MC Fireside Chats - Episode 61

This week on MC Fireside Chats, presented by Modern Campground, we’re deep-diving into the world of glamping with a collection of industry experts.

Hear from David Korse, organizer of The Glamping Show USA, about their upcoming conference. Plus, we’ll chat with Ruben Martinez from the American Glamping Association and Glamping Hub, Jeff Haynes, a rep for De Waard, and Mike & Anne Howard from HoneyTrek.

Transcript

[00:00:00]

[00:00:51] Good morning, everybody. Welcome to another episode of MC Fireside Chats. My name is Brian Searl with Insider Perks here with an amazing cast of characters [00:01:00] as always with Cara Csizmadia from the Canadian Camping & RV Council, Mr. Darryle Busa from Modern Campground editor in chief. I am in a hotel in Canmore Alberta.

[00:01:10] We’re trying to see if I can actually. Good quality, audio, and video for one week here. The production value of the show is Cara pointed out backstage earlier is just absolutely amazing. We have no idea what I have no idea what we’re doing, everybody else does. But super excited to be here with you guys.

[00:01:24] We’re going to talk about all things glamping today, going to go around the room here, let everybody introduce themselves with just a quick reminder. We are available as a podcast after the show, Google, Spotify, Apple podcasts, all those kinds of places. If you’re watching us on one of the many Facebook pages that we’re broadcasting live on, feel free to drop a comment in the chats, and we can ask your question to any of our panelist’s guests here and get you guys involved with the conversation.

[00:01:48] So let’s just go around the room. Have everybody introduce themselves, Mr. David Korse would you like to start us off? My name is David Korse I’m one of the areas of coming to Colorado in just over two weeks. Good morning. [00:02:00] Hi everybody. Hi, David. Thanks for joining us. Thanks for joining us, David.

[00:02:06] Welcome David. Yeah, whoever wants to go next, please go ahead.

[00:02:09] I feel like we have hesitation. Nobody. We have to actually pro K Mike and Anna here. Are they still having problems with their audio? No, they’re there. I can go for it.

[00:02:18] Oh, I spoke to CB. Can’t hear them, but I can like now we can.

[00:02:26] I thought we could. Yeah, amazing. Like production value here. We’ve got going on. Let’s go with Edward from door tenant. Hey guys. I’m Edwards. One of the partners at EGX distribution and I’m here representing the war tent out of the Netherlands today. Welcome, sir. We really appreciate it.

[00:02:45] Looking forward to talking about your products and the things that you offer. And then we’ve got Rubin from the American glamping association and 10 other things. I think everybody, yeah, Martinez amongst some other things, I’m a founder of glamping hub and the American glamping association.

[00:02:59] And [00:03:00] as I like to say, I talk glamping all day, every day, so very happy to be here. And thanks for having me. I feel like they’re the worst jobs, Ruben then talking glamping every day. Yeah. I always joke about that one. I’m scared to death to Dave. I have to get a real job. So yeah, that’s what I keep expecting to do, but I’ve been doing it for 10, 11, 12 years over long.

[00:03:20] It’s been going, so I’m just crossing my fingers and hoping it continues. Really excited to have all of you guys here. I think we want to start off care. I believe with Mr. David Korse he’s got a really awesome glamping show USA. That’s coming up here at the beginning of October. Now, I think the fifth and sixth David, is that right?

[00:03:38] Actually, the pre-show workshop starts on the court. So four or 5, 4, 5, and six. I was at this show back in 2019 when the world was normal and glad we’re getting back to that. And we can have more in-person shows. I did attend the virtual one last year, which was great as well, but obviously super excited to be back shaking, hands, eye contact with people, stuff like that.

[00:03:59] I wish I could [00:04:00] personally be there. I’m stuck in the great white north in Canada, but David, tell us a little bit about your show and some of the things that you have lined up for people. Sure. Nobody’s happier to be face-to-face again than we are. It’s been a long two years since we were in Colorado together back in 2019.

[00:04:15] For those who were with us in 2019, I guess the things you’re going to see that are different, the pre-conference workshop, I just mentioned, we’re going to have organized and sponsored by an American association group. It has a bunch of 10 or 11 open speakers called glamping business basics, really designed for people who are new or relatively new to the marketplace, an overview, all things glamping business from one to four 30 on Monday.

[00:04:44] And that he’d be all steal his thunder or the AGA is hosting a reception at the lazy dog cafe down the streets to which I understand, basically everybody’s invited I know that we’re going to be there. Tuesday, the regular conference program starts with eight sessions over two days and [00:05:00] some great speakers Covers Cobra was really popular.

[00:05:02] Last year. We’ve got more than twice. As many people registered for the conference this year, 2019. And staying with the theme of more than twice as much, the expo component happening has grown to more than twice the size. It was in 2019, the indoor exhibition space is sold out. We sell more space.

[00:05:22] We’re not going to have room to sit and have coffee. And the outdoor space is three times the size. It was in 2019. We had over half the structures that were going to be there had a couple of right cancellations from companies in Europe that the UK that are not allowed to come to the states under the current situation.

[00:05:41] So we’ve had a couple of people that have the dropout only because they can’t get here. Even that we’re discussing the challenges, getting product and his team to the state school candidates. More than twice the size of the expo, more than twice the size of the conference program. She’d be a great place to meet folks, to [00:06:00] network with your colleagues, and to just celebrate glamping because none of us wants to have that real job.

[00:06:05] We all want to be like Brian. This isn’t, this is interesting to me, David, right? Cause glamping is a buzzword. It was much more than a buzzword. Now it started off as a buzzword. And it’s I feel like it’s quickly gaining popularity all over the world. Like we’re covering with Modern Campground and Darryle knows this, like glamping is a word that’s being used in Australia and Asia, South America and Africa and everywhere, like it’s glamping and it’s just continuing to like it’s in its infancy still.

