In this episode of the Carlsbad People, Purpose, and Impact Podcast, co-president and co-founder of Grand Pacific Resorts, Tim Stripe, talks with Bret Schanzenbach. As a former CPA, Tim was uniquely positioned to help design and build the company alongside his business partner, David Brown.
Tim is a California native, a hospitality industry expert, and a people-focused leader. He discusses how he and David started Grand Pacific Resorts, the various branches of the company, the ever-changing clientele in the hospitality industry, and the many ways the company gives back to the community.
Enriching Lives Through Grand Pacific Resorts
Tim Stripe is a CPA by trade and worked in public accounting for four years. As time went on, he joined Winners Circle Resorts International, which is where he began his journey in the hospitality industry. As the company looked at what projects had been sold out, Tim and his business partner, David Brown, decided to start their own management company, Grand Pacific Resorts. According to Tim, David was the catalyst that got everything started.
They began with three properties in the Carlsbad area, but have grown the company to manage 20 resorts in California, Utah, and Hawaii. Grand Pacific Resorts’ purpose is “Enriching Lives by Creating Experiences Worth Sharing.” For Tim and David, their company is about creating the happiest experience for their guests. This includes the facility, the grounds, the room, the amenities, and more!
Specifically, Grand Pacific Resorts serves its customers through five distinct segments of business:
- Resort Operations: This encompasses over 20 properties located in the Western United States and Hawaii. Grand Pacific Resorts developed 9 of these properties themselves.
- Advanced Financial: This smaller branch does loan servicing and is the largest servicer for the residential wholesale industry, with approximately $3 billion in assets.
- Hotel Group Division: Three properties are attached to this segment. Two are franchised by the Marriott and the other is franchised by the Hilton.
- Timeshare Sales & Marketing: This branch primarily markets and sells the various timeshares that Grand Pacific Resorts has.
- Real Estate Development: This division rehabs existing structures and develops new builds.
Certainly, the hospitality industry has taken a huge hit due to COVID. Not only did Grand Pacific Resorts have to shut down its hotels, many of its employees left the hospitality industry altogether, which, for Tim and David, was one of the most heartbreaking aspects.
Grand Pacific Resorts saw a huge shift in their customer base, as well. Usually, there are three main types of hotel customers: tourists, corporate, and social. Tim admits that it will take 2-3 years to rebuild the corporate group to where it was, as Grand Pacific Resorts was writing checks of $2 million for corporate groups that had to cancel due to COVID.
Interestingly, tourists have helped alleviate this gap. Usually, tourists make up 35% of the customer demographic, but now, it has jumped to 50%. This has partly been due to Marriott and Hilton’s marketing, and partly due to Americans’ changing schedules. Ten years ago, the end of the summer signaled a significant drop in reservations as kids went back to school; however, it is not that way anymore.
In addition to these changing variables, another shift in daily life has occurred due to COVID: remote work. Now that many companies are moving to a virtual working environment, many are not renting out office spaces. Instead, they are taking some of the funds they used to pay for their building and using them to create weekend retreats, organize holiday parties, and lead conferences at hotels.
Not only are those at Grand Pacific Resorts focused on offering their services to businesses and travelers, they are also intentional about supporting charities that give back. One charity that is close to their hearts is Send Me On Vacation, a charity that pays for the vacations of breast cancer survivors. One of the employees at Grand Pacific Resorts was the recipient of Send Me On Vacation, so she asked if they could support the charity to help others like her.
Grand Pacific Resorts also supports Christel House, which establishes educational programs for children in under-served communities around the world. In addition to this, those at Grand Pacific Resorts also serve on many boards and volunteer at nonprofits throughout the area.
Certainly, Grand Pacific Resorts stands by their purpose of “Enriching Lives by Creating Experiences Worth Sharing.”
Did you like what you heard? This show is produced by Imagine Podcasting dba Heard Not Seen Media, Inc. For more, visit Imagine Podcasting’s website.