Saturday, November 5, 2011

where to stay when you travel

Right before we planned our trip to NY, I read a "Guide to New York City" from A Cup Of Joy.  So, when we started planning our trip I went back to her site. All  the hotels she recommended were either booked or way over our budget. She also recommended website, and I went ahead and registered there. Basically, it is a website where you can rent an apartment or a house or a bedroom or even a futon. We were looking for apartments in Manhattan, hoping we could get the "whole/entire apartment" deal. I wrote several people and said a few things about me and my hubby. I waited for responses and got several rejections, and lost a couple thousands of nerve cells before we finally found a great room in Lower East Side. The pictures looked great and the host (a Japanese girl) responded  right away. We wrote back and forth with her and got to know each other before our arrival. She turned out to be great. We had a separate bedroom (clean, airy, cozy) and shared her bathroom (which was better than I expected). We were out all day and came home pretty late. So, it just worked out great. We lived 10-15 min from the subway and a walking distance from East and West Villages.

Now, we had a really bad time finding a place to stay in Boston. Nobody from had answered and all hotels were booked or way too expensive. I started looking for B&B and even tried calling one in Cambridge (the lady said she was all booked). Finally, hubby found and booked a good hotel in Back Bay area. And that night, right before our trip, we had a good sleep, satisfied that we had everything arranged.
When we arrived in NY and were on our way to our airbnb apartment, a lady from that Cambridge B&B called me back to ask if I was still looking for a room. I didn't want to waste my precious phone minutes, so I briefly said that we got a room, thank you, good bye. While I was hanging up my call, hubby was starting to curse. Apparently, our hotel room was cancelled! I dial back that B&B lady and asked her for room :)
She gave me the phone of her neighbor who was renting a bedroom. I immediately called that lady. We  talked about the details and the room was ours! I couldn't believe that it was that easy. A day before our trip to Boston, I called her again and made sure she was holding our bedroom for us :)
It turned out great too! Her house was 10 min away from Central Square Train, 5 min away from Whole Foods! We had a comfy bedroom and shared her bathroom. She even had light breakfast for us in the mornings.

Both of our hosts were incredible. Youko,  our NY host, was a fashion designer. I loved her apartment and decor. It was an inspiration for us to have a simple, elegant, clean and minimalistic place in the future.
Our Boston host, Francis, was a inspiration of a different kind! She is a professional Chinese chef (if I understood it correctly). She is very well traveled, she is sooooo interesting to talk to. She just had both of her hips replaced a few weeks before- but she looked great. She has art in her home from all over the place- it was great discovering some unique pieces on the walls from different countries.

I think we got very lucky!

1 comment:

  1. It was interesting and fun trying new options for accommodations. Kind of an adventure!