Delivering a 5 Star Holiday Home

Channel 7 Hotel Rules, Instant Hotel, Day 1, Location 1, Terry & Anita’s house, West End, Brisbane.

There’s nothing like showcasing your luxury holiday rental on reality TV to give you a jolt into making your house camera ready. But you don’t have to be on TV to make sure your own ‘instant hotel’ holiday home is a perfect holiday for your guests. Here are our top tips for creating instant hotel success.


Let’s start with the obvious list:

  • super comfy beds
  • spotlessly clean house
  • enough bathrooms for the number of guests
  • stylish modern spaces
  • everything in working order (e.g. light bulbs aren’t blown, TV remotes accounted for and batteries working, dinner and glass sets full, etc).


But what about the less obvious? What is going to make your holiday rental really stand out from the crowd?

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Know your market. Your holiday rental is your brand, and you are selling time there as a commodity. It should go without saying that you must understand your target market, and then provide everything that group could possibly expect and want.


Go the extra mile. We provide a gift of flowers, bottle of wine, and rose petals for the outdoor bath. People want to live large on their holidays, and it’s those special touches that makes their stay valued and special.


Add a touch of luxury. Everyone deserves luxe on their holidays. We provide luxury linens and sourced beautiful natural linen sheets (much to Juliet Ashworth’s amazement), bath salts and candles, and a gourmet selection of teas and coffees.


Go local. Our gift baskets include a beautiful selection of locally-sourced supplies to show off and support our talented community. Choose what your community is known for and hone in on that, whether it’s artisanal food, boutique arts and crafts, or a nod to the beauty of the local environment.  Our version of ‘local’ includes photographs taken by me, and prints from a local artist.


Beautiful toiletries. Give the gift of cleanliness. If you can source locally supplied all the better, but the idea here is to provide that metaphorical cleansing of the old and embracing the holiday zen away from the routines of home. Many people will bring their own toiletries and won’t use yours, but if you arrive somewhere and are looking for these basics, there’s nothing better than finding something unique and beautiful to use.


Get off to a great start. When guests arrive, make sure they have enough supplies to immediately relax with a cup of tea or coffee, and a biscuit. We give a packet of Tim Tams, because most of our guests are from overseas, and Tim Tams are quintessentially an Aussie thing.


Set the bar high. One of my favourite sayings from corporate life is ‘under promise and over deliver’. I don’t use wide angles to highlight how spacious the living area and back deck are. I prefer people to arrive, step inside what effectively appears to be a small cottage facade all the while thinking, “OMG, it’s not really big enough for all of us”, and then watch them gasp in amazement when the expansive back area opens up to them like a luxury Aladdin’s cave.


Set expectations up front. Communicate well, especially with people before they arrive. Give them a very honest assessment of whether the space is suitable for them. Don’t go all salesperson on them and have them arrive thinking they can play cricket in the backyard when really it’s only suitable for bouche or jenga.


Remember that people are spending their precious annual-leave time and holiday budgets to stay with you to relax and recharge. Respect that, and don’t mislead them.

Follow these tips, do it your way, and you’ll be sure to build a reputation as a five-star instant hotelier!



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