How I Quit My Job & Became A Professional Glamping Host

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In this podcast episode, Liam interviews Chris Jeub, the owner of Monument Glamping. Chris shares his journey into hospitality and how his family is involved in short-term rentals.

They started with a hunting tent in their backyard, which they listed on Airbnb and were surprised by its success. They gradually expanded their offerings, including container homes and winter glamping. Despite facing challenges with county regulations, they turned it into an advantage by focusing on hospitality and improvisation.

Chris emphasizes the importance of mastering the art of hospitality and creating magical experiences for guests. They have unique touches like gifting homemade wine and allowing self-check-ins to let guests explore and discover the property. With consistent five-star reviews, Chris has found success and fulfillment in the hospitality industry.

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[00:00:00] Liam: Hey everybody. Welcome to the Boostly podcast. This is the podcast that gives hosts the tools, the tactics, the trainings, but most importantly the confidence to go out there and get more direct bookings. And today we are going behind the host with another interesting short-term rental hospitality host and to ask questions about their hospitality business, uh, to extract some juicy answers, things which.

[00:00:22] Liam: You can learn from their inspirational stories, but also some tricks and tips that you may be able to implement within your hospitality business. So, uh, my name's Liam Carolan, uh, mark Simpson's co-host, and today we are joined by Chris Jeub. He's been in hospitality since 2019 and he owns Mon Monument Glamping, and you can go and check them out at

[00:00:45] Liam: so we are talking about glamping today. So thank you for joining me today, Chris. Welcome along. Well,

[00:00:51] Chris: thank you for having me on, Liam. I appreciate it.  

How did you get into hospitality?

[00:00:54] Liam: Can you tell me anything about your, your family, I guess, and also how you got into hospitality in the first place?

[00:01:02] Chris: Sure. My family is kind of the icebreaker.

[00:01:04] Chris: We have 16 children, so I'm one of these really large families. Wow. We, but most of 'em are adults. Most of 'em have gone and grown up and they're on their own and. And, uh, and they're all into, uh, uh, short term rentals in some form. Either they own 'em and do 'em on the side while they're working through college.

[00:01:21] Chris: I have one daughter who's, who's going through law school, and they are living off of the income from their short term rental. Uh, I have another son who's into an RV park down in, in Oklahoma. He's, he's developing a 300 unit RV park. I have another son who's out in Tennessee, uh, uh, working some, working some short term rental deals.

[00:01:43] Chris: And, and, and I have a son-in-law and daughter who's into cleaning and, and, and some tiny home. They actually built a couple tree houses. So all I have to say, we're all sort of into this and, uh, I've only had five children at home right now, so I feel like this is, uh, I'm sunsetting the parenting, uh, the parenting world.

[00:02:03] Chris: But, uh, but they're, they're those two, they two are, are in, into, uh, the business here. Uh, they oftentimes might, might clean some tents and, and, uh, uh, deliver some goods to some, some guests or something like that, kind of into the hospitality world. Uh, they're all teenagers right now. Well, my youngest is an 11 year old.

[00:02:21] Chris: And, uh, but he's still very active. He, he takes care of the hot tubs and things like that. And, uh, uh, so it's all, it's a big fa it's, well, it's turning into a family business. So I was a teacher, uh, so I, I taught at a, at a school, uh, here in town. And, uh, English teacher, uh, English teachers don't make a lot of money.

[00:02:38] Chris: So I had a side business on side, which was a publishing company. So I published curriculum for academic speakers and debaters. And so that was my, that was my shtick and that kept us. Here at this house and on this property, it's a nice property. It's six and a half acres. It's got a creek in the backyard and everything.

[00:02:55] Chris: Well, I had my summers off, so I, uh, so in 2019, uh, Wendy and I said, well, let's remodel. The bedroom was kinda out outdated. We need to, we need to really do it, and a total remodel, like to the studs and tore everything out. So I set my hunting tent out in the backyard and put my, put it up and moved my master bedroom outdoors.

