Airbnb Offers Free One-Year Stay in Sicily

Photo credits Nick Day
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by In Trieste

Airbnb is offering a free one-year stay in a newly-refurbished property in the small rural village of Sambuca in Sicily.

The winning applicant, who can take up to three family members or friends with them, must rent out one of the house’s rooms on Airbnb but they can keep the profits.

The formerly abandoned property was bought by Airbnb as part of Sambuca’s €1 house campaign, launched in 2018 to address the village’s declining population by promoting cultural heritage and sustainable tourism.

The campaign has breathed new life into the village which has become a multi-ethnic community, with 143 properties sold (by both local authorities and private individuals) to families from 38 countries around the world, reports Italian news agency ANSA.

Airbnb says the refitted home “combines the needs of contemporary living with the charm of Sicilian architecture.”

The house will be available from 30 June and applicants must apply by 18 February via the Airbnb website, which contains full details of the offer.

Applicants will be asked to attach a short essay outlining how they would organise their life in Sicily and how they would see themselves as a host, “sharing a private room of your Sicilian house with guests coming from all around the world.”

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