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Cabana Pricing Insanity

Cabana Pricing Insanity

Old Aug 7, 19, 10:15 am
  #1  
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Cabana Pricing Insanity

The hotel industry has gone crazy on their pool-side cabana rental schemes.

First, the pricing is so high that the vast majority of cabanas remain available.
Examples include Andaz Maui in winter and Aria mid-week summer at ~$400/d for basic cabanas.
Hardly any are rented.

Second, the all-day-only rental policy sucks.
Don't most people on vacation want to enjoy a cabana for a few hours on maybe a couple of days during a multi-day vacation?
It's not an option to spend $50 for 2 hours - you pay $400 for the whole day or it will just sit empty.

Yes, there are exceptions.
Some resorts like Baha Mar are often fully booked at the above prices and full-day rule.

But overall, hotels seem to be pricing cabanas the way airlines priced domestic first class in the 80s & 90s.
Wouldn't it be better to maximize revenue by reducing the price so that only 10% remain unrented to accommodate walk-ups?
Wouldn't it be smart to cater to guests not wanting to spend the whole damn day at the pool?

My thought would be to have a food & beverage minimum per hour, charged by the cocktail waiter, for the actual time consumed.
Easy & customer focused.
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Old Aug 7, 19, 11:50 am
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Perhaps renting 2 per day at $400 is more lucrative than renting 10 at $40. In the long run, I suspect the pricing will settle at a revenue/profit (very little cost) maximum.

Or they just want to communicate an air of exclusivity, and consider it a marketing opportunity cost.
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Old Aug 7, 19, 9:48 pm
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The MGM Grand has two person “pods” (a day bed with a canopy basically) available for $100 in food in beverage spend. Even non-guests can reserve them.

A friend and I went in on one two years ago and thought it was a great deal.
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Old Aug 8, 19, 12:42 pm
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I was just at the JW Marriott in the San Antonio Hill Country this week and literally every cabana was rented on a Monday. The cheapest cabana was $479 and go up from there.
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Old Aug 13, 19, 7:20 am
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Originally Posted by Colin View Post
Wouldn't it be better to maximize revenue by reducing the price so that only 10% remain unrented to accommodate walk-ups?
Wouldn't it be smart to cater to guests not wanting to spend the whole damn day at the pool?
I'd bet good money that large resorts like you mentioned (Maui, Las Vegas) knows what they're doing in terms of maximizing revenue. I'm certain they have data that backs up their decisions.
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Old Aug 13, 19, 9:33 am
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Originally Posted by Colin View Post
The hotel industry has gone crazy on their pool-side cabana rental schemes.

First, the pricing is so high that the vast majority of cabanas remain available.
Examples include Andaz Maui in winter and Aria mid-week summer at ~$400/d for basic cabanas.
Hardly any are rented.

Second, the all-day-only rental policy sucks.
Don't most people on vacation want to enjoy a cabana for a few hours on maybe a couple of days during a multi-day vacation?
It's not an option to spend $50 for 2 hours - you pay $400 for the whole day or it will just sit empty.

Yes, there are exceptions.
Some resorts like Baha Mar are often fully booked at the above prices and full-day rule.

But overall, hotels seem to be pricing cabanas the way airlines priced domestic first class in the 80s & 90s.
Wouldn't it be better to maximize revenue by reducing the price so that only 10% remain unrented to accommodate walk-ups?
Wouldn't it be smart to cater to guests not wanting to spend the whole damn day at the pool?

My thought would be to have a food & beverage minimum per hour, charged by the cocktail waiter, for the actual time consumed.
Easy & customer focused.
I totally agree with you. It's a waste of money, nothing else. UNLESS, you're with a huge group of people celebrating something, then maybe.
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Old Aug 13, 19, 1:06 pm
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Actually most of the hotels I have been to with $400 cabana, you have to book them days ahead. People are paying for them. I don't pay for $400 cabana, but when I asked how much were they.. the reply I usually got was "they are fully booked for the day already".
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Old Aug 16, 19, 8:35 am
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Grand Wailea Maui is $700 in April 2019. $625 or so in April 2018. I love it and can’t not do it for at least one day.
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Old Aug 16, 19, 8:37 pm
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I tried to look up how much cabanas were at Turtle Bay on the North Shore of Oahu, but I couldn't find any information and a close examination of pool photos suggests the cabanas have been removed. But Turtle Bay now charges for chairs on the beach.
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Old Aug 16, 19, 9:24 pm
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Originally Posted by Colin View Post
The hotel industry has gone crazy on their pool-side cabana rental schemes.

