The “Gabrieri Apartments” in Dubrovnik are among the most popular vacation rentals outside the Old Town. It is a villa with 5 accommodation units, near the green market in Gruž. Ivana Gabrieri cares about renting and guests, and she told us how it all started.

My family started with renting business 5 years ago, when we renovated our family house. We started working with Direct Booker right from the start. As beginners, we didn’t want to take the risk of making bad business moves, so we agreed to work with an agency that offered exactly what we needed.

At the beginning, it was important for them, as Ivana said, to have a professional to monitor their work and to advise them in order to offer quality and comfortable accommodation to the the guests.

Our Account manager Stijepo was really our right hand from the start, monitoring our work, guest requests and helping us to “get on our feet”

The greatest advantage of working with Direct Booker is the constant support, as well as exceptional care for the interests of the owners.

Most rental platforms give much more attention to their guests, protecting their rights and interests, so when problems arise, they usually take the guest’s side, with no one asking anything the owner.

 

I would also recommend working with Direct Booker to the others, especially those who are just entering the world of vacation rental business. It will certainly be easier to position yourself in the market, and you’ll have daily support of an excellent team. We really benefited from that a lot.

She admits that being a renter is not easy, especially in the competititive environment.

The vacation rental owner has no working hours, holidays or Sundays. It is important to take care of the guests every day, to be on disposal, but not intrusive. We provide our guests a comfortable place to stay and rest, making sure that they have everything that is expected of us: clean and tidy space, environment, secure and accessible clean linen and towels. The guests are really diverse, and so we adapt to the various requests. 

She has a special memory of the event during the 2018 FIFA World Cup, when she and her guests watched the Croatia-England match.

Everybody cheered for their players and it was really interesting for them and for us …. lots of laughs and singing… They were delighted with our euphoria.

The expectations for the 2020 season are to surpass the previous year.

There were more shorter stays this season so guest shifts are almost daily. I also expect more arrivals in the pre-season and post-season, hoping that Tourist Board  will do its best to provide guests with interesting content during this period. I recently had guests who stayed with us for 7 days, with a baby. For a few days in a row the weather was bad, they asked me where they could spend some quality time while it was raining, and I didn’t really have an idea what to recommend them.

 

What I would recommend to all new vacation rental owners is to receive their guests as dear friends.

Most of the times, guests can feel it, and they feel important and welcomed, and in some ways more confident. When you establish a good communication with the guest at the beginning, everything somehow becomes easier, and some possible mistakes are less taken to heart.

“Kind words will unlock the iron door”- that is my guiding principle … everything else then falls into place.

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