- travel industry
- hotel industry
All stories here are copyright The Beachfront Club and are provided free for publication and distribution. Please copy and paste. Credit may be given to The Beachfront Club, or John Everingham, or left off. Please include the web address www.thebeachfrontclub.com so your readers can check the website for themselves. Further information, photos or interviews with the founders, can be obtained by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org. We appreciate notification of stories published.
Is it right on the beach?
Though a small question, it is asked by millions, perhaps tens of millions, of people each year: is it right on the beach? And despite their best efforts looking at websites and photos, countless beach-lovers have found themselves just where they didn't want to be; across a road or trekking to get to the beach.
When holiday-makers travel half way around the world to find a beach, the question, is it right on the beach? soars in importance. Who wants to spend a small fortune to find they have been duped by misleading advertising, and are sleeping with the noise of traffic instead of waves?
A simple, new solution is at hand. A new website has employed the latest hi-tech mapping techniques to answer that question for once and for all. The Beachfront Club has meticulously mapped every beachfront hotel it can find along the beaches of the entire planet. And while they don't claim to have them all, they certainly have most, displayed in amazingly detailed maps that leave no question about their 'qualified' hotels' true beachfront credentials.
The site maps not just the beaches but also the hotels themselves, showing the outline, position and size of each one. All doubts about these 'qualified' hotels being true beachfront evaporate. And if one wants to see the 'real' beach and location just toggle the satellite image from below.
This new-style hotel club accepts all 'true' beachfront establishments, be they budget backpacker bungalows or glitzy 5-star resorts. 'True' beachfront is the only criteria. It means that in Thailand, one of the 'hot' beachfront destinations of the world, hundreds of small bungalows that cost under US$20 a night can be found quickly on even the remotest islands. In the Caribbean and Egypt the sites map all of the, huge fancy resorts in detail not seen before. In Africa one can check out all of the true beachfront resorts in Zanzibar and compare with those in neighbouring Kenya.
Perhaps most valuable of all for the average beach-lover is what The Beachfront Club does not show; it has cut out all of those hotels whose rooms don't open directly onto the beach or waterfront. Now one can go hunting for a beachfront hotel - one truly on the beach - with no fear of being duped by misleading advertising.
simple new 'true beachfront' hotel finder will put you right on the beach, quickly, anywhere in the world
Want to find a beachfront hotel anyplace in the world with no fear what-so-ever of ending up across a highway, or having share your route to the beach with traffic? This new website has taken the work out of finding true beachfront hotels. And the worry about getting duped. Those hotels near a beach, but not right on it, have been completely eliminated, leaving only the dreamed-of variety on their detailed maps.
All qualified hotels are mapped in a way not seen before, with the boundaries of each hotel drawn to display the shape, size and exact location of each - always on the beach or waterfront.
When you see this level of detail you will believe that the hotels they 'qualify' are the real thing... right on the beach. The satellite image of each location lies beneath, adding credibility. Their coverage of the globe is thorough, and while they don't claim to have found all of the true beachfront hotels of the world, the more than 8,000 they do have include virtually all of the obvious ones, and lots more hidden and hard-to-find ones as well.
Don't be fooled by misleading advertising again
hotels claiming to be 'beachfront' often aren't - but we don't know until we arrive
Have you ever booked a beachfront hotel and headed off with dreams of holidaying right on the beach - only to find out that you were sleeping with the sound of traffic, not waves? If you haven't been burned this way, you probably know someone who has. Millions have been.
This problem can now be overcome with a few clicks of the mouse, thanks to new technology. The Beachfront Club has meticulously mapped every (or nearly every) 'true beachfront hotel on the planet', offering an almost indisputable guarantee of finding you accommodations directly on any beach you want.
'True beachfront' is defined by this new-look hotel club as hotels that have absolutely no roads nor motorised traffic between their rooms and the sand or water. Non-beachfront hotels that have misled guests in the past with fancy advertising, or by simply refusing to show the roads in front, are now getting their payback - no amount of fancy wording will get them onto this club's carefully checked maps.