[00:03:15] Chris: Loved it. Oh, it was so nice. The kids were indoors, we were outdoors. We were, we were just having the, the time of our, the, the moon comes up over the creek and everything. It's really a beautiful property. And uh, and at the end when, when we were done with the remodel, about a month later, we, we, we decided that, you know, let's put it up on Airbnb and see what happens.

[00:03:34] Chris: We booked out for the rest of the summer. I couldn't believe it. And it is like, wow, this is, this is, I'm making money off of my hunting gear. I couldn't believe that. Uh, so, so the next summer we decided to take it a little bit more seriously, and we put up a second tent about halfway through the summer.

[00:03:51] Chris: Um, so I can give you some numbers here. This, this might inspire some people out there. So, so the first, the first summer we made $2,400 and I was like, wow, this, this is good money. And, uh, and the next summer we, we cleared almost $20,000 off of two tens. Now that was the covid summer, so we thought maybe it was just a fad and, and this was gonna pass.

[00:04:12] Chris: Uh, but, but it. At least was like validation, like, wow. And, and not only that, Liam, we, we loved doing it. I mean, this was something we, we didn't know we would enjoy so much. And because none of us, none of us worked in hotels or, or any kind of hospitality. The hospitality wasn't even in the, I mean, we, we, we, we liked to throw parties.

[00:04:34] Chris: I guess that's, that's, uh, that's hospitality. But uh, um, and so the third year, that's when the lid blew off. Payout and we were like, wow, this is something, because we, we, we cleared nearly $70,000 in the summer. Whoa. Wow. And, and now we took it seriously. We, we, we started Winter Glamping, I think is a thing that, that Glamps should be doing because there is a, a, there is a demand out there.

[00:05:01] Chris: We, uh, we, we expanded to container homes. My son, one of my sons was a welder and he, he, he, he created these container homes that are really cool. And, uh, um, and we, we, we, we partnered with one of my neighbors and, and used some of the, her land and stuff. So there, there were some things we did, we really did expand.

[00:05:19] Chris: So that number isn't, uh, well the number's still impressive. That's amazing. But we we're working it and we were really enjoying it. That's when we started to get in trouble with the county and the county. We had a neighbor who did not like, uh, what we were doing. Mm-hmm. Just one. Just one. That's all it takes.

[00:05:37] Chris: And, uh, and, and then we, um, it was a, actually a year ago this month, uh, no wait, it's February. Uh, this is coming on this spring. Anyway, it was, it was, uh, early 20 21, 20 22 rather that I, uh, that I had to work with the county to get properly permitted. Um, and at first that was a, that, that was somewhat devastating cause we were really on the roll.

[00:06:01] Chris: I and I, and I had left teaching and I, I, I sold my, my business. So I was like my, my publishing business. So I was, I was all in, Wendy and I were in, we were, we were like, this is the coolest thing since sliced bread. And I'm, we're, we're, we're on it. Um, but then, then that, that, that threat was coming in, of being shut down.

Turned to our advantage

[00:06:23] Chris: Um, we, we really turned that to our advantage. Uh, and that's, that's the good story. I gave a presentation at the American Glamping Association in October, uh, that went, uh, uh, it didn't really go viral, but it went, it got very popular among the glamping professionals. So I, I, I, I encourage people to go and look at that video at, uh, Um, uh, I've got it online somewhere.

[00:06:45] Chris: You could do a YouTube search. Yeah. I, I, I am becoming more and more a student of hospitality the more I get into it. Now, I, I mentioned before I was a business owner of a, of a publishing business, so I, I, I guess the business side of things, I, I understood or I wasn't intimidated by. Uh, uh, every business owner would say they learn as they grow, so they get into it right away, and they kind of get their grease in their fingernails while they're working and they, and they, they make things up as they go.

