Can you tell us about your property in Edinburgh?
There’s a 24 hour reception, car parking, a gym and fully equipped kitchens in every apartment, with a dishwasher and washing machine. It’s in a great location near the Royal Mile. We have welcome hampers and breakfast packs, which are bespoke for different clients. Although there’s a lot of competition in Edinburgh, the brands are yet to come here and the independents are the majority.
Do you think brands have the advantage?
The serviced apartment industry is not yet as established as the hotel sector and, therefore, brands give reassurance and consistency to the consumer. There’s a large range of independents and it’s very important for independent providers to have good quality content, including photography and video footage on their website. Traditionally, competing against brands was very difficult. Businesses are now more transparent because of the internet, review sites and social media, meaning brands are just as vulnerable as we are.
How involved are you in the HBAA?
I attend regular meetings with executives and other committee chairs once a month. There are also monthly apartment committee meetings. We’ll receive queries from properties and agents who want to discuss reasons as to how and why they should get involved and sign up with the HBAA.
Do you think offering facilities is important for the industry?
A good location is very important so you have the access to facilities, such as a local restaurant or a supermarket. The apartment should have investment; in the space and the facilities.
Why should properties and agents join the HBAA?
The HBAA looks out for the best interests of everybody involved. It’s a united front that represents all of those who are involved in serviced apartments.
Quick fire round:
Edinburgh or London? Edinburgh, but it’s a close call.
Hotel or serviced apartment? Serviced apartment. I could get in trouble for that!
Describe the SABA event at our offices in three words Quality, social and fun.
Terminator or Back to the Future? Back to the Future. Is there a psychologist here analysing this?
Favourite person in SilverDoor? No comment. The team’s fantastic!