The detailed maps here outline each qualified hotel by its boundaries, thus displaying the size, shape and precise location of each one - always on the beach or waterfront. The satellite image lies right underneath giving additional proof of location. Hotels that have any motor traffic, even small motorcycles, between their rooms and the beach have been disqualified, and are simply not shown. All of The Beachfront Club's mapped hotels are thus guaranteed to be absolutely on the beach.
Though completely new, this new beachfront hotel finder claims to have discovered over 8,000 of the world's true beachfront hotels and resorts in over 400 destinations in 106 countries. The beta version now available displays those hotels, but until the hotels themselves register and upload information, there is only minimal information available about each. But there is a link the hotels' own websites.
Because their qualifications are strictly geographic, this is surely the most democratic of all hotel clubs on-line. Members range from budget bungalows in the remote islands of Thailand to glitzy, 5-star resorts in the Caribbean and The Med. Perhaps the most powerful aspect of their maps is what they do not show.all hotels that do not have direct access to the beach have been completely eliminated, whatever their class or rating.
The Beachfront Club says it will soon introduce restaurant members - again only those right on the beach or waterfront, along with ratings and reviews of its both members and of the beaches themselves. Many other interactive innovations are promised. But for now the detailed maps in this site make it the surest, most confident path to finding accommodations that will allow you to sleep to the sound of waves, not traffic.
New tool can make travel agents 'true beachfront' experts
When a hotel billing itself as 'beachfront' fails to deliver a right-on-the-beach location it can be a cause of disappointment and conflict.
Now there is a precise, hi-tech web tool to turn every travel agent into an expert on all 'true beachfront' hotels of the world. With a few clicks, agents can now tell beach-lovers exactly which hotels are true beachfront, quickly, easily and confidently, and which hotels require crossing roads and voiding traffic.
A new website, The Beachfront Club, has set itself the goal of becoming the global authority on everything 'beachfront', and has mapped over 8,000 'true beachfront' hotels into its beta opening site. To gain certification, a hotel must have no road nor any traffic whatsoever between its rooms and the beach or water. A quick look at the incredible detail within The Beachfront Club's maps shows why the online company claims to be the global experts on this niche marketing topic.
Every hotel is mapped by its exact boundaries to detail shape, size and, of course, its position right on the beach or waterfront - with a satellite map below for added authenticity. It's difficult to go wrong with this amount of detailed information. This new hotel club suggests the global total that passes their strict 'no traffic' qualification is about 10,000. They are appealing to users and hotel owners to help locate and map the missing ones.
Geography rules the qualifications here, not star rating, meaning that small budget establishments are qualified alongside top 5-star resorts - just so long as both are truly beachfront. It is just as fast to find cheap bungalows for young families on the remote islands of Thailand as it is a luxury retreat in Zanzibar, the Red Sea or in the Caribbean.
All hotels that don't match The Beachfront Club's strict criteria - even if guests have to cross a small road - are not certified and are simply not seen anywhere in the site. Thus, thousands of hotels that call themselves 'beachfront' or 'Beach Resort', but are not absolutely on the beach, have been eliminated. This has turned the once-impossible job of finding absolute beachfront hotels on any beach on the planet into a simple and speedy task - just a few screen clicks away.
Do 'beachfront' hotels really mislead their guests?
by John Everingham,
founder, The Beachfront Club
It was about 1991, but it might have happened yesterday - and it will surely happen again tomorrow. I was in a boat, some 500 metres off shore in Patong Bay, Phuket with a 500mm lens - that's one long, long telephoto lens. When I focused on the Phuket Palace, a brand new, high-rise apartment-hotel situated an even greater distance back from the beach, the telephoto effect sandwiched everything in view. Suddenly the beach, trees and towering building were flattened. The 700 metres from beach to building virtually disappeared in the images that I clicked. The high-rise appeared to be parked in the trees right at the back of the beach.
Those disappearing 700 metres in my photo came to cause grief and financial loss for many people in the following years, it turned out. That photo ended up in a court of law, used as evidence in bitter legal dispute as evidence of the developer's calculated intent to deceive.
After shooting and delivering the image to the delighted developer he then placed it prominently in his advertising on the back cover of PHUKET Magazine, a high-end tourism publication of which I was the publisher. Though I was both the photographer of the image and the publisher of the magazine helping to sell this out-of-place high-rise as 'beachfront', I did not think it was such a big deal at the time. And, I believe, I pushed aside the publisher's eternal struggle between money and conscience with simplistic justifications, telling myself that 'people would not really be fooled.'
