Luxury lodge lands legendary accolade aided by electronic ‘employee of the year’

Owners: Max and Robyn Reelick

Nelson’s Palazzo Motor Lodge is revelling in a run of recognition, reaping a range of awards due to the welcoming, customer-focused approach of owners Max and Robyn Reelick and star back-office support from software MVP Seekom.

The luxurious five-star motel offers 16 spacious apartments, including 10 with their own private spas, making it a popular choice for guests who appreciate Italian style and a touch of class.

Max says it was a “no brainer” to choose Seekom’s iBex management software when he and Robyn bought the motel four-and-a-half years ago.

“Seekom is one-stop shop which not a lot of providers offer – the whole platform is really user-friendly and they’re always tweaking it with useful bits and pieces.”

Palazzo Motor Lodge was included in Tripadvisor’s illustrious Travellers’ Choice Best of the Best Hotels list for 2023, joining an A-list of legendary establishments that have received such consistently brilliant reviews that Tripadvisor ranks them in the top 1 per cent of hotels worldwide.

Having garnered such outstanding recognition, it’s no surprise Palazzo Motor Lodge recently won the New Zealand’s Best Motel – Under 25 Rooms at Hospitality New Zealand’s Awards for Excellence for the second year in a row.

Max says Seekom software takes care of all the bookings, stores guest bookings in one place and manages all the little details behind the hotel’s operation, allowing it to rightfully claim the title of “employee of the year”.

“Every hotel operator’s nightmare is having a double booking when the town is full, and you don’t get that with Seekom – it helps you sleep better at night.”

Seekom cloud-based software also plays a role in boosting the lodge’s bookings because the platform is user friendly for customers as well as staff and managers, he says.

“It has a great customer portal.”

Max and Robyn rely on motel minders to take time out from the demands of running a high-end establishment and enjoy a well-deserved holiday. Max says Seekom makes it simple for the minders to step into their shoes because it’s so easy to train them up on the software.

“As soon as you say ‘Seekom', they say ‘fantastic’. Last year I trained someone up on Seekom who had never had any experience in hotel management - we left them for two weeks and there wasn’t a problem. It’s an easy system to use and Seekom’s support team is readily available to contact if you have any questions.”

In contrast with another property management system he used in the past, Max has found Seekom to be proactive in adapting to the needs of its users.

“Seekom comes and offers new tools on a yearly basis that are beneficial to users, and their channel manager encompasses everything. They built such a good product years ago and have tweaked it organically to make it seamless.”

The elegant Italian-styled motel aims to cater for everything the discerning guest might require, offering a concierge service, wireless chargers and fast internet access to suit the requirements of corporate guests, as well as a handy deliver-to-your-door laundry service.

Nestled in the heart of the city, its location is hard to beat, with Max describing it as a “five- minute walk or 10-minute stumble” to anywhere in central Nelson’s vibrant arts, culture and restaurant scene.

He says he’s thrilled Palazzo Motor Lodge has been recognised as one of the world’s premier accommodation providers and recognises Seekom’s role in securing the awards that take pride of place in the motel’s reception area.

“We’re proud to have an association with Seekom – we find their synergy and ethos to be the same as ours. Winners surround themselves with winners.”

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