Study on the Quality of Service in Rural Homestay -Taking Shanli Lohas as an Example
Journal of Tourism & Hospitality

Journal of Tourism & Hospitality
Open Access

ISSN: 2167-0269

Research Article - (2018) Volume 7, Issue 4

Study on the Quality of Service in Rural Homestay -Taking Shanli Lohas as an Example

Liu Yaru*, Xiao Liu and Ma Jing
School of Tourism, Beijing Union University, Chaoyang 100101, P.R. China
*Corresponding Author: Liu Yaru, School of Tourism, Beijing Union University, Chaoyang 100101, P.R. China, Tel: +86 10 6490 0059 Email:


The rural homestay has gradually become a new format in the development of rural tourism in China. The rural homestay is a different accommodation experience than the traditional hotel. It brings the most interaction between people, the warmth of the people, the family service. However, due to various reasons, the villages in many places are still in the state of “farmhouse”, and the quality of service is seriously lagging behind. This paper selects the Shanli Lohas rural hotel as the research object, and builds a reasonable evaluation system of the B&B service quality from four aspects: infrastructure, service quality, resource characteristics and local contact by means of participatory observation and deep semi-structured interviews. Investigate the advantages and disadvantages of its development, and propose the formation of brand effect, strengthen the development and design of night tourism products and activities, expand the business model of the second and third consumption, and improve the service quality improvement measures of the personnel security system. This research not only supplements the research on the quality service of the current rural homestay, but also proposes specific solutions from the actual situation. It aims to better promote the development of rural homestay and promote the development of rural touris

Keywords: Rural tourism; Development of rural homestay; Quality of service; Shanli Lohas


In recent years, ecological environmental protection, local care and in-depth tourism have become hot topics. Under this background, leisure tourism is also developing towards the original ecology of the countryside. With the accelerating process of urbanization, people are more and more yearning for a peaceful, simple and harmonious life style in the countryside. Rural tourism has become one of the main entertainment ways for people to feel natural and wild interests, experience rural life, and have a quiet and relaxing holiday. The development of rural tourism not only enriches the content of tourism activities and expands the tourism capacity, but also drives the adjustment of agricultural industrial structure and promotes the development of rural economy and society. Among them, as an important carrier of rural tourism, the development of rural homestay has a great influence on the whole rural tourism.

How to lead the development of residential quarters at a higher level is directly related to the development level of rural tourism. The quality of residential service is also a key link in determining the level of rural tourism development. The factors that determine the quality of service depend on two aspects: First, the level of hardware facilities and soft management services provided by operators to tourists; Secondly, tourists’ demand for residential accommodation. For residential operators, they choose those small mountain villages with mountains, water and scenery, those small villages with excellent blue sky and white clouds, and those natural villages with quiet, leisure and wild interests, so as to create residential groups with strong competitiveness. With the upgrading of consumption and the change of vacation mode, boutique homestay have become the focus of both the host and the guest under the new tourism situation, attracting the participation of capital forces from all walks of life with extremely strong profitability, and have become the driving force for the development of rural tourism in many places.

As one of the leader of the boutique rural homestay, Shanli Lohas has developed by relying on the natural landscape. Compared with most other domestic homestay, the Shanli Lohas have a strong competitiveness in service quality. On the basis of participatory observation, semi-structured depth interview and reading related literature, this paper attempts to evaluate the service quality of Shanli Lohas through the construction of service quality evaluation index system. In order to provide targeted suggestions for improving the service quality of Shanli Lohas, it also provides reference for improving domestic service quality. The aim is to better promote the good and fast development of rural residential areas and help rural tourism develop.

Research Progress on Homestay

Progress in foreign research

Foreign scholars believe that “residential accommodation” generally refers to B & B (Bed and Breakfast). And there are a series of family words to express the same meaning, such as Family Hotel, House Hotel, Family Inn, House Stay, Guesthouse, etc. The study of home and boarding travel abroad began in 1980s, mainly including the study of the residential and residential tourism market, the study of the relationship between the hostel operators and the tourists, the research on the problem of the house and the house and the rural tourism and so on.

