Holiday Snaps: Alan House Holiday Resort Unity
Alan House is the director and general manager at Holiday Resort Unity (HRU), a family-owned business located in Brean Somerset. First opened in 1948, the park is now one of the largest holiday parks in the region and incorporates the facilities of Holiday Resort Unity, Brean Leisure Park and Golden Sands Holiday Park.
How was 2015 for Holiday Resort Unity?
2015 was a positive season for us across all areas of the business. Caravan holiday homes in particular were very successful, and spending in our bars and restaurants was around 10 per cent up on the previous year.
How is 2016 shaping up?
Advance bookings look strong; I put this down to the reinvestment in the park and facilities, the economy and the unfortunate unstable international situation we find ourselves in at the moment.
What are the main challenges facing the holiday park industry at the moment?
Customers are starting to tell the industry how much they want to pay as opposed to us saying how much we will charge. Taking children out of school and the implementation of the living wage in 2016 are also key issues at the moment.
If you had to identify one element, what is the most crucial aspect to the success of HRU?
Reinvestment to the business based on guest feedback. Last year we invested £2.2million on expanding our pool complex to include an indoor splash zone and we built Brean Play - a large modern indoor soft play centre which has proved really popular. On top of this we have replaced 35 hire fleet caravans, refurbished areas and started on a new caravan and lodge development.
What does a typical day in the office for you consist of?
Getting a good overview of the operational status of the business then everything to do with operating a busy holiday centre. I like to oversee all our major supplier deals at the beginning of the season.
What is the best piece of business advice you have been given and by whom?
“Take a risk, but listen to your gut” – Sir Stuart Rose.
Where do you go on holiday?
As many places as possible! I do love Australia though.
Tell us a joke…
A guy got a job at a bar in Spain, during his first shift the other staff kept tapping him on the backside, he said what type of bar is this? A Tapas bar…
I like to network with other holiday park owners and if anybody would like to come and have a look around, I would be more than happy to show them.