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Kudzu

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Hello Everybody,
I found this forum last week while researching info on running a small Inn. Everyone who posts here seems very knowledgeable and helpful. I have read quite a few threads and learned a lot! Thank you for sharing what you have learned from years of experience.
Let me introduce myself. I have just been hired to run a small 8 room Inn. It is located in a small tourist area in Western North Carolina. The current owners call it an Inn but by your standards it might be considered a small hotel. The rooms are large and all rooms are equipped with microwave, coffee makers, toasters, & mini fridge. 3 rooms have stoves. Each room has a jacuzzi tub and walk in shower. It is not a B&B, no food will be served. I have no experience running such a place. I worked customer service for an airline for 23+ years and have traveled the world. I have stayed in everything from a 5 star hotel to a dorm room in a hostel. I have always wanted to do this and this opportunity has presented itself to me.
I came into this job as a result of the unexpected death of one of the owners who was the primary caretaker of the property. The owners do not want the responsibility of the day to day operations, they are up in years and winter in Florida.
The property has been on the market for over a year. They really want to sell but in this economy who knows when that will happen. As a result marketing dollars will be pretty tight until spring.
So why am I posting here when this is not a B&B? There are several reasons.
1. I want to emulate a B&B as much as possible by offering a warm and comfortable stay.
2. Marketing: We are small like B&B's with similar a customer base. I have already learned so much about websites and the internet from you guys. I hope to learn about the most effective and innovative marketing techniques. Marketing is very important because my compensation is commission. Other than a basic website and some flyers marketing is non existant.
3. Day to day operations and challenges are similar.
4. Maximize every dollar spent to ensure the most return on investment.
If the moderator or posters feel like this is not the place for me I will just hang out on the sidlines and glean as much info as possible from existing posts.
Thanks!
 

wendydk

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Of course you're welcome. We want you to be a success, because that reflects well on all of us. In addition, your unique opinion will add mightily to our discussions!
 

JBloggs

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Welcome! Of course this is the place for you, grab a cuppa and sit right down. :)
Feel free to post your questions on unique threads so you can get as much feedback as possible. There are all sorts here from cabins, to boats, to lodges.
 

Kudzu

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Alrighty then! Thanks for the warm welcome!
 

JBloggs

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dupe post
so DOUBLE WELCOME!
PS When I saw your user ID I just knew you were either SW VA, NC or SC. :) Our guests think Kudzu are statuaries on the sides of one our our highways here as they swallow up entire hillsides and hollows.
 

Don Draper

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Welcome! Your name made me laugh as well, lived in Raleigh for several years and got well acquainted with the kudzu...it's too cold for it to take root up north here.
This will be a great place for ideas for you, I think we have a number of folks who rent cabins, etc.
 

birdwatcher

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Welcome! This is a great group of people, sometimes brutally honest-but thats a good thing.
 

Joey Camb

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Hello! I am from the UK so our stuff is a bit different but am like the others happy to help where I can. if your marketing budget is low then you have to get the most you can out of free or low cost options.
 

Morticia

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You can generally pick up a lot of useful info for any kind of lodging by hanging out here. You've been hired to manage the place? How much leeway do you have to implement new things (website updates as an example)? What is your scope of work? Managing others or doing all the heavy lifting yourself?
Given what you've said the layout is, I'd think making it more homey would include things like cookies at check-in, 24 hour coffee bar so guests feel like it's ok to mingle and not have to stay in their rooms. A comfortable lounge area (inside and out). Fresh flowers. Stuff like that makes it more personal.
That may already be in place. It's probably better for you to throw out ideas and see what sticks.
 

Copperhead

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It is nice to have some diversity...and do think you fit in here.
BTW JB - Kudzu is also found in Northern GA and AL
 

Banana

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Welcome! Nice to have you! This is a great place, not only for helpful ideas, but for venting. You'll do your share of that too, probably! Congrats on this opportunity for you - it's very exciting starting something new and totally different from what you've done before.
 

JBloggs

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Yeah it is eating the entire south. :)
But my first instinct were those three states I mentioned. Not sure why.
 

Samster

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dupe post
so DOUBLE WELCOME!
PS When I saw your user ID I just knew you were either SW VA, NC or SC. :) Our guests think Kudzu are statuaries on the sides of one our our highways here as they swallow up entire hillsides and hollows.
.
Joey, you forgot GA....Kudzu is the vine that took over the South.
Welcome, Kudzu! We look forward to your participation in the forum.

 

Kudzu

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You can generally pick up a lot of useful info for any kind of lodging by hanging out here. You've been hired to manage the place? How much leeway do you have to implement new things (website updates as an example)? What is your scope of work? Managing others or doing all the heavy lifting yourself?
Given what you've said the layout is, I'd think making it more homey would include things like cookies at check-in, 24 hour coffee bar so guests feel like it's ok to mingle and not have to stay in their rooms. A comfortable lounge area (inside and out). Fresh flowers. Stuff like that makes it more personal.
That may already be in place. It's probably better for you to throw out ideas and see what sticks..
I am the only employee. This is a contract position. If I hire help it comes out of my pocket. My scope of work will be answering the phone. Check in and clean the rooms, minor repairs, & laundry. Work the office on weekends.
Great idea on the cookies! There is no indoor common area. Reception is pretty small. We do have a picnic table and fire pit adjacent to the rooms. There is a large lawn. I plan on picking up horseshoes, cornhole boards, badmitton, frisbees, etc. I hope to maximize the outdoor space. I am proposing building a gazebo this spring. The property is pretty large. I plan on putting in a cutting garden this spring so we can have fresh flowers in the rooms.
 

