biggest headaches is taken care of by a professional company that always delivers on time. Busy times demand a fast turnaround, and by using an established supplier, you can be sure that fresh linen is always available. Outsourcing is a vital part of successful management, and all your linen needs can be dealt with by a single company, allowing you and your staff to focus on the service aspect.

Online Presence

Not only do you want people to be able to find you, you also need a reservation platform, and your website should provide this. It makes sense to register with the major online directories, as many travellers use this service, but having your own website gives you a level of uniqueness, and it should be designed in such a way that visitors can see your concept as soon as they arrive on the site. There are many marketing avenues to explore, and it might be an idea to enlist the help of a digital marketing company who can put together a dynamic plan that reaches potential customers across a range of digital platforms. Your website should be mobile compatible, and by hiring a developer, you could create your own App, which would facilitate the booking process and make it easier for regular customers to make a reservation.

Efficiency

Management strategies should focus on efficiency within the organisation, and with an all for one attitude, any member of staff is comfortable with carrying out duties that are not on their job description list. The manager would be the kingpin, and with open communication, any issues can quickly be resolved. Customer feedback should tell you if there are any shortcomings in your service routine, and by having regular staff meetings, any issues will be quickly addressed.

The Little Things

Market research tells us that if the basics are in place, it is the little things that really impress your guests. A welcome cocktail, or a nice package in the room with items that are useful, will make the guest’s stay more comfortable. Ask your guests for constructive feedback on how to make things better, and you might gain an insight into what really matters to your clients.

Internet Connectivity

If there is one thing the modern traveller cannot be without, it is a reliable Internet connection, so you should have a good Wi-Fi service that is free for residents to use. This used to be an attractive extra, but such is the importance of being online, it is now a necessity. Some of your guests will no doubt be business people and they have a need to be online round the clock.

The Hotel Grounds

While the interior matters, it is nice to have relaxing areas where your guests can spend their downtime. A conservatory could double as a breakfast room, with easy access to the gardens, and with some tasteful garden furniture and a few awnings, there will be plenty of quiet corners for guests to relax. First impressions matter, and even though most people will book online, you will have some walk-in business, and if your hotel looks shabby and jaded from the outside, this might be enough to send potential customers on their way. The hotel entrance should always be tidy, and it is worth hiring a gardening contractor to regularly attend to the trees and shrubs. If your entrance looks clean and inviting, people will want to come inside, and that is half the battle.

Running a small hotel successfully is definitely a team effort, and the best management system is one that fosters a high level of customer care, so spend some time creating the right attitude with your team, as they are the key to making the business special.

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