There is a new demographic of high-end travellers that aren’t looking for luxury – they’re looking for eco experiences without sacrificing comfort. TripAdvisor reported in 2013 that 79 per cent of their members plan to make more eco-friendly choices in the next 12 months compared to 71 per cent the previous year. And according to Luxury Travel UK, in the coming years we will see more hotels facilitating increasingly engaging and memorable guest participatory eco-experiences.
Thala Beach Lodge is a deluxe eco resort located near Port Douglas in North Queensland and this recorded emergence of the high-end eco traveller seeking local experiences is something they are well aware of.
“We’re finding guests that come to stay with us aren’t looking for glitz or glamour, they are looking for a lasting and special experience to take home with them, stories they will remember forever and share with friends and family. That’s what we focus on along with our high standard of comfort,” says Thala Beach Lodge’s manager, Johan Klindt.
As a family owned resort, the staff at Thala are passionate about the region and they share this enthusiasm with guests, encouraging them to leave with a broader and educated understanding of where they have holidayed. Thala also offers a range of complimentary on-site experiences, such as guided star watching and informative nature tours as well as encouraging and organising all kinds of local activities such as visiting the Great Barrier Reef.
While many hotels and resorts are competing on room rates, Thala is increasingly finding that it isn’t a major influencing factor for the guests they are attracting. What they want over a cheap room is a quality and unique experience of the environment and that’s where Thala excels.
“Our guests have usually done their research on the local area and are really looking for a unique story to take home with them. Thala is seen as a little ‘off the beaten track’ and that is what resonates with the kind of traveller we attract,” explains Johan. “Our approach is to tailor experiences, by helping plan a range of activities for them. And there’s no shortage of amazing things to do and see in this part of the world.”
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