Tag Archives: rentals

4 things you never knew about Paris

Paris is renowned as the endlessly talked about and photographed city of love. But what about the lesser-known aspects of this capital of romance? We take a look at four things you never knew about Paris.

Place Monge metro in the Latin Quarter, Paris

Place Monge metro in the Latin Quarter, Paris

The Eiffel Tower ‘grows’

The iconic landmark was designed to sway a little in the wind, but it also moves away from the sun as much as seven inches when the tower heats up. The tower gets a bit taller in warm weather too, ‘growing’ up to six inches.

Scale its heights to watch the setting sun before being wooed by the twilight sparkle over Paris. If you have a big proposal to make, you could always pop the question at the champagne bar on the top floor.

It’s not all about the Louvre

Paris’s museums and galleries are world famous. The Louvre is the world’s largest museum, the Musée d’Orsay’s collection of impressionist artwork is outstanding and the Centre Pompidou offers a near complete summary of 20th-century art.

But what about the city’s small and quirky museums? The Museum of Magic explores the ancient arts of magic and optical illusion in the cellars of the Marquis de Sade’s former home. Here you’ll find a stunning collection of antique magicians’ props and beautiful old posters advertising magic shows.

There’s only one recipe for baguettes

Parisian baguettes are so integral to everyday life in France that the recipe is prescribed by French law. These elegant loaves have to be made on the boulangerie premises from start to finish and can only contain four ingredients – flour, water, salt and yeast.

Find the finest Parisian baguette in the 14th arrondissement at Aux Délices du Palais, winner of the city’s best baguette competition for the second time this year. Don’t be deterred by the queue snaking out the door – the bakes are worth the wait, including the multi-award-winning macaroons.

A lady’s attire could have broken the law

Chanel, Saint Laurent, Lacroix… Paris is the home of high fashion. But until last year, any woman strolling down the street could have been arrested if they were found to be “dressed like a man”. This city by-law had been on the statute books for over two centuries.

Thankfully, you no longer have to fear arrest when sporting your chinos on rue de Passy. Try the quaint Marais district for distinctive jewellery and vintage clothes, or wander around the lavish department stores of Printemps and Galeries Lafayette. See the latest catwalk trends in the Saint-Honoré fashion district’s chic boutiques, such as Hermès.

Want to make your own Parisian magic? Browse our Paris holiday rentals

Using social media to market your holiday home

nl200904_socialSocial networking is a simple (and free!) way of increasing your online presence and making other internet users aware of what you have to offer.

Twitter and Facebook are the most well known of the social networks with Google+ growing in popularity. Not only are they a great place to engage with friends and family, they also form the perfect opportunity to build a network or community of like-minded people around your holiday home and holiday offerings.

What’s more, promoting your home on social networks increases your presence on the web so any guests Googling your home are likely to find your Twitter feed or Facebook profile. Guests can contact you via social networks if they want to make a booking and also leave comments about their stay.

To get you started, why not hook up with us? You’ll find Holiday Lettings on TwitterFacebookGoogle+ and Pinterest.

Top tips for each social network:

Facebook

Twitter

Google+

Pinterest

Blogs

Using blogs to market your holiday home

A blog is a form of online diary (originating from web log). Think about having your own blog where you can prominently display your quicklink and document your experiences as a holiday home owner.

You don’t have to be a computer expert – there are plenty of templates available on the internet, such as Blogger and WordPress. All you need to do is think of a name and create your content.

In order for your blog to be effective, you need to attract readers. Before you start telling people about it, make sure you have already published several entries. As with Twitter, if all people see is an empty page, they’re not likely to visit it again, even if you have great content later on. Add new content regularly to avoid the risk of losing readers as time goes on. If you also use Twitter, invite your readers to follow you there as well.

Get into the habit of visiting and commenting on other people’s blogs. Once you’ve established some good content, find blogs written by people you want to attract. Most people invite readers to comment on their posts and you can often embed a link to your own blog in your profile name – if you don’t have a blog then add your quicklink instead.

Guest reviews – how many do you have?

review

Collecting reviews from people who have stayed at your place is one of the best ways to promote it to future guests. Some guests may leave a review on your advert without any prompting from you, but actively encouraging feedback from all guests can be really valuable for your business. Reviews are an unrivalled marketing tool and they’ll also give you ideas to improve the holiday experience for your guests.

  • Collect reviews as you go. Reviewing a home is quick and easy, and many of your guests will be familiar with the process. After each guest has checked out, send them an email (including a link to your advert) asking them to review their stay. If guests email you directly with their feedback, thank them and encourage them to write their review on TripAdvisor.
  • Leave some business cards in your holiday home. Include your contact details, a picture of your home, a link to your advert and a request to leave a review after their stay. This will remind guests about their holiday and might prompt them to leave a review when they get home.
  • Engage the entire group. If you’ve had a large group to stay, ask the party organiser to encourage each guest to review their holiday. Alternatively, ask the organiser if their friends would be happy to be contacted by you, so you can prompt them individually.

For many people, booking a holiday is the largest online purchase they will make in a year. Reviews are a vital part of the research and booking process, so having them on your advert means holidaymakers are much more likely to send you an enquiry.