Over the last two years, we have had the pleasure of staying in four Airbnb’s in various destinations in the US and the Caribbean. We use the title “Airbnb” loosely since at least one of these was booked via Homeaway, but since we have no real allegiance to either vacation rental website we will refer to them generally as “Airbnb”. Kind of like “Kleenex” or “Band-Aid”…you get it. However, if Homeaway wants to throw some free nights our way we would be more than happy to hop on their bandwagon quicker than a Miami Heat fan. So far, we are 4 for 4 when it comes to Airbnb’s, with each one exceeding expectations in every way. Without further ado, in no particular order, we give you our top 4 (“only 4”) Airbnb’s of 2015 and 2016.
1. The Maineiac – St. Thomas – $90/night
The Maineiac will probably always be the most memorable accommodation of our journeys because it is where we got engaged. It also happens to be a docked sailboat in St. Thomas’ Vessup Bay, right down the dock from a pretty wild local bar called Latitude 18 where Jimmy Buffett likes to hang out. Jeremy, the owner of the Maineiac, is extremely friendly and even let us borrow snorkeling gear for the weekend. The boat has a bathroom, sink, microwave, fridge, and a below deck-bed. If your hotel in St. Thomas isn’t floating, you’re doing it all wrong.
2. The Cozy Cabin – Estes Park, CO – $135/night
The Cozy Cabin is the perfect place to stay for a weekend trip to Rocky Mountain National Park. It’s a two minute walk to the restaurants and candy shops in downtown Estes Park, and a fifteen minute drive to the national park entrance. As the name implies, it’s small, but for two people it’s all you need. There was a family of deer in the driveway at all times and a herd of elk right across the street.
3. Villa Claude et Telma – Tartane, Martinique – $150/night
Located just off the main road in Tartane, Claude’s villa was the ideal home base for our week-long stay in Martinique. We have previously written that the Caravelle Peninsula is the highlight of Martinique, and the villa is within a five minute drive of some of the best beaches on the island, good restaurants, and hiking. Our unit included two spacious bedrooms, a kitchen/living room, and a nice front deck overlooking the ocean. The pool is shared with the other unit but still felt private compared to what you would get at any resort or hotel. Claude’s handiwork was evident throughout the property, with every detail being meticulously perfected. The only downside was finding the place. We arrived after dark, and since we had no service we were relying on printed Google Maps directions like it was 2003. After close to an hour of failure, we called the owner, who attempted to communicate his location to us in French while we foolishly hoped that he would understand our nonsensical combination of English and Spanish. Eventually he walked down to our car after deciphering our Spanglish and realizing that we were basically right behind his villa. Other than that, 5 stars for Claude’s Villa.
4. Diamond Resort – Sedona Summit – Sedona, AZ – $70/night
Staying at Sedona Summit is normally over $120/night, but we lucked out by finding one of their studios posted on Airbnb. It’s a short drive from the main drag in Sedona and all of the nearby hiking trails. Not to mention there were a few pools and hot tubs overlooking the red rock landscape.