Urban Explorations Urban Explorations

Want to Sleep Like a King, Queen or Borgia For a Night? Stay in these Historic Airbnbs

Whether it’s the former home of a national icon or an extravagant estate in Europe, the sharing economy offers the chance to go back in time for a night

A sumptuously appointed room within the Borgia family's castle in Tuscany, now available for everyday people to rent. (Airbnb)
smithsonianmag.com

When a listing says “Property type: Castle,” it’s probably gonna be good. The rental company Airbnb has highlighted some of its most royal accommodations around the world, but the domains of kings and queens arent the only thing travelers can find on the website. Airbnb, and other rental companies, offer lodgings that are important to history in a variety of ways: houses where literary figures wrote their novels, famous clock towers that have become landmarks and, in at least one case, the home of a civil rights icon.

See below for five historic places that anyone can live in for a night:

Rosa Parks’ Home, Washington, D.C.

(Image courtesy of Flickr user Rain0975)

Rosa Parks was a civil rights and anti-sexual-violence activist with a story larger than the famous bus boycott she sparked—and now one of her homes is available to rent. The Mansion on O Street, as it’s now called, has been frequented by famous individuals, including presidents and rock stars, and Parks lived there for more than ten years. Her room is a steep $500 a night, but it comes with more than the average historic rental. The current owner of the mansion, H. H. Leonards, who’s owned the estate for more than 30 years, knew Parks while she lived there and has plenty of stories. 

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