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Employees – Please Stop and Ponder This

How can you succeed in the hospitality industry, especially if you wish to remain with the same company, at least in the short term? Try these simple guidelines for getting ahead or taking control of your own career development! A few simple concepts include: • Remember, promotion is a reward, it is not a right • In order to be noticed take a simple project and turn it into something that is both memorable and that showcases your abilities • Don’t dress for the job you’ve got, dress for the job you want • Keep improving Promotion is a Reward, it is not a Right  How many people in our business get frustrated because they see others progressing faster than they are? One might hear “I have been with the company for 3 years now…” as what is meant to be a convincing argument for promotion. The truth of the matter is that the growth and development that most people are seeking is going to happen when they show they are ready for it, and not before. Nobody can expect others to recognise and reward their potential if they are not at least prepared to create opportunities for that potential to shine through. This can mean volunteering, rather than waiting to be asked. It can mean being proactive about offering assistance, or asking for learning and development opportunities rather than waiting for someone else to offer them. It is just as important to realise that the career growth you seek has to be earned. In order to be noticed take a simple project and turn it into something that is both memorable and that showcases your abilities: The message is simple and is perhaps one of the best pieces of advice for anybody wishing to move their career along. It …Read More

FreeSpirit takes ownership after Darwin resort acquisition

On Monday, FreeSpirit Resorts Pty Ltd purchased the freehold of Darwin FreeSpirit Resort, no longer just managing the operations, but now having full ownership and control of the resort. The management company had already held the leasehold on the Darwin property for nearly 11 years, until the opportunity to purchase the freehold recently became available. FreeSpirit Resorts Pty Ltd Chief Operations Officer Yvonne Bristow says the acquisition is the beginning of a new era. “Our involvement with Darwin FreeSpirit Resort dates back to our company’s inception, when we began by assisting corporate entities that had invested in holiday parks or resorts and did not have the operational expertise or desire to manage them,” Ms Bristow says. “Purchasing the freehold was the most logical step to take after managing the resort for almost 11 years and this now marks the beginning of a new era for us, as well as the resort. “The acquisition will allow us to operate unconditionally and further improve all facets of the resort.” “FreeSpirit also provides operational management services, training and development and master planning consultancy services for the entire caravan industry. Darwin FreeSpirit Resort is situated on 11 hectares in Holtze – 17km from the Darwin CBD and 3km from Palmerston – and when at capacity, has the ability to accommodate up to 1,500 persons per night. The resort has 3 pools, a licensed bar and bistro, function room, jumping cushion, camp kitchens, barbeque areas and much more. There are 150 rooms available at the resort, over 300 caravan and camping sites, as well as numerous amenity blocks including laundry facilities for guests. The resort has a great mix of guests from holidaymakers travelling to Darwin, but also people looking for short or long-term accommodation including contract workers. FreeSpirit Resort & Holiday Park Management also …Read More

Keeping Your Employees and Your Own Self Healthy

Perhaps you may ask, why bother? Having healthy staff members who are energetic and want to work will benefit your business enormously, so step up and lead the charge. Encourage your employees to be healthy and active, lead by example; get those “endorphins” pumping. MOVE Movement is absolutely essential for your circulatory system, immune function, posture and strength. It also helps to develop improvements in endurance, overall energy and plays an important role in your systemic health. So find an activity to embrace and include it daily as a key part of your commitment to living well; your body loves to move! It is recommended that we all exercise first thing in the morning and give yourself an energy boost for the rest of the day, however, aim for balance, check in with yourself regularly and try something different; your body will thank you for it. STAND UP  Recent research has revealed that the Western population is now spending half of every day sitting down and it now believed that increased time sitting down is linked with poor health outcomes including the chance of developing diabetes, cardiovascular disease and even the risk of early death. Sitting for extended periods of time places a force on the body that it is not built to accommodate. One of the reasons it is deemed to be bad is because it disengages the pelvic floor, which is critical in supporting the lower back and lumbar spine. There is also evidence available that suggests that exercise or physical activity will not undo the damage caused by prolonged sitting. Instead, it’s much better to stand up as often as you can. Both standing and moving involve more muscular contractions than sitting and burns around 50 more calories per hour. If your day involves long periods of …Read More