First, the pricing is so high that the vast majority of cabanas remain available.
Examples include Andaz Maui in winter and Aria mid-week summer at ~$400/d for basic cabanas.
Hardly any are rented.

Second, the all-day-only rental policy sucks.
Don't most people on vacation want to enjoy a cabana for a few hours on maybe a couple of days during a multi-day vacation?
It's not an option to spend $50 for 2 hours - you pay $400 for the whole day or it will just sit empty.


Yes, there are exceptions.
Some resorts like Baha Mar are often fully booked at the above prices and full-day rule.

But overall, hotels seem to be pricing cabanas the way airlines priced domestic first class in the 80s & 90s.
Wouldn't it be better to maximize revenue by reducing the price so that only 10% remain unrented to accommodate walk-ups?
Wouldn't it be smart to cater to guests not wanting to spend the whole damn day at the pool?

My thought would be to have a food & beverage minimum per hour, charged by the cocktail waiter, for the actual time consumed.
Easy & customer focused.
Quite possibly.... but wouldn't most of those people tend to want the SAME "few hours"? Would you book the first 2 hours of the day...or the last? Neither would I.....
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Old Aug 21, 19, 8:35 am
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I've never quite understood it myself - the last thing I'd want to do is fly a long way to a tropical island and then spend whole days next to a hotel pool. Don't get me wrong - I love a good hotel pool - but it's always a quick dip in the morning or evening, before or after going and doing something interesting during the day.

But someone else hit it upthread: these high prices are the hotel's profit-maximizing point. Like so many other overpriced services in a hotel, they get enough people there on expense accounts for whom the price doesn't matter. Just like they're better off selling few $50 breakfasts than a bunch of $5 breakfasts, they're better off selling a few $700 cabanas than a whole bunch of $40 cabanas. The $700 renter also probably orders bottle service (or lots of drinks, anyway), so even comparing to the drink-minimum model, they come out ahead.

The one time I was at the Grand Wailea, there was a huge doctor's convention there. I bet the cabanas were rented, the Dom was flowing, and the hotel was happy.

The individual paying-for-it-yourself person at the hotel is not the target audience for many of these things.
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Old Aug 21, 19, 11:31 am
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Originally Posted by pinniped View Post
I've never quite understood it myself - the last thing I'd want to do is fly a long way to a tropical island and then spend whole days next to a hotel pool. Don't get me wrong - I love a good hotel pool - but it's always a quick dip in the morning or evening, before or after going and doing something interesting during the day.

But someone else hit it upthread: these high prices are the hotel's profit-maximizing point. Like so many other overpriced services in a hotel, they get enough people there on expense accounts for whom the price doesn't matter. Just like they're better off selling few $50 breakfasts than a bunch of $5 breakfasts, they're better off selling a few $700 cabanas than a whole bunch of $40 cabanas. The $700 renter also probably orders bottle service (or lots of drinks, anyway), so even comparing to the drink-minimum model, they come out ahead.

The one time I was at the Grand Wailea, there was a huge doctor's convention there. I bet the cabanas were rented, the Dom was flowing, and the hotel was happy.

The individual paying-for-it-yourself person at the hotel is not the target audience for many of these things.


I am with you on this one I don't go on vacation/adventure to sit by a pool. A pool cabana in Hawaii is the same as one in Jacksonville Florida to me...to pay for one? I wouldn't take one for free!
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Old Aug 21, 19, 11:36 am
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$400 Beach cabanas? Yes!
$400 Pool cabanas? Nope.
​​​​
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Old Aug 21, 19, 11:41 am
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[QUOTE=rickg523;31440552]$400 Beach cabanas? Yes!
$400 Pool cabanas? Nope.
​​​​[/QUOTE

I agree with you too, 400 beach cabana in the Maldives, that I would pay for!
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Old Aug 21, 19, 11:52 am
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[QUOTE=Nhilar;31440570]
Originally Posted by rickg523 View Post
$400 Beach cabanas? Yes!
$400 Pool cabanas? Nope.
​​​​[/QUOTE

I agree with you too, 400 beach cabana in the Maldives, that I would pay for!
I'll spend the day at the beach.
I'll spend a couple of hours, maybe, at a pool. Won't go in the pool at all if there's a beach.
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