Renovation – it’s a word to strike chill into the hearts of the most hardened accommodation providers.
There comes a time, though, when descriptions like “faded décor” and “bit dated” start creeping into your Trip Advisor reviews.
Meeting guest expectations is the challenge for every accommodations provider – whether you’re running a B&B in Beachlands or a resort in Rotorua.
Larry Mogelonsky of Hotel Mogel Consulting Limited has some pointers we feel it’s essential to remember.
Budgets never last for longer than the time they were created
Larry says: “There are more ways for costs to overrun than you can count. It’s natural to use a renovation to augment deep cleaning, upholstery renewal, upgraded security systems, LED conversions and any other new technologies. It all adds up!”
What lies beneath?
Planning and budgeting should involve a thorough assessment of the infrastructure behind your walls. Unforeseen wiring and plumbing issues can spark time blow-outs and flood you with time delays.
As Larry says: “You have a hotel business to run, not a construction site. Don’t even think of doing both simultaneously”. You need someone who will manage the project on your behalf.
Stay in touch
There are always unexpected issues. If you’re not regularly on-site, decisions will get made by people with good intentions but no direct access to your brain. Power points and light switches won’t fit into your minimalist masterplan unless you’re on hand to specify where they should be hidden.
Create a deadline
Be realistic about the length of time you can afford to have your property out of action. Make sure everyone knows your deadline and sticks to it. Larry says: “As a senior manager, you put decide what the maximum tolerable length of agony is that your property can endure before irreparable damage is done to its occupancy and reputation.”
Don’t let ‘What If?’ become ‘WTF?’
Want to move a door, reposition a switch or add a dimmer? Most contractors will never say no. Larry says: “Just about anything can be built or modified; it is merely a matter of time and materials. So, be careful what you ask for, as your whimsical idea may be converted into reality but at a price too hefty to properly bear.”
Take plenty of photos
The time will come when you’ll look back on the whole bad dream with fondness, and an appreciation of how much better everything but the bank balance looks. Try to image the best angles and where you stood, so that you can replicate them exactly with the new look. The before-and-after comparisons may help justify any cost overruns.