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    Hire the right people to perform the function.  Never fill a position with a just warm body, regardless of how strapped you are for staff or you'll ultimately regret it..  

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    The keys to great reviews are:

    Understanding the level of service you are willing to provide and clearly advertising what you are to attract the right customers. We supply a very niche market, no cooking self catered apartments that are slightly difficult to find, in one of the busiest tourist regions of the UK. We cannot compete directly with hotels or bed and breakfasts nor can we compete with cottage/house holidays. However we are situated in an area of remarkable culinary and artistic creativity and there is no reason to spend all day cooking. By clearly describing our services and limitations to guests on booking and allowing free cancellation if they cancel straight away, we only get the guests who love what we provide. 


    We are lucky to be a family business with good local knowledge, and we ensure that every guest gets a full welcoming. If you supply anything larger than a room with a bed there will be quirks or instructions that are best explained in person. So we walk our guests all the way through the apartment and explain anything that needs it. For some guests this might be your only interaction and chance to leave an impression so DO NOT WASTE IT! Use it to find out their plans, some guests like privacy and wont share and that is fine. But most people have no plans and have not been to the area before and need guidance, so make sure you know what the area has to offer and always supply a variety as budgets vary. Make yourself an indispensable source for your guests and they will keep coming back to you. On a side note, we live on site with our guests but are known both for our privacy and hospitality. That's why the initial interaction is so important, we project openness and tell them that we are always available, however, after the first day we do not initiate contact we wait for them to come to us and respect their space otherwise. 


    CLEANLINESS, CLEANLINESS, CLEANLINESS, is the most important aspect of your guests stay. So important I will say it again, CLEANLINESS! We use a minimalist design that guests love but we do it so we can deep clean every surface after every stay. In a modern world of virus's and allergies to name a few, people value cleanliness more than they realise. We early on got a reputation for the cleanest apartments around and straight away whenever people arrived at a dirty accommodation they came to us! Like I said before, our apartments are niche but a spotless room forgives a lot. 


    Krissie's has been providing luxuriously furnished no cooking/self catered apartments for five years and has maintained an average of 9.5 or greater for that time. 


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    Always under promise and over deliver.

    Service and kindness with love and care, always get kudu's from guests.

    Be warm, be real, be kind, be gentle 

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    Donna J Mcdougall

    It's simple. I like meeting people and I let them know this! Ask questions about them and less about you.


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    The secret to incredible guest reviews is that we have an incredible team who will go above and beyond for all our guests. From reception to our Maintenance team will bend over backward for our guests.

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    I agree with all of the above, and must stress that communication  with future and current guests is the key to happy guests. I always respond to guests within a few hours of receiving their booking, and making sure the calendar is up to date. Unfortunately I do not get to meet my guests as the distance between our home and our holiday property is too great. Therefore most of my communication is via the extranet messaging or by telephone. All of which works well. I do have an excellent changeover company that looks after our apartment, so making sure that the place is spotless, as well as everything like the washing machine, TV, internet etc is fully working is very reassuring for me. I also provide a welcome pack for guests including, wine, water, tea and coffee etc. I have recently placed an information pack in the apartment with restaurants, places on interests, and nearest beaches. We are attached to a golf complex so I make sure guests know they can recieve discounted green fees when staying with us. I now have a visitors book in the property for this season so will be interesting to see those comments as well.

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    Apartments Villa Tanja, Okrug Gornji, Croatia

    I simply visualize that I'm a guest coming to an unknown house, and I imagine how I want, to host me and my family to welcome and host.
    I never calculate how many jobs I need to do, focusing all my attention on the ultimate goal, which is to prepare the apartments and the whole house to look perfect and equipped with all that the guest needs, including the details.
    I never calculate how much I will earn, I just want my guests to spend nice days in my house, which they will keep in their memories.
    Money as a result nevertheless came.

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    Differentiate: Guests have a choice at booking, their decision to book one place over another is made impulsively and without deep thought…We have attractive bright pictures of aspects of our farm accommodation that puts blue water between us and the local competition.  We ail to
    create impact and promise a different experience from the local hotels and BnB’s.

    We feature pictures of fresh baked bread, bedrooms, obviously and sunny pictures of happy guests enjoying the rural life, plus humorous farm animals, horses, sheep and chickens which has a double effect.

    1      These pictures act as a filter, attracting the sort of guests we like, ensuring that guests are matched to our ethos and services: and dissuading folk who would not enjoy the farm .

    2         It sets us apart from local competition.

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    I try to make people comfortable and welcome, greet them by name and make sure everything is clean and polished I get a lot of return guests. Chat if they want to but also take note if there tired when they arrive they may not want to chat it’s good if you can read people 

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    We try to exceed guest expectations.