[00:06:29] So tell us, David, what, like for the people who are familiar with the campground industry and all those kinds of things, we’ve obviously got like RX national show. We’ve got Koa show, we’ve got Yogi show and some aspects of those naturally touch on glamping. But what really sets your show apart is the dedicated must-see show or must-attend show for glamping specifically.

[00:06:50] I think you just said it, Brian, thanks for the commercial. I think all of the other comments come from the perspective of the ordinary. So the Arvik show is from the [00:07:00] perspective of the association and what they’re trying to do in terms of resources and education for their members Koa is doing the same thing.

[00:07:09] We’re the only ones I think that are just unaffiliated with anybody else we’re just attacking and covering the whole phenomenon of glamping or whatever you want to call it. As it relates to the luxurious tourism sector around the world. And particularly for our event through the Americas. As I have mentioned a little earlier, he’s getting ready to leave for the UK tomorrow the next day, because the glamping show in the UK opens later this week.

[00:07:38] So they’ll cover Europe and the UK parts deliveries we’re covering the Americas. And maybe of these days, we’ll have other things that cover other parts of the world, but we’re about the glamping. It doesn’t matter if you’re. Part of an association. We have the education that we think will help you, but it just focuses on this particular sector more than the broader campground RV park, [00:08:00] kind of everything outdoors, but some of the other events are covering.

[00:08:04] So just a little different perspective. I think the educational opportunities, all of them are excellent. It’s just teachers coming from a slightly different perspective. We’re trying to be Switzerland here. We’re trying to be in the middle kind of objective without a vested interest in any one sector or geography.

[00:08:24] Awesome. Yeah. Again I wish I could be at your show looking forward to being back there next year. Just that travel thing is keeping me from being there. But and I know we’ll talk more about your show or your conference as we continue to go through this chat here in the next few minutes, but I do want to move on to a couple of other amazing guests that we have here briefly.

[00:08:40] So we’ve got Ruben Martinez from the American glamping association, I think, correct me if I’m wrong, Ruben. But I think for somehow this is the first time that you and I have ever been face to face either in a zoom or anything like that. And I feel like that should have happened a long time ago with the great things that you’re doing when there’s a glamping world with vaping, as you said, in the American banking association.

[00:08:58] So [00:09:00] maybe start by telling us glamping hub is consumer-focused. So tell us how did glamping hub come about and what is the goal of that? And then we can move on to the association. Yeah, we started a glamping hub about a man almost 11 or 12 years ago now. And there wasn’t really anybody focusing on. Glamping within specifically the United States.

[00:09:21] You couldn’t really find an easy way to find information about good places to go information around pricing, or even just to book and so early and decided to create a listing website that allowed people to look at glamping operations and to book glamping sites all over the world.

[00:09:40] So we transmit that over a hundred countries Australia, New Zealand Canada are big markets for us as well, and in Europe as well, but 70% of what we do is here in the United States. So it honestly started because the information was fragmented and nobody’s. Could really go out and find this type [00:10:00] of outdoor travel and information to book easily.

[00:10:03] And honestly, this is the way that I like to travel. This is my preferred method. Being able to be outside in the great outdoors, but to have a certain level of comfort. At that point in time, I just thought I can’t be the only one in the world who wants to travel like this. And so that was the birth of.

[00:10:22] I feel like you’ve proven that to be a true factual statement now, instead of just an idea that there were other people like you an Olympic hub has a tremendous amount of success. So I’m just looking forward to seeing that continue and evolve and like, how do you place yourself in the worlds of the Airbnbs?

[00:10:37] I obviously, know there’s a difference. You’re focused primarily on glamping in the outdoors, Airbnb, just like the conferences, air, BBS, some of that, but how do you see yourself in that kind of landscape next to the Airbnbs? And Expedia is long-term Airbnb. For example, always be focused on the departments in city centers and those home-sharing and [00:11:00] booking.com will be focused on hotels, but our focus and we believe our graves value is that we are providing a just direct focus on just this outdoor unique travel in glamping.

[00:11:14] And therefore can a have campsites, we’re not going to have hotels are not going to have bed and breakfast. We think that we’re confident we know from, over the years and the, over the decade that we’ve been doing this, that this has this will continue to grow at a rapid rate.

[00:11:31] And to your point earlier, and as you say the word buzzword since we’ve been doing this for over a decade, every, since the beginning up until today, I’m hearing how people say, is this a fad? Is it going away? How long is it sticking around? But we’ve been having that conversation for over a decade and every year has been tremendous growth.

[00:11:51] And so we just believe that if we focus on this very specific niche within the market that we’ll continue to add a lot of value [00:12:00] to our hosts. Our guests to go stay at that Airstream in Joshua tree or the treehouse in California, or the safari tent, New York. They are specifically looking for this type of state, right?

[00:12:13] They’re typing glamping, accommodation near me, or Airstream rental Austin. And that’s how they find her. So we will let Airbnb do what they do. And they’re very good at what they do, booking.com as well. And we’ll continue to put our heads down and just focusing on them, providing unique experiences for people.

[00:12:31] Worrying about, oh, sorry. Brian, go ahead, Cara. Please. Yes. I’m interested in hearing about the association and its background, how it got started, how old it is, what your membership base is like those kinds of things. Then, the association actually just started as a side project between actually the founder of under canvas.

[00:12:51] One of the largest operators here in the United States and Claire do sick and I to help standardize the conversations that we were receiving [00:13:00] on a daily basis. People asking questions about insurance or how do I get a loan through, an SBA loan? What kind of structure should I pick?

[00:13:08] So we decided that the industry at that point in time, years ago needed an association that would help provide tools, resources, and network, a community to people who are actively going through this process over the years. And definitely over the last two years specifically. There has been a development boom that we haven’t seen ever in this space, perhaps across large hotel groups institutional investors.

