Digital travel platform Booking.com has named Bulli's Southview Guest House among a list of outstanding properties in Australia to win a prestigious Guest Review Award.
Southview was listed among the leading NSW properties based on customer review ratings in 2018. To be recognised properties need to have an average review score of 8.0 or higher based on at least five reviews from customers who have stated in the accommodation.
Southview is described on Booking.com as a boutique guest house, where the guest house owners live on site with their two children. Guests enjoy the exclusive use of either a one-bedroom self-contained suite or a standard room. Each has its own private entrance. There is an outdoor swimming pool and a children's playground.
- The sea view suite has a hydrotherapy spa, private balcony, views of the mountains and beach.
- The garden view suite has a private courtyard.
- The king room has a small deck overlooking pool and backyard. Guests enjoy free parking.
Neil Davis-Raiss said he and his wife Leanne brought the two storey house split into four levels in 2009 and did significant renovations to transform it into a guest house.
They were very keen to provide a point of difference and the way they have done that is to try and provide things that most people don’t have at home and that other accommodation properties don’t have such as King sized beds..
“We have a hydrotherapy spa upstairs that is quite large and can fit a family of four in it. And the pool outside heats up to 36 to 40 degrees. We have a four star rating and we provide things like toothbrushes and toiletry kit. We want people to be able to say they are staying in something similar to a hotel but with a very relaxed feel about it,” Mr Davis-Raiss said.
Southview is a three-minute walk from Sandon Point Beach, a seven-minute drive from Thirroul Beach, 15-minutes drive from Wollongong and a 20-minute drive from Stanwell Tops Lookout. Couples particularly like the location rating it a 9.6 for a two-person trip.
“It is mainly for couples but we also do welcome families. And we have been lucky enough in the last couple of years to start to get a few more business people come through mid-week,” Mr Davis-Raiss said.
“I have always had an interest in hospitality. I used to run a surf camp. I worked in Australia and France and dabbled a lit bit in Indonesia with accommodation. I have always had an interest in it. We recently started a stand-alone villa offering accomodation as well in Woonona which has been quite successful too. But in a different style”.
Other Booking.com Guest Review Award facts:
For the second year in a row apartments were the top-awarded accommodation type.
They made up more than a third (36 per cent) of the award-winning properties globally in 2018.
While hotels came in as the second-awarded accommodation type, nearly three quarters (73 per cent) of all the winning properties were homes, apartments and other unique places to stay, including everything from boats and igloos to homestays and country houses.
Booking.com also asked 21,000 travelers across 29 countries about their travel habits and found more than a third of Aussie travellers (33 per cent) would prefer to stay in a vacation rental (holiday home or apartment) over a hotel in 2019.
And 17 per cent of those surveyed said that they would consider listing their own home on a travel accommodation site over the coming year.
Booking.com vice president Olivier Grémillon said what the digital platform found was that no matter the type, size or location of the property, customers value a human connection when they travel.
“Whether it’s some extra attention to detail or a truly individualized approach to service,” he said.
OUTSTANDING PROPERTIES IN AUSTRALIA RECEIVING 2018 GUEST REVIEW AWARDS
- Grand Hotel and Apartments, Townsville, QLD
- Avenue Hotel, Canberra, ACT
- Hotel Grand Chancellor, Hobart, TAS
- Somerset on the Pier, Hobart, TAS
- Vintages Accommodation, Margaret River Town, WA
- Hervey Bay Colonial Lodge, Hervey Bay, QLD
- Salamander Bay Bed and Breakfast, Salamander Bay, NSW
- Southview Guest House, Wollongong, NSW
- The Playford Adelaide – Mgallery by Sofitel, Adelaide, SA
- Best Western Olde Maritime Motor Inn, Warrnambool, VIC
Most welcoming places in Australia
The top 10 most welcoming destinations in Australia:
- Bendigo, Victoria (71 winners)
- Hervey Bay, Queensland (65 winners)
- Halls Gap, Victoria (61 winners)
- Ballarat, Victoria (67 winners)
- Townsville, Queensland (71 winners)
- Hobart, Tasmania (154 winners)
- Launceston, Tasmania (70 winners)
- Margaret River Town, Western Australia (88 winners)
- Warnambool, Victoria (65 winners)
- Canberra, ACT (84 winners)