    Slightly underselling our product and standards via our marketing messages works for us, avoids the need to provide unnecessary additional free extras and generally leaves guests appreciating a quality and value experience.  



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    13 Bees

    Don't focus just on price!

    If you think about you, your place, your team (if you have one) and the memories you help to create, they will be different - and hopefully better - than the memories other stays will create within guests.  So why try to homogenise your business and your offering by leading on price?

    Instead, pay attention to what goes on in your locale and price accordingly; either above or below for promotions, but never settle on average.  If you do - and excuse me - but the search engines suck all the added value out of your offer.

    Not every guest is looking for the cheapest price!  Just great value for the memories you are helping to create.

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    Martin de Rusett

    We've made two unbreakable rules. 1) Never expect your guests to receive lower standards than you would accept yourself. 2) Set yourself only the very highest standards.

    After that, enable your guests to really feel at home. Be there when they want you.....and not there when they don't!

    Essentially, enjoy their company and let them see that you appreciate their visit.

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    Take the extra time and talk to your guests. Don't be afraid to ask them if everything is OK - the sooner you find out about any issues (especially the small ones) the better equipped you are to be able to fix them or deal with them immediately showing that you do care about their stay with you and you want everything to be as good as it can possibly be.First impressions do count, but last impressions count as well - think about giving a gift on departure - something small - maybe with a discounted booking code attached for return visits :).

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    I believe that being yourself and genuine is a great way to greet, and allows guests to be at ease and also encouraging them to be themselves. It is difficult to compare as it is clear from reading these comments that we all deliver a guest focused service based on our surroundings and that is what people attract to and as long as we are true to that, then majority of guests are not disappointed and leave great reviews.

    A unique and personal experience is finding out guest needs and then quietly arranging, no fuss because they know what to expect, but then being approachable is the key without offering the world, a small thing can mean so much . Not so much trying hard, just being aware.

    That said, we are a small B & B and I can imagine it is very frustrating for hospitality if staff do not share the same enthusiasm for customer satisfaction. Enthusiasm is a great thing .


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    Be friendly, warm and welcoming! Make your guest feel like they’re family being welcomed home! I find guests love engaging in conversation, making them feel like you’ve befriended them. Aside from the obvious superior service that should be offered,
    a warm smile and an eager willingness to assist always goes a long way and almost always guarantees a return guest :).

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    Our priority is to treat all guests as individuals as each guest is unique,all guests have differing needs and requirements. The starting point for us is good communication prior to the guests arrival, ask if they have any special needs or requests and importantly the time of checking in,be flexible and try to meet any requests that are reasonable.Put the coffee on and make sure the house is well presented and immaculately clean,we actually get on our hands and knees to ensure all corners are as clean as the main areas even moving the fridge out to make sure there are no debris underneath !!

    Always a couple of bottles of wine on the table,fresh fruit and kitchen essentials to hand,soaps and all household items included in the rental cost,go to great lengths to welcome the guest first impressions are important,ask if they have any special requests for the first night,simple things like a bottle of milk in the refrigerator and a bottle of orange juice,it really goes a long way,its really simple just make them feel truly welcome,most of our guests comment on the cleanliness and appearance of the house within ten minutes of arrival so we know our efforts pay off. In season we allow guests to help themselves  to fresh produce from the greenhouse and peaches,apples and pears from the garden,home made preserves are often placed in the house to the delight of our guests. There are many things we do to ensure our guests are happy but the most important thing for us is to see the guest totally relaxed and enjoying the house and gardens,our hospitality is free the superb comments of our many guests are priceless !!


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    Firstly always remember customer is king, they are there reason you are working in hospitality, and that word again 'hospitality", should be your mantra. At my gites in the beautiful Deux Sevres, France, I'm constantly trying to innovate and develop ways in which to  bring to my clients a warm and personal touch. Sometimes its the small things, a freshly baked bread,home made confiture, fresh milk, if you have chickens leave some fresh eggs, or get some good quality local ones, coffee, teas, sugar and handy pantry items are a bonus too, as are some nice quality toiletries. Im fortunate to have a large vegetable garden and it gives me immense pleasure in sharing my home grown produce or making up veg boxes that guests are happy to pay for. Bedding and towels should be good quality and clean, and it goes with out saying the accommodation should be clean,welcoming and warm.

    Provide good tourist information and share with your clients you experiences locally, perhaps over a glass of wine and some nibbles.

    At the end of guests stays, don't rush them and politely ask them to fill out a questionnaire asking for suggestions on how you can improve or what could be better.

