Hey Big Spenders!
Growth in demand for glamping accommodation options, such as yurts, is up 13 per cent on last year according to Pitchup.com. Meanwhile bell tents, which bridge the gap between glamping and camping, have enjoyed a 101 per cent growth in bookings as holidaymakers search for more affordable glamping options. A North Herefordshire activity centre is reaping the benefits of its highly successful glamping villages, which have seen year on year growth of over 100 per cent.
Business is booming for Oaker Wood Leisure near Leominster, since it launched its first woodland glamping village in 2014. The park quickly reached maximum capacity, so over the winter of 2014/15 they built a second village. Each village is made up of nine wooden pods, made locally by Jaques International Ltd, and can be booked exclusively by groups which has proved popular with corporate team building groups and stag and hen parties. School and youth groups visits have also increased year on year with the second glamping village meaning Oaker Wood can now accommodate groups of up to 120 young people.
Kate Tudge of Oaker Wood Leisure explains: “We have two glamping villages that each sleep between 12 and 50 people in wooden pods. We only take exclusive bookings so the groups have private use of all the village facilities, including the fire circle, dining and kitchen hut, Scandinavian style barbecue hut, showers and toilets.” She continues: “Our Glamping & Activity weekend package is very popular. This includes two nights glamping and two outdoor activities at a package price of £160 per person. We could sell our weekends in spring and summer several times over, so there is definitely a growing marketing for packaged activity and glamping weekends.”
HOME FROM HOME : Glamping has changed markedly in the last few years, with a definitive move into more luxurious interiors, higher specification facilities and the provision of individual toilets and showers. New designs and innovations are constantly evolving and premium quality components and interiors are now the norm, rather than the exception. “Around 65 per cent of the enquiries we get from people who are thinking about adding glamping to their parks or farms never go beyond the initial thought stage. The usual issues include planning considerations, lack of identifiable locations within the parks or lack of understanding within the old guard,” reveals Mark Scott of Clear Sky Safari Tents. “Holiday parks are all about selling caravans and lodges and it is often difficult for existing management structures to fully understand the revolution that is happening throughout the holiday park industry with the UK and Europe.” He adds: “Glamping is a revolution that will continue to grow and develop in all sorts of directions, this is not a fad, it’s a movement led by the networked generation, fuelled by social media and experienced by younger families for a more adventurous holiday experience.”
CHANGING MARKET : Anouk Wanders of Outstanding Safari Tents agrees: “Glamping has not only proved to be a trend, it has changed the holiday industry. “The level of comfort that guests have come to expect is getting higher and higher. For example, private bathrooms was a rare luxury just a few years ago, but nowadays most glamping accommodation features built-in bathroom facilities.” Anouk adds: “The market is going through major changes and we have to adapt very fast. We need to keep developing new structures and need to be innovative to keep up with this increasing demand.” Inspired by the African experience, safari tents are fast becoming one of the most popular forms of glamping accommodation. Great for families, couples or groups, tents offer something extra special for holiday makers and many parks are reaping the rewards of a safari tent investment.
BOLDSCAN Tel. 01823 665849 www.albioncanvas.co.uk
CLEAR SKY SAFARI TENTS Tel. 0845 299 6484 www.safaritents.net
FUTURE ROOMS Tel. 01452 501455 www.futurerooms.co.uk
OUTSTANDING SAFARI TENTS Tel. +31 (0)318 575056 www.safaritents.co.uk
OAKER WOOD LEISURE Tel. 01568 780111 www.oakerwoodleisure.co.uk
YURTS FOR LIFE Tel. 01803 762370 www.yurtsforlife.com
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