Off & Away has quietly rolled out a new private sale service that allows its users to sign up for daily deals on luxury hotel rooms, earning discounts of as much as 50 percent. The Seattle online travel startup kicked off the new offering on Tuesday, complementing the online hotel auction service that it unveiled 13 months ago.
In some regards, daily deals could actually resonate more than Off & Away’s inaugural auction service, in part because consumers have already been trained to participate in daily deals via companies such as Groupon, LivingSocial and Zulily. Also, in the case of auctions, there’s a good possibility that consumers won’t win the bidding.
On Off & Away, the daily deals last for a week (or until they sell out) and consumers are notified via email. Currently, five sales are being operated on the site — including a deal for a $199 room at the Mondrion SoHo in New York and a deal for a $164 room at the Ritz-Carlton in Marina Del Ray, California.
Reservations are available on a first come, first served basis. But consumers can get a 24 hour jump on the competition by “liking” the hotel on Facebook. The service also integrates with the company’s auctions where 88 percent of users achieved hotel room savings of 70 percent or more.
Last October, Off & Away raised a $2 million venture round from Madrona Venture Group. The 13-person company is led by Doug Aley, a former entrepreneur-in-residence at Madrona who previously worked at Jott Networks and Amazon.com
“We’re well aware that we’re entering a crowded space with private sales and we didn’t do so lightly,” Aley tells GeekWire. “We’re bringing the same level of hotel curation that we’ve always brought, along with amazing customer value … and a few new innovations.”