B&B Tourism market research: (1) Supplier research. Foreign scholars’ research on the property industry is mainly reflected in the business mode, business behavior and the scale of the hotel. For example, Ingram [1] found that owners of UK homestays are usually independent owners and operators. Getz and Carisen [2] studied rural tourism and hospitality operators and owners in rural western Australia and found that their main goals were related to lifestyle and family. (2) Demand side research. Some foreign scholars have found that the main characteristics of tourists who choose B&B are that their income and education level are relatively high, and they are sensitive to the atmosphere of “home”. Like Jones and Guan [3] surveyed Hong Kong tourists’ preferences for mainland Chinese homestays and found that young, middle- and higher-middle-age women are the main target groups of mainland Chinese homestays. Chen et al. [4] survey of Taiwanese tourists found that visitors who choose to stay in the home show the characteristics of a nuclear family, good education, and middle and lower classes. (3) Marketing and management. The foreign lodging industry uses a variety of marketing methods to conduct marketing. Scholars have found that word-of-mouth marketing is the most frequent and effective means. Kline et al. [5] commented on the B&B website in Indiana, USA, and found that these sites are doing a good job in attracting, but they still need to be improved in terms of user-friendliness, market effectiveness and technology. MJeong [6] found that customer satisfaction with the information provided by the B&B website was the main determinant of its re-use of the website.

Study on the relationship between the owner and the tourists: Stringer [7] in an in-depth interview with British homeowners and B&B visitors from Australia, it was found that there is not only a transactional relationship but also an emotional connection between the owner and the visitor, but the boundaries are vague. Hultman and Cederholm [8] also found the social, temporal and spatial complexity of the commercial friendship between the host and the guest.

Homestay management problem research: Kelley and Marquette [9] discussed the nature of the “sideline” of the property, pointing out that tax breaks for homeowners who operate out of interest and hobbies will promote the development of the property industry. Sherry [10] discussed the legality of the operation of the hotel and how to standardize and rationalize it. Through the review, we can find that the current situation of the homestay in China is very similar to the situation of the western B&B in the 1990s.

Homestay and rural tourism: As an important part of rural tourism, the homestay has received the attention and attention of scholars. Fleischer [11] concluded that rural tourism has great similarities around the world after comparing Israeli and European, North American country houses. Kuo and Kuo [12] tries to integrate the B&B into ecotourism. In their survey of the Guanziling area in Taiwan, they found that there is a great similarity between the homestay and the ecotourism tourists in terms of gender, age, income level, and education level, but the difference between the two is greater in the ecological landscape.

Progress in domestic research

The progress of domestic tourism research can be divided into two stages: the first stage is before 2010, the research content is mostly the description of concepts and phenomena, the research methods are mainly qualitative methods, the academic attention is not high; the second stage is 20100 After the year, with the deepening of research and the application of quantitative methods, from theoretical research to case studies, the operability and practicality are emphasized. The research content mainly includes the residents of the residential community and the behavior of tourists, the development and countermeasures of the hotel, and the tourism industry.

Behavior research of community residents and tourists: Yuting [13] used literature method, questionnaire method and interview method to qualitatively and quantitatively analyze the development of residential houses in 9 traditional villages, and used SPSS analysis to study the influence of residents in traditional village communities on village protection. From the perspective of community residents’ participation. Suggestions for the sustainable development of traditional village B&B tourism. Gao Weiwen and others used Xiamen as a research object. Based on the tourist perception survey and field visits, this paper explored the status quo of tourism safety management and the impact on tourists’ perception [14].

B&B tourism development and countermeasures: (1) Successful experience and countermeasures of tourism development in B&B: Zhou Qiong expounded the development history and development characteristics of Taiwan B&B tourism in Taiwan, and the development of Taiwan B&B tourism in the development of the hotel, characteristic mining, professional services and multi-marketing The tourism of B&B has a reference effect [15]; Yang Lijuan summarized the academic research progress of B&B tourism in Taiwan, and the study of the B&B tourism in the mainland has a reference role in research behavior and research content [16]. (2) Problems and countermeasures in the development of tourism in B&B: Luo Anqi et al. conducted field research on Qikou Village in Enshi City, and analyzed the importance and satisfaction of tourists on the quality of service of six local B&Bs by questionnaire interview and IPA analysis. And put forward suggestions for the development of B&B tourism in the future [17]; Pan Yingying summed up the problems that need to be solved in the development of B&B tourism in Xitang area of Jiashan, Zhejiang Province [18]; Deng Nianmei and others based on the current situation of the development of B&Bs in ethnic areas in southwestern Hubei, proposed to extend the industrial chain and strengthen the brand Suggestions for building and improving the quality of hotel services [19].

