First impressions matter when coming from a guest perspective.

So many guests that book a motel room have changing expectations in line with the price they have just paid. The more they pay the more they expect, the cheaper they pay the less they expect and finding that balance isn’t so hard to do, give your guests great first impressions and they will thank you…..

So what do you do to make guest think “wow” when they first walk in?……..

As an owner/ manager of a smallish motel in regional New South Wales we have been fortunate to create wow factors in some of our motel rooms, with more to come.

What is a wow factor and how do you get comments from guests like ‘It’s lovely, I will be back” and they do come back.

You see, we bought this motel in May 2016. While we were waiting for the sale to be finalised we stayed in one of the motel rooms. Each night the previous owner had maybe 4-5 rooms with guests in them apart from Sunday nights when she would often experience no guests. Not one person walked in!

I walked through all of the rooms prior to the sale and came up with a plan for each one, there are 19 in total.

During the first week, I did what I call “a quick freshen up” in each room. Gone were the awful, unstylish big multi-coloured quilts that screamed to a guest “I AM NOT CLEAN!!”

Before Photo
Basic motel room - before photo

Fresh, nice and crisp white linen with top sheets on all beds. Done!

After Photo
The first impression does count!

Next, we are lucky enough to have a reasonable sized kitchenette/lounge/dining room and a separate bedroom with ensuite bathroom in all of our rooms. The kitchenette consists of cupboards a full sized sink and bench. The previous owners had replaced all the bench tops so they looked fresh and the rooms were all painted throughout.

I have learned over the years to look at every section of each room when I am upgrading a motel. At this point, I needed to update all the rooms with my so-called rapid fixes and then concentrate on upgrading one room at a time in further detail.

Changing the Tea/coffee caddies from a container which held coffee cups, teacups and saucers. To new coffee/tea caddies trays, not a new thing but it looks so much nicer.

Towels – argh hh hh

Guest towels
Finishing touches make a difference

Why would you spend your valuable time washing your own linen, only to save a few dollars now?

Linen that smaller motels take upon themselves to wash never seem to come up as white as the commercial linen suppliers/laundries can get them. Try it. All that washing and drying is just such a waste of time.

Towels – we have received so many reviews about our fluffy towels. I have a contract with a commercial laundry to supply all of our linen and towels.

Yes, it costs you more but when you balance it out with return guests, good reviews and word of mouth from your guests having a great experience with you. It is worth every cent. Alas, none of the things I have mentioned is going to give you a Wow factor but they will make great first impressions.

So what really gives you the wow factors – that’s easy …….

Offer the guests more than what they expect for the price they paid. It’s not hard to make each room smell nice, look fresh and clean. It’s the small touches as well but that’s another story…

To find out more read:

Special touches