From: Emerald+Aqua
Published: Mon Apr 24 2017

In a first for the Illawarra, Australia’s peak tourism certification body, Australian Tourism Accreditation Program (ATAP) and Emerald & Aqua, Wollongong’s largest holiday home agency today announced that Emerald & Aqua has been awarded ATAP certification.

Emerald & Aqua is the first holiday home management agency to attain certification within New South Wales and is only one of four businesses in the Illawarra to been exceeded the national tourism Quality Assurance standards to achieve certification.

Greg Channer, Managing Director of Emerald + Aqua Holiday Homes, said: "Emerald & Aqua is a proud contributor to the mix of available options in the Wollongong Accommodation market providing high quality short term holiday letting. We are the first Wollongong Accommodation provider to successfully attain ATAP certification which is a reflection of the high quality assurance standards we bring to the Wollongong Accommodation market and comes shortly after being awarded the ‘Highly Commended’ status in the 2016 NSW Tourism Awards."

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About Emerald & Aqua:
Emerald & Aqua manages the largest network of holiday homes in the Illawarra and is dedicated to the sole focus of the professional management & marketing of holiday homes with the aim to increase the tourism of the Illawarra region. Specifically, we are a sales & marketing company that promotes the Illawarra experience engaging our customers to "Live, Feel & Belong" like a local would.

The visual experience of arriving in the Illawarra inspired our name. We get our name, Emerald & Aqua from the journey a guest experiences as they drive down through the lush ‘emerald’ rainforest of the Illawarra escarpment & glimpse the inviting ‘aqua’ of the Pacific Ocean that announces the serenity & beauty that awaits each of our guests to the Illawarra region.

Our mission is to make every coastal holiday blissful.

About Australian Tourism Accreditation Program (ATAP):
ATAP is a business development program that is based on Quality Assurance principles and certifies tourism businesses that meet specific quality assurance criteria. It is the only accreditation program in Australia that is open to any business that engages in visitor services and operates Australia wide.
Accredited businesses continue to stand out as quality tourism providers with over 54% of finalists at the recent Australian Tourism Awards accredited through ATAP, and ATAP businesses won the top honours in 18 out of 25 categories.

Media enquiries contact:
Greg Channer
Managing Director
0403 032 666
02 4207 9988

Further details about Emerald + Aqua:

We are not a traditional real estate company that’s core business is selling homes & managing a large cumbersome rent roll that dabbles in tourism & hospitality via bolting on a misaligned service of holiday letting. We only manage holiday homes, tourism is our core business & this is unique in our industry.
As you would expect there are strong benefits to both the Holiday guest & the landlords of a business that is purely dedicated to holiday home management & this is demonstrable when our performance is viewed against that of a traditional real estate company that dabbles in holiday management.

Our value proposition was developed in mid 2015 in response to the experience of family & friends when they would come to visit us in the Illawarra & look for family friendly accommodation. The choices of accommodation was between the usual staid hotel offerings or engaging with a real estate company who has no alignment to tourism & who’s main business objective is to either to sell a property or secure a long term tenant for a property. They have no appreciation of the hospitality & tourism industries & the needs & services of tourists, resulting in a rather less than attentive & confusing experience.
Of course the alternative was to rent a holiday home directly from a home owner via Stayz or AirBnB, however this does not offer a professional experience where the paying guest can be assured that the homeowner is fully legislatively compliant & not just trying to make a couple of extra dollars on the side with none of the safeguards of a professional framework.

Initially we approached this problem through the lens of the guest, how to supply a guest with impeccable service while they enjoyed the experience of living in one of our hand picked holiday homes. And as we developed our offering we realised that we actually have another customer, the property owner. Be they be a) a property investor who’s domicile is elsewhere & they enjoy a holiday home b) a property investor who wants a greater return than the tiresome permanent rental & c) home owners who want to travel & rent our their home to pay for their holiday costs.

As property investors ourselves we have experienced the lack of focus that can occur when your property is just one of several hundred that a traditional real estate property manager is ‘managing’. Real estate investing is known to provide an attractive form of passive income, however who wants to achieve just average earnings?
As a property investor I want an active management of my investments, I don’t want the mix bag of a traditional estate agency that has ‘bolted on’ tourism hospitality to their service offering.

What is the problem that we are attempting to solve with our business?
The experience of our friends & families had when they hired a short stay holiday home illustrated to us the problem that we would go on to solve with Emerald & Aqua.
That is the traditional approach to the holiday home industry involves a real estate agent who has no training in tourism & is not aligned with hospitality. The traditional real estate agency approaches tourism from their industry perspective, delivering a service that is at odds with the tourism industry. Tourism is about delighting the customer (guest) & delivering memorable experiences where the customer is valued, returning year on year. Where as the real estate industry is about selling a home & then moving on to the next buyer, there is no longevity & the customer life cycle is short & abrupt, & this is the service than many holiday home guests were experiencing.

We understand that as a business we stand on the shoulders of those who have gone before us & that collectively we benefit from the success of each of us.
At Emerald & Aqua we understand the importance of the local tourism community we belong to, it is to the benefit of all that the Tourism industry in our region is supported, is vibrant & flourishes & our appreciation of the industry is one of the reason why we licensed our guest app.

Our guest app is free for all tourism related businesses to list their business details in our database & for our guests’ to search it via the guest app tourism related business in our region & to directly use their service. We make no commission of collect & fees for this service, we see it as a value added service for our guests & as a way to support the tourism industry in our region.

About the Directors:
Emerald & Aqua has two founding directors; Tanya who has enjoyed a successful career in the telecommunication, education & the hospitality industries & for the past six years has utilised her accomplished skill set through a variety of roles within the Real Estate industry.

Greg has had a very solid career within the international IT industry landscape leading sales & marketing teams at a regional executive level along with developing a property portfolio. As a member of the Executive Management team for across Australia and New Zealand he was responsible for leading & developing sales teams.
He is also an avid traveller who has lived overseas for many years & experienced all accommodations offers available throughout the world.
Company: Emerald+Aqua
Contact Name: danielmike
Contact Email:
Contact Phone: 02 4207 9988

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