(The Hosting News) – Set in 1,400 acres of parkland in the Usk Valley, Wales, The Celtic Manor Resort is playing host to this year’s Ryder Cup. The three hotels at the resort have six restaurants, five bars, three golf courses, two health clubs and many other leisure facilities, and it’s one of the premier leisure destinations in the UK. In order to further build its online presence and attract visitors in the run up to the Ryder Cup, the resort uses a combination of text descriptions, high-quality images on its websites and a promotional video featuring a tour of the premises and grounds.
With the Ryder Cup starting in early October (1st -3rd), online traffic is expected to increase significantly as the event approaches with 50% of the traffic coming from overseas. Therefore, Celtic Manor needed to ensure that visitors could watch the video content wherever they were in the world, without it stuttering, becoming jerky or affecting the overall performance of the website.
“After some research, hosting our website in multiple locations on multiple continents looked like a fairly expensive option,” said James Lewis, marketing manager at Celtic Manor. “We needed a method that allowed viewers from around the globe to get good quality video, but which didn’t require a large amount of configuration, wasn’t cost-prohibitive, and ideally, would be separate from our own website so that there were no performance degradations at peak times.”
In the end Celtic Manor opted to use Hostway’s Content Delivery Network (CDN). The CDN works by caching media-heavy components of the website, including images, videos or podcasts, on seven locations around the world, making it perfect for Celtic Manor’s requirements. Users requesting this content will be directed seamlessly to content stored on the closest server to their location, rather than the Celtic Manor website.
Each server requires very little configuration, and Celtic Manor’s current package can handle 50Gb of traffic each month (over 2,000 downloads or streaming users). Because the video is completely separate from Celtic Manor’s website, the video and high res images can be viewed as often as users wish without affecting the main site. The IT and marketing team have access to analytics about CDN usage, so that if viewings of the video increase, they can upgrade their package to give them more bandwidth. Similarly, if the Celtic Manor team need to take the video down for any reason, they can turn it off at very short notice.
“Although pictures are an essential tool on our website, it’s video content that really allows us to offer an in-depth experience of our resort,” continued Lewis. “The CDN is very cost-effective, doesn’t require much set up, and allows us to host high-quality video without affecting the performance of our site.”
To see the Celtic Manor video, log onto: