Wyboston Lakes Resort has made an outstanding start to 2023 following a year of record results in 2022.
The Resort already has contracted bookings for more than 50 per cent of its 2023 budget, and that is greater than it achieved in the whole of 2018. Bookings and prospects for 2024 and 2025 are also very strong. Exceptionally high levels of repeat business and guest satisfaction are contributing significantly to this.
In 2022 its trail blazing Woodlands Event Centre and Willows Training Centre generated their best conference and training performances with sales up 49 per cent on 2019 and up 79 per cent on 2018. Profit was also well ahead of the 2019 total. This is despite the slow start to 2022 when Covid lockdown regulations were still restricting and impacting on hospitality, events and travel.
Its Landing Pad brand encompassing flexible office space performed well, with serviced office occupancy at more than 95 per cent and Branded Space revenues increasing well. These are expected to grow strongly again in 2023.
Reflecting on the key factors driving this success, Richard Smith, Sales Director said: “We have a clear strategy, and this has clearly paid off. We simplified our targeting, focussing on core sales lines where the team can be best in class at delivering and we have stopped selling services that negatively impact on the team’s welfare.
“We also aligned our targeting well with the strengths of our freshly refurbished facilities which have been transformed over the last five years with an investment of close to £10m. Extensive refurbishment of our venues before and especially during the pandemic has paid off.”
Wyboston Venue Management
Wyboston Venue Management, the new management consultancy arm, got off to a good start and was commissioned by several major brands in the industry for substantial consultancy projects. Further growth is expected in 2023.
During 2022, the Wyboston Lakes Resort team also maintained their commitment to pioneering sustainability initiatives and to treating everyone fairly. The launch of a Green Energy Roadmap and its award-winning Room2Grow – planting trees on the site when guests opt not to have their room cleaned – were the latest introductions, while the resort for the seventh consecutive year achieved zero waste to landfill and it has begun to tackle its goal of “no food waste” leaving site. It became a Real Living Wage employer and for the ninth successive year was judged one of the UK’s Best Companies To Work For.
Steve Jones “I am naturally very happy with 2022’s results and our start to 2023. To have achieved a budgeted profit figure significantly higher than 2019 and the years’ immediately prior to that is testament to the outstanding team I have the pleasure of working with.
“We started turning this business around in 2019, first gaining clarity on the direction we were taking, then we set about delivering on this with ambitious plans to invest in our assets and a laser focus on the well-being and welfare of our team. A significant part of our plan was to be brighter and more modern in both our approach and our appearance, with sustainability being a key focus. We have achieved all that we had aimed to deliver in 2022, despite the rising costs, tight labour market and other external factors.
“Looking at 2023 and beyond is an exciting prospect. We have further plans for our facilities and plan to extend the support we have been offering others via our consultancy and management contract business ‘Wyboston Venue Management’; and, as always, it’s inspiring to see what new levels our team can reach, as a collective and as individuals.”