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Wednesday, 01 August 2012 09:35

Make a Change of Plans Work to Your Advantage

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What do you do when your hotel opening is delayed by six months and it becomes critical to ensure that the right information is communicated? If you are the team at the Oak Bay Beach Hotel, you try and keep the anticipation alive by promoting experiential gift cards, connecting face-to-face with your local community, and even run errands in your signature electric powered GEM cars.

When it was announced in April 2012 that the Oak Bay Beach Hotel would miss the opening deadline of May 25, 2012–coinciding with the David Foster Foundation Twenty-Fifth anniversary Miracle Weekend–longtime owners and developers Kevin and Shawna Walker stepped back and reassessed their plans for the summer of 2012.

Although the Miracle Weekend was a remarkable success (earning more than $4 million for the David Foster Foundation), the Oak Bay Beach Hotel was still under construction. With a focus on ensuring that corners weren’t cut and quality wasn’t diminished in order to meet deadlines, the Walkers faced a new challenge–missing yet another busy summer season.

To connect with their community, the Oak Bay Beach Hotel team started both an online and in-person grassroots outreach. From sponsoring the fireworks for the Oak Bay Tea Party to attending public events in Oak Bay, as well as continuing to discuss newly completed aspects of the property with their online community and even introducing a mascot (Ollie Bear), the hotel is working hard to maintain a presence–even without being open to welcome guests. In addition, the hotel purchased three electric GEM vehicles, branded with the hotel’s logos and color scheme, allowing staff to complete errands throughout Oak Bay. 

“We realize that by delaying our opening, people who are eager to check in and try out all of our amenities, had to alter their plans,” says Kevin Walker, owner and developer of the Oak Bay Beach Hotel. “We know the demand is there so through connecting with our local and online community, we are helping them to plan ahead and perhaps even be the first guests through our door, experiencing our spa, trying out our dinner theatre, or having a beer in The Snug.”

One incentive being offered by the hotel is gift cards that can be used throughout the Oak Bay Beach Hotel. And for gift card purchases of more than $200 Canadian, between August 1 and December 31, 2012, even the purchaser receives a present of a complimentary day pass to the Boathouse Spa and Baths hot seaside mineral pools as well as the opportunity for seaside dining–something that will typically be restricted for the use of spa guests. For more information, visit

Source: Tartan Media

Read 1593 times Last modified on Wednesday, 01 August 2012 10:22

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