[00:13:36] And it doesn’t matter if they are the person who’s well-capitalized with the $500 million in the bank, or somebody who has 20 acres, one or two units, it’s it can be tough navigation to get it, permitting done ADA accessibility picking, should I be doing food and beverage? And so we help anybody and everybody in the space get to their version [00:14:00] of their finish line.

[00:14:01] And there isn’t really, this isn’t the hotel world, this isn’t vacation rentals or apartments. It has a very distinct asset class, a very distinct checklist. And so we’re just here to help people along their journey and get to their version of their Awesome. It’s amazing. It sounds like go ahead, please.

[00:14:22] Cara, please. I already cut you off once. It’s your turn? No, and that’s part of what I was going to say actually, as we talk too this is really conversational. I know we’ve got a lot of guests on the show today. But like happy to have David or Edward or Mike and another audio working or whatever, jump in, ask questions of each other.

[00:14:39] As I’m talking to them, we really want this to be conversational. Like interviews are great. But we really rather have you guys jump in and talk about anything you want to, but yeah, the association, like all I keep hearing are good things about it. Rubin. And I. I have a side bet with myself that Randy is unaware of, but I’m going to just mention Randy Hendrick’s name, like every show until I can’t anymore, just [00:15:00] somewhere slide it in there, but he keeps telling me about these amazing AGA is that actually, I think there’s one probably going on right now during our show.

[00:15:06] And Randy was on it and he was telling me just how great these calls are for communication for bringing the group together. So tell us a little bit about that benefit of the association, but yeah, the way that it was set up, because this is not our, we’ve got a great group of advisors, a great member base, and the best way to, to think about it’s really for the people by the people.

[00:15:25] It’s one of those where, it’s not just industry leaders or it’s people who have just opened up their ramping operation, Who are giving real-life context to situations that will help people get to their version of their finished light. And so it’s not a guidebook around here’s the four ways that, that here are the five steps that you need to follow.

[00:15:48] It’s really people helping people. It’s people who’ve been there who have done that, who have learned hard lessons who have made a bunch of mistakes. Who’s had a lot of success and everything [00:16:00] in between. And so it’s, it really is a network and a community for people to say it doesn’t, I don’t, I, I know I want to do this, but help me along my journey.

[00:16:09] And it’s real people helping other real people. And it’s not a, like I said, checklist or a guidebook, and we have versions of that. But when for example, purchase 75 acres and maybe you’ve raised a little bit of money and you need to jump into the. You can do a bunch of Google research and read a book or figure something out.

[00:16:27] But at the end of the day, it’s great to talk to people who’ve gone through it and you’ve experienced it and who can give you context. And so I think that’s the best way to explain and sets people, for the people, by the people, helping other people get to their version of their, a business plan and their success.

[00:16:46] And so I think because it’s driven by a great group of members and a great group of people who just know what it’s like to struggle through a new business. They’re all entrepreneurs in a way. And [00:17:00] they, because somebody most likely have helped them along the way. They’re very eager to turn around and help other people.

[00:17:07] And part of it’s just that. Effect of would love to help you out because somebody helped me out. And when we can do that, especially with the amount of development that’s going on, it really just helps everybody. It’s the rising tides, a theory, and it really is true with what we’re trying to do. And, I think the best thing that we see is that early on, before we started the association, quite a few people just couldn’t they would give up, right?

[00:17:35] They didn’t have the tools, didn’t have the resources, it was too hard. There are always a million reasons to do it. And so we’re grateful that because of our great advisors, because of the great member base people don’t feel like that’s an option for them anymore. They have a vision and they’re able to accomplish it, which is really exciting to see all the.

[00:17:56] New. Every day, every week, there’s a great accommodation, a great [00:18:00] resort, a great property that’s going up that is just different and unique. And that’s, what’s exciting about this industry is that it’s not cookie-cutter. There’s no cookie-cutter version of what we do. Are you seeing your membership demographic shift with time, or is it typically that small business entrepreneur, that owns some property and is going down this road?

[00:18:20] Or are we shifting to start seeing more institutional or corporate? Maybe I’m hearing about hotels transitioning or adding space with glamping units and things like that. Are you seeing a shift? Yeah, there is definitely no one demographic, no one description, even amount of institutional capital that’s as God is faith over the last 10 years.

[00:18:44] It’s not a million dollars here, a million dollars there it’s hundreds of millions of dollars at a time in a few projects. So it is definitely a large-scale institution, the capital. It is, it’s hotel groups that are looking to diversify [00:19:00] because they got hit really hard this last few years.

[00:19:02] And they want to make sure that their class and their product offering are a bit more pandemic proof if you will. It is the person who inherited five acres. It’s the person who wants to have 10 or 12 of these operations across the United States or even globally. It’s the person who’s straight out of college.

[00:19:23] It’s the person who’s trying to retire. It’s the person who side-hustle turned out to be a lot better than their day job. And it’s literally, there is no one ethic and, that’s really the cool part about what the glamping industry does provide any outdoor space is that you do have to.

[00:19:43] Have a level of kind of vision and uniqueness, but it does gravitate towards anybody and everybody. There really isn’t one description, which is one of the great parts of the industry. And I think that’s a big part of why it’s not a cookie-cutter is we have this [00:20:00] really broad range of demographics contributing from all walks of life and all kinds of, amounts of dollars backing projects and things like that really contributes to the industry, being super diverse and unique.

[00:20:12] And that’s obviously such a big benefit to our industry compared to a lot of similarities. And we, through the booking platform in glamping hub, get to see on a daily basis what people want, what they don’t want. And at the end of the day, it is a unique and experiential-based travel entity in that, if people want predictability or a bit more of the same, they’ll go to a hotel because hotels do what you’re going to get.

[00:20:37] You maybe make your decision based off on is air continental, breakfast, or proximity to where I’m staying or is there a gym, but with glamping, the difference is that really the accommodation is the destination and what’s different that they book the stay first and then they book everything else around it afterward.

