Whenever Charles and I talk about our past & future travels with friends and family, many of them ask, “Where did (or will) you stay?” For the past year, our answer has been = “Airbnb” which is usually followed up by the question, “What is Airbnb?” Here’s my one sentence summary: A super cool online marketplace where you can rent unique accommodations from local hosts in the city/country you’re looking to visit.Our trip to Europe last summer marked the first time we had ever used Airbnb and we were blown away by our experience with them in Amsterdam and Barcelona. As such, I thought it might be nice to share with you our accommodations in case anyone was planning a trip to either country.
For our 5 days in Amsterdam, we stayed at this wonderful private room. The owners, Wendie & Hans, were so welcoming when we checked in and made us feel right at home. As you can see from the photos below, our room was cozy and surprisingly quiet despite the fact that we were located on a busy street close to all the main attractions in Amsterdam.
In addition to having a private bathroom, our favorite feature of the room the balcony access which overlooked the private courtyard (we ate breakfast there every morning). Another fave about the room were the local snacks that were provided (which we finished in the first 2 days haha).
^^ Cutest blue bathroom
^^ Charles modeling on the bed :)
^^ Our coffee, tea and snacks table
^^ Balcony Access
While in Barcelona, we planned to spend the majority of our time outside for our 3 days there and wanted to find a place that met our basic needs. This room, located in the Born area of Barcelona, met those requirements spot on. Our room was small but comfortable. It had a bed which, to be honest, was all we really needed. We were located about a 10 minute walk from the beach, less than 5 minutes away from the nearest metro station and there was a nice cafe we ate a few times across the main courtyard.
The cherry on top of our accommodation had to be the wonderful rooftop terrace views. Each day after exploring the city, Charles and I would grab a 6 pack of beer at the corner store and unwind on the rooftop. One those days, we had a chance to share a beer with our host, Francesco, a scientist focused on developing water purification systems. It was great to learn about Barcelona from his perspective and get his recommendations on places to eat.
Overall, at $27 a night, we felt like it was such a steal and completely made up for what we invested on our Airbnb in Amsterdam!
^^ Bedroom – Sorry for the junky photo. Totally forgot to snap a pic before we settled in.
^^ Apartment View
^^ Headed To The Rooftop
^^ Our host, Francesco!
^^We tried a different pack of local beer every day.
^^ The view from our bedroom overlooking the courtyard at night :)
And that’s that, a short and sweet recap of where we stayed in Amsterdam and Barcelona! Charles and I really enjoyed our Airbnb accommodations and definitely plan to use it as our main method of booking rooms when we travel from now on (we booked our Chicago apartment through them as well – more on that to come soon.) For us, Airbnb is a great way to travel like a local while still maintaining the comforts of home.
I know some people are apprehensive about staying in a “stranger’s house” but all of the rooms listed on Airbnb are verified through reviews from other people who have stayed at each host’s home so you can know what to expect when you arrive to check in. Charles and I placed alot of value on these reviews as they played a major factor in influencing which accommodations we booked.
If you’ve never booked a room through Airbnb, I highly recommend giving it a try. And heck, here’s a $25 credit to use towards your first trip! Doesn’t get much better than that right?
Have you ever booked a room through Airbnb? How was your experience?