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Old 11-27-2011, 11:35 AM   #1
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Question Airstream park in Branson, Missouri

Hello everyone....

I am a new member as of today and the developer of a project in Branson, Missouri called Branson Cedars Resort.

We have themed this resort with a "retro" feel and have an additional 48.5 acres that we just added to the original 80 acres and are looking into developing it into an exclusive Airstream ONLY RV park as part of the property?

We presently build and sell Treehouses, Storybook cottages and Log Cabins and feel that an RV park that would cater exclusively to the Airstream community would be a welcome addition to our project. What do you think as owners of an Airstream?

Are we on the right track? Would enough people travel to Branson to use such a facility? and if so, what would you like to see us build as amenities for your exclusive use as well?

Last question would also be would you prefer to just rent space on a nightly or weekly basis? or actually own an exclusive fully outfitted RV spot that would be around 60'X 48' with built-in fire pit, paved 18'X40' section, with shade treatment & privacy landscaping?

Let us know what you think and also as part of our commercial area we are building at the top across from the entrance to Big Cedar we want to add a small "retro cafe" type restaurant and build it out of the shell of an old Airstream.... so, if you have one to sell or know of one that's available please do not hesitate to email or call.

Thanks for reading my post and my wife and I are looking forward to seeing what you think about our "retroRV" concept.

Michael Hyams
COO/ Developer

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Old 11-28-2011, 09:36 PM   #2
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Did I do something wrong?

Nobody wants to give us any feedback? That's disappointing.... We just wanted to know what everyone with an Airstream would like to see in a park created just for them.... But no takers? Oh well, I guess we must have misjudged the loyalty that Airstream owners felt for their vehicles. Thanks to the 25 who at least viewed the post, I sure wish you would have commented on it as well.

We really wanted to build an exclusive RV park just for owners of Airstreams..!


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Old 11-29-2011, 02:17 AM   #3
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Hi. I live in Oregon and have seen a lot of advertisements for Branson. Because of those tv commercials, I plan on visiting Branson next year. I like the idea of having an Airstream RV park not only because I own one but it's so neat to see the Airstreams all together in a park. I think a lot of people are captivated by Airstreams so it may be a draw for people who don't own them. Anyway, I hope you get more feedback on your idea. This thread of yours is on the 3rd page of "new" posts so not a lot of people will see it at this point. If you don't get anymore responses, you might try starting another thread asking about an Airstream to buy for the retro cafe. You might get more people replying then you can open up the dialogue from there. I wish you and your wife the best on this new endeavor. It sounds like a great idea and a fun place! Take care.
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Old 11-29-2011, 04:49 AM   #4
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I for one would think it would be cool. We camp there at the state park by the water and love it! It's a nice area and you can get to Branson pretty quick, I think it's easier than winding through town. I'm not sure how many airstreams visit Branson in a year but our Air Midwest group meets there 2x a year. Good luck and check out the Classifieds for a trailer, there are some project trailers there from time to time.
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Old 11-29-2011, 08:01 AM   #5
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We enjoy visiting Branson. I like your idea and if you develop it would take advantage of it 1 to 2 weeks per year. Probably not interested in ownership as not enough use.
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Old 11-29-2011, 09:40 AM   #6
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You asked for it

Well Michael, like they say, "Don't ask for my opinion if you don't want to hear the truth." "Truth" as I see it anyway.

Strictly speaking, if you are planning on opening an RV Park and decide to limit it only to Airstreamers, you are reducing your client pool drastically. Building an upscale facility with great amenities sounds like a great idea and you most likely would fill the place with upscale trailers and motor homes. You say "Airstreams only" and it might be a little harder for you.

Personally, I don't like to support places that exclude people. I would prefer a sign that said "Airstreamers Welcome" rather than one that said, "Go Away".

There might be a market out there to sell sites only to Airstreamers. That would be a little different but as someone has already posted, Branson isn't the kind of place that people want to return to time and time again like they might go to the ocean, or the mountains, or places warm.JMHO
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Old 11-29-2011, 09:48 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by michaelhyams View Post
Nobody wants to give us any feedback? That's disappointing.... We just wanted to know what everyone with an Airstream would like to see in a park created just for them.... But no takers? Oh well, I guess we must have misjudged the loyalty that Airstream owners felt for their vehicles. Thanks to the 25 who at least viewed the post, I sure wish you would have commented on it as well.

We really wanted to build an exclusive RV park just for owners of Airstreams..!

You posted this less than 24 hours after you posted your original question. Give us a chance here....

The loyalty we have for our Airstreams does not transfer to a loyalty to your business concept. Perhaps the 25 "who at least viewed the post" might have been trying to tell you something.
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Old 11-29-2011, 10:12 AM   #8
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Most, if not all, Airstream only parks came about through WBCCI or through a co-op of the owners. The attraction is that they are fairly cheap and are run by the owners. The concept of a private, for profit, Airstream only park is sorta limiting. Perhaps as a section of a existing park? Several of the original Airstream only parks have removed the Airstream only designation in order to survive.
The idea does have some appeal to me. If looking for a place to stay I would probably check out an Airstream park and lean towards staying there. But are there enough of us to make it worth while? Except when on a caravan or rally I seldom see more that 1 or 2 Airstreams in the campgrounds we frequent anyway.
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Old 11-29-2011, 10:58 AM   #9
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I agree with aftermath! I was on this a few different times since before and after your initial post and missed it. I can tell you I was a little put off with "...must have misjudged..." comment.

