Announcing Our New Mobile Hospitality Manager

At HomeAway, our mission is to make the vacation rental experience as easy as it is to stay in a hotel - and as of today, we just got a little closer to accomplishing that goal.

It all started when we acquired Glad to Have You, the vacation rental industry’s leading mobile guest management solution, in March 2014. Ever since, we’ve been leveraging Glad to Have You to strengthen the hospitality features of our existing mobile app in order to better support the guest experience before, during and after the stay.

App View - Local SuggestionsNow the wait is over!

Today we launched the Mobile Hospitality Manager. With this feature, guests have access to all kinds of information about the property - from directions to the rental and how to use the hot tub, to where they can find the best seafood restaurant in town and the local attractions they can’t miss – all from their mobile device. And the system automatically sends welcome emails, check-in/out instructions and more, so travelers always have the information they need at their fingertips. Best of all, it helps travelers stay connected to the homeowners throughout their stay should any questions arise – kind of like a mobile concierge!

With travel industry research firm PhoCusWright estimating mobile travel bookings will “more than triple over the next two years, to reach $39.5 million by 2015,” we recognize the need to provide a fast and effective mobile resource that enriches the travel experience of vacationers around the world.

Wanna know more about the Mobile Hospitality Manager? Check out the video below:

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Welcome Mariano!

marianoWe’re always excited when someone new joins the HomeAway family, but we almost cannot contain ourselves with our latest hire: This week, we welcome Mariano Dima as our new Chief Marketing Officer (CMO).

Mariano comes to us after a seven-year tenure at Visa Europe, Ltd. where he led strategic marketing, brand communications, advertising, sponsorships, and insights and analytics. He has an incredible 20-year track record of elevating some of the world’s most recognizable brands including PepsiCo, Inc., Vodafone and Levi Strauss & Co, and we’re very much looking forward to leveraging his experience and passion to create an emotional connection between our brand and the families and groups who stay in vacation rentals.

He will oversee all aspects of our global marketing, corporate communications and brand initiatives and will split his time between our Austin and London offices.

Read more about Mariano’s professional background.

Beyond his vast corporate experience, Mariano offers a truly global perspective, having lived and worked in the U.S., Mexico, Brussels, Argentina and the U.K.

Want to know more about our new CMO? Here are 5 things you don’t know about Mariano:

*What attracted you to HomeAway?
Lots of things! HomeAway is an amazing company that has achieved tremendous growth and still has massive potential.  Its purpose is clear and incredibly powerful and it is a unique platform that enables customers to unlock memorable experiences that last for a lifetime - not a lot of companies deliver such meaningful customer benefits!

I was also very impressed with the high-caliber team and committed board, so all of the dimensions are there for a great success story.

After using HomeAway for my last three holidays, I experienced firsthand the company’s mission and purpose and I am really excited to be a part of it!

* It may be too early to say, but what are the biggest opportunities you see for the brand?
I think the opportunity is twofold: First, to let more people know about all of the great things that we do and stand for, as well as our functional and emotional benefits; and the second is to provide customers with more reasons to engage with us.  We need to give them more opportunities to share and enjoy our products, so they use HomeAway more often and become advocates.

There is a great story to be told in an impactful and innovative way.

Mariano_family

On holiday with his family in Whistler, Canada

* Where are you from?
My life is quite multinational and it is hard to describe where I am really coming from. I feel I am a citizen of the world… I speak four languages - English, Spanish, Portuguese and some Italian; my mother is from Argentina and my father is Italian. I have a brother and a sister, both born in Buenos Aires, however they live in Miami and London, respectively. My wife is half German and half Argentinean and I have two beautiful British daughters.  Every time I go through customs in the airport, the customs official looks at us with a funny face because of the variety of our passports!

* Describe your ideal vacation.
With family and friends, in amazing locations – from trekking in Patagonia or wine tasting in Bordeaux to scuba diving in Greece – in a house with nice views and a big barbecue.  You need to remember that I am Argentinean!

