Hospitality industry is an ever evolving and developing sector of the economy. Many countries are being faced with hard economic times and this has greatly affected the tourism industry. The number of guests being received has drastically reduced in the recent past (Meyer, 2006).The lowest figures were recorded in 2008 during the global financial crisis. However, as many countries continue to receive fewer visitors, Australia still receives a significantly higher number of visitors every year. This is attributed to the numerous tourist attraction facilities in the country. In order for the country to improve the number of guests visiting the country, they need to ensure that the guest experience during visits is highly regarded. This will not only earn the country good recommendation but will also ensure that the number of visitors coming to the country rises steadily. The hospitality industry plays a crucial role towards ensuring that a country increases the number of visitors visiting the country (Lieberman & Nissen, 2006). The hospitality group in Australia has been very instrumental towards ensuring that such improvements are met. The Group ensures that the guest/host relationship is highly improved and this has earned the company a number of referrals thus making it the largest hospitality group in Western and Eastern Australia. This paper focuses on the improvements and the developments that have been realized in the hospitality industry in Australia. There are a lot of improvements and developments initiated by different companies that have seen the hospitality industry grow and receive referrals in the recent past as will be discussed in the research paper.
Hospitality refers to the relationship between the host and the guest. It is also used to refer to the act of being welcoming and it specifically means the reception of guests, offering entertainment facilities to the visitors, provision of membership clubs and offering other services to the travelers and the tourists (Jaszay, 2006). Hospitality in Australia has developed in the recent past and the quality of services being offered by the hotels is also improving tremendously. There are some tourist motels like the Hospitality Pty that has led the way in the growth of the hospitality and the Tourism Industries in Western Australia. Most countries all over the world have received poor and decreased tourism in the region. However, Australia’s travel market is on the rise and is struggling to keep up with the increased demand for tour services. In order for a country to have a good hospitality industry, it needs to have elaborate and adequate transportation system and high quality hotels and motels. These will encourage more tourists to visit such countries. The professional in the field also need to be very hospitable in order to take care of the tourists efficiently during their visits. Provision of a hospitable environment include making the staff to be friendly to the guests, offering manageable prices which are attractive, offering high quality services and trying to make their lives as comfortable as possible. Several hotels and tour companies have developed in the recent past so as to keep up with the ever increasing number of tourists visiting the country.
Hospitality Group was established in 1962 and was initially named Highway Motels. This has been very instrumental towards the development of the hospitality industry in Australia. This group operates motels in almost every Australian states and the New Zealand. This company acquired several motels in different states in Australia. The motels were later developed in order to meet the increasing demands of the guests. The quality of the hotels was also further improved so as to become even more attractive to the guests. The Highway Motels have been increasingly steadily so as to cover all parts of Australia. The company further added accommodation facilities including Caravan Park and five star hotels both in Australia and New Zealand. The Highway Motels later on acquired the Village Motel Group. It also purchased the Noah’s Hotel Group and in 1980, it re-branded and adopted the name Hospitality Inns. In 1987, Hospitality group had accommodation facilities with over 2000 rooms and had more than 1500 staff serving under it. In 1989, the group of hotels purchased approximately 50% of the ownership in Great Aussie Holidays, a leading tour operator in Australia. The hotel then resolved into the establishment of quest apartments so as to offer more attractive facilities to the guests. The company then acquired the management contract of Quest apartment complex which is found in South Perth. Later on, the company acquired several management contracts for different apartments. These developments were very successful and the company provided exemplary managerial activities to the apartments. Franchise marketing and referral system was introduced in Australia by the Hospitality Group. The main targets were the serviced apartments in Australia. This was aimed at outsourcing the services of the Motels and putting in place an elaborate and efficient managerial and marketing system for the Hospitality Group and other companies that were interested in the Hospitality Industry (Routes, 1999).
