Why did you decide to become a host?
With nearly three decades managing key global client relationships in a job I adore and also having a passion for gardens, animals, and people, becoming an Airbnb host with our Decatur Alpaca Cottage was a natural extension of everything I already love! To host well takes commitment, attention to detail, creativity, and it combines the hospitality Georgia is known for with a good bit of business sense. As a young child, I also enjoyed playing with dolls and playing house. In many ways, being an Airbnb host is a lot like that on a larger scale; finding the perfect linens and bedding for our guest cottage, decorating with just the right touch of gracious comfort and eclectic charm, and finding ways to surprise and pamper our guests with little touches that show we care. In short, it is the perfect combination for a hobby business!
What year did you start hosting?
How many properties do you own / manage?
Where do you list your properties?
Airbnb & My Own Website
What’s the link to your own website?
What do you love about being a host?
I love meeting our guests and hearing their stories; what brought them to the area, why they chose the Decatur Alpaca Cottage, and where they have seen alpacas before. Every guest has a story to tell and I thoroughly enjoy hearing what our guests share! I also take great pleasure in reading our guests’ entries in our guest book and finding the common themes; impeccably clean, incredibly comfortable, a haven, peaceful, close to the city, but just far enough away, you thought of everything, and my all-time favorite ‘We’ll be back!”
What, if anything, do you find challenging about being a host?
The most challenging part of being a host for me is learning all the ins and outs to make it easier to host without detracting from our guests’ experiences. Finding helpful third party services, like GuestBook, variable pricing services, etc. make it much easier to host leaving our time available for doing what we love – preparing for and greeting our guests and then leaving them to enjoy their stay!
Do you have a philosophy or approach to hospitality that you think differentiates yourself from others?
Our philosophy at the Decatur Alpaca Cottage is to go the extra mile to ensure our guests have not only a pleasant stay, but a stay which they will remember for years to come. This can be as simple as providing fresh flowers or wine when a special celebration is the reason for the stay or gifting alpaca or farm animal finger puppets to a child guest who is having a birthday. We pay attention, find ways to raise the bar a bit higher, and deliver!
Do you offer any special amenities that you think are important for guests to be aware of?
We always cover the basics with premium quality items – high thread count sheets, plush towels (in fact, the linens in the cottage are better than those in our own house!), and ensure that the cottage is impeccably clean. Going further though, we offer our guests a generous basket of snacks and fruit upon arrival, some beverages already cooled in the refrigerator, Italian chocolates beautifully presented on handmade pottery by the bedside, and the gift of a nice bottle of wine for those who wish to partake. We also ensure that guests have everything they need to ensure a comfortable stay; Pharmacopoeia organic, natural guest amenities in the bathroom and more towels than any human being could possibly use during their stay to ensure no one runs out. We aim for a spirit of generosity and plenty for our guests knowing it will pay off in superior reviews, return guests, and good will all around.
Are you using GuestBook to help manage your properties?
How has it improved your hosting experience?
Although I am still learning about all the functionality, it is helping me organize myself around my hosting as well as be more responsive to my guests. I am taking it slowly with implementing all it has to offer, but I already know I love it!
Thank you for the opportunity to share my experience and feedback about GuestBook, Jeremy!
GuestBook is the easiest way for short-term rental, vacation rental, and homesharing hosts to manage their properties, reservations and guests. For travelers, GuestBook provides access to hospitality services and peace of mind throughout their trip.