- Published on Thursday, 24 November 2011 07:30
Article Read: 2510
Maison Noosa's unique location is one of very few absolute beachfront on-site managed resorts in Hastings St Noosa.
Recently acquired by Royjoy P/L in April this year, Maison Noosa is actually one of the older bodies in Hastings St with a fresh new face.
Simone Wetherell has been the onsite manager at Maison Noosa for almost four years taking over the reins of the resort after the major refurbishment in 2008. Today she and her small but very valuable service orientated team make sure Maison Noosa is special friendly and professional.
The property was built in 1968 with the original name being Paramount Apartments.
"Noosa was a very different place back then," says Simone. "It started out with 15 apartments. Then at some stage through its history the adjacent block of land was acquired for around $100,000. "I hasten to think what that parcel of land would be worth these days!" said Simone.
Later the additional apartments were added to that land to total 24 apartments in the resort. The property then went through a name change from Maison la Plage, meaning 'The Beach House' in French, to Maison Noosa once refurbished in 2007. During the external renovation the individual apartment owners, although not mandatory, all refurbished while the building was in shutdown.
"Fortunately we have owners that could see the benefits in the outlay of the exterior refurbishment costs by complimenting their attention to refurbishing the interior of their apartments. This moved the property from a very tired self rated three-star property to a 4½-star property," Simone said.
Maison Noosa is quite unique in having just 24 apartments but nine different room types. All the apartments are modern with quality furnishings and appliances. The website has every apartment photographed so that guests can basically walk themselves through each apartment, make a choice, arrive and receive exactly what they selected on the Internet.
"The website is our number one marketing tool. Generally guests are sitting in front of the computer when they call us with an enquiry." Simone says, "It makes converting the call to a booking really easy."
"We have often toyed with the idea of offering direct bookings on our website. But we feel we know the apartments well enough to confidently recommend apartments exactly where our guests want to be. Contacting them with a detailed quote linking them to the photo gallery and then talking them through each option on the phone has proven to be a winner. Yes, it's not the easiest way to get a booking, but it's the best. We rarely have people say they are not happy with their apartment allocation, purely due to this fact."
The team at Maison is totally customer service focused and this has helped them achieve a high ranking on the TripAdvisor website. They are presently ranked fifth in the specialty accommodation section for Noosa, placing them as the highest rated resort on Hastings St. Simone praised the staff saying, "That's a very satisfying achievement for us. We can't stress enough the importance of delivering quality service to achieve and sustain this high ranking. It is vital to our business. I also believe that replying to as many reviews as I can puts value to the way you manage the business showing dedication to meeting your guest's expectations. We know we aren't going to get it right every time. But, we learn from those less than satisfactory guest experiences and take steps to meet or exceed guest's expectations to get it right more often."
With Noosa currently keeping itself above water or at least trying to sustain its fair share of the domestic travel market, Simone says it's an interesting time to be in the hospitality industry in Australia.
Simone said "The next few months look very promising for us with occupancies looking good. The winter months have been tough with the strength of the Australian dollar, the floods, cyclones, and the earthquake in New Zealand. You certainly need to be resilient to all sorts of disasters in this industry."
"Through it all we have tried to remain positive. Weather and world events are certainly not something we can control but there's a hell of a lot we do have control over.
"Noosa is a great product. If we all remain service orientated then guests will keep coming back. The advertising costs related to a guests 'word of mouth' referral are minimal. The pay off to our business and the industry in general can be mind blowing."
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