[00:20:58] They’ll look at their [00:21:00] stream bill. It’s this emotional decision of look, I can see myself having a beer or a glass of wine with that sunset, and then I can go fly fishing, or I can go rock climbing or hiking or mountain bike. And they book that first and then behind that, they take a step back and say, oh crap.

[00:21:16] How do I get there? And I need to book a Carter flight in which is a completely different mindset than any other travel, in, in hospitality. Yeah, it’s really changed the perspective of our guests, which is incredibly cool. It’s it just makes for, a new experience, which is, sought after, by so many of us.

[00:21:40] And it’s opened up a lot of new opportunities, right? And so there as glamping becomes more widespread as more people adopters as more consumers flock toward it, there is naturally a need for suppliers like Edward who’s on the show to fulfill some of these needs for unique accommodations, unique experiences to help shape that.

[00:21:58] Yes, there’s the Airstreams of the [00:22:00] world, but there are all kinds of different tents and yurts and teepees and cottons and all kinds of things. And so Edward, tell us a little bit about what your company offers how you got into it and where you see your role evolving. Oh, okay. We’re a distribution company essentially.

[00:22:17] And we represent a couple of manufacturers out of Europe that didn’t have anyone here looking after them. When we got, going into being, which is a company that’s over 70 years old their main principles around groundbreaking design, exceptional quality, lifelong dependability. And then, of course, another keyword that’s kicking about sustainability.

[00:22:38] So do control every aspect of their manufacturing process. And they are also, mostly tents and structures and, they are made from cotton aluminum and then wood source, sustainable sorts of areas that we work with are called cricket. Structures. Now, when we started talking to David, we were hoping that we would [00:23:00] come to the glamping show with whatever free product that we have under the sun.

[00:23:03] But sadly, because of the current global situation, we’re just not able to move around that easily. But what we really try and do is talk to people that are starting these resorts and build them custom to what they want to have. We have a set range of products that you can choose from, but we want to be the company that people come to and say, I’m here.

[00:23:24] I’d like. Can you do it? And we want to be the company that says yes. I’m not actually that far away from you, Brian. I was in the mountains on the weekend. I’m now back in Edmonton, Alberta. So what we’re trying to do really as a company is getting out there with brand new to North America and show people that there are alternatives to the products that are out there.

[00:23:45] And also there are companies willing to make something for you, customer, which is us. Yeah. Where are your manufacturing facilities? So at the moment, Dwight and creative structures are manufactured out of the Netherlands in Europe. And there is a very strong possibility [00:24:00] that within the next 12 months, both will be moved to here in Canada.

[00:24:04] Yay. Oh my gosh. I have so many operators really looking to support Canadian-based manufacturing businesses, and I have a hard time finding good matches. So I’m a champion of that. Please do that.

[00:24:21] And I will say this to Edward. When you are, if you move the manufacturing here in the next 12 months, then reach out to Cara and I again, and we’ll come up and tour. The manufacturing plant, maybe do a dedicated show on. I think that would be really interesting to see how some of that stuff has made I’m in Calgary, Edward, so some nearby as well.

[00:24:41] So we can work something out. The wild stuff is it’s handmade. It’s made by people. It’s not plastic it’s made by machines. It is people sitting in the warehouse and creating this stuff by hand. The in Europe is a very well-known brand. And I know that in the glamping world, Dutch companies are [00:25:00] held in very high regard.

[00:25:01] It’s just a few years to get everything geared up to a stage where they want to move abroad, but they feel pretty strongly about when the time comes, shifting the manufacturing and cutting out the middleman, which is the shipping. I don’t know, who’s dealt with shipping recently around the world, but it is an absolute nightmare.

[00:25:19] Yeah. And also let’s be honest, its footprint on the planet is awful, and we’re trying to build products from the earth for the earth. And the whole idea is that these products are sustainable. You can replace every single part of them and they last for a lifetime. So that’s where they’re very forward-thinking.

[00:25:40] And that’s, I think the direction that a lot of good manufacturers are going, they are moving towards, let’s do things more locally. Let’s try and create products that last forever do are very unique in the fact that, they own the whole of their manufacturing process. It is all made in the Netherlands from cotton, wow.

[00:25:57] To the canvas, to the word, to the Armenian. [00:26:00] So we are also in a unique position where we can be very competitive with products that usually are significantly lower in cost. And that would, and were more sustainable. So we see ourselves brand new to North America. We haven’t got much of a footprint here whatsoever.

[00:26:17] And we’re really excited about what we could achieve. That’s fabulous. I really think consumers are shifting their buying habits to be more conscious about sustainability. Yeah. Yeah. I really commend come in that stuff. That’s incredibly valuable to members. Yeah, it makes tons of sense.

[00:26:35] Okay. On a design on, oh yeah, go ahead, Brian. Sorry. I just wanted to, I just wanted to, I just wanted to comment on the design perspective of the wards. They look fantastic. I love them. I just have to say like the big Oak tent, it looks absolutely fantastic. Just think that it’s sustainable.

[00:26:54] And to think that it’s sustainable, that’s just icing on the cake. That’s cool. It is. Th the [00:27:00] origins for us a back just after the second world war where people couldn’t really afford to go anywhere. And it’s actually the same from the Royal Dutch Navy that created the first award tent. So we were very much campground-based.

[00:27:13] I’m an absolute staple across campgrounds in Europe. And we do actually have in many ways, a bit of a cult following in Europe for our camping products because we really intense that you will have for a lifetime. And then basically all of our designs were a bit weird all the way through their quirky differences, and that’s that we stand by it.

[00:27:31] If it’s going to come from the pod, it has to look different. We do have geodesic domes, but even our geo domes are very different from the other ones that are out there whenever our guys. I’m developing something new. They’re basically given full creative license, to build something that looks completely weird if they want to, in the hope that people will love it.

