An Airbnb guest used a Manhattan apartment to hold a sex party last week. Here’s how the company prepared a rapid response to the situation. Read more>
“Not everyone believes in Airbnb’s potential. Bill Carroll of Cornell University’s esteemed School of Hotel Administration says there’s too much “hoopla” around the service, and contends Airbnb will never be able to deliver as consistent of an experience for guests as hotels do. “It’s always going to be niche, constrained by how many people want to stay in an Airbnb type of experience,” he says. Carroll compares staying in a stranger’s home to the manger Joseph and Mary stayed in according to the Bible, joking, “That certainly wasn’t a chain property!”
“This company is going to be massively successful as long as you don’t fuck it up.”
Amazon CEO, Jeff Bezos, to Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky
“If you can’t fit it [the entire plan] on a page, you’re not simplifying it enough.”
Birdbnb highlights some of the company’s most distinctive properties.
"A few years ago, my host—whom I agreed to to call "Bradley" (his choice) for this article—moved to San Francisco for a job as an options trader. He was laid off eight months later, about the time computer programs started making the same decisions he made in a fraction of the time. So he went to work for himself. Now he wakes up on New York time, about 5:00 a.m. in San Francisco, makes trades until the early afternoon, and spends the rest of the day checking people in, doing laundry and cleaning apartments for his next Airbnb guests. For this part-time job—he spends a few hours per day on it—Bradley could make a six-figure income next year.”
(BTW, you should book a room in San Francisco so you have somewhere to stay for Innovation Uncensored [you’d be going last minute, but it’s worth it])
To raise money and attention for a village in the heart of Jakarta, a young man named Jeremy is renting out a space in the slum on Airbnb.
"You’re not going to be served iced tea while you watch the sun set or be given a massage just before your three-course dinner…if you’re lucky, the children will share their toys with you."
Priceonomics analyzes the how much you’re really saving (if any) by staying in an Airbnb apartment, instead of a hotel.
Officials in New York have determined that Airbnb is illegal, despite efforts by the online firm to persuade the city otherwise. The law violated is the illegal hotel law, which prevents residents from renting out their property for less than 29 days. According to CNET, the law originally meant to prevent landlords from turning residential properties into hotels.
The ruling doesn’t necessarily mean all Airbnb hosts will be cracked down on, as the city only enforces the rule when a complaint is filed.
Airbnb is to waive its fees on all properties in the areas devastated by Sandy, after one of its homeowners offered up her rooms for free to victims of the disaster. The offer stands until November 7 and covers New York, the Hamptons, Providence, New Haven, and Atlantic City. It also urged its hosts to lower prices.
Today, Airbnb—which we recently named one of our 50 Most Innovative Companies—unveiled a completely redesigned version of its site that showcases these beautiful, high-res property images and emphasizes discovery. Visually intensive like Pinterest, and socially curated like a Spotify playlist, the designers behind Airbnb 2.0 hope its new aesthetic appeal and features—such as user wish-lists, staff and guest picks, thematic catalogues—will boost bookings on the 200,000 active listings the service has in 192 countries. “For the first time, we’ve shifted from being search-based to browse-based,” says Gebbia, who also serves as Airbnb’s chief product officer. “We’ve finally surfaced all this amazing content, which for the longest time was hidden behind search.”
When my reservation requests started to trail off, I got onto Airbnb to find dozens more hosts had popped up nearby, undercutting my nightly rate. Then I spotted something else: an Airbnb listing in a building nearby, hosted by a guy I recognized as my landlord’s right-hand man. My landlord had caught on. When I delivered my rent at the beginning of the next month, I found the management company’s office under construction. It’s now a hotel. The “loft-style” rooms are now listed on Airbnb for $169 a night.
On Monday, June 4, about 10 days before my co-founders and I planned to push our first product into the iTunes App Store, a stranger in a blue blazer served me with a restraining order filed by my landlord.