Research on related industries of B&B tourism: Domestic tourism research has gradually formed along with the development of rural tourism such as farmhouses. Some scholars have studied the tourism of B&B from the perspective of rural tourism and urbanization, and proposed the direction and suggestions for the future development of the tourism. (1) B&B tourism and rural tourism: Hu Ying and others based on the perspective of vigorously developing rural tourism, conducted SWOT analysis on the development of B&B tourism in the ecological and cultural tourism circle of western Hubei, and proposed corresponding counter measures [20]; Zhang Xueli and others believed that the property industry is rural tourism. The advanced development model analyzes the current situation, industrial orientation and current problems of Hangzhou B&B tourism, and proposes the development path of the future B&B industry [21]. (2) B&B tourism and urbanization construction: Lai Bin introduced the influence of Shangri-La Town Development B&B’s characteristic tourist villages and towns on precision poverty alleviation. It is believed that the construction of B&B-specific tourist villages and towns in ethnic minority areas is an effective way to carry out tourism precision poverty alleviation [22]; It is believed that the development of island houses is conducive to the construction of archaic forest cities, and the greening and beautification of island fishing villages should be combined with the tourism of the islands [23].

Comparative analysis

Through literature review, it can be found that the development of foreign homestay industry has been quite mature after a long period of time, mainly with the following obvious features: 1 industry associations have been formed; 2 business is highly concerned with humanization and personalization; 3 service content is diversified; 4 localization, family. In contrast to its mature development, the B&B study is relatively systematic. The research subjects include homeowners, homestay industry management and tourists. The research involves multidisciplinary studies such as management, economics, sociology, psychology, and consumer behavior. His research focuses on the hotel market and the relationship between the owner and the visitor.

Compared with China’s Taiwan region, Japan, Europe and the United States, the mainland China’s homestay industry is still in the growth stage, and needs to be further improved in development and management. The relevant literatures on the development of tourism in the B&B are mainly based on the experience of successful regions and the review of the tourism research in B&B. However, there is relatively little literature on the quality of service research in the country. At present, there are problems in the service quality of the property industry. The main content of the service is relatively simple, the participation and experience of tourists are not enough, and the industry standards are lacking. From the current few documents, it is concluded that Chinese and foreign scholars have proposed the following solutions in improving the service quality of B&B: improving infrastructure and supporting leisure facilities; creating regional characteristics and marketing methods to innovate; establishing homestay industry associations and strengthening hotel management.

The Survey of the Research Objects

Shanli Lohas is located in Ganyugou Village, Miyun County, Beijing. At the foot of the Great Wall, it is rich in natural ecological resources. Although the ecological environment is superior, but after all, it is remote. The small village of Ganyugou is just like many hollow villages in China. It is difficult to escape the desolate and declining destiny. Only a dozen elderly people live in this village. Renovate and construct nearly 30 sets of creative rural dwellings on abandoned homesteads, transforming a gradually ruined “hollow village” into a tall “country hotel”. The exterior of the hotel maintains the original ecological characteristics of the village, while the interior is a five-star fine decoration, officially opened in July 2013. Butler service, natural and tranquil valleys, a mix of luxury and simplicity, a combination of comfort and nature, blends urban-style star hotels with the natural and tranquil life of the countryside. Ganyugou Village, Miyun County, Beijing, where Shanli Lohas is located, was awarded the title of “China’s Most Beautiful Leisure Village in 2014” and is the only selected unit in the 29 characteristic residential villages in Beijing.

