Laguna Vista Lodge - Resort Rescue Update - Open or Closed?

Resort Rescue Laguna Vista Lodge

In this Resort Rescue episode, Shane Green visits the Laguna Vista Lodge in Eagle Nest, New Mexico.

Laguna Vista Lodge is owned by Bert Clemens.

Bert promised his wife they would get rich buying a resort and retire young.

Decades late on his promise, Shane must try to help these owners finally achieve their retirement dream.

Shane says they are traveling to a really beautiful part of New Mexico.

The resort includes the lodge and historic restaurant and saloon.

They are located in Eagle Nest, New Mexico in the northeast part of the state.

Eagle Nest is tucked 8,300 feet up in New Mexico’s Sangre de Cristo Mountains.

Best known to tourists for its incredible natural beauty, this village once was a 19th-century gold-rush boomtown.

Although the gold is gone, Eagle Nest is still rich in Old-West history, including the Laguna Vista Lodge.

They have 25-rooms and are located on five and a half acres.

The Laguna Vista Lodge is comprised of a hotel, 13-cabins.

There is also a 700-foot-long covered boardwalk, which includes a historic brothel.

Some say the brothel is haunted.

In the late 1970s, Bert and his wife Karel were working for the Department of Justice.

They heard about the Laguna Vista Lodge and that it was for sale.

Bert says that Karel and him both have put over half of their lives into this hotel.

Online reviews show that visitors love the charming and comfortable resort.

However, they find their rates and the service of the restaurant to be poor.

Bert says they don’t take vacations or days off and they also don’t get paid.

Bert says they need help to be able to stay open.

Shane meets with Bert.

He and his crew get down to business, installing hidden cameras and mics around the hotel.

They also set up surveillance in an empty room.

Shane says that once he turns his cameras on, he can see all, and he knows all.

Bert says they had to lease the restaurant because it was too much work on top of everything else.

The waitresses do not want to go up to the brothel because it is haunted.

The customers in the brothel walk out without being served.

Shane’s first issue is that the restaurant is mismanaged.

Chef Jane has spread herself too thin trying to balance the catering business with her dine-in customers.

She leaves her waitstaff without leadership, and this affects the experience of the restaurant.

The biggest issue with the rooms is the bedding.

The bedding is outdated and it makes the rooms look dated.

The bar has no music and seems to be rather joyless.

Laguna Vista is the highest-priced resort in this area.

The largest resort is only $5 cheaper, which is really a draw.

They definitely have competition in the area.

In terms of the tourists and what brings them in, it appears to be the specials and the deals.

Kristin’s investigation has revealed the next key issue, rate inflexibility.

Today’s guests shop for deals but they’re not going to find any at this hotel.

Bert’s single-rate strategy allows the competition to undercut him and lure business away.

Observing the saloon has revealed the next and probably most critical issue, owner fatigue.

Bert and Karel have run this resort for over three decades and they’ve never taken a vacation.

Put simply, they’re just tired.

They just aren’t the strong leadership team they once were.

Shane says he has seen enough.

All of these issues are holding the Laguna Vista Lodge back from ever being a profitable business.

Shane meets with Bert and the staff.

Shane introduces himself to the staff and explains why he is there.

He explains what him and his crew have done so far.

Shane says that the catering business is hurting the guests that come into this resort.

They need leadership in both places.

Shane says that Bert is decades late on his promise to Karel.

He tells them he is there to make sure that that promise becomes a reality.

Shane meets with Bert and Karel.

He explains how creating packages can help their business.

He suggests creating a romance package for couples who want to come to the hotel.

Potentially creating a buy two nights get the third night half off promotion.

He also thinks that they should add breakfast service to the packages.

After watching Adrian in action yesterday, Shane thought he could help run the saloon and take some pressure from Bert.

Adrian says he would be very interested in working at the saloon.

Shane says they have to get music back.

While Shane, Bert, and Adrian work on getting music, Kristin explains the importance of price-shopping competitors to Sue.

Next on Shane’s to-do list is to give the staff some hospitality tips.

Bert tells Shane that they will have all the tips implemented by the time he gets back.

What Happened Next at Laguna Vista Lodge?

30 days later, Shane returns to the Laguna Vista Lodge.

The brothel has been brought back to life, offering hotel guests romance package deals.

Karel says that business is booming.

Rates vary according to demand and with new packages in place reservations are already up 14%.

Jane has taken Shane’s advice and put her husband, Frank, in charge of the catering business.

The team at the Laguna Vista Lodge have taken Shane’s advice to heart, and things have never been better.

Bert and Karel are going on their first vacation in over 35 years.

Laguna Vista Lodge is open.

Reviews are mostly positive.

Some of the negative reviews appear to have had higher expectations of the property.

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