[00:27:51] And the big example of that’s fantastic. Yeah. It’s gorgeous. I want one shame. I can [00:28:00] share if somebody wants to pull up the website, it was shining. It wouldn’t let me okay. I was trying to. If we get it up, we can share that. Cause yeah, I again, more inspiration, the more things can do like these are the types of stories like Ruben was talking about the AGA and getting in, Randy likes to use in the trenches as a phrase that I’ve stolen now and using it for myself.

[00:28:20] But telling the stories of the owners and operators telling the stories of the suppliers, what makes them different, where these things are sourced from, why they’re sourced there. I think those are important stories that I know I would like to highlight more either on this show or on Modern Campground.

[00:28:33] And so maybe we’ll try to connect you a little bit after the show Edward with Darryle, if you’re interested and see at least how you can get us, your press releases, and things like that. But just brainstorm some ideas about how we can. Help expand that reach for you and other manufacturers too, just to tell.

[00:28:47] Yeah, I think that’d be fantastic. There are so many fantastic manufacturers out there. There really are. And because of the growth of growth to echo Rubin, the growth in the market is ridiculous. So there’s plenty of work to go [00:29:00] around. And I know being in Alberta and Brian and Carrie will be able to echo this.

[00:29:04] I’ve seen people at mountains that I have never seen walking before. They, it has been so busy in Alberta this summer and last summer with people wanting to get out. I just, I can’t see it slowing down. I really can’t alcohol and retreat just outside of Edmonton are fully booked for the next two years.

[00:29:21] They’ve got four, four cabins and four domes. So it’s something that I really think is going to be, it’s going to just keep growing in. Yeah, I agree. If there’s one good thing, that’s come out of this whole pandemic situation, it’s a greater appreciation for the outdoors, for being in nature for being one with that environment and your natural surroundings and stuff like that.

[00:29:43] It’s like I’m in a hotel right now, I’m going to flip my camera around, and also I think we’re sharing. Yeah. How do you legit not appreciate that amazing view and want to be like, yes, there’s a hotel here right in front of the mountain, but I’d much rather be in a tent up on that [00:30:00] mountain, like a luxury glamping thing, halfway up the mountain in the middle of them, trees like to walk out and have your coffee there and have that kind of experience would just be, I don’t think you can beat that. Yeah. Yeah. No, for sure. Geez, the unit is so cool. They’re very different. And that comes in different sizes that, that would sleep up to six people, but you can also shorten it if you’d like to.

[00:30:25] And the great thing about these is the only thing that will perish over time is the canvas and that is completely replaceable. The other thing that would do odd is we have. We know we actually did it before. Patagonia. If I’m being honest with you, if the tent gets damaged in this canvas, you ship it to us.

[00:30:40] We fixed the tent for free. We ship it back and it’s another service that we do offer. And that’s something that we will probably get going in Canada before the manufacturing moves. But the hope is that in the not-so-distant future, we are busy enough here to justify bringing the actual manufacturing and creating jobs in North America, whether it makes [00:31:00] more sense to do it in the states or more sense to do it here.

[00:31:02] We’re not sure yet, but it’s definitely something that we are aspiring to achieve in the pretty niche. Is this a good time to tell people they can come to see

[00:31:11] David. And I started thinking about 6, 7, 8 months ago, and we were hoping to be representing creative structures and Tubo at the grumping show USA, sadly, our other two European partners. Couldn’t get the product to us quick enough. And they also weren’t able to travel. But we already had equipment for Duarte in the country.

[00:31:31] So we are coming down with our Dwight inventory. And then our hope is that things have gotten a little bit easier and we can bring everything next year.

[00:31:38] Yes. Awesome. Here’s what we need, David. We need like top-up glamping show villages that travel the globe and you can have people are interested in buying them or staying in them and starting their own businesses. So you have the main conference in October, but like maybe once every two months or something, or quarterly, just a [00:32:00] pop up like a pop-up glamping village that shows up on a Bermuda island somewhere.

[00:32:05] We can all come to stay there and have beers together and sit by the ocean. Talk about buying all that stuff. Yay.

[00:32:13] Aloha. I can answer. Yes. Introduce yourself. Tell us but we’re nomadic, hence, a lot of is running around in our little.

[00:32:23] Relocated to a library hacking. But yes, and we’re avid bland provers. We wrote the first book on glamping in North America and which sent us to the wild. And we’ve been traveling for 10 years. We quickly realized this is the best style of lodging travel experience you can have. So to hone in on that, having to like every stuff, fancy hotel to a normal campground, and we just fell in love with clamping.

[00:32:49] And we love this community. Amazing. So for those of our audience who don’t know you, who aren’t familiar with honey extract, tell us how did you [00:33:00] guys get into this in the beginning? What’s your origin story

[00:33:02] since.

[00:33:04] Did we lose them or is it just me? I think there we’ve lost them. Shane

[00:33:10] internet, David, maybe you can give us sure this will be wrong and overly simplified, but I have it and like to retell it accurately or not is they went on a honeymoon too, and went glamping in the 1975 Dodge Ram pickup truck with an imbed camper who they call buddy. And so that’s really the buddy and Mike, when on the honeymoon.

[00:33:39] And that was about a million years ago and they have yet to return, but this one can go up inside the glamping site to go up inside, started blogging about it. One thing led to another, the book they mentioned they published. So the 150 favorite places They have been to Europe now they’ve toured just about [00:34:00] everywhere you can go.

[00:34:00] And they, the best example I can take of social media influencers, people who just started doing something for the love of it. And it turned into a book of the side hustle. This is turned into their life. So they go from place to place and talk about it and share best practices and help people understand as operators, what they can do to attract people a really good session for us to the lead speakers in a couple of weeks about the guest experience, that’s really what glamping is about.

