LoneStarBQ

New RV Resort in West Texas

19 posts in this topic

I am in the beginning stages of opening a new RV Resort on I-20 in Midland Texas. As an RVer myself, I recognize that West Texas does not have a great option. To be more bluntly, I feel there is a lack of a good option on I-20 between Abilene and El Paso. This park will be no permanent stays, paved roads, pull thru and back in spots. Sites will have water, electricity, sewer, cable and wi-fi. We will have a pool in the middle of the park, laundry, restrooms, dog park. There will be a nice grass area between the sites. The park will be a couple hundred yards off the interstate service road, but have nice, easy access from an overpass.

I would like to ask you for your suggestions for this park. What amenities should there be? Suggestions for software to run the park. Employee suggestions? How to encourage people from the north to come down and stay? How would you put this park together if it was yours? What rates should we look at? Incentives? Affiliation with FMCA, Good SAMs! Etc.

All comments and suggestions are welcomed.

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I would like to see a small section for just overnight parking without any hookups. Fee somewhere around $10 for 12 hour stop.

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I'd go for the overnight configuration too - power only. Needed if hot or cold. Saves people staring their gennys early morning.

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Power pedestals of sufficient height to accomodate surge guards. Your own wifi, not a third party like tengonet or att. They all suck. List in Trailer life Directory, especially the trip planning software.careful thought to layout of sites to pot as many coaches as possible facing as to maximize awning shade on patios (Noth-Nothwest)

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Great Suggestions. I hadn't thought about section for overnight parking without hookups. That is a great idea!

WiFi has been on my mind. Something free to park users and works.

Power pedestal height is another great idea.

Not a lot of trees in West Texas, but we will plant some in mind that once they grow it will have the affect of maximizing shade on patios.

I will run some site plans by you when we get to that point.

Any other suggestions?

Jack

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With the demand for RV sites for oilfield workers it's gonna be tough to keep out the monthly pay customers that are willing to pay daily rates. You can try to impose a max number of days but it will be easy to pull out and come back for another say 15 days. I would suggest making it Class A only, something that may have crossed your mind already since you are on this forum.

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Great Suggestions. I hadn't thought about section for overnight parking without hookups. That is a great idea!

WiFi has been on my mind. Something free to park users and works.

Power pedestal height is another great idea.

Not a lot of trees in West Texas, but we will plant some in mind that once they grow it will have the affect of maximizing shade on patios.

I will run some site plans by you when we get to that point.

Any other suggestions?

Jack

With respect to the overnight parking, I would like to see pull through sites of at least 65 feet long because usually when we stop for the night we don't unhook. It wouldn't need to be paved, just level. If electric was available charge extra, like $5 if used. I would consider electric a luxury and would not use it unless it was too hot and we needed ac. Thanks for letting me voice my thoughts.

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Hello I would like to see a place that we could wash our Motor Coaches or Trailers

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I'm curious, why no long term stays? I know some semi-permanant RV's can start to look trashy if not kept neat, but these types of customers can be a cash cow, especially during the slow months.

What about a playgroound, game room, meeting room, etc. Will you have a well-stocked store, or just a few basic items?

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IMO, keep your infrastructure to a minimum especially for Class A clients. They stay in their coach/condo ap'ts for most of their needs. Put your money into a building with laundromat and maybe a few unisex shower closets. A pet enclosure'd be a big plus with hard and soft ground areas.

An electric dog polisher'd be nice but rare these days because of the cutbacks ;-)

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These are GREAT comments! I knew this was a great idea to post this on FMCA!

1. Answering "Rogelling" and "Aztec7fan", Rogeling is right. Midland is booming right now. There are not enough homes and so make-shift RV parks are going up all over the county. The city does not want any of them in the city limits and my land is in the city limits. Besides, I myself look at the permanent stay status of a park when I am deciding where to say myself. If people want to rent by the month, unhook, get a new spot and hook back up, that's ok with me. That means they want be setting up permanently with all their junk in one spot. I want this to be a really nice place. Not sure I can pull off Class A only. I'm afraid I would knock out a lot of good renters. Plus I have seen some pretty ratty class A's.

2. "DesertDeals69", I like your idea as well if we can fit it in the plan.

3. "DieselGuy", I would love to add this capability, but we are in a water shortage out here. I have talked to some people, and I think we could get an independent guy to come in and offer that service privately. They would have to bring in the water on a water trailer. We have these services all over town because you can't wash your car yourself. Go figure.

4. Playground, game room, meeting room and store will all be in the plan. How big the store is may depend on initial cost. We may start small and add on.

5. "Ramblinboy", great comments! Although, I don't believe I have ever seen an electric dog polisher. :D

Keep those comments coming!!

Jack

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Well I feel NO to the CLASS A's only. I have a small Class C and need nice places to stay, just as much as a Class A. The no permanent stays is good to hopefully ensure you have availability. WiFi, good idea.

We traveled through Texas, west to east, back in September. Stayed at Mission RV Park outside El Paso shortly after entering the state, (we'd left out of Phoenix early that morning). Spent the next night at Cactus Rose RV Park, along I-20 near Mingus, the next night. Then the next day we went to Shreveport, LA and stayed with my brother. Both of these parks are Passport America, so you ought to affiliate with them.