Yet many were fooled, and the developer ended up in that bitter court struggle, lost it, and fled Thailand forever. My photo that 'lost' the 700 metres between reality and magazine, first helped him make duplicitous sales then later helped convict him of intended fraud.
Did it make me think? Certainly. Perhaps that was the very first seed of an idea that would one day sprout and grow into The Beachfront Club.
Patong Beach had many more lessons of the 'beachfront' kind. Do reputable, 'brand' hotels selling rooms to innocent tourists from afar employ similar, misleading tactics?
A little later, about 1993, I was down on Patong Beach once again with my camera, shooting brochure photos for a well-known 'beachfront' hotel. I was setting up the desired beach-to-hotel shot, under the direction of the hotel manager. He was directing, moving cars and motorcycles off the road in front of his hotel. Everyone who has been to this famous resort beach knows that a very busy road cuts a prominent swathe between beach and the hotels here.
Without a vehicle in view, and me on the beach just below road level, my camera saw beach, trees and hotel. The road had effectively disappeared. Click. Again, the perfect shot. The hotel manager was so pleased with this 'roadless' shot of his 'beachfront' hotel that it remained prominent on the hotel's brochures for many years. Did a photo of the road ever make it into that hotel's brochure? Never. While writing this I did a quick check of the same hotel's website; among over 30 photos of the hotel not one gives even a hint that a major road separates hotel and beach. Is omission also a form of deception?
It matters little that I cannot mention the name of this particular hotel, because most along both Patong's and Karon's beach roads employ the same tactics of omission. But does omitting all references to a busy, noisy road between a hotel and the beach constitute 'misleading advertising'. Many of those who get fooled by it believe it is misleading or worse. During 20 years of publishing magazines in Phuket I heard uncountable complaints from disappointed, sometimes angry, tourists, about it. More seeds for The Beachfront Club.
Perhaps my being a founder of The Beachfront Club is a way for me to expunge my subconscious guilt and complicity in this unfair game? I know that my 1991 photograph that lost 700 metres caused others serious financial loss and distress. I'll never know how much disappointment my photo of that Patong hotel 'right on the beach' caused. And I did many other shots like it for other hotels. It is standard practice for hotel managers to instruct the photographer to hide or cut out the ugly and unwanted, or when that is not sufficient, to 'Photoshop' the images to take out ugly street wires, neighbouring buildings and more. Yet the most common retouch of all is to replace the murky water at a dull beach with the turquoise stuff from Tahiti or paradise.
While I no longer do hotel photo shoots, a quick glance through hotel websites shows that the retouching business is alive and brighter than ever; as is the sly habit of omission, as is the liberal use of the word 'beachfront' by hotels that are on the wrong side of a road, or worse.The Beachfront Club promises to help millions of people avoid the many pitfalls in discovering true beachfront hotels. I'm hoping it will be many times more than the number of people my photographs may have once helped dupe.
New-style hotel club arrives, kicking tradition
A new hotel club has sprung up on a web horizon already crowded with hotel clubs - but this one arrives kicking sand in the face of tradition, and is packed with new ideas and technology.
The first thing this newcomer does is kick snob-value -traditionally the driving force of hotel clubs - square in the face. This one lines hotels from budget bungalows to 5-star deluxe resorts side-by-side in a manner previously unimagined. The Beachfront Club is exactly that, a club restricted to all 'true beachfront' hotels, regardless of their star rating.
The maps on this site exploit the latest technology to new levels of detail, displaying 'all true beachfront hotels of the world. as never seen before. Beach maps showing hotels' exact locations are the core of the site, and the reason The Beachfront Club can get away with over-turning tradition. The Club has drawn all qualified member hotels by their borders, displaying the exact shape, size and location of each - always by the beach or water - while cutting out all of those hotels that do not qualify. To qualify as 'true beachfront' the hotel must have direct access to the beach or waterfront, with no road or traffic what-so-ever in between.