[00:34:33] It’s the experience more than anything else, and they become passionate and expert about it. So they have about a zillion followers on social media. I’m not sure the right number, but it’s about. And they call themselves honeytrap cause it’s the Trek they’re taking on their honeymoon, which looks like it’s never going to end.

[00:34:51] And I’m sorry

[00:34:52] for giving the wrong story with this impromptu spontaneous and sorry, [00:35:00] we’ll be in the outdoor exhibitor and that’s when.

[00:35:02] repeat what they did a couple of years ago, but it’s a place to stop and see them get another graph book and even a glass of warm, bold wine if they’re been the expectation. Okay.

[00:35:16] Do we have him back?

[00:35:18] So David did a great job of telling us how you got started in the industry. Not sure how factual is zillion followers on social media, but a lot I’m assuming is a good thing. And it’s so congratulations on that success,

[00:35:31] right. About 300 on social. So pretty darn

[00:35:35] cool. Cool. So before we chance maybe losing you again. I’m sorry. I think we’re just on a delay. So I don’t mean to definitely. I don’t mean to cut you off. So I’m going to say one more thing and then shut up and let you talk and hopefully, we’ll get you. But tell us to like how over the course of 10 plus years, how has your journey evolved as far as glamping goes, and as you see more of these companies, industry [00:36:00] suppliers, people running, glamping, operations, both big, small, medium-sized or whatever on different places has your journey as, and has your travel changed?

[00:36:09] It’s funny. Cause when we wrote the book about, glamping, the word like social distancing didn’t exist. Amazing how in the past two years that was a secret benefit of glamping. We would think of them. Of course, we love the outdoors and get fresh air in front of us. Before buddy, who knew this would become such a value for, people who didn’t even know about camping or glamping.

[00:36:31] They all knew that they were going to they needed that space and that escape. So that’s really been interesting to see glamping of all and one interesting way it has. And we LA frost, like the places we chose for the book were really not about the fanciest glamping experiences, but the places with part people were really like hundreds that were following a dream and sharing the world with guests.

[00:36:56] Can you still hear me amazing. And so [00:37:00] then with the pandemic, that’s an interesting challenge. Cause I feel like

[00:37:03] that personal touch is now a little bit taboo. People have gone a little away from, let me show you around and we’ve held, how many have we hugged at the end? Cause it felt like a personal expense. So now we’re navigating how to make these experiences personal while still respecting personal space.

[00:37:24] And I think there’s a way to do it. I think that’s an interesting challenge in evolution. And another thing asking about like how our journey’s changed, how we’ve seen the industry change during the last, eight years that we’ve been glamping around the world is now since the pandemic.

[00:37:40] And even before the pandemic, this was starting and people were recalibrating their lives. They were thinking about the owners, from the owner’s perspective, they were thinking about getting out of the rat race, getting back to their land, getting a deeper connection with, basically what their land and they thought glamping was a good way to bring some revenue.

[00:37:57] And now with the pandemic, that’s just [00:38:00] increased, two or three fold and people thinking, Hey, I’m done with the cities, I’m back on my parents’ land. Let’s set up camp and a lot more of those pop-up, which is really exciting. Yeah, we love working with those kinds of camps to help them capture.

[00:38:14] Cause a lot of them don’t come from hospitality. They just have a plot of land and they think, Hey, for a couple of grand, I could put some tents here, put it on hip camp and I’ll make lots of money and be a glamping camp. So it’s always exciting to visit those people. And they’re a very nascent stage of development and help them build a real connection with their guests and just build a proper glamping camp.

[00:38:36] It’s cool.

[00:38:36] So how does what you do fit in with a hat, with what David does with what Ruben does at the American glamping association, you mentioned consulting and helping people with, through the development process. That’s why I’m asking our specialty is really the guest experience. We stayed at around 200 glamping camps and boutique hotels around the world.

[00:38:55] So we can speak from experience to what works and what doesn’t and 10 years [00:39:00] later, what is that thing about that safari camp and the Masai Mara that still sticks with us? Cause I think if you can touch people and do something a little dent and make them feel special, they’ll remember you forever.

[00:39:10] So that’s the things that we’re drawing a pretty large base of knowledge and it’s. That we like to apply that and then share with the industry. Cause we’re really more of a consumer-facing brand. We just want to show our honey Trek, friends, and fans that like how awesome glamping is. But when we start speaking to the glamping association at the glamping show, it’s more about what have we learned and what can we share to pass on to make these blending campaigns?

[00:39:36] And then another few ways that like we work with David and Rubin and just the people across the glamping space is as journalists like there, aren’t, there’s a lot of glamping camp owners and there’s a lot of product manufacturers out few people who occasionally write about glamping, but that’s our beat.

[00:39:51] So we’re journalists. In this case, we go and review properties. We run for glamping.com. We write for glamping business and regular column with that. [00:40:00] So from the journal. And then you mentioned soul things. We worked in camps to help them elevate their experience the third way. Which again, I think one of the few people who do this is to help promote and market these glamping camps.

[00:40:14] I already mentioned like, our audience it’s $350, we’ll leverage that. And our social media Storytape glamping amps, or test their products and promote that to our audience. Yeah. Photography helped them with storytelling. The fund we’ve helped camps who literally are just buying the land and thinking what this could be that is established for a year.

[00:40:39] And they’re just fine-tuning been around for 10 years may and promote them to our audience. And so that’s the big way, of course, with the Glenn community.

[00:40:46] Sounds fabulous. Yeah, it’s definitely a needed service as, especially as the industry continues to grow so super excited that you guys are a part of that and here to help and excited to see where the future goes for this whole [00:41:00] glamping thing. Cause I feel like the sky’s the limit and I feel like we’re just, we’re way down here and we’re going to be way up here very quickly.

[00:41:06] And it’s going to be thanks to people like you too, to Ruben, to David, to all the other people, to Edward, all the other people who were involved in this industry, hundreds and hundreds of people as we continue to grow. So I’m going to put you on the spot here and I’m going to ask you not, don’t tell me that the top three best places you’ve been, because best is subjective, depending on what you want to experience and what, whatever.

