Getting Back to Nature

Glamping or camping? You decide.

Glamping or camping? You decide.

Recently, we’ve been working with a client with a unique vision: a resort of Monos nestled next to nature. This is the kind of thing that really inspires us here at DROP Structures HQ. As a result, we’ve been tossing around all kinds of resort-centric ideas , from glamping in the Rockies to using a DROP Structure as a cooking hut/rainy day hangout for mini campgrounds.

Camping by the numbers

Whether you call it camping or glamping, vacationing off the beaten track (or at least on the slightly less beaten track) is getting super popular. According to the latest North American Camping Report from KOA, people are increasingly searching for vacations outside the city.  In 2015, 4% of campers reported they were new to camping within the last year. In 2015, this number grew to 5%, and in 2017, it was up to 7%.

Our first thought was that these ‘new campers’ were older folks running away from Millennials, with their new fangled computer-phones and their internet dating, but it turns out we were wrong. According to this KOA poll, Millennials and Gen Xers make up three-quarters of all campers, with Millennials alone making up a whopping 40%.

And, with all these ‘youngins’ taking a liking to camping, things are starting to look a little different.

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The changing face of camping

At the turn of the Millennium, people were (more or less) camping like their parents had, with a tent or an RV, and a spot rented from the local campground. But just as Airbnb disrupted the hotel industry, ‘sharing sites’ have begun to change the face of camping by allowing people to open up their backyards (if it’s big enough – we’re not talking city backyards here) to campers.

This democratization of camping is making both traditional and more Instagram-worthy (i.e. glamping) methods more accessible through sites like glamping.com, Hipcamp and even Airbnb. Our constantly connected society may be part of the reason people are heading to the woods, but technology (like GPS, reviews and rating systems) also give those more safety-minded folks the nerve to step off the highways and into the forests without feeling like bear-feed.

This new crowd of campers also brings with them new ideas about what camping actually is. According to that same KOA study, today’s campers are much more open to an array of non-traditional accommodations, including Instagram’s infamous glamping. In fact, glamping.com reported its demand from consumers rose 100% last year.

Millennials, of course, are at the forefront, with six in ten trying out unconventional types of camping accommodations. However, Gen Xers are just as keen for adventure, with 93% saying they would like to experiment with other types of camping.

So, whether you like this Instagram-inspired trend or not, glamping is here to stay, which bring us back to our client with the Mono resort vision.

Camping with DROP Structures

To be honest, we hate the word glamping. We do, however, love escaping to a quiet cabin in the woods. And if that cabin’s a little more ambitious in design than most, like, say, a DROP Structure, we think it makes the experience even better.

A DROP Structure is the perfect way to take advantage of this trend. If you’ve got the land, a DROP Structure can be placed with those big windows facing the mountains, the forests or the sunset, then rented out to nature-hungry campers, and Instagram-hungry glampers, alike!

Thinking about creating your own nature resort? Give us a call. We’d love to chat.