Client Information

For travelers looking for an authentic and mindful Key West experience, Historic Key West Inns delivers. With six unique locations—most over 100-years old—this historic yet modern
boutique hotel collection is sure to please a wide range of tastes and expectations. From the charming Key Lime Inn to the magically private Merlin Guest House, each property brings its own culture and special allure, sure to spark many cherished memories of Key West.

Historic Key West Inns - Key West - Lighthouse Court Hotel - Cottages

“With Windsurfer, we can push our ADR and keep up with market rate reductions, all without reducing perceived value.”
—Chanice Dos Santos, Digital Marketing Manager, Historic Key West Inns

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SHR PRODUCTS/SERVICES

Windsurfer® CRS, Booking Engine, GDS, Direct Connect

Situation

Every hotel has its own special distribution needs, and Historic Key West Inns is no exception. Yet they were dealing with more than just property differences. “Key West has an unusually open feel, no passports required, and intentionally operates about ten years behind in terms of living pace,” Chanice explained. “So, our biggest challenge was to maintain that authentic Key West vibe, and yet reach a wider audience of modern travelers, seasoned history buffs and younger guests alike.” Weddings are another mainstay for her hotels. “Key West is currently number two in the continental U.S. as a wedding destination,” said Chanice. “So, having a distribution strategy that could make the most of group sales was crucial.”

Outcome

One competitive advantage Historic Key West already had was a deep understanding of the market. “This area has a naturally higher ADR, so the more you undercut rates trying to provide value, the less value is perceived by the guest, and the more you actually undermine your image,” Chanice said. “With Windsurfer, we can add value and push our ADR via discount codes on Stay Longer packages, then track those same promotions.”

They also did a bold 20% Black Friday discount campaign, jointly built in Windsurfer and their PMS, which was advanced purchase and non-refundable. “We lost 20%, true, but we got so many takers, it more than made up for it,” explained Chanice. “And bonus; it was all non-OTA, no commissions. Since we normally do 50-70% OTA business, that was a big
deal for us.”

And speaking of joint projects, the seamless 2-way interface they enjoy between Windsurfer and their PMS can’t be overlooked. “That communication is huge for us, because if our CRS and PMS can’t talk to each other freely, our promotions can’t reach the GDS,” Chanice said. “And from our perspective, the GDS is as vital as our connection to the OTAs.”

Historic Key West Inns - Albury Court Hotel - Guest Room

 

The Future

Ten years into their relationship with SHR, Chanice and Historic Key West Inns are confident about what lies ahead. “As a small hotel line, we need a reliable, solid partnership built on collaboration. We know from what we’ve already experienced that no matter what the market or competition brings, we’ll always have that with SHR.”

Visit historickeywestinns.com.

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