Privacy Checklist

Have you ever been asked about another employee or even a guest staying at your property? The question may seem innocent at the time but it so important that you qualify the request BEFORE you hand over any information. To ensure that you do not break any law on privacy, use the following 3 step checklist: 1. Is the request for information legitimate? It may be required by a union official, health & safety representative or committee member to investigate an alleged health and safety breach. However, the worker records have to be directly relevant to a suspected contravention of health and safety legislation. To ensure that they are, you must understand what the breach is according to the official, and how the records are relevant. These documents must be essential in undertaking an investigation into the alleged breach; not something which may cast only some light on what has happened. If they are not directly relevant, the request can be refused. Assuming that the records are directly relevant, you cannot allow anyone to inspect or make copies of a document; to do so would contravene a Commonwealth or State law, such as the Privacy Act 1988. o If a stranger has walked into reception and asks which site a guest is staying on, STOP and go no further. 2. Are you familiar with the type of information that you may provide to ensure that you will not breach the Privacy Act?  o Have you provided your staff with the necessary training and knowledge? 3. Is the identity of the employee/ guest protected? o Unless you have their consent you cannot provide any information. Have you asked your guests for their permission to provide their information to any person who may enquire? Everything you need to know can be found …Read More

2 FreeSpirit team members join CRVA standing committees

FreeSpirit is delighted to announce that 2 of their team have been chosen to represent on 2 new standing committees that the CRVA have created – the Future Leaders Committee and Policy & Regulation Committee. The CRVA is the national body for the Caravanning and Camping Industry. Yvonne Bristow, Chief Operations Officer for FreeSpirit has been chosen for the Policy & Regulation Committee, whilst Emma Bolton, Front Office Manager at Darwin FreeSpirit Resort has been chosen for the Future Leaders Committee (the Future Leaders had an age criteria of under 35 years). Click here to link through to CRVA’s announcement.

Trip Advisor – 2013 Certificate of Excellence Winners

We are thrilled to announce that 3 of our holiday parks have received “TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence” awards for 2013. These parks are: Darwin FreeSpirit Resort – DARWIN NT Hidden Valley Tourist Park – DARWIN NT Blue Dolphin Holiday Resort – YAMBA NSW The accolades, which honour hospitality excellence, are given only to establishments that consistently achieve outstanding traveller reviews on TripAdvisor. Approximately 10% of accommodations listed on TripAdvisor receive these prestigious awards. To qualify for the Certificate of Excellence, businesses must maintain an overall rating of four or higher, out of a possible five, as reviewed by travellers on TripAdvisor. Additional criteria include the volume of reviews received within the last 12 months. Our sincerest THANK YOU to everyone who took the time to share feedback on their stay!

Family Holidays – FreeSpirit’s 5 stress free tips!

Family holidays… memorable, fun and for some parents, downright stressful!   Whether you’re driving to the local camping spot down the road, or flying three hours to your favourite resort, sometimes when the kids are squabbling over who gets top bunk and your partner is insisting on eating dinner at the same pub everynight,  it’s hard not to feel the sudden urge to run for the hills. But never fear – we have 5 top tips to help you have a relaxing and stress free family holiday! #1 Pack snacks & games for the trip The top two things that will get the kids bickering and wining are hunger and boredom. Packing their favourite games and snacks should keep them full and entertained until you arrive at your holiday destination. #2 Research your destination Doing a Google search on your holiday destination’s local attractions, family friendly restaurants and tours beforehand, will leave you with more free time to relax on your actual holiday. Just think, all that time usually spent scouring through brochures at reception can now be spent relaxing by the pool! #3 Participate in resort activities Many resorts and holiday parks these days offer onsite activities for families to enjoy. These activities can range from arts & crafts to family games & movie nights and are a great way to spend time with the family, without spending money. #4 Give the kids (and the parents) some space While it is important to spend time as a family on your holiday, it’s also important not to “live in each other’s pockets”. Let the kids ride their bikes, play on the playground or other fun facilities, or mingle with the other kids at the resort. Not only will the kids have a break, you and your partner will be able …Read More

FreeSpirit supports the local community in Darwin!

Congratulations to our Northern Territory Caravan Park! Darwin FreeSpirit Resort participates in the Leukaemia Foundation – U.G.L.Y Bartender of the Year 2012. We are very proud to announce that our team collectively raised $9168!!! A fantastic effort by all, and one which had us awarded as the 4th highest fundraiser in the Northern Territory!!!  It is a great cause and is backed by the NT branch of the Australian Hotels Association. How did Darwin FreeSpirit Resort help? Our venue’s fundraising contribution raised enough money to provide 115 FREE night’s accommodation for regional blood cancer patients and their carer/families near their treatment centre. Our team’s challenge was co-ordinated by our Events Coordinator, Michelle Ormsby, and our staff member, Cynthia Gray, who was our nominated U.G.L.Y bartender! Our Darwin FreeSpirit Resort manager, Sean Gould said, “that it was great to see all our staff working together to achieve a common goal, and their individual and group contributions and efforts were amazing!  And to be awarded the 4th highest fundraiser in the entire NT, is something we are so proud of!”  The event covers an entire month of fundraising that is fun, light-hearted and maximises staff participation. Not a bad effort for one of the  Northern Territory’s best caravan parks! FreeSpirit is so happy to have been part of this wonderful campaign and look forward to supporting many more to come!