Improving referral Network
There was an initiative put forward through a joint venture between Laurie and Marlene O’Meara to create network of quality 3.5 and 4.5 star hotels all over Australia. This was to target the corporate and vacation markets. This initiative resulted into the establishment of a joint business enterprise with Best Western which then created a new network called Best Western Hospitality which was to offer referral services. This joint venture opened up a network of over 250 establishments all over Australia offering accommodation services. It was also part of a worldwide network which had the largest chain of hotels in the world. It had more than 4,200 belongings serving more than 80 countries across the globe. This network then became one of the most successful motel recommendation and marketing network in Western Australia. There have been several western Australian establishments that have joined Best Western and given the network a very considerable recommendation of highly wanted Western Australian motels. The shareholders and the administrators of Hospitality Inns decided to sell the rights of Western Australia back to Best Western Australia so as to permit Best Western Australia to conform to some of the internal Best Western network requirements.
Saving the Sky West Airlines
The Skywest Airlines assets were subject to receivership in 2001. However, the Hospitality Group helped in the establishment of a consortium that could bid against the same from the receivership of Ansett Airlines. The Hospitality group was one of the principal owners of Skywest Airlines. This shows the commitment that the group had towards ensuring that Western Australia tourism projects were profitable and efficiently done.
Launching innovative Tourist Website
There was a momentous plunge in the regional travel that was done by the corporate market and a progressive growth of internet killing. Therefore in order to contain the poor business performance, the Hospitality Group responded by launching an innovative tourist website that was intended to attract tourists to the region. The innovative website was interactive and the guests could be able to get information about the available motels and even make reservations. The website was also used for marketing purposes to make the guests aware of the facilities being offered by the institution.
Formation of Eco Company and Ecomodation
In 2006, a company known as Eco Company was formed. This company was charged with the responsibility of managing and developing eco retreats across Australia, initially the Company was an initiative between the Hospitality Inns and the Hawaiian Group. The organization then later on developed a new brand known as Ecomodation. The new brand had the following features:
- Eco structures
This supposed to provide expertise knowledge in design to facilitate the construction of tents and cabins.
- Eco Constructions
Was established to offer building services whenever they were required in the setup
- Hospitality Inns
Meant to provide management activities to the company
The establishment of Ecomodation ensured the provision of sustainable managements of environmentally affable retreats all Australia. Currently the Hospitality Group has already acquired the interest initially owned by the Karl Plunkett and the Hawaiian company.
The Hospitality Group has been on the fore front working towards the improvement of the hospitality industry in Australia for more than 47 years. The group is till leading other companies in the Hospitality Industry and its five motels are among the best in Australia. Several initiatives have been taken by the group in order to provide services that can contain the guests and ensure that they enjoy their stay while in the country. This has worked out very well as the group has been able to win the confidence of the guests and the local tourists as a result of their exemplary services.
Tourism industry is one of the most instrumental sectors of the Australian Economy. Guest/host relationship in any country receiving tourists is a vital factor. There is need to have an elaborate hospitality management that can ensure that the relationship is kept at its best in order to continue receiving guests. A country without a good hospitality management or with a hostile population is likely to suffer major drawbacks in terms of tourists’ preference. The hospitality industry has developed to greater heights in the recent past and has seen the improvements of services being offered by the hosts. There are several initiatives being taken by the Australian government and other development partners in the private sector so as to improve tourism in Australia. These initiatives have been successful and the country continues to receive numerous referrals thus boosting its tourism sector.
1. Danny Meyer (2006) Setting the Table : The Transforming Power of Hospitality in Business
2. Christine Jaszay (2006). Ethical Decision-Making in the Hospitality Industry
3. Karen Lieberman & Bruce Nissen (2006). Ethics in the Hospitality And Tourism Industry
4. Jacques Derrida (2000). Of Hospitality. Trans. Rachel Bowlby. Stanford: Stanford University Press.
5. Steve Reece (1993). The Stranger’s Welcome: Oral Theory and the Aesthetics of the Homeric Hospitality Scene. Ann Arbor: The University of Michigan Press.
6. Mireille Rosello (2001). Postcolonial Hospitality. The Immigrant as Guest. Standford, CA: Stanford University Press.
7. Clifford J. Routes (1999). Travel and Translation in the Late Twentieth Century. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.