Inside Oasis: The Airbnb Alternative for Tastemakers
When it comes to traveling in style, picking where you stay is an integral part of the process. Sometimes hotels seem too sterile, and Airbnb can be a hit or miss. Today’s modern travelers want a truly local and authentic experience paired with the guaranteed service and quality of traditional hotels.
Airbnb seems to have recently recognized this market desire with the launch of their new product, Airbnb Plus. But there’s an Airbnb alternative who’s been in this game since 2009: Oasis.
Oasis, founded by Parker Stanberry, Scott Sinclair, and William Bateman, is a platform that offers guests a curated collection of homes in a number of cities around the world. Disrupting the hospitality industry, Oasis wants to combine aspects of the hotel and home. I got a chance to speak with Parker Stanberry, Oasis’ CEO, about the company, where it sees itself in the future of hospitality, and why you should book your next trip accommodations with Oasis.
One of Oasis’ key competitive advantages to Airbnb seems to be the curation in homes. Could you tell me a bit more about this curation process? What is the local Oasis team looking for in a home?
“Oasis’ value proposition combines curation of design-driven homes, branded consistency and on-the-ground service and expertise. We have a keen eye for design and make sure clean aesthetics and artistic elements are incorporated throughout our roster of homes. Through a 50 point inspection process that encompasses everything from cleanliness to design, Oasis team members personally vet the potential properties to ensure the quality of the homes. Unlike some of the competition, with Oasis you don’t have to dig through thousands of homes to find one that’s clean, comfy and well designed.”
Who is responsible for the interior design & aesthetic of the homes listed – Oasis, or the homeowner?
“We allow the homeowner to design their own property, which gives each home its own special character. In some cases, we do work with homeowners to improve the design and make the space work for our guests.”
I’ve read that to give the customer a full, hotel-like experience, Oasis will do things such as give their guests work out class passes in lieu of a gym, etc. What other amenities are included in a stay at an Oasis home?
“Oasis offers one-of-a-kind experiences for guests, as well as special perks. Our on-the-ground Sidekicks act as an on-demand concierge service that can arrange everything from a private chef to a one-of-a-kind art tour to a reservation at a recently-opened hot spot. We also work with partners in every destination to give guests access to perks they might expect at a hotel—like a free fitness class at Barry’s Bootcamp, a discount with Zeel for in-home spa services, or access to a local private members club where they can take meetings or socialize.”
What are some of the most popular Oasis destinations? What are some of the locations in which Oasis is struggling more?
“Oasis has homes in over 20 cities in 13 countries around the world. We started Oasis in South America and the brand has seen great success in those markets. We currently have over 100 homes in Punta del Este, Uruguay and over 200 properties in Buenos Aires, Argentina. In 2017, we entered several new markets in the U.S., including San Francisco, and are continuing to grow there. Our key growth markets are currently Paris, Barcelona and Mexico City.”
I read that Hyatt has invested in Oasis – what kind of things can guests start seeing with this strategic partnership?
“In August 2017 Hyatt announced a strategic investment in Oasis. We have launched a pilot program offering Oasis guests special perks at select Hyatt hotels – such as beach service at The Confidante in Miami. We will be scaling that program soon. We will also be coming soon to the World of Hyatt loyalty program, which we’re excited about. We’ll have more to share about our partnership soon.”
What are some brands that Oasis consistently has in the homes? How are they selected?
“Oasis offers hotel quality standards in all our homes, this includes fresh linens, speedy WiFi and top-quality bath products from Malin + Goetz. We’re continuing to develop partnerships with popular wellness, lifestyle and design brands that are relevant to our customers, and will be rolling out more later this year.”
What is Oasis’s current marketing strategy? How is the brand reaching the consumers?
“In addition to a recent branding refresh to create a consistent design aesthetic across all marketing communications, we have a robust digital marketing strategy that includes everything from search engine marketing to social media to email marketing to advertising on third party booking platforms. We’ve been working on a few other initiatives, such as loyalty and referral, that we’ll be rolling out later this year. We also have a dedicated sales team that works with corporate housing and relocation companies, travel agencies, and more.”
What has been the biggest challenge for you in building Oasis?
“As we grow the brand’s business traveler arm, we’ve taken this new area of consumers as an opportunity to create an additional growth opportunity for the brand. In order to successfully build relationships and work with corporate clients we’ve had to gain a deeper understanding for what large brands are looking for alternative accommodations globally, this means gaining additional research and creating new marketing strategies. We’ve built an internal team to help grow Oasis’ corporate account business and have developed relationships with travel agencies that book for both leisure guests and large corporations.”
Do you have any travel tips or words of advice for our readers to have the best travel experience?
“The best advice I have for travelers is to find someone who either lives or has spent a lot of time in the destination they are traveling. Get the best recommendations without the typical tourist filter. By staying in an Oasis home, guests get access to one of our local Sidekicks who provides the best recommendations on where to dine, shop and have the best and most authentic experiences.”
Photos courtesy of Oasis