[00:41:26] Tell me three places that are really unique that stand out to you remember it forever, right? That you just were really impressed by.

[00:41:33] I’ll go with are a very reasonable it’s an example. We stayed there last week. So that’s fresh and this is a really beautiful story. Or we were in Montana on Flathead lake the Flathead reservation. We, this was a native American piece of the piece of land that they had was within their family for hundreds of years.

[00:41:53] And they always thought about sharing that land because it’s all being developed on them, but they said, no, we’re going to keep [00:42:00] this as pure land. And Gerard’s variance and are being popped up everywhere. But culturally, the Plains Indians and that part of the world whose GB, so that really could, we stayed in a TB.

[00:42:11] They do a traditional story retelling at the end of the night, and it really felt like something they weren’t trying to do it accommodate. We’re still pretty simple, but they were with us. The style of quilt learning about that in the context of something more was really special.

[00:42:31] We have a second one. I don’t know if we need to do three, but I’ll give it some, one a, which still resonates with us, even if they’re probably four years ago,

[00:42:38] it’s called Willow farms which is Washington day, right? Target men who just all piece of landing newly forested and bring animals back to that land that they bought this farm, [00:43:00] like 70 acres more and they reforest it a sense of history on it and like pretty simple thing, 10 with outdoor showers and. As to do goat tracking or just vegetables and see how a farm is really run.

[00:43:15] You can, I think a great place to go see where they’re and that they just let us be a part of their world a little bit there, she was milking goats that morning for us to join her and see done and shattered. So what they might think is a mundane day is something so cool. Cause toss it glamping is a lot about access and it’s more the fact that scene, it sits like,

[00:43:45] so I don’t know if it’s just me, but you’re breaking up still just a little bit. Mike, could you say the name of that resort one more time that you were talking about? I think you broke up.

[00:43:53] Oh, shame. Did we lose them again? Okay. That’s all right. We’re going to have just care. I [00:44:00] think we’re going to need to do like a show when I can maybe have a better connection just with them talking about their different glamping experiences, share some of their photos, unique opportunities.

[00:44:10] The vast amount of knowledge that they have traveled to all these different properties, writing the books talking to the consumers and then she, like her and Mike are both saying from a customer service aspect too is just a phenomenal, valuable resource. So I’m hopeful.

[00:44:23] They’ll come back on with us when they have a little bit better internet connection. So what did we miss? Cara? What else? There are 10,000 questions. I feel like I could ask everybody on the show. Yeah, I definitely, we’re running short on time again, so I just wanted to find out from David where we can send folks who are able and interested in attending the show in October.

[00:44:47] Where can they go? Sign up. I was so afraid you weren’t going to ask, so www.glampingshow.us. If you want to go [00:45:00] just to the expo part of. It’s free of charge. Just preregistered. If you show up on-site to actually charge you some money. So it is preregistered, it’s easy and free. If you want to go to the conference program, it isn’t free, but it’s pretty affordable with all the registration information, all the instructions, everything you need to go.

[00:45:17] The exhibitor lists conference schedule hotels. If you haven’t got a hotel, yet everything is on the website and glamping showed that us. Thanks, Cara. Okay. I’m sharing that. Again here, just so folks can see where that is. Glamping show.us. The website looks great. Okay. Tons of reasons. Oh, sorry, this is a great show.

[00:45:39] Like I’m sure again, I’m not going to be there this year, but I was there in 2019, and obviously, it’s on a much larger scale as David’s has already covered, but just the amount of networking, the sitting down, the having coffee at those little tables that I’m sure are going to be the same way. But the exhibitor hall and the outdoor space, specifically, the ability to go into these places that are actually set up.

[00:45:58] Yes, they’re not on a beach in Bermuda, but [00:46:00] David’s working on that, but they are in Colorado, which is still a beautiful setting. Just like we were showing the mountains here and just an amazing place there. And so if you have the opportunity to go and just walk through these tents, it’s just, it’s an amazing experience to see.

[00:46:16] Yeah, I absolutely, I wish I could be there this year, but 2022 is my year.

[00:46:20] Yeah, we’re definitely going to work on it. Ruben, I want to hear from you about the American glamping association specifically, and I know we’ve talked about it, but for the people who are in our audience, which is mostly comprised of the campground, RV park, owners, suppliers, things like that. How do we, and this is a yes, a self-serving answer too because I want to be a member, but how do we become members of the American glamping association?

[00:46:44] How do we join what’s involved with it? What are some of the benefits you get besides what you talked about, a broader association feel, but what are the bullet point lists of things we can expect and how do you join? Yeah. Yeah, if you just Google American glamping association or American [00:47:00] blackness association.net, you’ll find us.

[00:47:02] And it takes two minutes to become a member. Very simple pull-in, for campground RV park owners, where we have quite a few growing and it’s not only growing but a solid base within that segment in the outdoor industry. This space is lore ways to differentiate their property in a way to, maybe they own several different RV parks and look different product to it.

[00:47:27] And so we know the space well, and we’re here to help them along their way and along their journey in any way, shape or form. So we honestly serve anybody and everybody in this space and are excited about it, have to play in and look at them online and we’ll be able to help you out. If you become.

[00:47:46] And then tell people how they can participate in your weekly call. Now we don’t want we want people to participate in your call, but if you’re going to have it at the same time as our show, I feel like my heart is torn in both different directions here. But tell them how they can join [00:48:00] your call and get some information for that on a weekly basis.

[00:48:03] Yeah. Once people become members have access to internal communication channels, so members 24, 7 us, and other members to crowdsource information, post updates about their organization, find information about kind of anything. And a lot of our operators are obviously all busy during the day. Can’t make every conversation that we do record them and just post them in our internal communication channels as well.

