Home Sweet Homestay What makes our Look After Me hosts so sweet?
In 2011 when we launched Look After Me, ahead of the Rugby World Cup, I was told that no one would ever want to stay in anyone else’s home, in exchange for money.
I’m glad I didn’t listen to that advice because we’ve proven it wrong. Our hosts have now looked after over 16,300 guests – mostly spare rooms that guests have booked for short-term accommodation.
Homestays, farmstays and bed and breakfasts are now a legitimate alternative to motels and hotels.
We only need to look at the rise in popularity of the American-owned company AirBnB which has educated the world’s travel market about the Shared Access Economy.
Over the years, we’ve talked to our guests to find out why they love our home sweet homestays. Here’s what they said:
“We love that there’s a friendly face waiting for us at the door.”
“I feel safer staying with a mature female host because I know she’ll just look after me. I hate walking about the city by myself at night for dinner.”
“Barb left a little treat on my pillow!”
“I didn’t know anyone when I first moved to Christchurch but Beth introduced me to a few different clubs she thought I might like. She even recommended a decent hairdresser and gave me the low-down on where to get a good coffee!"
The world’s first Digital Hotel was opened in Dunedin in 2018 by Mayor Dave Cull and celebrity guest actress Rebecca Gibney (aka Julie from Packed to the Rafters).
We launched the Digital Hotel to trial a new format for Look After Me.
Here’s what’s new:
We’re increasing the quality of our accommodation to 3+ and 4-star
We’ve changed our look and feel by adding a simple ‘reception’ area to our webpage.
We’re trialling new software which allows guests to browse, book and securely pay using all major credit cards, from all devices
We’ve made it possible for hosts to list more than one room and book them out separately
So far, the Digital Hotel format has gone well in Dunedin. We were nearly fully booked for Ed Sheeran in March, Pink in September and now we’re gearing up for Elton John and Queen in February 2020. Tickets go on sale for Queen this Wednesday!