Customer Spotlight: Supercity Aparthotels
“We were able to be a bit braver with our pricing as we were recovering from the pandemic. Based on the confidence that Business Intelligence was giving us we were able to yield stronger rates.”
About Supercity Aparthotels
Six stylish serviced apartment hotels - in London, Manchester and Brighton - make up the independently owned Supercity Aparthotels portfolio, and provide all the friendly comforts of home within a luxurious setting. Since 2009, their signature personalized and flexible service has established a level of comfort, convenience, and attention to detail for business travelers, re-locators, families, and just about anyone who likes an added element of freedom when they travel.
Making better decisions, faster
Anyone still using legacy systems knows it can take a lot of time to pull a report, download it in Excel and then delve through the data and sort it out. Everything's moving so quickly that by the time you've done all of that, the pickup could have changed and the data might be outdated. With Lighthouse, we find it's an affordable solution for our business. The Lighthouse tab is open on my desktop from 9 to 5 and with its accuracy and real-time reporting, it gives us a huge amount of power at our fingertips.
The Lighthouse platform is our principal source of business and market insights and gives us the information we need to make a lot of decisions for the business during our weekly commercial meetings and property specific revenue meetings. The data from Lighthouse is very much the bread and butter of these talks and allows us to act very quickly as a business.
"Lighthouse gives you real-time data, but also looks at trends allowing you to make better-informed decisions quickly. Without it, you're going into the future blind."
Data-driven decisions for the whole team
Everyone takes something different from it, not just the revenue manager. We've also used the tool to help with operational decisions. For example, where we’ve examined lengths of stay and analyzed the data to see the number of check-ins and check-outs. Some of our properties have a similar number of apartments, but a higher turnover of guests, meaning that operations have an accurate picture of what the month is going to look like and can plan and budget accordingly.
Pricing with confidence
We work primarily on a competitor/market-based pricing model and adjust rates accordingly, subject to property specific performance. We rely on Lighthouse data to understand our position in the market and adjust it accordingly on a day-to-day basis.
You can see how your competitors are pricing over a length of time, and that's very valuable because it lets you make informed pricing decisions and capitalize on pickup. In general, it has helped us to be a bit braver with our pricing and we’ve been able to yield stronger rates based on the confidence that the tool gives us. Without these insights from Lighthouse, I probably wouldn't have that confidence.
"The Lighthouse tab is open on my desktop from 9 to 5 and with its accuracy and real-time reporting, it gives us a huge amount of power at our fingertips."
Optimizing revenue drivers
We have also found that the pace tool gives you actualised pickup and helped us forecast as a business, even when there was still a huge amount of uncertainty in the market. When I need to better understand my pickup and pace, I can analyze the pickup by channel, or by client, and very quickly identify any underperforming, or over-performing accounts. This allows us to spot trends or declines and address them. It also allows us to map the room type to compare our offer with a competitive room category, not just entry-level pricing or your standard rooms.
Market research to expand into new destinations
Even when we are looking at new locations to expand into, we use Lighthouse to create a compset and then shop rates over 12 months to understand the market and get an indication of whether an investment would be feasible or not. In this way, we can see how we're performing against like-minded properties and like-minded operators and understand where we have higher competition and where there aren’t as many aparthotels, and also what we can expect to get in January versus April, or June or July.
"In this way, we can see how we're performing against like-minded properties and like-minded operators and understand where we have higher competition and where there aren’t as many aparthotels, and also what we can expect to get in January versus April, or June or July."
A word to your peers
Post-COVID, travel trends have changed. You can't rely on previous data from last year or even from a few months ago, because everything has changed and the travel market is only just settling down. Historically, hotels would have budgeted based on previous years, factoring in a slight increase for inflation. But the past does not bring as much value as it historically did.
Lighthouse gives you real-time data, but also looks at trends allowing you to make better-informed decisions quickly. Without it, you're going into the future blind. If you're an independent, boutique-hotel-style operator, I think this is the best insight tool that I've used in the past number of years.