In her earlier post, Angela mentioned that we found in Glasgow the epitome of the Airbnb experience, and she is correct without a doubt.
But first, let me be very clear on this.
We have had the pleasure and extremely good fortune of staying at some spectacular Airbnb properties around the world, immersing ourselves in authentic culture and cuisine, and meeting hosts that we now consider dear friends. The Airbnb dynamic, if you are bold enough to openly embrace it, can be one of the most rewarding benefits of world travel.
It can also be something of a gamble. You are, after all, putting your vacation experience into the hands of individuals. Amateurs, if you will. So don’t expect turn-down service, consistently hot showers, or reliable wifi connectivity every time.
For us, the great reward of new international friends is worth the minimal risk of lukewarm showers, so we book with Airbnb as often as we can.
And, every once in a while, the gamble pays off generously. Not only with good friends that you plan to see again on future trips, but also with the accommodations and amenities that would put most four-star hotels to shame. Such was the case when we stayed with Bill and Ev at their penthouse apartment in downtown Glasgow.
It really is a penthouse apartment on the 11th floor of an amazing complex overlooking the River Clyde. And Bill and Ev were not only gracious hosts but also fascinating storytellers. World travelers in their own right, they provided insight into the history and culture of Glasgow in specific, the UK in general, and the wider world when the opportunity arose.
I could mention the in-room coffee maker, the abundance of Scottish sheep’s milk toiletries, the luxurious towel warmer, the breathtaking view from our private balcony, or even the bountiful breakfast each morning. But the best part, by far, was getting to know Bill and Ev.
If you get the opportunity to stay with them on your next trip to Glasgow, do so by all means. And listen to Bill’s recommendations on where to go and what to see while you’re in the city. He mapped out a self-guided walking tour along the river bank, suggested some excellent pubs for both food and drink, and even provided sage advice on where a Yank like myself could go dance with wild abandon to genuine Celtic music.
Today’s expat evaluation: +5 for the best Airbnb experience to date
P.S. Among other things, Bill and Ev are wine merchants and owners of rose-wine.com. Check out Bill’s blog while you’re on the site!