Here lies the marketing secret that allows this club to bring all classes of accommodation together: 'true beachfront' as defined here is in direct sync with the aspirations of a few hundred million beach-going holiday-makers. People don't like roads between their rooms and the water. It is also the reason why big name resorts, including some from Grand Hyatt, Sheraton, Le Meridien, Radisson, Marriott and many others, signed in even before the site went fully public this month - despite the presence of budget neighbours. They are already mapped into The Beachfront Club, and they can't afford to miss the unique opportunity of third-party endorsement of their true, on-the-beach location.
For hotels that currently rely on beach goers, but do not pass the 'no traffic' qualifications, this is not such good news. It probably signals a loss of business as beach-lovers move to 'qualified' hotels where they can sleep to the sound of waves, not traffic.
Is your hotel beachfront? really beachfront?
Can your guests walk out of their rooms directly onto the sand or waterfront? If not, your hotel might be in for a kind of 'deregistering. by a new website that has set itself up as the global authority on 'true beachfront' hotels of the world. The new website The Beachfront Club has drawn a line down the beaches of the world, segregating beach hotels into two distinct groups, 'true beachfront' and 'disqualified'. The latter are simply left out of the detailed beach maps of this new, hi-tech site.
To qualify as 'true beachfront' a hotel must have no road nor any motorised traffic at all between its guest rooms and the beach or waterfront. It can sit on a headland, though, just so long as it passes the 'no traffic' rule.
At the core of this site are the beach maps that show individual hotels in detail not seen elsewhere. Each hotel is mapped by its borders, displaying the size, shape and exact beach or waterfront position of each. This leaves no room for doubt about the beachfront qualifications of each.
When beach-lovers of the world discover this fast and easy tool, the segregation of beach hotels is going to give the 'qualified' members a huge advantage. Those hotels across roads, or 'just a few steps from the beach' are simply not going to be seen. Booking traffic is sure to flow closer to the sand, into those hotels certified as 'true beachfront', to the covered beachfront locations where people really want to be when they go to the beach.
Catch direct customers with new marketing technology...
(but only 'true' beachfront hotels need apply)
Not all hotels want more direct bookings from customers. Recently an owner in Kamala Beach, Phuket, said 'It's much better for me to pay the booking services their 15%. Then I can go to the golf course'. However, experience talking to dozens of hoteliers suggests this is definitely a minority view. Most hotels continue to upgrade their web skills - many by engaging SEO and viral marketing experts etc. . to use the internet more effectively in the hope of increasing direct bookings.
That, however, is still a complex path fraught with obstacles. As soon as technology promises hotels more opportunities on the direct-client path, the middlemen find new ways to jump in between. Booking engines exploit the difficulty the user faces in looking up multiple websites to check a few individual hotels, or even finding those hotels' websites.
One hi-tech newcomer to the web world is offering member hotels both new marketing channels and a route for them to make direct contact with clients... but only 'true beachfront' hotels need apply here.
The new, hi-tech website of The Beachfront Club has identified all 'true beachfront' hotels around the world, offering them free membership in this highly-interactive club. To qualify a hotel must have no road nor motorised traffic of any kind between its rooms and the beach or waterfront, thus cutting out all hotels across roads, or those pretending to be right on the beach. Membership is conditional on geography alone, allowing hotels of all classes to join - so long as they are 'true beachfront'. Their detailed maps show qualified hotels by their borders, shape and size - all details that confirm the hotels' beachfront status in a precise manner not seen before.
Breaking another common standard, this hotel club is not a booking engine. It will affiliate with the standard booking services like Agoda, Expedia and Bookings.com and direct traffic through those. Yet it also offers its members the chance to catch more direct bookings. The Standard Members (read free) get a live link from a Contact page in the mini website that each member is provided within the Club.
Direct bookings become very easy, however, when a hotel upgrades to the club's Premium level. This requires a monthly fee, running at around US$200 per month in an up-market resort destination. Premium Members get a high-profile direct link to their booking system accessible from all hotel pages. When users click through and make direct bookings the Club collects no commission.
While it sounds good, the success of this, from the hotels' point of view, will rest with the site's ability to generate public interest, something its creators believe it can do because the 'true beachfront' qualifications are in line with real aspirations of millions of beach-lovers. With good traffic, the qualified hotels will be able to justify the monthly fee with the commissions saved from a few direct bookings - and beyond that they can look for both savings and more personal relationships and direct bookings.