The Adventure Islands

THE TAKEOVER - Staff taking over a hotel in Westport is a massive undertaking . . .

takeoverWhether the profit margins have expanded or contracted, soared or slumped or just remained ticking over matters not, what really matters for the courageous staff at the Clew Bay Hotel in Westport, is that they showed great fortitude, initiative and expressed an interesting entrepreneurial streak in their managerial coup d'état, banded together as they were for the last two weeks of March 2013, and taking on the combined role of hoteliers, from owners Darren Madden and his wife Maria. Their approach was egalitarian, with great ideas made actual from all departments, and a complete dissolution of middle and upper management. The two-week sabbatical by the boss-man and his wife was revealing indeed, particularly as its results were a pleasing testimony to the camaraderie, team ethos and creativity of their hotel staff.

One interesting idea conceived for the two week period was a hotel accommodation incentive offering an 'Adventure Activity' absolutely free for two people on a 2-night stay; this being a triple positive benefiting not just for the customer and the hotel business, but also in its boosting of local tourism at large, with the adventure sector revealing itself in recent years as a forerunner in attracting visitors to the town. The offer not only invigorated the experience for the guests by veering them away from typical hotel practice to something more different and exciting, but with the airing of The Takeover on RTE Network 2 on May 2nd, the idea will also invite interest in the future from outside the locality, displaying nationally an insight into the west's best scenery, activities and friendly local character.

As evidenced by the RTE show, there was an ideal adventure activity for all availing quests who passed through the doors of the Clew Bay Hotel in those critical weeks for staff. The Adventure Islands, the affiliated company based in Westport offered a sensational and voluminous array of activities to the lucky quests, ranging from fun by sea, to commando style adventure by land. It is believed that apathy and indecision were simply not options for guests, pleasantly surprised as they were, when they realised the fantastic range of activities made available to them as part of the deal. Over the two weeks, The Adventure Islands staff said that they witnessed visitors from many walks of life take to the soil, the sea and the skies of Westport in a variety of exciting adventure formats, in some cases for their very first time.

The Takeover, with the help of The Clew Bay Hotel staff has captured brilliantly a fusion between great indoor hospitality and the great outdoors. It is truly a credit to the staff at The Clew Bay Hotel, Westport, for their ingenuity and creativity in thinking outside the box here, and to The Adventure Islands for their generous support in helping make this particular idea possible. Special thanks also to RTE for providing the stage on which to put it all on display.

Nathan Bauer – 6th May 2013

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Collanmore Island Lodge

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