US: Airbnb is partnering with developer RXR Realty to convert elements of New York City commercial properties into a “new category of urban lodging.”
The units are essentially hotel suites, with living rooms and kitchens, which can only be booked through Airbnb, and representing the company’s most significant move yet into the traditional hotel space.
The first project is at the Rockefeller Plaza in Manhattan, where the companies are converting ten floors into “high-end apartment-style suites”. They are also exploring collaboration at other RXR properties, including a development across from the Brooklyn Navy Yard.
Guests will be supported by a digitally enabled, dedicated concierge service staffed by local and knowledgeable “hosts” who will provide guests with a highly personalised experience.
“With the lines between business travel and leisure travel becoming increasingly blurred, RXR and Airbnb are offering a travel experience that immerses guests in a dynamic, thriving community in the heart of Rockefeller Center that’s vastly different than anything else in the market today. We’re proud to partner with one of the most innovative companies in the world to provide a unique and authentic travel experience unlike any other in New York City,” said Scott Rechler, chairman and CEO of RXR Realty.
“When we launched Airbnb over 10 years ago, it was immediately clear how people opening their homes could make guests feel like locals. With this new partnership with RXR, we hope to provide that same unique feeling, in the form of new spaces in the heart of Midtown Manhattan and elsewhere so that everyone can enjoy an authentic New York experience. We are so proud to work with RXR to offer magical travel through this new program,” said Brian Chesky, co-founder, CEO and head of community.