We have been long-term fans of private, single-party accommodation. Some clients enjoy the social aspects of lodges but the gradual decline in the attraction of communal dining gives a clue that perhaps there can be too much of a good thing?
Even some of the top lodges now offer multiple dining areas to allow holidaymakers (an important point here - a lot of people go on holiday to relax rather than socialise with strangers) some privacy and intimacy. We had a demanding client a few years ago who had a long list of requirements from their accommodation (no tin, only natural fabrics, only white tablecloths etc etc) - and one of the country's top lodges could not provide a white tablecloth or dining outside the communal dining room.
More and more of our clients are travelling in small groups of friends or family. They don't want to meet new people at lodges. They want to eat what they want, when they want, where they want. They want to dress how they want, get up when they want, drink as much as they want and go to bed when they want. I think most of us can identify with that.
So, we can see the rise of the private luxury home with top-grade understated service and a chef on-call. Glen Aros is one of those. There are a number of others around the country we are working on. Especially with a company like ours which keeps people engaged and busy during the day meeting interesting people and doing interesting things, so that by the time they get home, people are ready for some quiet time - private homes really work. Bearing in mind issues of changing quality in accommodation as mentioned above, having your own retinue of excellent staff insulates you from these fluctuations.
The final element - availability - has been addressed by the rise in real estate values and subsequent upgrading of properties which are now sitting there, unoccupied, in some lovely parts of the country - just looking for a professional team to fly in and breathe life into the place for a few days.
We predict the rise and rise of private luxury single-party homes in this country. It's going to be tough work trying them all out and making them work!!