Delighting Guests Starts With You

Delighting Guests Starts With You

An Example and the Impact of Real Hospitality

Guests typically have several options when it comes to choosing where they want to stay during vacation. However, it’s possible to keep them coming back to your vacation property every time they travel to your rental’s destination.


By showing them what real hospitality is all about.

If guests feel your vacation rental captures this, they’ll have no reason to even consider their other options. Presidio Lodging’s Managing Director Terry Haney’s success is proof of this. He runs San Francisco’s number one-ranked hotel on TripAdvisor, Lodge at the Presidio. interviewed him to find out how he does it, and Modern Innkeeper took away the key points to help you keep a full calendar.



Terry credits the Lodge at the Presidio’s success to his employees and their happiness. He’s a firm believer that if they’re happy, the hotel’s guests are going to be happy (and if the guests are happy, they’re going to write positive reviews). Odds are, you don’t have employees like Terry, but you can still learn from this philosophy.

Think about who your guests will encounter when they visit the places you recommend. For instance, does the best burger spot in town also have friendly servers? Does the local tour guide have a fun, engaging personality? Are you positive when you communicate with them?

The interactions they have with people they meet during their stay will have a big impact on their trip, starting with you!


Your “Why”

Terry’s in hospitality because he enjoys making people happy. This allows him to come to work every day and help the Lodge at the Presidio maintain its place as San Francisco’s top-ranked hotel.

Knowing why you became a vacation rental host will help you delight guests and increase the chances of them coming back. Whatever your “why” is, use it as a motivator to create the best guest experience possible.


Know Your Guests

One of Terry’s strengths is knowing who his guests are and what a fantastic guest experience is to them. He doesn’t waste time and money advertising on platforms that don’t attract the Lodge at the Presidio’s type of guest. He also doesn’t try to copy the experience luxurious hotels provide because it’s not what his guests want.

The guest experience you create must revolve around who your guests are. Take note of the activities they want to do, the food they like to eat and whatever else makes them tick. This information will give you a more accurate idea of what your property’s guest experience needs to offer in order for guests to come back.


Create a Connection

Terry and his staff have become so close to some of their guests, they know why they’re traveling and about their personal lives. The Lodge at Presidio’s guests appreciate the familiarity and how the employees treat them.

“When you have a memorable guest experience, you create loyal guests. They keep coming back. They tell everyone about it,” Terry told

Some ways to help them create memories at your vacation rental are:

●     Using distinct scents

●     Giving them a journal so they can log their trip

●     Communicating with them

●     Offering a travel scrapbook

Remember to make yourself available to guests throughout their whole stay. No matter how much you may have covered with them before they arrived, things come up they could need your help with. Being there for them during these times will show how much you care.


Only You Can Enhance the Guest Experience

Your vacation rental and its guest experience are both a reflection of you, meaning it’s your responsibility to ensure both reach their potential. Apply what Terry does to make his hotel the best in San Francisco and see how real hospitality can help fill up your calendar!