2020 has been our most challenging year yet, but it has also been our most successful and our most rewarding. We overcame these difficult times only through ongoing positive support from returning guests and those who found their way to ‘Somewhere Unique’ for the first time.
The year began with the dire effects of local bushfires which had caused us to briefly close the business in December 2019. Although the direct effect of the fires on ‘Somewhere Unique’ was relatively minor, the effect on the Wollombi Valley was scarring and long lasting. To recover as quickly as possible, in January we offered a free additional night for every booking to stay in 2020. This offer was enthusiastically taken up by supportive guests keen to return to ‘Somewhere Unique’ and those keen to sample our style of accommodation. Consequently, we had the biggest January for bookings ever!
Our exciting momentum, however, was quickly undermined in March as the spectre of Covid-19 began to cause caution and ultimately led to an enforced lock-down in April. ‘Somewhere Unique’ was closed for six weeks as we worried about what the future might mean for our guests, us, and our business. Of course, as always, safety was our highest priority and so we only re-opened once we had deeply cleaned both retreats, incorporated new thorough cleaning procedures, and registered a COVID-safe plan with the state government.
Again, we were inundated with guests, keen to escape isolation, but also keen to support ‘Somewhere Unique’. Since June we have been as busy as ever, offering safe, romantic, and luxurious escapes for guests worn down by the effects of COVID-19.
In August, we were awarded the ‘2020 Travellers’ Choice Award’ affirming that reviews from TripAdvisor travellers had placed ‘Somewhere Unique’ in the top 10% of hotels worldwide. This also confirmed us as the most awarded accommodation in the Wollombi Valley.
Consequently, we end 2020 on a very positive and optimistic note. We have been overwhelmed by the generosity and loyalty of our guests and by the ongoing support of our staff and suppliers.
We love ‘Somewhere Unique’ and we are committed to offering the best quality rural accommodation possible. And, as the most awarded accommodation in the region, we are even more determined to maintain and exceed these accolades as we continue to enhance our reputation.
As ever, we remain grateful to our guests and supporters and we look forward to nurturing these relationships both individually and holistically.
Merry Christmas and a happy new year to all. And, as always, a sincere thank you.
Murray & David