Things That Matter

Quench Your Wanderlust With 14 Of The Most Magical Airbnbs In All Of Latin America

If, like most young people out there, you want to experience traveling independently before you settle down into adulthood, you’re in luck. Latin America is the perfect place to quench your wanderlust. Latin America has become the go-to destination for young travelers because of its affordability as well as for the famous hospitality of Latin Americans. From Mexico to Peru, Latin America is full of locations and adventures right within your grasp.

Luckily, lodging during travel has become easier than ever thanks to lodging startup Airbnb. Airbnb has made finding a place to stay while traveling as easy as a few clicks of a button. So, if you’re not exactly a roughing-it, hostel-hopping kind of person, there’s no need to worry. 

We’ve compiled a list of magical Airbnb places to stay in during your next trip south of the border. 

1.  Mexico City Penthouse, Mexico

Credit: Airbnb

According to Airbnb user Tom “The flat was amazing – superb location with great restaurants and bars nearby. From here you can walk a lot of central DF…It’s a fantastic base to explore the city”.

2. Cabana Floripa, Florianopolis, Brazil

Credit: Airbnb

According to Airbnb User Jessicka, this Cabana is the pinnacle of peaceful living: “Honestly, if was the coolest and most peaceful place I have ever stayed and I’ve stayed in a lot of cool places…The animals, the connection to nature, the beauty… waking up here every day was the most beautiful thing I’ve ever experienced”.

3. Cottage In Governador Celso Ramos, Brazil.

Credit: Airbnb

According to Airbnb user Aubert, this beach-front cottage is “highly recommended for couples, those looking for seclusion, nature lovers – for those wanting to go out in Camboriu”

4.Skylodge Adventure Suites, Urubamba, Peru

Credit: Airbnb

According to Airbnb user Summer, staying in a Skylodge was “one of the coolest experiences of [her] life. “You aren’t just paying for a place to sleep but a full adventure”.

5. Seashell House, Isla Mujeres, Mexico.

Credit: Airbnb

According to Airbnb-er Mary, the Shellhouse was “as beautiful as described”. “When you walk up the driveway, you will be awe struck at the sight before you,” she said in her review. “Everything is perfect and clean and so inviting”.

6. Ilhabela Loft, São Paulo, Brazil.

Credit: Airbnb

Airbnb user Daniel said that this loft was a “great place to relax and get away from it all”. He went on to rave: “If you’re looking for a great place to stay in Ilhabela at an incredible price, look no further!”. 

7. Cabaña in San Carlos de Bariloche, Río Negro, Argentina.

Credit: Airbnb

Airbnb user Natalie had nothing but great things to say about this Argentinean cabin: ” This cabin is beautiful inside and out…The view from the bedroom is amazing to wake up to as is the view from the deck and the grill…Definitely a highlight and best value we’ve come across in a month of being in Argentina”

8. Sunset Rooftop, Havana,Cuba

Credit: Airbnb

Airbnb user Maggie said this this apartment was “amazing” with a “wonderful chef and manager and staff!”. She went on to recommend that other guests “take them up on their dinner – delicious and filling home cooking, the best Cuban food we had in Havana!”. Noted!

9. Ocean Front Apartment, Aguada, Puerto Rico

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Airbnb user Shelby raved about the location of this ocean-front apartment: “Great area, close to plenty of restaurants, AMAZING BEACH VIEW…So clean & a beautiful place”.

10. Villa del Peñon Suites, Cali, Colombia

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Airbnb-er Veronica said that this penthouse was “very clean and well kept”. Also that “the neighborhood makes you feel like you’re in Europe with all the shops nearby”.

11. Villa Drago Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

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Airbnb user Sylvia said that “this place exceeded our expectations in so many ways”. “Not only is it one of the coolest houses we’ve seen, but the hospitality,” she continued, but “the location and the amenities were 1st class. Truly a wonderful experience”.

12. Beach Front House, La Libertad, El Salvador

Credit: Airbnb

Airbnb user Staci had nothing but kind things to say about this beach-front house: “The home is stunning. No rocks in sand walking done to the beach and the water was warm”.

13. Sacred Geome Tree House, Montezuma, Costa Rica

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Airbnb-er Lilly said that this treehouse “was far more than what I could have expected”. “It was also on a farm!” she continued. “We saw all there vegetables and plants. There was also a yoga house that we were able to see”.

14. Domo Cajon del Maipo, San José de Maipo, Chile

Credit: Airbnb

Airbnr user Corrina said this this dome was an “absolutely gorgeous accommodation”. “Words can’t describe the feeling of having clouds sway by beneath you”, she said. “The dome is gorgeous, and everything that you need is there”.