I'm fairly new to Airstreams, and would like to see and stay at an Airstream exclusive park, but not if my intentions (or loyalty) are questioned....
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Old 11-29-2011, 11:29 AM   #10
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Interesting, but honest and straight forward, responses thus far. The luke warm response is not because the OP misjudged Airstream loyalty, but rather misjudged how perceptive Airstream owners are. IMHO firing off a zinger about loyalty is not a way to promote interest in a project.

"Airstream Only" parks are a thing of the past, and only a few still exist.....the market just can't support them. Some of the ones still around (I have been to three) were built/exist due to club members' efforts with self-help projects. I'm not sure they could be replicated today, and as was stated earlier, some have opened their doors to other makes.

If you build a nice RV resort.....Airstreamers will come. But, if you start making it "exclusive," you really cut into your client base. Having been to Branson three times, I would have been interested in staying at an "upscale" RV park (if it were competitively priced). However, having been there three times it is doubtful that I will ever return.

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Old 11-29-2011, 11:31 AM   #11
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I'm new to Airstreams, myself. I don't normally comment on people's business plans unless asked, but I guess in a way you sort of have here's my first unexpurgated thoughts.

I guess I would caution you about limiting your demographic as well. It's a tough economy right now, and what I've discovered here is that there don't seem to be huge swaths of one kind of Airstreamer owner, all of whom want the same thing out of their time spent wandering, all of whom have the same kind of discretionary funds, so it's difficult to make generalizations among such a small demographic of what kind of money they'll put out for something like this.

Have you done much RV'ing yourself? Do you own an Airstream yourself or have you spent any time in one? There's nothing like hands-on knowledge of traveling in an Airstream to know what Airstream owners need more than any other RV owner does. (I used to sell $6k sewing machines. Trying to do that without knowing how to sew makes it more difficult.) Do you have personal connections in any of the Airstream clubs? As in any situations where you want to cater to a community, knowing and being part of the community first makes it a heckuva lot easier to sell to them.

Limiting yourself to just Airstreams is sort of asking to give yourself the same problems any exclusionary group has, and you would have to expect that. Catering to Airstream owners specifically is slightly different from this.

Perhaps you could be like those vacation condos, and sell memberships in the pads, where people buy into time periods, and then schedule as they can? And then market to Airstreamers first and see if you can fill your pads that way?

I probably don't need to actually be asking you these things, I understand, since as an experienced developer you probably know most of them.

Good luck, and if I ever go through Branson, I'd be thrilled to stay in such a place, because I love Airstreams and always have - it'd be fun to see so many in one place, and I bet it'd feel like a perpetual rally. The cafe sounds like a brilliant idea no matter what, that's for sure!
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Old 11-30-2011, 08:51 AM   #12
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Thank you one and all for the responses... I apologize for my curt comment about Airstream loyalty, that was just a stupid thing to say! On the other hand your comments have given me something to think about and its not that I "dislike" any of the other types of RV's in the market, its that we just love the look and feel of what an Airstream says to people. Our whole resort concept for the Branson Cedars Project (you can find it online by typing in the full you will see we are fed up with building "sterile, no personality" type projects for the vacation home industry and wanted to do it completely different at BCR. The Retro look & feel to everything we do is because at 56 I remember what vacations really used to be like as a kid with my family and how much we all "really" looked forward to that time together camping, traveling the highways stopping at every Roadside Attraction we could find, going to the Jersey Shore or up the Lake Wallenpaupack in the Poconos and just exploring this beautiful country we have.

Vacations are about people - not buildings or swimming pools or attractions - its about connecting once again with friends, family and even strangers and making memories.

So, thank you all again, we are not deterred by those that think its too small a market or will "offend" people by its exclusivity - we just wanted to do something truly unique and to capture what in essence is a "time gone by..." and those of you who stumble upon us someday you will see that our focus although is about making money - its not the ONLY thing we care about!

Much appreciated everyone.... and again my sincere apology for being rude as that was not my intention. Michael Hyams
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Old 11-30-2011, 09:29 AM   #13
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Thank you first for being an "airstream fan", I enjoy staying with other streamers but also realize that most people make themselves happy with the usual " white box" for many year(as we did). With that said my suggestion would be to not open only to airstreams but instead, open to all and offer a discount for airstreams...bigger discounts for groups. They will come and then in time and after the inital investment you might be exclusive.
As for amenities...the usual ones offered in other campgrounds....with special consideration to being level, easy entry sites(maybe pull thru), full utilities, privacy and nice view.
We come to your area many times just for the relaxation out of the "rat race" and would love not to have to weave our way through tight,strrp, winding streets to get to a site!

Lots of luck!
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Old 11-30-2011, 10:17 AM   #14
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I'm speaking for thousands of RV owners, not just Airstreamers. We love to stay at luxury RV resorts near desirable destinations! And we'll stay at an excellent park in the Branson area year-round, not just when schoolís out. We'll pay top dollar to stay in an RV resort that's shady, spacious and quiet with excellent utilities and easy access. Don't limit access to Airstream owners because you can maintain exclusivity by charging top dollar if the campground is truly a resort. Also, Airstreamers donít mind parking next to Prevosts. Design and build an RV resort near a great destination, such as Branson, charge top dollar and weíll be there!

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