Customer Feature: The Wildflower Wedding Venue
Updated: May 17, 2022
At Living Intent, we build high-quality yurts for customers with a range of uses in mind. From homesteaders to weekend warriors, folks needing a guest room, and more. More and more, many of our customers are seeking out our yurts to use as short-term rentals on their properties. With a low investment and a very potentially high return, adding a yurt to your property or existing rental business can be simple to increase your income, and attract a different crowd uniquely attracted to the yurt itself. Yurts fall firmly into the glamping category, a topic we’ve touched upon a great deal in another post.
There are a lot of questions that go into starting a glamping business, and we like to go straight to the source to get answers for you. We were happy to reconnect with a former customer of ours, recently, Bryan, who is running just such a business, called The Wildflower, a wedding venue and short-term vacation rental property located in Emory, Texas. The Wildflower originally sought out Living Intent to incorporate yurts as lodging for wedding guests but has since seen an explosion in interest by guests of all types. Read on to find out all about The Wildflower, their yurt rental experience, and some important advice from Bryan for potential glamping business owners.
The Wildflower got its start like most businesses, as an idea in the heads of a few people. In this case, six family members, related by “love and blood”, embarked on the process of finding and securing land to build a wedding venue on. The key factor for them was affordability, location, and a great backdrop for the wedding ceremonies themselves. They ended up purchasing the raw land which is now the location of The Wildflower and began building from there.
Next to the wedding venue itself, there was some land that Bryan and his co-owners had been contemplating placing short-term rentals on. After several years of interest and research in yurts and other types of structures, Bryan decided that going with yurts working with Living Intent specifically was the right choice for his company and vision. There are a lot of yurts on the market, but Bryan found the high quality matched with affordability from Living Intent to be the perfect fit. Additionally, Bryan liked the idea of supporting a smaller business.
The yurts were originally intended primarily for use as lodging for the wedding guests themselves, you can check out their lodging page here. And while they have been a great addition in that respect, with many happy wedding guests enjoying the comfort of a Living Intent yurt, after having the yurts on the property for some time they began to notice an interesting trend. The biggest customer for the yurt rentals was not, in fact, wedding guests. It was people seeking the unique stay that only a yurt can provide. For our customers and readers in California or other western states, a yurt stay might not seem anything too out of the ordinary. But for people in most other parts of the country, yurts are eccentric and highly appealing in their uniqueness. The yurts have become a mainstay feature of the business. whether there’s a wedding or not. Since installing the yurts, Bryan has seen steady bookings and anticipates an even better year in 2022. The yurts have opened up the property and business to a host of new clientele as well, attracting people interested in the yurts and their relative uniqueness. They sometimes rent to yoga retreats and other events as well now, increasing their customer base and bringing new and interesting people to the property to experience its beauty.
One dilemma that Bryan faced when contemplating the addition of the yurts was how they would hold up in the Texas heat, as well as the cold winters they can have. After installing the yurts and having them up for some time, he’s been impressed with how they have done. Using a mini-split, a dual function heating and cooling device we’ve touched on in another post, the yurts stay comfortable in the 100 degrees Texas heat, and down to the 20 degrees cold. A specific recommendation Bryan had for those wanting to install a mini-split in their yurt is not to size for the square footage of the yurt itself, but to go bigger. The mini-splits that Bryan has installed in his yurts are sized for 1000 sq. ft, and his yurts are our 20’ model.
Some more advice that Bryan had for anyone looking to start a potential glamping business is to think about all of the various factors that go into locating your yurt or yurts. While we’ve touched upon the importance of yurt location in another post, Bryan specifically brought up the importance of doing any and all tree work and trimming you may need to do around the location before installing the yurts, saving you the hassle of delicate tree work if your yurts were already installed. He also stressed the importance of tracking the sun throughout the day, and throughout the seasons, to find the optimal place for your yurt.
We had a great time catching up with Bryan and The Wildflower, and hope that some of this information is helpful to anyone seeking to buy a yurt, start a glamping business, or just keep dreaming!