Profiles

Patience, persistence, perseverance and passion…

A trip across the Tasman Sea led Kiwi resort managers Tracy and Martin Hobbs to the beautiful Sandcastles on the Broadwater property.

This is a stunning, centrally located Gold Coast resort that sits restfully on the Broadwater with sweeping views across the water and beyond. Tracy told us: “Sandcastles on the Broadwater is a family-friendly complex where our motto is to arrive as guests and leave as family.

“We think that this is the perfect place to enjoy a family holiday. Attention to detail is what makes us stand out. We are not as big as some of our competitors but we think we go that little bit further for our guests, and our communication with them is of the utmost importance.”

image 1Eleven years ago with two girls, Mollie and Jessie, under two years old, the family decided to move from New Zealand to Australia for “warmer weather and job opportunities”.

According to Tracy, they saw the management rights industry as the perfect option because it would allow them to “be there for our young family while having the perfect work, life balance”.

Their first management rights purchase was in 2004 and Tracy acknowledged: “It was a permanent complex on the south side of Brisbane consisting of 80 units. It was all a little overwhelming at the start but we had fantastic support network including Mike Butler from RAAS and the local resident managers.”

After two years they decided to spread their wings and take on more of a challenge with holiday letting. Having gained lots of experience, in 2013 they purchased the management rights for their present property.

“Sandcastles on the Broadwater is a perfect destination for those who are wanting large spacious apartments close to all the fun that the Gold Coast has to offer. It is also very restful with the soothing tranquillity of the Broadwater across the road and features private balconies with spa baths presenting the perfect place to unwind after a busy day,” Tracy explained.

image 3Martin and Tracy grew up in New Zealand and before management rights Martin was part of the building industry for over 20 years, with Tracy in the transport industry. An interest in real estate led them to purchase their first property at only 21, Tracy said: “It certainly needed a makeover and from that day on one of our biggest passions was the accomplishment of transforming a rundown property into a perfect family home.

“But we had family friends who had purchased management rights and this triggered our interest and so we decided to complete the resident letting licence by correspondence. We flew to Queensland to consider some management rights businesses that were on the market, found a property, signed a contract and then headed back to Christchurch to organise our move across the Tasman!”

Tracy and Martin purchased Sandcastles on the Broadwater in June 2013. “We purchased the management rights with silent partners as this was the ideal option for us. We wanted to manage a large building where we could have staff to help with the day-to-day operations of the business,” revealed Tracy.

Of course, at 14 years old, the property has some areas that required an upgrade and recently most of the units were re-carpeted and painted throughout. They are presently in the process of refreshing the bedrooms with new bed-heads, bedside tables and linen.

image 2For Tracy and Martin it’s all about providing a great environment that enables their guests to enjoy their holiday and that, along with meeting lots of interesting people, is what they enjoy most about managing Sandcastles.

Tracy explained: “We also have a great relationship with our investors, owners and body corporate which makes running a large resort so much easier. When living in such a tight knit community, it is essential to be able to communicate.”

Tracy offered that the success of a resort boils down to how welcome guests feel and how special they are made to feel. “We offer them a home away from home and we treat everyone how we would like to be treated,” she said.

Divulging secrets to successful resort management, Tracy added: “Make sure you have a good support network around you, go and meet the local managers and introduce yourself. Don’t run before you can walk, you will trip up! Keep your eye closely on your overheads as they can run away with you if you let them.

image 9“Vitally important: if you haven’t got a passion for what you are doing, don’t bother. Be firm but fair with staff: if you look after them, they will look after you and eventually share your passion. Believe in yourself and be focussed.”

The main reason this family entered the industry was to be able to parent their children ‘hands on’, as Tracy noted: “Although busy, we are able to be there for our children and we also try and get away at least one weekend afternoon each week whether we go across and enjoy the Broadwater or go for lunch or a bike ride together.

“Travel is also something we enjoy as a family. We were one of the lucky, or unlucky, ones that ended up having an extended holiday in Bali for 10 extra days due to the Volcanic Ash. Thankfully we have amazing staff who kept things running smoothly during our extended stay away.”

Tracy admitted to thriving in the work environment but family and Yoga is her downtime. Yoga is, she claimed, “an essential component of a happy balanced life”.

image 7“I achieve that balance with daily yoga, which I can’t do without, and spending time with my precious family, of course.”

Resort News asked what her biggest achievement so far was and she replied: “My biggest achievement is being myself and from a professional perspective I always think that my greatest achievement is yet to come and that is what keeps me motivated.”

Tracy and Martin agree that management rights is a lot of hard work: you need to learn from your mistakes and use them as stepping stones. You also need “patience, persistence, perseverance and passion” to succeed.

“Hard work goes into building a strong foundation for any business.”

Rosie Clarke

Rosie Clarke is managing editor at Multimedia Publishing.

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