Italian B&B Report 2007 - Quality and flexibility
B&Bs are evenly located all over Italy. The survey showed, in descending order, that 34% of the operating facilities is located in North-Italy, 27% in central-Italy, 21% on the islands and the remaining 18% in South-Italy.
The different geographical location percentages mirror the levels of economic growth in various Italian production areas, and they testify the connection degree between the facilities and the territory they belong to. The productive ground where these non-hotel accommodation micro-enterprises can start up and expand is made of: the organizational levels reached by the tourism protagonists, the cultural activities sponsored by the local authorities, the widespread associationalism of the central-northern provinces.
Another B&B rating – expressed by the survey – shows up that 35% of the attested facilities is located in urban areas (big metropolitan areas, old towns and middle-sized cities).
23% percent of B&Bs are located in the countryside and rural areas, 17% is formed by coast and seaside resorts, without missing mountains (14%) and lakes (4%). The remaining 6% cannot be rated (places close to the main thoroughfares, airports, etc.).
DETACHED HOUSES OR APARTMENTS IN A BLOCK?
Another important result of the survey sponsored by www.bed-and-breakfast.it concerns the type of B&Bs, i.e. if they are seated in detached houses or in apartments belonging to a block.
The percentage of B&B seated in an independent building is really high; the figure is close to 80%, this confirms a really interesting and high level quality profile which guarantees a more comfortable stay’s privacy. A little less than 20% is located in an apartment block framework and it is a characteristic of B&Bs in big cities and metropolitan areas.
NUMBER OF ROOMS
Italian B&Bs have an average of three rooms meant for overnight stays with the option to increase the number of beds depending on the client’s needs. It seems that this flexibility is quite appreciated and it allows optimizing the profitability of the facility.
By survey 36% of B&Bs run on 3 rooms, more tan 22% runs on 2 rooms. But there’s no lack of bigger facilities: 15% of them has 6 rooms at guests disposal, 13% has 4 rooms and 8% has 5 rooms We must also specify that each B&B has its common areas for breakfast, conversation and relax.
DIFFERENT B&B CATEGORIES
The ruling law on Italian B&Bs does not provide for a quality classification of existing facilities. The survey tries to set this type of classification taking in consideration some specific features which may help the traveller/tourist to achieve a better orientation.
We can define some specific profiles by interviewee answers: Family B&Bs (with a prevalent domestic framework) sum up the biggest part with 60%. Then we have the historical mansions (those facilities still bound to the past which want to rise above the group for this characteristic) totalling a full 15%.
The Charm and Design B&Bs have the same percentage (a category with great expansion standing out for their interior design and the personal style of the owner).
SLEEPING IN A B&B
Not all the owners sleep in their facilities; but to comply with the actual law they have to live in any case not more than few dozen of meters apart from the accommodation facility. However the percentage of those living inside their B&Bs is quite big. The survey shows that 64% of the interviewee states to live in the same housing unit, while the remaining 36% lives in adjoining buildings.
This fact underlines once more the importance of the owners’ presence in relation with the client guest, and it is really the cornerstone of the B&B philosophy.
NUMBER OF OWNERS
The number of persons in charge of managing and hosting in a B&B varies between two and three. Two persons are managing it in 50% of the cases, a single person in 37% of the cases. Only 13% of the cases reach the number of three.
The up-to-date census of B&B totals around 20.000 of them in Italy and considering an average of two persons for each housing unit, we may suppose that 40.000 individuals are working on family accommodations.
One of the strengths of B&Bs is the competitiveness of prices applied by them.
The average price for a single night in an Italian B&B ranges between 30 and 40 Euros.
This price may differ slightly but, normally it doesn’t exceed 50 Euros per person. The prices have a seasonal pattern with little variations that do not affect the cheapness of the offer. These figures are indicated by 78% of the interviewee, and only 12% answers that the price for one night in their facility is about 50 Euros. 7% of them exceeds the average of 50 Euros and only 3% has a cost equal or lower than 20 Euros.
Breakfast is one of the fundamentals of a B&B; the family warmth you can discover in it comes directly from breakfast. You meet together in the morning to enjoy a breakfast which usually offers local typical and natural products. Breakfast is included in 92% of the cases and it is an important occasion for the guests to meet with the owner. At this time he may suggest special and uncommon routes, recommend a restaurant, the museum or the arts workshop. The law provides for a single-dose packaging of all the products offered for breakfast, but there are delicacies of homemade cuisine too.
The research was conducted by
Gran Via srl - società&comunicazione