Morticia

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You can generally pick up a lot of useful info for any kind of lodging by hanging out here. You've been hired to manage the place? How much leeway do you have to implement new things (website updates as an example)? What is your scope of work? Managing others or doing all the heavy lifting yourself?
Given what you've said the layout is, I'd think making it more homey would include things like cookies at check-in, 24 hour coffee bar so guests feel like it's ok to mingle and not have to stay in their rooms. A comfortable lounge area (inside and out). Fresh flowers. Stuff like that makes it more personal.
That may already be in place. It's probably better for you to throw out ideas and see what sticks..
I am the only employee. This is a contract position. If I hire help it comes out of my pocket. My scope of work will be answering the phone. Check in and clean the rooms, minor repairs, & laundry. Work the office on weekends.
Great idea on the cookies! There is no indoor common area. Reception is pretty small. We do have a picnic table and fire pit adjacent to the rooms. There is a large lawn. I plan on picking up horseshoes, cornhole boards, badmitton, frisbees, etc. I hope to maximize the outdoor space. I am proposing building a gazebo this spring. The property is pretty large. I plan on putting in a cutting garden this spring so we can have fresh flowers in the rooms.
.
10 rooms with kitchens & Jacuzzis and YOU are cleaning all of it by yourself? The voices of experience will say you can do half of those rooms well, all of them half-well. But not if you have a day like we had this week where every room had something broken. We hire out the lawn and have a housekeeper and we have 7 rooms. Don't try to do it all yourself on very busy days. You'll quit.
Make sure you have people lined up for last minute.
 

egoodell

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You can generally pick up a lot of useful info for any kind of lodging by hanging out here. You've been hired to manage the place? How much leeway do you have to implement new things (website updates as an example)? What is your scope of work? Managing others or doing all the heavy lifting yourself?
Given what you've said the layout is, I'd think making it more homey would include things like cookies at check-in, 24 hour coffee bar so guests feel like it's ok to mingle and not have to stay in their rooms. A comfortable lounge area (inside and out). Fresh flowers. Stuff like that makes it more personal.
That may already be in place. It's probably better for you to throw out ideas and see what sticks..
I am the only employee. This is a contract position. If I hire help it comes out of my pocket. My scope of work will be answering the phone. Check in and clean the rooms, minor repairs, & laundry. Work the office on weekends.
Great idea on the cookies! There is no indoor common area. Reception is pretty small. We do have a picnic table and fire pit adjacent to the rooms. There is a large lawn. I plan on picking up horseshoes, cornhole boards, badmitton, frisbees, etc. I hope to maximize the outdoor space. I am proposing building a gazebo this spring. The property is pretty large. I plan on putting in a cutting garden this spring so we can have fresh flowers in the rooms.
.
10 rooms with kitchens & Jacuzzis and YOU are cleaning all of it by yourself? The voices of experience will say you can do half of those rooms well, all of them half-well. But not if you have a day like we had this week where every room had something broken. We hire out the lawn and have a housekeeper and we have 7 rooms. Don't try to do it all yourself on very busy days. You'll quit.
Make sure you have people lined up for last minute.
.
Morticia said:
10 rooms with kitchens & Jacuzzis and YOU are cleaning all of it by yourself? The voices of experience will say you can do half of those rooms well, all of them half-well. But not if you have a day like we had this week where every room had something broken. We hire out the lawn and have a housekeeper and we have 7 rooms. Don't try to do it all yourself on very busy days. You'll quit.
Make sure you have people lined up for last minute.
I agree. We have our hands full with the main house and two suites. I could not physically do 10 rooms. Even tho you are not doing breakfast. And stoves/kitchens will be left a mess and take time to clean.
Riki
 

egoodell

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You can generally pick up a lot of useful info for any kind of lodging by hanging out here. You've been hired to manage the place? How much leeway do you have to implement new things (website updates as an example)? What is your scope of work? Managing others or doing all the heavy lifting yourself?
Given what you've said the layout is, I'd think making it more homey would include things like cookies at check-in, 24 hour coffee bar so guests feel like it's ok to mingle and not have to stay in their rooms. A comfortable lounge area (inside and out). Fresh flowers. Stuff like that makes it more personal.
That may already be in place. It's probably better for you to throw out ideas and see what sticks..
I am the only employee. This is a contract position. If I hire help it comes out of my pocket. My scope of work will be answering the phone. Check in and clean the rooms, minor repairs, & laundry. Work the office on weekends.
Great idea on the cookies! There is no indoor common area. Reception is pretty small. We do have a picnic table and fire pit adjacent to the rooms. There is a large lawn. I plan on picking up horseshoes, cornhole boards, badmitton, frisbees, etc. I hope to maximize the outdoor space. I am proposing building a gazebo this spring. The property is pretty large. I plan on putting in a cutting garden this spring so we can have fresh flowers in the rooms.
.
10 rooms with kitchens & Jacuzzis and YOU are cleaning all of it by yourself? The voices of experience will say you can do half of those rooms well, all of them half-well. But not if you have a day like we had this week where every room had something broken. We hire out the lawn and have a housekeeper and we have 7 rooms. Don't try to do it all yourself on very busy days. You'll quit.
Make sure you have people lined up for last minute.
.
Morticia said:
10 rooms with kitchens & Jacuzzis and YOU are cleaning all of it by yourself? The voices of experience will say you can do half of those rooms well, all of them half-well. But not if you have a day like we had this week where every room had something broken. We hire out the lawn and have a housekeeper and we have 7 rooms. Don't try to do it all yourself on very busy days. You'll quit.
Make sure you have people lined up for last minute.
I agree. We have our hands full with the main house and two suites. I could not physically do 8 rooms. Even tho you are not doing breakfast. And stoves/kitchens will be left a mess and take time to clean.
Riki
 
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