Interested in working in luxury rentals?
“In some ways you can forget the summer!”
You may be attracted by the glamour, the wonderful climate, those magnificent properties and the lifestyle in Marbella. But if you’re thinking of making a career out of rentals, read on for the naked truth.
Be warned – it’s not for everyone but for those who do have an affinity for it, luxury rentals can be a rewarding career. In Marbella, we enjoy dealing with showstopping villas and an international, diverse clientele. We love the variety and the fast-paced environment. Nevertheless, it can be hard with long days and clients who demand the best at all times. It takes a certain type of personality to really thrive.
Here are the 8 traits or skills you need to make it in luxury rentals in Marbella.
Knowing What Clients Want
Think of yourself like a professional matchmaker for luxury rentals. Of course, clients will tell you what they want, but they don’t always tell you everything you need to find them their dream rental. Your role is to read between the lines, discovering subtle cues about their lifestyle, their idea of a good holiday and one more thing, which is even more important than any other requirement: their taste. The style of the interior is very important to make that first impression. Are your clients classic or modern? Do they want something flashy or discrete?
Prime real estate is always going to be in high demand. But for luxury rentals, it’s not just about being in a desirable neighbourhood, the real skill lies in finding a rental that makes your clients’ eyes light up with joy. Many of the luxury rentals we choose are situated in prime locations like Sierra Blanca or Nueva Andalucía in Marbella, with impressive views of The Mediterranean Sea, but each one would suit a different kind of customer. A good agent can match the right property to the right person based on a combination of what they are telling you and more importantly, subtle signs they may not be sharing openly.
Attention to Detail
The devil is in the details, and that’s especially true when it comes to high-end rentals. From top-of-the-line appliances to impeccably appointed interiors, every element should be carefully considered to provide guests with the ultimate in comfort and style. As a rental specialist, you have to know what good looks like, and have the ability to spot quality. Think of it like being a detective: ask the right questions at the property tour, ensure you know everything about the villa or apartment and feel free to test things yourself.
Do the doors open easily? Is the air-con unit easy to operate? Has the owner installed slick looking appliances and furniture? Would everything appeal to the most demanding guests? All these little touches add up to the overall experience for your customers.
You Need to Understand What Excellent Service Really is
At Swish we pride ourselves on our ability to offer guests the kind of service you would expect from a five-star hotel but with more personality. From 24/7 concierge service to daily housekeeping, everything is designed to make your stay as effortless and enjoyable as possible but still give you the sense of a home-from-home.
Do you have what it takes? Being good at customer service is not just about being available all the time, it takes planning, so you can prevent problems and issues before they happen. It also takes a high level of initiative. Can you think on your feet when a client needs something urgently and it’s a public holiday? Can you anticipate what guests will need before they ask so they don’t even have to ask? If you can, then luxury rentals could be right up your street.
Can you deal with conflicts between owners and tenants? Can you handle complaints with sensitivity even when you have to tell a guest they cannot do something they want or tell an owner that a guest has cancelled a booking?
At Swish, we train all our team to handle difficult situations with tact and grace. This is important for building trust both with owners and clients.
Across our team we speak over 8 languages. In a market like Marbella, being able to speak the same language as a potential customer really makes a difference. English is a given, but if you want to attract clients from other areas, having a member of the team who can converse in French, Arabic and/or Scandinavian languages will help build trust. Working in The Costa Del Sol, you will also need to speak Spanish. Never assume other people in Spain should speak English just because you don’t speak Spanish!
There will be long days, short deadlines for client turnarounds, last minute changes to plans and suppliers who occasionally let you down. How you cope under pressure is especially important. You need thick skin and to learn how to keep calm at all times. In Marbella you have the added challenge of the heat in summer, so you need to develop strategies to keep yourself hydrated, well rested and prepared: in some ways you can forget the summer! To be properly effective in the peak season you need to be available out of hours. Can you handle it?
Clients will often ask for recommendations. This is where your love and your knowledge of the area will come into play. Make sure you are up to date with new restaurant openings and that you know how to give directions to the main attractions, with confidence. Remember not every guest is the same as you- even if you have a good knowledge of local places to visit and eat, are you putting yourself in other people’s shoes?
You need to think about how different types of guests will spend their time. Plan for the sort of questions families with young kids will have, or elderly clients with reduced mobility. This is how you can add value and ensure your guests really do have a wonderful stay.
Be Prepared to Live and Breathe Rentals
To do really well in this game, you have to live and breathe it. You’ll know which of your villas are east or south facing, which have Gaggenau appliances, where the communal entrances are to each urbanisation and you’ll know where the nearest chemist is to each property. You’ll have this insider knowledge because you’ll be fascinated by holidays in Marbella and everything that sets each of your own rentals apart.
At Swish we make it our vocation. We wake up thinking about rentals and we are always talking about villas, looking at villas, and studying Marbella.
That’s passion. Do you have it?
If you are looking for your next luxury escape in Marbella, please feel free to get in touch, we are only too happy to help you. Likewise if reading all of the above hasn’t terrified you, check out our careers page for vacancies.
The Swish team xx
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