As recently as the beginning of 2009, it seemed that the Chotol hotel in Horoměřice would be almost empty this year. The fight for the establishment’s survival caused the management to resort to an unusual move. The three-star hotel with more than 90 rooms has decided to use part of its capacity for long-term leases.
“We set out to nearby construction sites and started offering accommodation to the people working there,” the hotel’s Jana Sedlářová said. “It worked. We have already rented out some 20 double rooms this way.” As a result, employees from nearby construction sites make up a large portion of the guests on workdays.
“Even though we are more expensive than workers’ quarters, we have found guests,” she said. “A double room here costs roughly CZK 7,500 a month, and that includes a bathroom, while in the quarters they have four-bed rooms with showers outside.”
This is not the only new way that the hotel is trying to attract new guests. Besides using the internet to promote itself, the establishment is distributing brochures to nearby petrol stations and relying on drivers and travel guides who have taken clients there before. “They keep on bringing new guests without us having to pay them any commission,” Sedlářová said, “because they are our friends now.”
Chotol counts mainly on Polish travel agencies, which pass through with more tours than others. “Bargaining is a good way to handle the Polish clientele,” Sedlářová said. “So we have cut prices to a greater extent this year.”
In the near future, the hotel also wants to make much better use of its location near the Prague Airport. “We know that many people arrive for business, so we want to take advantage of these opportunities,” Sedlářová added.