Florida Rental By Owners (FlaRBO) is excited to introduce you to some of our incredible hosts from the Orlando area. As a hot spot for theme park tourists, our hosts love creating magical experiences with the best service possible for their guests in Orlando. Please meet our host for July, Sarah and Ken Elder of Orlando Vacation Insiders who share their passion for making an Orlando vacation the best they can possibly be for lifelong memories.
1. What inspired you to start hosting your Florida Vacation Rental?
We owned a busy restaurant-bar in a coastal resort on a Greek Island for almost three decades. We always wanted to make sure our customers had the best time possible, not just when they were in our establishment, but for their whole vacation in general. We wanted visitors to our island to see why we loved it so much. We gave our customers lots of insider tips, told them where to find secret hidden gems, gave must do and must-see lists, best places to eat, and mapped out itineraries.
It seemed like a totally natural progression for us to venture into Orlando vacation rentals. The end goal for both businesses was identical: To make sure visitors had THE absolute best vacation possible.
We are self-confessed theme park nuts, and we have annual passes to all the Orlando theme parks. We visit the parks several times a week to keep up with happenings, discover hidden treasures we can share with guests, check out dining locations and sample the ever-changing snacks and treats. All in the name of research of course!
2. How do you exceed your Guest’s Expectations? Why do they keep coming back?
Guest experience is the number one key for us. It can actually be quite stressful planning a trip to Orlando. There’s just so much to see and do; guests can get overwhelmed trying to figure it all out and cram it all into a short stay.
We try to make that planning part as easy and smooth as possible with tips, advice, and suggestions. We arm our guests with premium planning tools. It makes a difference that they have their own personal trip advisor to answer questions and help plan.
High-Quality Orlando Vacation Rentals
We also focus heavily on high quality in all our homes. We call it laid back luxury. We want guests to feel comfortable enough to kick back and relax while having upscale amenities that feel that little bit extra special.
We try to anticipate everything a guest might possibly need during their stay. All our homes are loaded with extras, things that are not generally provided as standard in our location. Our guests really appreciate all the little touches that make such a big difference. We’re lucky too that we’re in such an ever-changing environment that it’s perfect for guests to revisit. There’s always some new big event or attraction every year. Always something new to see and do.
3. Why are you passionate about your Orlando Vacation Rentals?
Our Orlando vacation rentals are in such a unique and vibrant location; it’s impossible not to be passionate. We absolutely love the magic of Disney and try and bring a little of that sparkle into our homes. We want our guests to feel magical when they are in the parks and at home too.
The feedback we get from our guests drives our passion even more. It’s such a buzz when we hear “You thought of everything!” We strive to provide everything we can possibly think of that might make a difference or might come in handy. Something perhaps that guests didn’t even know they needed! When we travel ourselves, we are constantly inspecting places and searching for ideas that we could incorporate in our homes.
We love to travel, and when we do, we always try to stay in “rental by owner” accommodations. We feel there is no better way to immerse ourselves in the destination. Rentals by owner allow you to be like and among the locals, not one of many tourists! We know the host can make or break our travel experience.
When we became hosts, we tried to provide all of the things that we appreciate when we travel. Our guests are putting their trust in us when they decide to spend their valuable time and money on vacation, and we take that responsibility very seriously. The gratification that comes with enabling someone to have a fantastic and memorable vacation and then want to come back and do it again with us is absolutely priceless!
Staying in a vacation rental by owner type of property allows you to live like a local and leverage the host’s knowledge for a flawless and memorable vacation!
4. What are the Keys to Your Success that others may not know about?
Our single most important goal is for our guests to leave with magical life-long memories and a heart full of happiness. That’s the be-all and end-all of everything.
We focus totally on customer attention to make sure our guests have an amazing trouble-free stay. Of course, things go wrong, stuff breaks down, but our whole team is committed to dealing with incidents as fast as humanly possible with minimal inconvenience.
We also have a great team available 24/7. We make ourselves available to provide as much help and advice as needed.
