21 Mar A Home Away from Home
Samantha has her hands full running her own bakery in Pensacola, Florida, but she and her husband try to get away on short trips occasionally. Their favorite place to go is New Orleans, and it’s not hard to see why. “The property [we visit] in New Orleans is amazing. It feels like we live there,” Samantha explains. Through working with The HOST, she didn’t just find a welcoming home, but a team of people who are on call to make the experience one to remember. They even have a selection of personalized guest services, right at their fingertips. Got a list of groceries you want stocked in refrigerator when you arrive? Done. Prefer the home to be kept at a certain temperature? Done. Need restaurant reservations or a walking tour booked? Done and done. With The HOST’s team of guest concierges and host ambassadors, no request is out of the question.
Vacation rentals can also be a more affordable option for out-of-towners. According to a 2015 study conducted by the University of New Orleans Hospitality Research Center, the average visitor to New Orleans who stayed overnight in a hotel stayed for 4.2 nights and spent $238 per person, per day (see neworleanscvb.com article). If that seems a little out of budget, home rentals are a smart choice for folks who want to save money, park their car more easily, and enjoy home amenities like multiple bedrooms, bathrooms, and a kitchen. Two years ago, Samantha and her husband started taking advantage of this opportunity and now prefer home rentals over hotels when they return to the Big Easy.
Samantha’s guest concierge provides the usual services, such as assisting with transportation, meeting the guest upon arrival, ensuring the home is in good condition, and helping the guest with any needs or questions as they come up. On one visit, though, Samantha wanted something a little extra special. She had planned a special Halloween vacation for her husband’s birthday. After coordinating with The HOST’s private concierge, she and her husband arrived to a beautiful birthday celebration, complete with balloons.
If you’re looking to rent your home to people like Samantha, she has some advice for you too:
- Make it cozy. Her favorite places feel like a home– they’re comfortable, familiar, and filled with decorative touches that make the place feel lived-in. “I don’t want a place so nice that you can’t touch anything,” she explains.
- If you live in an urban area, think about parking for your guests. If there’s not a private driveway, see about getting parking passes or recommending a nearby lot.
- Leave a list of things going on in the area during the time that your guests are visiting. In a city like New Orleans, guests can get overwhelmed by the numbers of options for things happening in the city.
- Don’t have your own team of service professionals to facilitate additional guest requests? No problem. Renting your place out through The HOST connects you to a developed network of trusted professionals who your guests can book without you having to lift a finger. That means they have an elevated travel experience and want to come back.