    There are so many things you can do to make your guests feel like they are home from home, I'm not sharing all my tips..youll just have to visit to see for yourselves.

    Lastly don't stint on the loo roll...theres nothing worse than looking cheap!

    All the very best to my fellow'ers...



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    I don't do home made preserves and I no longer make the bread (used to but too much was left over) but my price reflects what I do and I get consistent positive comments about being good value for money. Everywhere is immaculately clean - spotless.  I treat the guests as I would like to be treated. Friendly, helpful and interested. I provide a very big selection of teas and coffee in the rooms - lots of herbal and decaf ones too. There's also a plate of chocolate biscuits and a large bowl of fruit from Aldi. (Aldi also do great super seeded bread and 97% pork sausages)  I also have a mini fridge in each room with a jug of fresh milk and cartons of orange and apple juice. Guests loathe UHT milk. The beds are very comfortable with electric blankets and silk pillows. The ensuite bathrooms have plenty of towels and face clothes and I show them where they can help themselves to more towels as required. In the bathroom I also supply shampoo, conditioner, shower gel, hand wash, nail brush, and supplies of personal hygene products, razors, new toothbrush/paste etc in case they've forgotten something. Also ear plugs, cotton budgs, wipes, etc.etc. Each room has a TV with DVD slot and very fast wi-fi. Also a multi-plug charger for any device. Guests can  make use of a travel cot, high chair and potty loo seat plus kiddies bowls, plates, etc. I put on the bed soft cuddly toys for any child up to 5.  There are a rack of brochures about local activities in each room.  I am totally flexible about breakfast - guests select the time they want it and what they want to eat.Guests are always asked the night before what they are likely to want so, if its a traditional fry-up, I can then have everything except the eggs ready when they get round the table.  Because we only have two rooms for B&B (can sleep up to 7) I sit everyone round the kitchen table.  I think I get good reviews because I listen.  We've only been doing this for just over 2 years and its guests' suggestions which have enabled us to improve. eg. providing a knife in the fruit bowl, a long handled shoe horn in the rooms, a magnifying movable mirror so women can put their makeup on using daylight near a window. Having said all the foregoing, we find the whole thing great fun. You have to accept you wont get it right for everyone all the time. And you absolutely should not let a lower mark upset you.  Someone else said they were marked down for 'location' or 'facilities'. Me too. When I asked what facilities would have helped, the answer I got back was that because they didnt use the pool or the gym they felt they couldnt give me full marks!!

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    Susy Bretherton

    info says it all. 

    You can get 10's in a row and then wham, someone for the first time in 6 years slams a 5.4 there!!!! 

    No real reason and no constructive criticism. But, although that hurts it shouldn't bias your thinking towards guests!

    We greet our hosts by showing them the pool deck area, the tracks to the beach,give them a brief run down on what they can use...kayaks etc...and then show them their room. I always ask where they have driven from that day and then how long they are visiting our country . 

    Spotless presentation, perfectly made beds and dressed bathrooms. Beach towels and Pool towels. Nespresso machines in all our rooms. It really all comes down to presentation of both yourselves and their environment you are offering.

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    Vale View Apartment Prestatyn

    I don’t normally write ‘Host’ posts as I don’t feel much of a hospitality expert but oh, go on then,, you twisted my arm with your email about my “reviews” being “incredible” and would I ‘share my secret’ =))) Yeah, I’m a sucker for flattery!

    But then I thought, actually hang on, I always encourage, appreciate and rely on my guests to post their thoughts, so I really should do the same in return to the request from the site that brought those guests to my door in the first place.

    That all said, I still don’t feel enough of an ‘expert’ to offer anything more valuable or useful than others who’ve already done the same so well in the comments before me.  I really don’t do much differently than the rest of you, which is of itself, a great relief to me personally as I’m not a hospitality professional!

    But, you know, ‘personally’ is a key word there because no matter how often we tell ourselves not to take it personally when people review, I’m sure most of us do because it IS personal: we’ve invited people to stay in our properties if not our homes and there’s very little more personal than that; so I suppose the key point to remember as a host is that you make your guests’ experience personal.

    Pick some/all of the ideas my co-hosts have mentioned that you’re not already offering and can feasibly / economically / appropriately implement at the type of accommodation you’re providing, and do everything you reasonably and practically can to ensure your guests receive great value for money, whatever your price!  And then keep your fingers crossed your guests take the time to leave you a positive score!

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    Being friendly and welcoming.  All our guests that arrive in the afternoon are offered tea and home made cake, and we sit and talk to them about their stay, where they want to go etc. If necessary book a local pub for dinner for them, but certainly make recommendations.

