Business View Magazine interviews Olivia Cossey, Sales & Marketing Manager for Island Villas as part of its focus on best business practices, Barbados.
Situated steps away from the glittering shoreline of Barbados’ famed Platinum Coast and directly opposite the inviting waters of Alleyne’s Bay, sits a luxury 45-unit apartment community, the Lantana Resort. Developed by the Candelisa Company based in the UK, Lantana combines tropical living with a modern aesthetic and offers budget-friendly accommodation in one of Barbados’ most prestigious locales.
Lantana boasts a mix of one, two, three and four bedroom apartments, each outfitted with air-conditioned bedrooms, fully equipped kitchens, complimentary Wi-Fi, washer, dryer and flat-screen TV. Guests can enjoy views of the coastline from the spacious balconies or relax on the sun loungers by the two communal swimming pools on site.
The resort is ideally located within a short driving distance of some of Barbados’ best dining, entertainment, nightlife, shopping, and historic sites. Approximately 5-7 minutes away are popular restaurants such as the Lonestar and Mullins Beach Bar, prestigious golf courses at Royal Westmoreland, Apes Hill, and Sandy Lane, and duty-free shopping at Limegrove Lifestyle Centre. Lantana also sits between the hubs of bustling Holetown and quaint Speightstown, offering guests a glimpse of Barbados’ diversity, vibrant history, and rich culture.
Each unit at Lantana is privately owned and approximately half of the units are managed by boutique real estate agency, Island Villas. A Caribbean company with an extensive global network, Island Villas offers a wide range of services including property management, villa rentals, sales, and a premium concierge. At present, the company maintains four employees at Lantana – two housekeepers, a night watchman and a property manager. According to Olivia Cossey, Island Villas’ Sales & Marketing Manager, the company is also planning to expand its presence with a concierge representative on site two days a week. “As the demand for Lantana has increased we want to ensure that all of our guests’ needs our met and that whether you are visiting Barbados for the first time or returning, we have someone there to discuss activities, tours, and to help you plan your perfect vacation.”
Cossey also explains the unique appeal of Lantana and credits the resort’s affordability as a primary reason for its popularity. “Barbados is a premium travel destination and the West Coast in particular attracts international celebrities, annually. As a result, the island’s most expensive hotels and accommodation options tend to be located along this Coast and are notably higher priced than other parts of the island. Lantana represents an affordable option for most travelers while still offering amazing amenities and a luxury experience. Another highlight is the apartment concept providing guests with a full kitchen and other conveniences not available at the standard hotel.”
Rental stays at Lantana are highly variable and the average yearly occupancy rate is just under 60 percent. “With some of the units the owners may come and stay two weeks out of the year, so they are on the rental market for the majority of the year,” Cossey says. “Barbados is a highly seasonal destination with high season being November to April. At the Lantana price point, however, we find that there is consistent interest year round so in the summer months, when things are typically quiet and many hotels are experiencing a dramatic drop in bookings, we are still receiving rentals. Due to the number and type of enquiries, we usually maintain a three night minimum stay although we may allow nightly rentals where it is possible. Our guests tend to stay a minimum of a week but we have had requests for longer stays like four months and if we can accommodate them, we do.”
Island Villas promotes the resort via email marketing, social media, and via rental portals including booking.com and Expedia. “With the current global environment, we have seen a shift in the profile of the traveler coming to Barbados,” says Cossey. “We have had more interest in affordable luxury and budget-friendly options and we have worked with our reservations and property management team to ensure that our portfolio offers a wide range of accommodation options to suit every budget.”
AT A GLANCE
WHO: Lantana Resort – Barbados
WHAT: A luxury 45-unit apartment community
WHERE: Platinum Coast, Barbados
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