Renting Around the World
Vacation rental websites were big news in 2011 and, as a result, the web has become glutted with similar sites offering by-owner rentals. Very few websites actually curate their selection like, for example, the modern vacation rentals collection at Boutique-Homes.com Finding the perfect lodging for your vacation is stressful enough without having to scroll through thousands of listings for bland apartments in boring neighborhoods. That's why we like Wimdu.
Wimdu is a relatively new website that has already assembled an impressive array of rentals in Europe, the USA, and especially in Asia (where vacation rentals aren't very common). Wimdu is focused on providing travelers with a truly cultural experience. The site hooks guests up with property owners who can give them local tips and recommendations. Check out this neat video featuring a Wimdu guest meeting his host in Berlin to get an idea about how the website works.
The company is very responsive to client inquiries. When we asked them to recommend a few design-conscious cities for us to write about, they immediately recommended New York and Tokyo, and sent us tons of information and links. Below are a few of the cool rentals we were able to pull up easily by using the site. To start with, let's take a look at Tokyo apartments.
Tokyo is definitely one of the world's most remarkable cities and a hot spot for trend hunters looking for the next cool thing. Wimdu does not disappoint with their offerings. From traditional houses to funky studios in hip neighborhoods, there's something for everyone.
Check out this colorful apartment in the youthful Shibuya area of Tokyo with its welcoming sign and friendly vibe. We especially like the butterfly painted over the door; very hip.
Or, for traveling musicians, a soundproofed apartment with a recording studio built right in – for $50 per night. The owner even offers to assist in the recording process! So don't forget to pack your guitar before jetting off to Tokyo. Now onto New York.
They say if you can make it in New York, you can make it anywhere. But finding a place to rest your head in the city that never sleeps? That might prove more difficult. Luckily, Wimdu makes it very easy to find New York rentals without issue. The website allows browsers to filter search results by neighborhood, which is ideal for a large and varied city like New York, as well as by amenities and type of accommodation. But even without search filters, Wimdu brought up hundreds of neat New York rentals, all of which are more interesting and character-filled than a tiny shoebox room at the local mega-chain motel.
How about this creative loft in up and coming Mott Haven? The cool blend of color and industrial design plus the personalized message from the owner is very appealing.
We also like this sunny apartment in Little Italy, which has lots of charm and beautiful furnishings. We especially like the owner's message regarding the small size of the kitchen: "While it's not exactly built for chefs or those who like to cook a lot, consider coming to NYC and doing as New Yorkers do… eat out!" Spoken like a true New Yorker.
We've had a lot of fun browsing through Wimdu's listings and daydreaming about where to go next. We suggest you do the same. You can check out Wimdu here. MT