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A new look for the record-breaking holiday agency that’s bucking the trend

Unique Homestays staff at Gwendolyn

A new decade brings a new identity and record-breaking year for revenue, for luxury holiday home agency, Unique Homestays.

The UK holiday property sector is a growth industry attracting huge interest from investors. As key agencies sell out to large international corporations such as Airbnb, Expedia Group and Sykes (with recent acquisition from Vitruvian Partners) not this brand, who are proud to stay exclusive, independent and unique.

Three years ago, the Cornwall-based firm set out on a mission to refine their collection, design and build a new website and launch a multi-channel brand awareness campaign – which launches this week. Rather than portfolio growth like others, Unique Homestays only accept around 10% of homes that enquire.

In its 18th year, the company is proud to stay under the same ownership of sole director and founder Sarah Stanley. Unique Homestays have tripled their workforce since their last website (in 2013), employing 35 members of staff (33 in Cornwall) and are on track to bring £14.8 million into the UK travel economy this year alone with only 188 properties on their books, an increase of 18.4% on 2018’s £12.5 million. By focusing on the highest quality homes and service, the average booking value has risen by 20% on 2019, now at £2340 per booking.

Francesca Reed, Head of Brand at Unique Homestays:

“When we got our heads together around the table it was unanimous that we wanted to take a pared-back and understated approach, continuing to innovate in an increasingly noisy marketplace, with cutting-edge technology. The new mobile-first website is clean and refined, allowing the properties to do the talking. The design draws more from the owners, who are fascinating in themselves. We also incorporate local, independent chefs, galleries, wellbeing providers and restaurants in a bid to support small businesses too.

We’ve worked with some amazing photographers, digital specialists and designers to create an ownable style. To showcase the new look, we’ve invested in a big brand campaign to run across titles from World of Interiors, Conde Nast Traveller, The Sunday Times, Guardian and more. We will be promoting our new film on digital channels including YouTube. The new website and marketing campaign are huge investments for us, and I hope continues to show creative and committed we are in marketing own owners’ homes.

Our team are passionate about showcasing the raw beauty and intrigue of the British Isles and gaining high occupancy rates for the homes we invite to join our collection. We now donate for every booking made too, supporting charity Rewilding Britain. By championing the staycation, we hope to help the British tourism industry thrive, without the need for people to fly across the globe to find luxury.”