Shanli Lohas adopts the business model of “Company + Cooperative + Farmer”. The tourism company is responsible for the construction and management, so that the assets of the village can be operated in a benign manner. In order to ensure the smooth progress of the project, the village has also established a folklore tourism professional cooperative, which is responsible for communication and coordination between the company and the farmers, and also involves a series of rents and dividends. Follow-up matters; farmers provide resources for management, and most of them are dual-identity of shareholders and employees, which improves the enthusiasm and participation of farmers. Shanli Lohas actively promoted the transfer of land, the management of assets, and the organization of farmers, which enabled the successful transformation of traditional rural tourism into high-end rural tourism and opened up a new road for the development of mountain villages.

The tourism company has not only damaged the original style of the village, but also brought a comfortable accommodation experience to the passengers. This harmonious development model has attracted a large number of tourists. The reception capacity of Shanli Lohas is getting higher and higher. By 2016, there have been five receptions. Ten thousand people, the number of rooms is in short supply, holidays need to be booked one month in advance, the average daily price per set of courtyards is more than 2,000 yuan, the most expensive is 8,800 yuan, and the average daily consumption of tourists is also 500 to 2,000 yuan. The second phase of the 18-story house has been renovated and welcoming guests. The network is scheduled to be “hot”, and there are also many tourists visiting during the off-season such as autumn and winter.

Research Process and Research Findings

In this study, Shanli Lohas was selected as the research object. The field research period was from October 6, 2017 to October 12, 2017, and lasted for one week. Qualitative research is the main method, and data are obtained through literature analysis, in-depth interviews, and participatory observation. The study required researchers to become a “temporary visitor” to participate in the observation method to experience the service quality of the Shanli Lohas and to record the living experience and feelings.

In addition, other research methods include: deep semi-structured interviews. The interviewees included Mr. Yin Wenhuan, founder and president of Shanli Lohas, some guests staying at the hotel, some service staff of the B&B, and local villagers, totaling 22 guests. During the interview, the author avoided the service staff and the local villagers working time, try to choose their rest time. In addition, the method of informal conversation is used. During the survey period, informal conversations between the investigator and the guest and staff were also recorded to enrich and prove the findings.

In order to make an objective and scientific evaluation of the service quality of the Shanli Lohas, this paper firstly constructs a reasonable evaluation system of the hotel’s service quality from the four aspects of infrastructure, service quality, resource characteristics and local contact, and then targets the above four evaluation indicators. The service quality of Shanli Lohas was empirically analyzed and evaluated.


In the infrastructure, the Shanli Lohas has got rid of the problems existing in most domestic B&Bs – the infrastructure is not perfect, whether it is in terms of architectural features, accommodation facilities, catering facilities or traffic conditions.

The Shanli Lohas is transformed from the original old house. From the outside, it is the old house of the villagers. Wooden doors, wooden windows, rafters, stone walls, etc. are all preserved. There is a hole in the room, combining the simple and modern concept, fivestar rooms and bathroom facilities, Chinese and Western restaurants, wireless network coverage. Wooden doors and windows are lined with double-layer plastic-steel glass doors and windows, bluestone paving, and installation heating facilities. The furnishings are quite hard to worry about. Many wardrobes, cases, and tables are old objects that are scoured from the hands of the villagers. Even the doorplates are named after the seasons and the solar terms, and there is a long history of homesickness. Each courtyard includes at least two standard rooms that provide 24-hour hot water and floor heating. There is a Chinese restaurant that can accommodate 100 people at the same time. The 24-hour monitoring system and the full coverage of WiFi wireless broadband have been completed. Supporting parking lots, toilets, and children’s entertainment facilities have also been completed.

Service quality

The orientation of the Shanli Lohas is to serve the minority and to face tourists who have unique and lasting interest in natural ecology. Although these people do not have an advantage in quantity, they have different tastes and abilities in lifestyle, tourism interest, educational level and economic ability. The demand for tourism is deeper and more unique. it needs to experience the local life, culture and humanistic spirit, pay more attention to the freedom, comfort and individuality of tourism behavior and process. In tourism reception, employees have extensive personal contacts with tourists, and the humanized service mode is also in line with the psychology of these target consumers - maintaining good and lasting relations with this small group through websites, conferences, letters, telephone calls, even personal contacts. Although the number of tourists selected by the Shanli Lohas is not large, the revisit rate is high and the cost is high, thus constituting the main market of the Shanli Lohas - mainly serving financial, it and other industries and high-end business people such as foreign enterprises and listed companies.

