Renovating and styling for a holiday rental

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

So you’ve got a sure-fire, money-making idea. You want to cash in on the hot instant-hotel market and turn your investment property into a home-away-from-home for modern travellers. If you fancy yourself as more Dorchester than Fawlty Towers, there’s a lot more to turning an investment property into a profitable holiday rental than meets the eye. Turning a profit means keeping the bookings turning over, and to do that you need those all-important five-star reviews. Here’s what you need to consider to keep those back-to-back bookings rolling in.


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Bathrooms, bathrooms, bathrooms

Have you got enough bathrooms for the number of guests that your property can sleep? If you can’t fit as many full bathrooms into your renovation as you’d like, then at least consider separate powder rooms to avoid that awkward queue for the toilet.


Stylish, modern spaces

Modern and stylish doesn’t have to mean cookie-cutter boring. Strike a balance between making spaces modern, yet keeping them interesting. Tell a story and bring a theme. At Zen in West End, we have a chilled eco vibe, and we tell our renovation story by showing the ‘upcycled’ pieces of the house, like the stunning timber vanities. Be yourself, and be consistent. Our thing is a chilled, renovated space, so perching a disco ball (or a stuffed albino peacock called Percy) over the back deck—because we’ve seen someone else do it—would not fit with our theme.


Breakout spaces for guests

We have a front verandah, a front patio, a big outdoor patio, and a daybed. This gives everyone somewhere to disappear to.


A good night’s sleep

Never underestimate the value of a good night’s sleep to your guests. Tired guests with sore backs don’t enjoy their holiday and they don’t give five-star reviews. Buy the best beds you can afford and the biggest allowed by the space. If you can fit a king-sized bed in, there are some awesome options that give you the added flexibility of splitting it into two king singles.


TVs in bedrooms

Guests may be looking for a house that gives them the space to enjoy time together in the evening, but not many groups want to face each other first thing in the morning. They’ll probably want to get a cup of tea and go back to bed to read or chillax with the TV, just like they would in a hotel.


Bathroom storage

There’s nothing worse than having nowhere to put your toiletries in your instant bathroom. Make sure you have adequate benches and shelves for toiletries, hooks for toiletry bags and face washers, and enough towel racks—preferably the kind that don’t fall off the wall the moment you walk in—for everyone to hang their towel.


High standards

Don’t be afraid to: have high standards, deliver a premium service, and reflect that value in your pricing. You want to attract quality guests who will appreciate what you’ve delivered. Remember: “the bitterness of poor quality lasts long after the sweetness of cheap price is forgotten” (Benjamin Franklin).




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