9 Art Galleries That Double as Airbnbs
AD circles the globe—from Baltimore to Seattle to Japan—to find the best spaces where you can sleep surrounded by art
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Opening a new art gallery is challenging, and keeping it open even more arduous unless you have unlimited resources. The latest crop of small-gallery owners has discovered a way to display one-of-a-kind works from emerging artists while making ends meet: by cohabitating gallery space and sleeping space, thanks to Airbnb. While financially beneficial to the owners (and in some cases, the artists as well), it also has myriad benefits for guests desiring an immersive art experience.
“If somebody spends five minutes in front of a piece [at a gallery], that’s an incredibly long time,” says Matthew Kellen, owner of Open House Contemporary, an art gallery Airbnb in Chicago. “If you’re talking to your friend and the art is in the background the whole time, it starts to come into your brain more.”
Owners like Kellen have found artists to be keen on the concept, too, because it gives them an opportunity to intimately display their work to a captive audience. Whether the works are for sale or for viewing pleasure only, exposure to these pieces can help guests forge a deeper connection with the community in which they’re staying.
“We joke that you can buy art that you want to marry, but [here] you can just sleep with art,” says Kascha Snavely, who co-owns a gallery-Airbnb in Seattle called the Vestibule with her husband, John.
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