Resource characteristics

The Shanli Lohas rely on the Ganyugou Village in Miyun County, Beijing. The overall landscape is beautiful: you can climb the small Tianmen Mountain in the spring, fish in the creek in summer, pick the mountain in the fall, and watch the snow in the winter.

Shanli Lohas also provides a leisure experience with local characteristics under the theme of “Live Living”. Many of the concepts emphasized by the Lohas are reflected in the Shanli Lohas: healthfresh air, sweet spring water, healthy organic food; natural gentle slow movement (climbing, hiking); nature - buildings using local materials (stone, wood, rattan, etc.), quaint traditional furniture; environmental protection-cycling, walking, solar lighting, garbage sorting and recycling; happy-slow-key life, listening to soul music; harmonyshared Lohas experience, supporting children in mountainous areas with love; sustainability-we hire locals, grow their own agricultural products, rebuild existing buildings and re Use materials and adhere to sustainable operating guidelines.

Contact between Shanli Lohas and the local area

Local economic effects: Driven by the Shanli Lohas, the income can be described as follows: in 2016, the net income of the villagers increased from 12,087 yuan in 2012 to 29,303; the annual income of members employed in enterprises exceeded 50,000 yuan. Many villagers who have left the village have returned to the village. The guest room department, the food and beverage department, and the key account manager are natives of the local village of Beizhuang. For example, Gao Jianqiu (26 years old), who participated in training in Malaysia and Hong Kong in 2014, became a habit Consultant; some became a waiter, the company also hired outsiders as a “housekeeper”; Gao Yunshun, an old driver who has been resigning for more than 20 years, returned to the village as a shuttle driver, renting his own yard, cultivated land and fruit trees, working with his wife in the company. The annual income exceeds 100,000 yuan; such as room service, security, farm farming, fruit tree management and protection, etc., from more than 20 villagers in Beizhuang Town, the minimum wage is more than 2,400 yuan.

Local social effects: Enterprises take appropriate positions to prioritize the employment of their members, and bring about the work of civil construction, room service, security patrol, sanitary cleaning, farm farming, fruit tree management and protection. The project also attracted local youth to return. Now the head of the room department, the head of the food and beverage department, and the key account manager of Shanli Lohas are all children born and raised in Beizhuang Town. They used to go to school and work outside. Now they are back to their parents, holding the same salary as in the city, doing a decent job. Comfortable work, I believe that more rural youth will come here to apply for jobs. Some of the staff also went to Malaysia, Hong Kong and other places to receive overseas high-end business training, so that these villagers who have never been abroad have broadened their horizons. In the current village of Ganyugou, the villagers have truly lived a new life with new grassroots organizations, new management models, new ecological construction, new living environment and rich ways.

In the process of building a rural hotel, Ganyugou Village promotes the construction of public transportation, water supply and power supply, garbage and sewage treatment, communication information and labor and employment services, and modern, civilized lifestyle and rural pastoral style. The way has been organically integrated, the originally ruined farmhouse and weedy fields have turned into a quaint, heavy, natural and high-end rural tourism base, and embarked on a sustainable development path.

By evaluating the local economic and social effects of the Shanli Lohas, it can be seen that Shanli Lohas has played a good demonstration role in the connection with the local area.

The Problem of the Quality of Service in the Shanli Lohas

Through the construction of the B&B service quality evaluation system, it is found that Shanli Lohas has its own unique features and shining points in the four indicators system of infrastructure, service quality, resource characteristics and local contact. It is worthy of reference and reference from other homestays. Of course, in the process of participatory observation and deep semi-structured interviews, the author also found that there is still room for improvement in the quality of service in the mountain. The main problems in the service quality of Shanli Lohas are:

Service personnel lack modern service awareness

Shanli Lohas have higher requirements for the overall quality of the property owners. Although some of them have higher education, and there are innovative, thought-provoking and connotative college students “housekeepers”, some urban students are not willing to stay in the “Hinter House”. In addition, most of the service personnel are composed of villagers around the scenic spot. These villagers are simply understood as a place to provide food and accommodation for tourists because of their low level of culture and weak sense of innovation and development. Lack of innovative service awareness, but there are many difficulties in cultivating local people as “housekeepers” with modern service management awareness and skills.

