Raglan Kopua Holiday Park sells good memories set in silver service to produce gold standard

September 08, 2015
Raglan Kopua Holiday Park sells good memories set in silver service to produce gold standard

"We're not selling accommodation. We are selling memories," says Raglan Kopua Holiday Park Manager Rob Clark who, with his wife Mary, has built an iconic haven and a highly successful business.

His message is relevant to road tourism in New Zealand and Australia.

"It's that warmth and care that customers remember. They won't recall the details of your park, but they'll remember how they felt and how well they were looked after on holiday," he says.

In recognition of excellent customer service, the Clarks received the ServiceIQ Holiday Park Visitor Experience Award at the Holiday Parks Association 2015 conference.

The cabins are booked out months, sometimes a year, in advance. About 80% of summer reservations are regulars, like migrating birds returning to the warmth. The park gets up to 1,500 guests per day in high summer, and needs four receptionists full time to check-in and take care of everyone.

Of course, the main attraction is the stunning seaside location, toasty climate and close proximity to perfect waves at a world famous surfing beach. It's an ideal hot spot for everyone from families, adventure seekers, surfers and tourists from all over the world.

Even so, if service was slack, the business would suffer.

"Customer service is not important. It's crucial," says Rob who has over 20 years industry experience.

"It's also quite a drive out to the coast, so we like to treat guests well and to make it worth the journey. They might book in with us for just the one night and end up staying for a week. That's gold."

His mantra could be 'endless improvement'. When visitors leave as winter rolls in, he's busy sprucing up the buildings, grounds and planning upgrades for a progressive, even more enjoyable experience.

This year, he's out to improve customer service by enrolling his team in tourism training.

The assistant manager, three receptionists and grounds person are advancing their skills on-job with a ServiceIQ Certificate in Tourism (Visitor Experience) Level 3.

Just months in, the benefits are evident to Rob: "There's the potential in a business like this to have your head down and tail up and not see the bigger picture. The training has opened their eyes about how they can help and solve problems effectively for customers."

On completion, the team will each gain a nationally recognised qualification. And they'll be ready to impress visitors and help attract new ones when summer comes.

The business gets lots of favourable online reviews and word of mouth recommendations which Rob says have a powerful impact. The same could be said for winning the prestigious Visitor Experience Holiday Park Award 2015.

Raglan Kopua Holiday Park accommodation options include a Beach Bach, Tourist Flats, Kitchen Cabins, Park Motel Units, Backpacker accommodation, together with spacious Powered and Unpowered sites for Caravanners and Campers.

Things to do include:

Safe Swimming in Raglan Harbour.

Surfing and Surf School.

Boating and Kayaking.

Excellent Fishing.

Visit Bridal Veil Falls just 15 minutes away.

Raglan Area Day Walks.

Waingaro Hot Springs Play Golf at the Raglan Golf Club.

Skate Park.

Try the many excellent restaurants.

Editors note: GoSeeNewZealand thanks Holiday Accommodation Parks of New Zealand (HAPNZ) for this feature.

ServiceIQ New Zealand Certificate in Tourism (Visitor Experience) Level 3.

This program is designed to give tourism operators, including holiday parks and resorts, the essential skills needed to provide a top quality visitor experience.

Kopua Holiday Park Aerial
Kopua Holiday Park Aerial