Lisa Frank And Hotels.com Created An Apartment That Looks Like The Inside Of Your 3rd Grade Backpack

Culture

Lisa Frank And Hotels.com Created An Apartment That Looks Like The Inside Of Your 3rd Grade Backpack

LisaFrank / Instagram

Calling all ’90s kids. Was there ever a better feeling in the world than getting a new shimmery, colorful Lisa Frank binder? We all know that one person who had the whole kit; pencils, erasers, notebooks, stickers. Maybe that person was you or maybe they were someone you were always just a little jealous of, whether you admit it or not. It was a rainbow-colored explosion in every elementary and middle school in the ’90s. Yet, Lisa Frank stationery wants to make the experience immersive. You now have a chance to stay in an apartment decorated in the signature rainbow-colored and slightly psychedelic style of the ’90s brand.

The Lisa Frank apartment, a collaboration between Lisa Frank and Hotels.com, screams nostalgia.

Credit: Hotels.com

Lisa Frank teamed up with Hotels.com to bring your ’90s backpack to life. Hospitality company Barsala, which specializes in delivering the best value for price to their customers. A lucky few fans will be transported to the wonderful world of fluffy rainbows, unicorns, golden retrievers, and technicolor dolphins. The Lisa Frank-themed penthouse is in the Los Angeles Fashion District in downtown. But if you want to stay there, you better hurry. The room is only available for a couple of weeks this month only.

“We wanted to design a room that celebrates all things ’90s, and nothing screams childhood nostalgia more than these iconic designs,” Adam Jay, president of Hotels.com told Curbed LA.

The bed has Lisa Frank sheets and duvet and there are pillows with the trademark colorful kitties and puppies of the brand.

Credit: LisaFrank / Instagram

The bedroom features a hot-pink four-poster bed with a light-up canopy outfitted with Lisa Frank’s signature chromatic bedding and rainbow-hued curtains. There’s a wall-sized mural featuring some of Lisa Frank’s most iconic designs like the rainbows coming out of fluffy clouds, the bear dressed like an Elton John-styled magician, and all of the animals and characters we remember.

The bathroom is an underwater technicolor oasis with all of the Lisa Frank nautical designs we all recognize.

Credit: LisaFrank / Instagram

The bathroom walls are decorated with Lisa Frank’s underwater scenes that graced out school folders for years. Heart-shaped bubbles, rainbow colored tropical fish, and the famous pink and blue dolphins cover the bathroom walls. It is everything you ever wanted your parents to do for your bedroom and bathroom growing up.

Of course, Lisa Frank’s chromatic animal print collection is on full display in the kitchen. 

Credit: LisaFrank / Instagram

You’ll find a true rainbow color spectrum in this kitchen from bright pink to pale blue and all the colors in between. Lisa Frank’s iconic animal prints come to life on the cupboards. Yellow zebra print, a red leopard print that fades to orange. The best part? The kitchen comes fully stocked with the most iconic vibrant-colored candy from your childhood —like Gushers, Pop-Tarts, Pixy Stix, and Planters Cheez Balls.

Get in touch with your inner pop artist with all the stationery and Lisa Frank goodies you can take home.

Credit: Hotels.com

If all the rainbows and colors are making you inspired, next to the lounge area, there’s an office space complete with all the cutesy rainbow Lisa Frank stationery you could ever want. The desk comes supplied with pencils, post-its, notepads and stickers. If ever we wanted to smuggle something out of a hotel room, this is it. 

Guests even get limited edition robes, slippers, and sleep-masks.

Credit: Hotels.com

With your booking, you get to take all of the goodies you like. The candy, the stationery, the Lisa Frank-embroidered robes, and slippers, all yours for the rate of $199 a night.

Yes, Lisa Frank is a real person, but the art was a collaborative effort.

Credit: LisaFrank / Instagram

The Lisa Frank brand first rose to prominence in the 1980s and ’90s as purveyors of hyper-bright, animal-centric school supplies, including Trapper Keepers, pencil bags, backpacks, stickers, and stationery. Lisa Frank is a real person and started the company while she was still in college. However, many artists collaborated to design the illustrations. 

“The artwork was a collaborative effort, but it all began with me putting it on paper as a marker rendering,” Rondi Kutz, who was Lisa Frank Inc.’s Senior Designer and Product Development Leader told HelloGiggles. “The concepts came from Lisa, James (her husband), or me, so I can say that some of the characters were my idea and original design. But by the time it went on to an illustrator to redraw it, adding detail, then to a computer artist who rendered it on the computer (which entailed hundreds of hours of work), it had many artists’ stamps on it.” Kutz went on to work at the company until 2002.

