- Associated Press - Saturday, February 11, 2017

ST. LOUIS (AP) - The Airbnb listing is blunt and honest, describing a “not-so-great” home in a predominantly low-income area of St. Louis surrounded by an abundance of vacant houses and abandoned buildings. Perhaps surprisingly, it has generated plenty of guests.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch (https://bit.ly/2kQ9VrU ) reported that Natalie Vowell of north St. Louis has received quite a bit of social media attention for the home she lists on Airbnb, a home-sharing site, under the title: “Home is Where The Hood Is.”

“Perfect for the intrepid traveler who enjoys living on the edge. Provides a unique glimpse into life in a working-class, low-income neighborhood, a mismanaged Midwest city, and decades of urban decay. Abundance of vacant houses and abandoned buildings nearby for UrbanEx adventurers,” the listing reads.

Vowell said she and her husband were trying to be humorous, but honest.

“Don’t advertise you have a palace when you have a tent,” Vowell said.

Guests have included students, professionals and travelers attending local conferences.

Peta-Gaye Green said she and her husband spent two weeks at the north city condo while they looked for a home they could buy to eventually sell or rent out. Green said they were drawn to the area from Atlanta because of lower housing costs. She was surprised to find the neighborhood was quiet and felt safe.

Vowell and her husband started posting homes on Airbnb last year. Their no-frills accommodation in north city costs $29 a night, before taxes. Another home on Airbnb called Punk Rock Flop House is marketed to “the budget-conscious traveling band or introverted artist who seeks the gritty, yet low-risk, ‘squatter experience.’”

Despite the humorous tone, Vowell said she isn’t making fun of the community or the realities of poverty.


Information from: St. Louis Post-Dispatch, https://www.stltoday.com

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