I'm Brett, the owner/manager of the Adventure Queenstown Hostel in New Zealand.
Have been a member for about 3 1/2 years, but never really posted much. I found this site helpful for some research info in the early days of planning my little hostel. So thanks Josh(?) and the other moderators. And anyone else who may have posted useful things.
We currently have the lovely Courtney, this site's blog writer, staying with us and she encouraged me to post more often as she believes our vision here could be helpful to many people.
We opened a little over two years ago and quickly established ourselves as one of the top places to stay. Check us out here: www.aqhostel.co.nz
We were a complete new start-up - the hostel used to be an accounting firm! I was backpacking Europe and North America in '09-'10 after the GFC when I decided the hostel thing would be great fun. So in Istanbul I bought a notebook and started writing all the best and worst things I saw of all the places I stayed. Hostel Majdas in Mostar, Montreal Central, Traveller's House & Lisbon Lounge were all influential. As was Danny at Clarence Castle in Toronto who took so much time to talk with me about his ideas when this was just a thought of what to do when I got 'home'. The bad hostels were just as informative. It's great to know what doesn't work and what you don't like. Hooks, hooks, hooks, people.
Anyway, after stumbling onto the perfect property, it was time to turn the little book of notes into a business plan and 8 months later we were born. Now we head into our third winter and we are continually surprised about how well everything is going.
Our aim is to try to help shake the stereotypical hostel tag and show it's possible to have homely quality and comfort with loads and loads of extra details and provide everything for free and still make a profit. And do all this without coming off as a new flashpacker. It seems to work.
If you are ever down this side of the world, come say hi. Otherwise I look forward to interacting with many of you here in the future.