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B and B for Climbers?!
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amartin


Nov 14, 2012, 9:01 PM
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B and B for Climbers?!
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I am thinking about starting a B and B catered to climbers and other adventure seekers. I want it to be 20 minutes from good climbing (cant disclose location yet) with cheap beds and hot running water. What other requirements are more specific to climbers? Transportation to and from the climb sites? On the go breakfast? Would anyone be interested in this or is camping outside still the best option? Would appreciate any opinion!


granite_grrl


Nov 15, 2012, 5:05 AM
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You gotta keep in mind that climbers are cheap and you are marketing to a smaller segment within the climbing community. There are two groups of climbers who would go for this: 1) climbers sick of sleeping on the ground, usually people 40 years old or older but not exclusivly. 2) climbers who are travelling in by plane and don't want to haul all their camping stuff with.

In both cases more of a hostel kind of setup might work better with a common kitchen. Selling food on the side would probably do okay too.

Other comments: 20min away from good climbing seems pretty far away. If you're appealing to climbers then that closer you are to the rocks the better. Also if people need transprotation to and from the crag then they'd probably also need transportation to the grocery store and to the airport.


camhead


Nov 15, 2012, 5:55 AM
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I second the hostel setup. If you're 20 mins from climbing, transportation is a must.

Also, a small gear shop and crash pad rentals would be a good idea. Check out the site for The Crash Pad in Chattanooga for more ideas. Though, they are a bit on the pricy side, and like granitegirl said, climbers are cheap.


Gmburns2000


Nov 15, 2012, 6:11 AM
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amartin wrote:
I am thinking about starting a B and B catered to climbers and other adventure seekers. I want it to be 20 minutes from good climbing (cant disclose location yet) with cheap beds and hot running water. What other requirements are more specific to climbers? Transportation to and from the climb sites? On the go breakfast? Would anyone be interested in this or is camping outside still the best option? Would appreciate any opinion!

I have a long family experience with B&Bs, and it sounds to me like you're describing a hostel. B&Bs generally aren't that cheap with hot water as a selling point, but hostels are. Hostels don't have to have just dorm rooms either, though many do.

B&Bs generally offer comfort on a personal level to compete with hotels, which can be comfortable, but often aren't personal.

Could be different where you're from, though, but that's my experience.


lena_chita
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Nov 15, 2012, 7:25 AM
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amartin wrote:
I am thinking about starting a B and B catered to climbers and other adventure seekers. I want it to be 20 minutes from good climbing (cant disclose location yet) with cheap beds and hot running water. What other requirements are more specific to climbers? Transportation to and from the climb sites? On the go breakfast? Would anyone be interested in this or is camping outside still the best option? Would appreciate any opinion!

Whether I personally would be interested in something like this, would depend on the location. Some climbing destinations have much better camping options than others, and that would affect my decision.

As far as additional services, if this is near bouldering area, how about crashpad rentals?

Breakfast would be really nice, but depending on what's nearby, as far as food options, I would think that some sort of communal cooking area, or an option to buy dinner, would be a big selling point.


atg200


Nov 16, 2012, 6:24 AM
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lena_chita
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Nov 16, 2012, 6:27 AM
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atg200 wrote:
If you set something up like this near Red Rock in Vegas, you'll print your own money. I'd probably never use it anywhere that had decent camping though.

Of all the places, Vegas is the wrong one, IMO. Yes, campground there sucks. But if you are flying in, there are so many good cheap hotel deals...


wonderwoman


Nov 16, 2012, 8:57 AM
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moved from campground to general by ww.


wonderwoman


Nov 16, 2012, 9:06 AM
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We occasionally stay at hostels when there is no nearby camping. Having access to a kitchen is nice. I would skip on the breakfast, though. No one wants to eat heavy and then go climbing. A grab & go breakfast is not a bad idea.


Wade308


Nov 16, 2012, 9:47 AM
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I'd be interested, but I'm one of those 40 year olds that is willing to pay for comfort.

How would this be different from, say, a VRBO rental? Would you be a sort of casual guide that could direct people to unknown or seldom climbed spots of awesomeness?

Otherwise a VRBO rental and a guidebook would cover my needs, most likely.


Partner happiegrrrl


Nov 16, 2012, 9:56 AM
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Market Research is key - but not just asking what people on the main climbing sites want, because I can tell you this. The website POSTING climbers are but a very small fraction of the whole. Many others read the threads, but will not post, and many don't do the forums.

I would first see what the area you are considering already offers, and what people who climb in that area feel about the offerings. I don't think you really need to be secretive about the locale, and this might hinder your getting good input.

Then, I would list every "adventure base" place I could come up with, at least in the US, and thoroughly analyze what they offer, what the alternatives to that area are, how this impacts and all that....This would be an exhaustive part of research, but pretty important, really.

I think it is smart to market toward the greater outdoors adventurer, assuming your location merits that.

