The idea for Daycation came out of a family trip to Cancun, Mexico, when 19-year-old founder Matt Boney and his best friend wanted to check out pools in the surrounding resorts but found the only way one could do that was by registering as a guest.
“They walked into every one of them, asked the front desk agents if they could pay to just sit by the pool, and every time the answer was no,” co-founder Mo Soussi told Inman.
An idea was thus born.
Along with Soussi and third co-founder, Alex Novo, Boney launched an app that lets users buy a ‘day pass’ to a hotel without spending the night. Most often, this gives them access to the pool, a lounge chair and discounts on the food and drinks — although, depending on the hotel, it can also include beach access, spa time, a personal cabana or a massage.
“Guests are able to choose from the list of available hotels in their chosen location, then once they’re set on a date and package, they go ahead and book their Daycation,” said Soussi. “[…] Once checked-in, guests go on to “Welcome Today” and chill poolside.”
Depending on the location, a day pass starts at $18 and can run more than $100 if it includes spa treatments. Right now, Daycation partners with hotels in Miami, New York, Los Angeles, Phoenix and Chicago as well as resorts outside of the U.S. in countries like the Bahamas, Mexico and Bermuda.
Since the launch, the company has secured funds from Rough Draft Ventures in Boston, Venture City, Santiago and M8 Ventures. As the concept of ‘staycations,’ ‘daycations,’ and phone service startups took off, so has Daycation — the company plans to roll out in more cities and get more hotels on board in the coming months.
Some of the hotels the startup currently partners with include the James Hotel in New York, the Bob Marley resort in Nassau, the Park Hyatt in Chicago and the W Hollywood Hotel in Los Angeles.
“Guests are able to choose from the list of available hotels in their chosen location, then once they’re set on a date and package, they go ahead and book their Daycation,” Soussi said.