[00:07:13] Chris: Uh, and, and that's, that's the secret success, uh, model for any business person. But the more I get into it, the more I really understand that boy hospitality is an art. Um, and, and I have to read not only books on financing and accounting and, and, and marketing and, and stuff like that, and be, be a business person.

[00:07:35] Chris: I have to get into, I have to get into hospitality because that's, that's the core of what I do. Mm-hmm. Uh, so, oh, for example, I just finished the book this morning. It's called, uh, unreasonable Hospitality. It's the bestseller out there in the business world. But, uh, it's all about restaurant hospitality.

[00:07:51] Chris: But you, and I'm not doing restaurant hospitality, but I have to become a master. The idea of hospitality. I stay very close to the people who kind of get that and understand that. Uh, I, I'm a, a big fan of being a, a member of the American Glamp Association. We get together every week. I sit, sit in there. I very much appreciate the ones who are our former, uh, former hotel hospitality managers and stuff.

[00:08:17] Chris: And now they've like, have to say, How to treat a guest, uh, how to make the experience magical. Uh, uh, lemme give you a couple examples of things we do on our property that that's unique, uh, because there, there is a sense of improvisation that, that comes with hospitality that makes it magical. Uh, that, and, and we try to process it the best we can.

[00:08:45] Chris: But if you get too processed, it doesn't become manageable anymore. Uh, so one of the things we did, we, we got a, what's called a BM b liquor license here in, in Colorado. And so we're allowed to give away our homemade wine. So we make homemade. So everybody who comes here gets a gift of homemade wine. Yes.

[00:09:02] Chris: And uh, boy, they love that. They just, they just get a kick out of it. And, and we don't tell them they're getting it, so we don't advertise it. So when they get here and there's a, there's a. Here's another thing about hospitality, that this is another trip to the trade that somebody could take with it. Um, we let them self check into our tents.

[00:09:21] Chris: We used to be there at their tent and try to try to meet them at the door kind of thing and check 'em off and, and greet there. That's not nearly as good as what we came up with. We let them self check in mm-hmm. And give them, and we can see 'em from a, you know, we can peek around in our, you know, it's out the window and stuff to make sure that they're, they're getting settled in.

[00:09:40] Chris: We let them check in for about 10 or 15 minutes. And then we roll in on our little, uh, you know, ATV and stuff like that. Hey, how you doing? You got any questions? Stuff? That's a very strategic move. Because there's, there's, they're exploring for 10 or 15 minutes. You see what I mean? They drive up to the tent, they walk up on the deck, they look at the fire pit, they look at the grill, they open the grill up.

[00:10:02] Chris: They see the, the cast iron pan. They open up, Ooh, there's a sign there. Welcome to. Rela sit back and relax or glance, Ooh, here's the hot tub. Ooh. And they, and they have this awesome moment of discovering, and then here's me coming up, or Wendy coming up, or one of my kids coming up and saying, Hey, how you doing?

[00:10:20] Chris: And here's a, and we would like to gift you with this bottle of wine. They're like, oh, then. And so now they're like, this is over the top. And, and that's how you get a five star review every time. And I'm consistent with five star reviews on, on my OTAs. So, Um, so it's, it that's, that's the magic we

[00:10:39] Liam: create in there.


[00:10:41] Liam: That's amazing. So thank you so much Chris for this, and thank you too. If you're listening to the Boostly podcast or on the YouTube channel, uh, we know there's a lot of places you can put your attention and we thank you for putting it with Boostly. Um, that's it from me. Uh, Chris, is there any closing comments or, uh, anything I missed?

[00:10:57] Chris: Hey, no, no, this is a lot of fun, Liam. Thanks for having me on.

[00:11:00] Liam: Thank you buddy, and uh, everybody. We will see you on the next podcast. Bye for now.

[00:11:06] Chris: Having a blast. Gonna get it on the Boostly podcast. Bruce Lee. Like Bruce Lee cuz it's so hard on the tees. Loose leaf. Making up those rhymes. Don't write it, just do it loosely.