I assume the location is a "destination spot" - and not simply a locally frequented place. Some things I think people who are traveling to a destination might like are:
- variables in packages, from low, no-frills, to nicer digs
- secure storage for gear
- ample and safe parking area
- showers, absolutely
- inclimate weather shelter. Miguels handles this well, with the covered cooking area that has a stow place so people don't have to carry cooking gear back and forth, and also has the inside room, I was there two years ago in a rainy spell, and it was nice to be able to go in there, recharge myself and my electronic goods, and talk to others.
- access to electrical outlets for recharging(now pretty much required ammenity)
- internet access(also pretty required, unless there is wifi access nearby)
- Information on local areas, for the activities your clientele does as well as other stuff to do. Guidebook Rentals would be good to have.

Food is tough, because people eat differently, and doing food well is bets left to people who know food prep. It would depend what is available nearby, whether to delve into food is worthwhile.


(This post was edited by happiegrrrl on Nov 16, 2012, 9:58 AM)


juststrange


Nov 16, 2012, 10:02 AM
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I've considered doing the same. I always figured guidebooks available, and a TV with a large supply of climbing DVDs for those rainy days (atleast for the bouldering crowd). I second crashpad rentals - flying/driving with those sucks.


dagibbs


Nov 16, 2012, 10:20 AM
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This is definitely a possibility. As many have noted, this is going to appeal more to the climber with a job on vacation than the on-the-cheap climber. (Though, also offering camping could allow you to tap into both markets.)

B&B/Hostel is, definitely, the way I would prefer to do my climbing trips. Hotel/motel next choice, camping last choice. I'm older, I can afford a place to stay, and I'd rather be warm & dry & comfortable than in a tent.

I like a breakfast option -- I like to have a good breakfast any day that I'm climbing.

D'Acres (http://www.dacres.org/) near Rumney and the Posada (http://www.elpotrerochico.mx/) near El Potrero Chico seem to both be doing fairly well in this market. (Both also have other business beyond just climbers, but seem to get a lot of climbing business.)

Walking distance, if possible, to the climbing destination can be very useful, especially if your destination tends to get people arriving by air rather than driving. (D'Acres is a good drive, but most people get to Rumney by vehicle; whereas Posada is an easy walk, and many fly to Mexico.)

Other thoughts: is climbing seasonal in your area? What to do with the land/buildings and about overhead in the off-season? Are there other reasons people come to that destination that could help supplement the business?


shockabuku


Nov 16, 2012, 12:07 PM
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markc


Nov 16, 2012, 12:39 PM
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As others have suggested, I think a range of amenities is a good idea. You could have a limited selection of camping sites, a hostel-style bunkhouse with communal facilities, and several private rooms. That caters to a wide range of budgets and preferences.

I don't know that you need to provide breakfast. If you have an open kitchen and provided a nice perk like free coffee, I'd be really pleased. Renting out crashpads and having a climbing library (magazines, books, and DVDs) are good suggestions. You could have a guides available for purchase or to borrow with a deposit.

A community room and secure storage would be really good additions. If you have a van, shuttle service to the crag, to town for groceries, etc. may be useful. Again, this depends on how people are getting to you and on the nature of your location.

This might be more trouble than it's worth, but you could also have a FB group or virtual bulletin board for solo climbers to connect with each other before arriving. How useful that is may depend upon your location and how people connect there now.


atg200


Nov 16, 2012, 1:30 PM
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DougMartin


Nov 16, 2012, 3:06 PM
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Its being done at Seneca Rocks, WV! Check out

http://www.seneca-house.com

And it is a fantastic place to stay by the way!


Gmburns2000


Nov 16, 2012, 4:52 PM
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atg200 wrote:
lena_chita wrote:
atg200 wrote:
If you set something up like this near Red Rock in Vegas, you'll print your own money. I'd probably never use it anywhere that had decent camping though.

Of all the places, Vegas is the wrong one, IMO. Yes, campground there sucks. But if you are flying in, there are so many good cheap hotel deals...

I drive there for weekends frequently, and while you can find good hotel deals downtown and on the strip, good luck finding anything less than $100/night anywhere near Red Rock itself. I don't have much interest in driving 30+ minutes each way to stay at a casino hotel. If a decent cheap hotel opened anywhere near Red Rock, it would be packed with climbers.

Mid-week, the Suncoast is pretty damn cheap, and it's no more than 15 minutes away from the booth.


robx


Nov 16, 2012, 5:47 PM
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definitely check out d'acres in new hampshire.


smallclimber


Nov 16, 2012, 7:07 PM
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" wrote:
Suncoast is pretty damn cheap, and it's no more than 15 minutes away from the booth.

That's where we always stay.......I never thought I would have something in common with GMBurns!
The graveyard special breakfast at 5.00am for $1.99 before an epic day is pretty good!


Gmburns2000


Nov 17, 2012, 5:48 AM
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smallclimber wrote:
" wrote:
Suncoast is pretty damn cheap, and it's no more than 15 minutes away from the booth.

That's where we always stay.......I never thought I would have something in common with GMBurns!
The graveyard special breakfast at 5.00am for $1.99 before an epic day is pretty good!

And the rooms are pretty nice, too. Really close and easy to get to, especially for the price.


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