Bluestone National Park Resort is attracting more first-time visitors to Pembrokeshire, demonstrating how the five-star short-break destination is contributing to West Wales’ rural economy.
Just as the resort enters its third autumn season and is on course for a record Christmas period, Commercial Director, Pamela Joseph, said more guests from London, Oxfordshire, Cambridgeshire, and the Midlands are being attracted to Pembrokeshire for the first time.
Reinforcing the increase in UK staycations, over 44 per cent of guests to the resort so far this year said they had not been to Pembrokeshire before. Many who had done so had not visited since their childhood days.
The figures come as the resort records 100 per cent occupancy levels throughout the summer season after investing over £8million in 60 extra lodges, bringing the total number of lodges, cottages and studio apartments to 280.
“A combination of our targeted marketing and people wanting to spend more quality time on a short-break in the UK is driving people to Pembrokeshire for the first time,” said Pamela.
“We’ve opened up new avenues, such as the train service between London and Swansea, invested more than £8 million in new luxury lodges and added new offers and attractions which is boosting bookings and visitors to Pembrokeshire.”
Bluestone now has over 1,400 bed spaces within its luxury lodges, cottages and studio accommodation, set within a village and wooded environment with a water park, adventure centre, steep ravine and spa.
Located near Narberth, Bluestone markets the wider coastal and countryside opportunities and attractions to its guests.
The resort’s commitment to supporting the local economy is demonstrated through its employment of over 400 staff, its links to the farming community that provide crops to fuel its biomass heating system for the Blue Lagoon water park, use of local food, products and services wherever possible, and partnerships with other local tourism providers.
In July, Bluestone was awarded Business in the Community’s UK award as an Exemplar of Excellence in Rural Development. It scooped the Wales title in June.
Bluestone has used national television advertising, media, social media and other channels to market Bluestone and Pembrokeshire. It’s currently promoting its Christmas offer – Elf School – and will shortly begin its 2012 marketing drive.
“The winter and Christmas market is growing and we’re building on our successful 2010 season with Kingdom of the Elves in 2011. The initial Christmas campaign is already seeing a strong uptake,” added Pamela.
“Above all, we’re pleased to be helping bring more new visitors into this spectacular part of the UK.”