[00:48:32] So people can whether you’re an existing member to go back and watch it or a brand new member, you can go back and watch every single speaker that we’ve ever. Fantastic. Yeah, that’s a great resource. And then David real quick before I forget to touch on glamping business. America’s all right.

[00:48:49] Glamping business America’s magazine. Tell us briefly about that. Sure. It came out of what we did with the virtual event last year. We found that there are a lot of people who [00:49:00] just physically couldn’t get to Colorado and still had an interest in what we’re doing. So we launched the magazine back in February issue number four’s coming up as the show issue.

[00:49:09] We’re actually going to print a thousand copies and bring them to Colorado with us. So people will have a real magazine and directly to the show too. But it has content on any. Mike is a regular contributor. We have several regular contributors, new contributors, every quarter, four times a year.

[00:49:27] Subscriptions are free. You can subscribe on that same website at grabbing, showed that us and upon the navigation bar on top, it says the magazine, you can read previous issues and subscribe. We have over 4,000 people subscribing so far about 3000 here in the states, we have over 300 Canada and about 500 that are in Latin America, and the last 150 200 every place else.

[00:49:54] So people in Asia and Africa and all over the hacking gun [00:50:00] who are also subscribing. So content for the business person who is neglecting space how-to tips, advice, lessons learned suggestions, keep an eye out, things we hope will have business value. It’s not designed as a consumer. It’s designed for trade professionals to try and help them between shows when we’re not doing things in Bermuda with Brian, see what’s happening, and have a source of information.

[00:50:27] So grumpy cause this is awesome. Thank you so much, David. And then Edward briefly tells us with the ward logistically speaking we have Modern Campground, it’s a global audience. We’re growing our viewership in Europe and all those kinds of places or readership, I should say. But disproportionately we have more North American park owners and operators who watch us read us right now.

[00:50:47] So tell us, what are the logistics involved with someone who wanted to get one of these sustainable glamping products that your different manufacturers offer? What how do they go about doing that? If they’re located either stateside or again so the easiest way is to [00:51:00] contact us straight away.

[00:51:00] We do carry inventory here in Canada. Sometimes it doesn’t make sense for us, to go from the Netherlands to Canada across the border, into the states because of all the rules involved. So more often than not, we would just ship them directly from the Netherlands to the states. However, if you’re in Canada, we do hold inventory.

[00:51:16] The lead times and such at the moment, I don’t think it matters, which manufacturer you talk to. The lead times are they’re long at the moment, shipping and prices of the commodity, getting hold of things to build your resorts your new venture, it’s taking longer than ever. So no matter which manufacturer you’re talking to, I recommend you start talking to them soon.

[00:51:36] We have lead times at the moment. Some of them are as long as five months. So if you’re looking to get something up for next spring and really hit the ground running, it’s something that you probably need to be looking into sooner rather than later, regardless of who you choose to do.

[00:51:51] Great. Awesome. Thank you so much, Edward, for being on the show. Do we have Mike and Ann Beck?

[00:51:55] Nope, I don’t think so. Oh, I thought I just saw pop [00:52:00] up, but that’s okay. All right. We will get Mike and Ann’s contact information. I think they, probably have, obviously, you can follow him on social media. It’s probably, they are at honey Trek on social media. So their Instagram account is fabulous to follow.

[00:52:13] They’ve got all kinds of great fun content there. I know they’re on LinkedIn under the same at honey Trek. So yeah, follow them, go follow them. Check. Yeah. Have them come visit your parks. Yeah. And like we said, we’ll try to get them on another show later on, because I do really want to deep dive into some of the valuable things that they can offer people.

[00:52:33] Like they were talking about the customer service, the consultation, stuff like that, and have them maybe share some photos and stuff like that with our audience. Carrie, is there anything we missed before we wrap up the show? I know we’re about out of. Yeah, no, I think that’s everything. I was really excited about this show.

[00:52:47] I can’t wait to have the event goes David forward to some follow-up there. And 20, 22, I’ll be there. I’ll send that. [00:53:00] So your fingers. Yeah. We’re just going to sneak somewhere. Good. Can we say that live on the show? Can we just say we’re going to sneak across the border because I feel like Biden’s probably not watching?

[00:53:10] But maybe, I don’t know. They’re always watching. They’re always watching everywhere. Would just be misdirection then. So we’ll say live on the show, which way we’re going in. And then they’ll all like swarm to that area and we’ll go to the other side, have a clear path, but anyway, yeah, looking forward to 2022, definitely looking forward to 20, 22 to be back together with all of you guys Rubin.

[00:53:33] I definitely want to meet you face to face as soon as I can, but we’d love to have further conversations with you again, about how we personally, from Modern Campground from Insider Perks can join your glamping association and support that. But also how we can just work together and maybe give you an even greater voice than you already have because I feel like you’re doing some really great things in the industry as well.

[00:53:51] Thank you to everybody for joining us to David, to Rubin, to Edward, to Cara for being here as always there for being here as always. I think that’s all we have for this week. Next [00:54:00] week we are. I think we’re going to do a show on Outdoorsy, working out some logistics of that.

[00:54:09] Okay, perfect. So looking for, and what are some of the things we’re going to talk about care just very briefly. I know we’re over. I’d really love to just touch on the peer to peer market and there, the ways they’re working with campgrounds and operators to just expand access to the RV, camping lifestyle, to folks who maybe aren’t owners and, expose the camping lifestyle to more folks out there in the world and show them how amazing it is, get them in our campgrounds and our glamping spaces and see what those spots have to us.

[00:54:43] Awesome. Definitely looking forward to that. Thank you guys again for joining us. Really appreciate it. Thank everybody for watching another episode of MC Fireside Chats. We will see you next week without Dorsey until then have a great one.

[00:54:55] [00:55:00]

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MC Fireside Chats
Hosted By

Brian Searl
Cara Braeutigam