We had the good fortune of connecting with Paul Gerard Porter and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Paul Gerard, is there something that you feel is most responsible for your success?
Although Bon Vivant Properties is in the “Vacation Rental Industry”, we operate as if we were in Hospitality rather than the Rental Property Business. Although location, amenities, and competitive pricing are vital to success in this Industry, they don’t guarantee success. I’ve found that our Guests value the overall experience of their stay and are delighted when presented with more than just an accommodation. Asking questions such as whether they are in town to celebrate occasion, have any special requests, or need a recommendation on things to do are starting points. When you combine this personal spin on their stay with globally-appreciated touches like welcome gifts, fast response times, and quick resolutions to problems you are providing value that your local competitors are not. It also greatly improves your chances for having happy guests who leave 5 star reviews and and provide word-of-mouth referrals.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I’ve spent 25 years solving technical and operational challenges in High Tech companies such as Apple and Salesforce, along with small startups such as AdBrite and Topsy. In these roles I learned the importance of listening to hear rather than to speak, differentiating yourself through attention to detail, not being afraid to fail, and that success will come if you focus on delighting your customers. I believe that applying these ideas to my current endeavor has helped me find a niche that Bon Vivant Properties has found success in and that enjoy doing.
Another lesson that I have incorporated into my company is the importance “ease of use” and simplicity play in customer satisfaction. Have a question about operating the Sauna or navigating the Apple TV? No problem – scan a QR code labeled “Manuals” that takes you directly to a web page with online manuals and instructions for everything in the house. Just arrived and wondering where to eat? We’ve got you covered with a recommendations page complete with links to Yelp reviews, driving directions. phone numbers, and online reservations. We are working to take this to a new level for our guests.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I’m still exploring all that Scottsdale has to offer myself, but I have very quickly fell in love with both Mastro’s Steakhouse and Dominick’s Steakhouse. Some of the best eating I’ve ever had! I highly recommend spending an evening with either of them.
For people who enjoy the outdoors, Hole in the Rock Trail is a short and easy hike next door to the Phoenix Zoo. Really cool rock formation landscape and 360 panoramic views of Phoenix.
Lastly, Century Grand is an amazing cocktail experience with three different concepts under the same roof – all of them superb. Grey Hen Rx is my favorite but you’ll want to make sure you have a driver as there is no way you are leaving sober.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I would like to thank my family and friends for the encouragement and support on this endeavor! They listened to my ideas and helped refine and improve upon them with honest and constructive feedback.
In particular I would like to thank:
– My son, Jacob Porter, for creating our amazing logo and handling all of my digital design needs
– Lee and Suzy Stidham for lending a hand, tool, or bottle of wine with my first property in Dorrington, CA. They are the best neighbors! @shazam480
– Scott Thompson and Kelly Hartigan of the Arizona Living Team at Bliss Realty for helping me navigate the Scottsdale market and find the perfect property for my AZ expansion. @arizonalivingteamblissrealty
– Samantha Bryce for fielding my random text requests, helping manage my properties, and taking my hospitality to a new level! @samanthaaubreyrose
– Michael and Diana Porter for assisting with maintenance, projects, and helping me maintain my sanity.
– Claudia Amador for the professional (and personal) organization assistance @claudia_lover
– My friends Robert and Julie Gurule of Water Heaters Express for their Business advice and handling all of my plumbing needs @waterheatersexpress
Instagram: @paul_g_porter and @gobonvivant_net
Matt Wong Paul Porter Samantha Bryce