Hotelier Profile: Ann Callahan

Finding Your Niche

As hoteliers, our job is to cater to people from all walks of life, but sometimes it helps to specialize.

Everyone Has Different Needs
When people travel, they often have unique needs, seek new experiences, desire different ways to explore their passions, or aim to limit their impact on the local area. For motorcycle riders, those goals  and needs are still very pertinent, so finding ways to cater to them can be a fantastic way to win lifelong clients and a stellar reputation within a tight-knit community.

As an avid motorcycle rider, Ann Callahan (Owner of Hillcrest House Bed & Breakfast) knows what riders need to feel secure in their stay and experience the most when they’re on their bikes. By using her unique insight into what can make or break a trip on a bike, Ann provides amenities to her guests that many other hotels would be shocked to see; but for her, it has resulted in a stellar reputation and a loyal customer base that knows they can count on Ann to help out when they need it as well as to point them in the right direction on their travels.

If You’re Proud of Your Ride, You’re Going to Want to Keep It Clean
When people pursue their passions, they often invest significant amounts of time and money into them. For motorcycle riders, this means time spent on their bikes and money in repairs and upgrades. However, time on the bike takes its toll on both the rider and the bike. While there are beds for the riders, many lodging establishments lack amenities to service the bikes—that’s where Hillcrest House starts. When a rider arrives at the Bed & Breakfast, they are treated to a bucket of soapy water and dry towels so that they can ensure their pride and joy is clean and inviting for the ride ahead. Additionally, Hillcrest House allows riders to park their bikes in off street parking, enabling them to maintain peace of mind throughout the night. By helping guests take care of their bikes, the Hillcrest House makes them feel that much more at home during their stay.

Finding the Experiences that Suit your Guests
Bikers love to ride (you could almost say it’s their thing) but it’s often difficult to drop into a foreign city on your bike and immediately know what parts to explore. However, because of her riding experience, Ann knows the most scenic routes through the mountains and the smoothest highways by the sea, so she openly shares where to find the best roads with her guests. When directing her guests to the hidden gems on the road, Ann goes the extra mile to provide the insight that her customers really need by exploring the roads on her own. When she gives a recommendation, it comes from her knowledge and experience, rather than a quick internet search.

By finding ways to connect her passion with her business, Ann is able to provide information that may not be available to the general public, and shares her insights in a way that makes her a valuable resource to her guests. These insights and resources don’t go unnoticed and have allowed Hillcrest House to establish a reputation as a great place for motorcycle riders to stay during their travels.

It’s More Than a Niche
As Ann and the folks at the Hillcrest House demonstrate, finding the link between your passion and your work allows you to provide your guests with the best experiences possible and create a stellar reputation within the community. Though many in the lodging industry rely on online booking and Yelp reviews, having a solid reputation that is spread by word of mouth can still prove to be a great tool to expand your business and supplement those online bookings. 

In other words, by playing to your strengths and providing amenities that your guests find valuable or unique, you can help establish a reputation that goes beyond being a good hotelier or B&B owner—you can become an ever more welcoming host.