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I'm 70 feet in length. I hope your roads are concrete and not caliche. My son is manager of Furgesons on Florida st in Midland. If you build it, we will come.

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Make sure you design your park with lots of level pull-throughs. One thing Class A RVers hate is having to unhook the towed or being forced to level the RV when staying just for the night. Also, have your rates higher for short stays and enticing for monthly or longer stays. To make sure you're profitable, have electricity a separate item so RVers don't overuse air conditioning in the summer and electric heaters (instead of furnaces) in the winter, especially for the longer stays. RVers don't really mind paying for electricity if the other rates are low. Clean restrooms and nice clean showers are important also, even though many RVers seldom use them. Garbage bins need regular pickups so they never become unsightly full, and a good recycling program is looked upon favorably by a majority of RVers. Park security is another item regarded as important by RVers, especially at night. A well-lighted campground also is important for security reasons. Cable TV and WiFi are nice to have but not as important as it was a few short years ago. Most RVers now have the Internet available on their smartphones these days and a lot of them also have satellite dishes for TV reception. The times certainly are a-changin'.

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Don't agree about the extra charge for electric, (on daily stays). I don't know about others here, but when I compare campgrounds and rates I get a little upset to see CG-A that I thought had a better rate, is actually higher when I add in their daily charge for electric. Almost everyone staying is going to use electric, so factor that into the rate. That'd be like a motel saying so much a night, but if you want electric there is an additional daily fee. Now you could offer some real cheap sites for people wanting to just park overnight, travellers, that doesn't have electric available on the site, that would give people an option for something cheaper.

Lighting can be double-edged, yes you want some light outside, but not so bright it glares in thru the sun-blocking window shades.

I still think wifi is a nice touch, as some people, myself included, only use the internet on their laptop, when they can get wifi.

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I agree with many of the comments above.

Points that I've not seen mentioned above:

I've been in too many parks where the sites are laid out exactly 90 degrees to the access roads so that you need almost 3 lanes on the access road to turn it in one swing (i.e. without unhooking, and backing to and fro to line up). Consequently, I really appreciate a park in which the sites have been laid out on a bias (like 45 degrees) to the access roads allowing an easy swing-in (both pull-throughs and back-ins).

I also appreciate parks that have given some thought to actual utility use for a variety of different rigs. Placing all the utilities in the center of the site seems to me the best compromise (I really don't like those parks in which I need to run 30+ feet of sewer hose, or disconnect the car, move it to the front and back up to reach electric or water because all they expected were 5th wheels).

Trees are a good thing for shade, but give some serious thought to how they might be in the way of turning or backing when they grow up.

If there is a good RV service business in the area, making arrangements with them to do reasonable on-call service would be beneficial. I can't count the number of times I've seen people get ready to leave a CG and slides wouldn't go in or air build-up right or tires hold pressure, etc.

For attracting Northerners (mostly from a male perspective):

You might want to see what arrangements that you could make with golf courses/clubs in the area (discounts or day passes at private clubs). Two examples: In Albuquerque, NM the park had tickets for resident rates (significant discount) at the U of NM championship course. At a park in Edinburg, TX they had arranged for a "winter Texan" membership at the adjacent private country club.

For evenings a small recreation room with a couple of good pool tables seems to be a pretty good draw.

For me (a former Yankee) the neatest park I stayed in had a clays shooting range organized at the far recesses of the RV area within a county park. The layout and machines had been provided by a group of winter visitors from Wisconsin. Not suggesting that you put in something similar, but arranging access to skeet/trap/sporting clay ranges in the area could be a plus.

Other things that might be of interest if they exist around the area would be tours/access to a Long Horn cattle ranch (maybe even some buffalo), dude ranch, western dance hall and western wear store as things they're not going to run into back home.

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My view maybe a little different from some here. You started your post looking for suggestions for a "RV RESORT". Are you looking for suggestions for a Resort environment or suggestions for a Commercial campground? To me there is a difference.

I don't see a Resort offering cheap overnight sites with the option of electricity. I mean there are very few commercial campgrounds that offer that option. I understand RVers wanting to save some money while on the road, but offering a $10 site to stay within the secure confines of a park I think wouldn't be a wise business practice. Not when this same site could generate a much better return on your investment if all sites come with full hook ups.

When I think of a Resort RV destination, it means the entire park is maintained above the expected norm of a commercial campground. It means that I will pay a premium for such an experience of maintained grounds, good clean water and electrical service.

There are more and more RV Resorts being brought online and offering more than a site to park. Most of these are doing well while many of the commercial campgrounds are not enjoying profitability.

Many RVers today forget that RVing today is not a inexpensive as days of old. Cost of starting, maintaining, and expense to run a campground have risen to all time highs. As have the state, city and county jurisdictions fees and taxes.

Build it with your vision and market to who you are wanting to attract as your consumer.

I Sir wish you the absolute best of luck and wishes to meet your vision. Keep us updated and I hope to come stay with you in the future.

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