Product quality needs to be explored

Tourists choose homestay products to experience the beauty of the environment and the beauty of the humanities. The overall landscape of Ganyugou Village where the mountain is located is beautiful, but compared with the Moganshan area, the environmental resources are not dominant. The courtyard house name is named after the season and the solar terms, but it is very charming; but the excavation and combination of the local characteristic culture is slightly insufficient. Lack of two times of consumption, tourism products rich and interesting.

Conclusion and Recommendation

Exploring the source of customers and forming a brand effect

The most important way to develop tourists is to package and market the brand. In this regard, we can adopt the marketing method of “Internet + B&B”, through cooperation with some internet celebrities and big V, and with their influence and voice on the internet, promote Shanli Lohas and further develop tourist sources. Of course, the promotion of the brand influence of Shanli Lohas cannot be separated from the publicity of the local government. We should make use of the new media’s communication channels to give full play to the new media’s role of playing a point-by-point role and strive to make the Shanli Lohas into a city business card.

Strengthening the development and design of night tourism products and activities

According to the statistics of foreign tourism industry, although the scale of night tourism is smaller than the scale of daytime tourism, people’s spending willingness and consumption impulses at night are stronger than during the day. Therefore, the income from night tourism often accounts for 1/3 of the total tourism revenue, and the profit is much higher than the daytime tourism. Tourism is the alienation of lifestyle, not just the rush of the day, but also the experience of the night. To capture the psychology of staying in the nighttime entertainment of tourists, the design experience combination leaves a memory point. Therefore, after the introduction of a large number of tourists, the development and design of night tourism products can be appropriately strengthened to further enhance the service quality of night tourism products and bring visitors a unique and profound experience. According to their own abilities and conditions, some visitors’ participation activities, such as cooking, textiles, embroidery, etc., can be added to increase the experience and feelings of visitors to the personalized service of the country house.

Expanding and strengthening secondary and tertiary consumption

Homestay is, after all, a small market. Tourists spend their leisure time on vacation, eating and sleeping only once a day. Tourists also eat midnight snacks, drink coffee and buy a variety of agricultural and industrial products, which can be attributed to secondary consumption. If culture, music, calligraphy and painting, health, fitness, health and other elements are added, three times of consumption will be formed. Rural residential housing economy is a comprehensive consumer activity. The business model of three times of consumption development is a three-dimensional, comprehensive and high-efficiency economic activity, which will become a new business mode of rural modern service industry.

Improving the personnel security system and the quality of service

The training of operators directly determines the competitiveness of homestay. It is impossible to change from a farmer to a home stay operator without systematic training and long practice. Knowledge should be through training, refinement, service training, personalized service training, crisis service training, improve the management of the business ability and comprehensive quality, to attach importance to the problem.

It is recommended to introduce a professional team with mature experience and advanced concepts to play its exemplary and leading role. Training and guidance for practitioners, wearing clothing that echoes the style of boutique B&B, providing warm and sincere service, providing butler-style services, and assigning special personnel to provide visitors with full arrangements and planning for food, accommodation, travel and other aspects during their stay. Let visitors have a perfect feeling.

It is recommended to introduce a professional team with mature experience and advanced concepts to play its exemplary and leading role. Provide training and guidance to employees, wear clothing that is consistent with the style of boutique residential accommodation, be enthusiastic and sincere in service, and provide butler - style service. Assign special personnel to provide tourists with arrangements and plans for all aspects of food, shelter and transportation during their stay, so as to make them feel perfect.


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Citation: Yaru L, Liu X, Jing M (2018) Study on the Quality of Service in Rural Homestay -Taking Shanli Lohas as an Example. J Tourism Hospit 7: 370.

Copyright: © 2018 Yaru L, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
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