5. Why do you recommend your area for the perfect Florida vacation?
Mr. Walt Disney called it “The Most Magical Place on Earth”. We think he was on to something! We welcome some guests for a once in a lifetime experience, others visit time and time again, because there’s so much to see and do. We have world class theme parks right on our doorstep, endless attractions and unique entertainment. But we also have spectacular beaches an hour away, serene state parks to get away from it all and wonderful local towns to explore. There’s so much to see in and out of the parks. And the glorious Florida sunshine is the icing on the cake.
6. What would be the perfect itinerary for a stay in your homes?
There really is no perfect itinerary because a visit to Orlando can be totally different for everyone.
Some families have young kids and will want to see the magic. Others will have older kids and might want to focus on rides. Some might not even be traveling with kids! There really is no one size fits all itinerary. However, one piece of advice goes for most: Visiting the theme parks can be pretty exhausting. You don’t realize just how far you’ll walk each day.
We always recommend guests take some time out. Head to the parks in the mornings, take a break for the afternoon, then head back in the evening for the spectacular fireworks. That downtime gives friends and families time to unwind and relax together.
7. Describe your Orlando vacation rental experience in three words?
Exciting, Magical, Memories!
8. Who would you recommend your properties to?
With three homes, our properties are a pretty perfect for all kinds of groups.
Families with children: Our family groups appreciate the strollers, high chairs, cribs, bed rails, baby monitors, toys, books and games we provide. We know these little guys can take up a lot of luggage space, so we try to provide as much as we can. Our five-bedroom home has a pool that is a total magnet for the kids! We get so many comments from Moms telling us they couldn’t get the kids out of the pool to go to Disney!
Adult groups: Despite popular belief, the theme parks are not just for kids! We get lots of adult only groups who enjoy the space our Orlando vacation rentals offer compared to several hotel rooms. The bedrooms give them privacy, and there’s plenty of space to hang out together in the living areas. It’s the best of both worlds.
Snowbirds and Seniors: We get a lot of seniors staying with us who love the peaceful locations and amenities we provide. We often get extended stay guests during the winter months who stay for a month or two. Our homes are perfect for when the grandkids come to stay.
Multi-Generation Groups: Our homes are perfect for this type of group. Grandparents, parents and grandkids spending quality time together.
9. Why do your properties stand out from the crowd?
Three things immediately spring to mind.
Location: There’s nothing worse than a 30-40 minute car ride in traffic with tired, cranky kids at the end of a day at the theme parks. We love being on Disney’s doorstep! It’s literally 10 minutes or so to get to and from the parks. In fact, we’ve done Disney’s Animal Kingdom in six-minutes from our five-bedroom home!!
Quality: In my location especially, many homes are equipped with an “it’s good enough for renters’’ attitude. We’re just about as far from that as can be! I can’t tell you the amount of times I’ve been told I don’t need something because “It’s only a rental.” NO NO NO! It’s not “only a rental”! It’s a dreamy home where guests come to make magical memories!
Provisions: Most homes in our area are supplied with ‘starter packs’ – a single toilet roll in each bathroom, a dishwasher tab, a single trash bag, a hotel size bar of soap. Guests are required to purchase anything else they need themselves.
I’m sure none of my guests want to go to a grocery store for household products as soon as they arrive on vacation. Who wants to buy a box of trash bags when they only need a few? Or a pack of laundry detergent to do a couple of loads? We provide all the extras needed. 100+ box of trash bags, several toilet rolls in each bathroom, a full box of dish detergent, large size laundry detergent and fabric softener and most things families will need for comfort.
All we want our guests to think about when they arrive is what a magical time they’re going to have.
Interested in visiting Orlando, Florida?
You can view all of Sarah’s properties here and take advantage of getting the best price directly with Sarah and Ken through their FLARBO listings. Why book elsewhere when you can get the best price through Florida Rental By Owners?
Florida’s #1 Owner Preferred Website. No Traveler Fees, No Commissions, and Direct Communication with the Owner always gets you the best price.