* Finish the sentence. When I’m not at work, you can usually find me…
Doing different things such as having fun with my family and friends, looking for a good bottle of red wine, planing my next trip  or training for my next triathlon. Life is too short; you need to make the most out of it!

Mariano Family2

Night trekking at Perito Moreno, Patagonia, Argentina

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HomeAway Hits 1 MILLION vacation rental listings

Infographic

Click on the image to expand

This week marked an epic milestone for us at HomeAway – we surpassed 1 Million live vacation rental listings!

To put things in perspective:

  • We now offer more than 1.4 billion square feet of livable space
  • We are in 190 countries – that’s almost 99% of the world to choose from
  • We created more than 201 million memories for families and groups in 2013
  • Our owners have more than 2,392,789 collective years of experience!

(Check out the infographic to the left for more fun facts)

To celebrate the occasion, we also launched the “Million Ways to Stay” contest, offering up a $10,000 vacation rental stay to any of our global properties, which now range from the unique castles, yurts and tipis to the more traditional condos and beach houses. Want to enter? Click here.

Design.Graphic[1]We’re pretty proud of this accomplishment, which has come just nine years into our company’s history, and are grateful to both the customers who’ve stuck with us all of these years and to those who are just joining us now! We hope we can continue to help families make unforgettable vacation memories together for years to come.

Our global team had some fun with the “1 MILLION” theme and hosted celebrations around the world. Here are some photos from our internal events in Singapore, Paris, Marseille, Rome, Madrid, Bangkok, Geneva, Frankfurt, Melbourne and Austin.

 

 

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5 things you don’t know about… Mana Gurunathan

Mana Gurunathan, Senior Engineering Manager Created with Nokia Smart Cam

Lives in: Denver, Colorado

Employee Since: February 2006

What fictional character do you most identify with and why?

Jeeves (PG Wodehouse) – that fictional character is like a role model for me. Jeeves’s mastery over a vast range of subjects from philosophy, poetry, science, history, car maintenance etc. never failed to amuse me.  I used to be a diehard user of askjeeves.com, a search engine for which Jeeves used to be the mascot (currently just ask.com).

How would your teammates/colleagues describe you?

I asked and one colleague said, “driven, positive, inquisitive, inventive, invested, intensely focused, and Inspector Gadget, wait…scratch that, Supreme Master and Commander of the Technical Gadget Universe.” 

What do you love most about living in Colorado?

I love the four seasons that Colorado offers. Each season is rich and offers different activities. This brings in a lot of variety to life.

Enjoying the Colorado snow with his family.

Enjoying the Colorado snow with his family.

What’s a little known fact about yourself?

I used to be a hardcore Mechanical Engineer and worked in a Cast Iron Foundry for a year. This motivated me to pick-up the computer field.

What do you consider your greatest achievement?

Running a successful vacation rental brand with a group of talented engineers that work remotely and efficiently is something I am very proud off. ManaG

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All we do is win…

It has been a great couple of weeks for HomeAway’s recreational teams. Both our bowling team and our softball team won their respective leagues to close out their winter seasons.

The bowling team, which has played together for two years, beat a team they’d lost to earlier in the season to secure their victory in their final match. They capped off this season with a record of 7-2 and an impressive average score of 130 per person.

Bowling Team

HomeAway employees pictured (l-r). Tiffany Keeton, Valerie Pearcy, Meena Rudmann, Sarah Staples, Robert Favors and Lena Kwan

The softball team has also played together for nearly two years and were the defending champs from the previous season. Perhaps their experience played to their advantage because after a grueling three-game tournament, with no subs to allow for rest, the HomeAway softball team nabbed the super social league championship!

Softball Team

HomeAway employees pictured (l-r). Shawn Stoller, Darylen Carroll, Laura Levine, David Smith, Woody Apfel, Richard Gonzalez, Patrick Tokarski, and Nicole Wagner.

Congrats to all of the players!

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