Other notable themed properties available to rent (not on Hotels.com) include Bella Swan’s house from “Twilight,” a “Taco Bell inn” pop-up and the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile. Stays at the Lisa Frank Apartment are available only from October 11 through 27. The cost per night is $199 and the room can only be booked through Hotels.com.

READ: This Mexican Hotel Will Give You Unlimited Tequila And Let You Sleep Inside A Tequila Barrel

Mexico City Is The Latest City To Fall Victim To Airbnb’s Gentrification

Things That Matter

Mexico City Is The Latest City To Fall Victim To Airbnb’s Gentrification

Instagram / nurifergar

When we think about Airbnb, we usually think about holidays. Who hasn’t used an Airbnb? Or, at least, who hasn’t at least thought about using an Airbnb? After all, there are so many benefits to booking an Airbnb: you can reserve a spot that suits you – all through an app – and you can directly communicate directly with the owner of your temporary home. Heck, you can even opt in to living with said owner, and getting to know the real niche, hidden gems of a new location. The fact that your feedback on the accuracy of their listing hangs over their head means that Airbnb owners generally have to be accountable. But, not all is well when it comes to the world of Airbnb. Or, should we say, Airbnb is what’s not right, in some places of the world.

Mexico City has really been feeling the impact of gentrification at the hands of Airbnb.

Instagram / @2kadin1sohbet

Before we get ahead of ourselves, let’s talk about gentrification. Because to be honest, it mostly sounds like a fancy word real estate agents use to convince people to buy up property. And, that’s not too far from the truth. Gentrification is the process where an area – most commonly neighborhoods – become more pricey. This can happen through the introduction of local amenities, property refurbishment and development, or even just simply an increase of demand for housing in a particular area. Most of the time, it’s a combination of these things that feed gentrification. And while this is great for people who own property in gentrified neighborhoods, this is less great for the poor, who eventually get pushed out of the place that they call home.

Local tenants are finding that they’re being pushed out of their homes, while property owners make room for vacationers.

Instagram / @kirstiwinnberg

Where Mexico City is concerned, this has meant that those fortunate – or, wealthy – enough to own property and land have seized on the opportunity that is Airbnb. Local tenants are finding that they’re being pushed out of their homes, while property owners make room for vacationers willing to pay multiple times the average rent price. “Here in the historic center, we are aware of dozens of buildings that used to be social housing or middle-class housing that have now been completely converted into Airbnb. The biggest apartment buildings are being converted into hotels, but when it isn’t possible to change the legal land use, they are converted into Airbnb,” a local resident said in a recent interview with Truthout. 

But Mexico City isn’t the only city suffering from the rise of Airbnb.

Instagram / @arisoiko_photo

If you thought that this was a problem just for Mexico City, you’d be wrong. Protest posters in Amsterdam read things such as, “Stop the eviction of Amsterdam!” during a December march against the changes Airbnb had brought to the city. Reports from The Guardian say that in 2018, Barcelona received 32 million tourists – which is approximately 20 times the residential population. The city now boasts graffiti saying, “Tourists go home, refugees welcome.”

What’s frustrating locals a lot goes beyond gentrification, into social and cultural shifts.

Instagram / @nurifergar

Locals are seeing their neighborhoods turn into transitory destinations, rather than a community built on strong relationships. “Before Airbnb, you had neighbors you could depend on. They looked out for you. If you went out of town, they’d get your mail, your paper,” New Orleans resident, Janice Coatney, said in an interview with the Huffington Post. “You just had more of a neighborly neighborhood.” 

However, not all is doom and gloom.

Instagram / @riot_code_23

A few countries have introduced legislation in order to curb the socio-economic changes Airbnb has brought to cities around the world. Barcelona authorities placed a moratorium on new hotels in 2015 – and Airbnb hosts are required to hold a license to operate. It’s now illegal for entire apartments to be rented out for less than 30 days in the city of New York. Amsterdam has a cap on the number of nights that Airbnb hosts can rent out their apartments, having reduced that number from 60 to 30. So, policy-wise, these cities are trying to preserve their sense of community, without completely sacrificing their tourism industry.

Another alternative can be found in the aptly-named Fairbnb.

Instagram / @italianembassyinlondon

It’s essentially Airbnb, but with a twist: 50 percent of the revenue made from hosting a visitor is donated to local community projects. Fairbnb has sought to protect neighborhoods by also establishing a “real homesharing” policy – where hosts may only place a maximum of two houses on the Fairbnb market.

Ultimately, though, while we can see the buds of change beginning to blossom, it may be a while yet before it takes root in these gentrified neighborhoods. Here’s hoping that Mexico City won’t suffer too much from the strain of both migration and tourism.