    Eggs are from our hens.  I bake my own bread and make all the jams and marmalade.  Sausages and bacon are from local farms, people really like to know where their food comes from. A good breakfast makes a good impression.  Be ready to adapt  to vegetarian, vegan and gluten free requirements.

    In the rooms we provide bath sheet size towels as well as hand towels and face flannels.  All toiletries provided are organic in large containers, and guests use what they need and leave the rest.

    Our rooms are kitted out with smart TVs, WI-FI and USB charging points. All our bathrooms are fitted with modern remote controlled wireless power showers.

    We try to give our guests everything they need, and provide toothbrushes and toothpaste and other essentials that they may have left behind.

    Ultimately be yourselves, be genuine.  People can tell if you're not.  We find we get on well with 98% of the people that visit.  However, you cannot please 100% of the people 100% of the time, but if you treat people well, how you would like to be treated yourselves, you can't go far wrong.

    Lastly enjoy meeting other people.  Everybody has something interesting to say, you just need to ask the right questions.


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    Joseph Attard 1972313

    It is very simple.  Be yourself, welcome the guests with open arms and show them how very pleased you are to have them stay in your guesthouse or apartment.  Show them around a little bit before accompanying them to their room to break the ice and make them feel at home.  Give them some tips about buses, your recommended restaurant, sites to visit, etc.  Above all let them know that you are at their service at all times and that they can contact you on your mobile if they need help with anything.

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    Rarotonga Villas

    We have a small boutique family business and strive to do the best and be the best at what we do. It is simple; we strongly believe in treating our guests exactly how we expect to be treated.Respect is paramount!


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    Loving what you do is a must in this industry and I love it even though there are not many free hours in your day!  Being a host in your home and in the place you love is a wonderful honour.  Great communication in the run up to arrival, clear directions, personally greeting guests, booking dinner tables, home baking, friendly conversation and treating people as you would expect to be treated yourself is imperative.  A super comfortable bed, lots of lovely little extra touches, lighting the open fire and the food we provide are usually the things most commented on plus appreciation for our commitment to hosting. 

    Vivienne & Steve


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    The most important thing you can offer your guest is your time, this is the reason they have chosen to stay in a guesthouse rather than in a hotel.  Be kind always and show a genuine interest in your guest. Remember all the essentials you like to have in your room when you travel and make sure these items are available to your guests too!! Put your guests at the centre of all of your decisions!

    Surprise them with a turndown service, pull the blinds down, turn on the side lamps and leave a little chocolate on their locker!  Kill them with kindness and any negative will turn into a positive...Happy Days!

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    Spotlessly clean! A range of good pillows, quality linen and towels. Good quality beds and comfortable couches. Be generous with your breakfast provisions and cater for special dietary needs. 

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    From the first point of contact be friendly, hospitable and helpful but give guests the space to 'do their own thing' and make themselves at home.  Be well prepared before your guests arrive - ensure everything is spotlessly clean, offer some extra touches - like a bottle of wine or some chocolate. Home baked vs bought is always appreciated.  Make sure you let them know you are available if they have any questions but don't impose on them unnecessarily.  Take an interest in them and their travels without being overly inquisitive.  Be willing to share a little bit about yourself with them too.  Books to read, a few dvds to watch, good quality hand soap/body lotion, fresh flowers all add a personal touch to their experience.

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    Hello there!

    To tell you the truth there is no formula, there is no "way"!

    Our guest comments come from the heart! When you are genuine, warm, caring, attentive and willing to go the extra mile the same will flow back to you.

    Our comments come from our presence and our love of people. Everything else follows.

    Love Renate & Roberto Noosa Valley Manor B&B Sunshine Coast, Queensland AUSTRALIA



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    I agree with all the comments above especially about creating a unique experience.  We were not able to build the little "gingerbread house" cottage I wanted owing to budget constraints so I had to settle for a pr-fabricated colour bond cottage with few unique factors!  BUT I have had such fun creating a lovely garden all around it and making the inside as quirky , different and comfortable as possible.  This creates a lovely, cottagey, cosy feel which guests love.

    I always provide home bread on arrival and have fresh flowers in the living area, bathroom and bedroom.  They also appreciate the little extras like scissors and sticky tape and the kind of things you would find at home.  We often get the comment "19 Blue is like a home away from home"

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    Provide the best experience possible as described in all the above comments. I never ask for a review, as I believe if the experience is good enough, guests will offer a genuine positive review. I have heard of travellers who felt harassed by constantly being asked for reviews. I prefer to have fewer reviews of genuine good quality than trying to get lots of reviews and putting pressure on guests who feel obliged to do a review if they have been asked.

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