Airbnb Launches Experiences In New Orleans, Offering Nearly 25 Activities Led By Locals
NEW ORLEANS — Airbnb launched Experiences in New Orleans, offering nearly 25 unique, one-of-a-kind activities handcrafted and led by locals throughout the city, all bookable on the platform. With a record number of people visiting New Orleans, Airbnb Experiences is creating new economic opportunities for residents by allowing them to unlock their talents and interests and make money from them, catering to the hundreds of millions of people that use Airbnb’s platform to discover unique and authentic travel experiences.
“Airbnb Experiences are one-of-a-kind activities handcrafted and led by locals and connect travelers to an authentic side of New Orleans," says Riccardo Ulivi, head of North American operations for Airbnb Experiences. "We’re excited to empower New Orleans residents to showcase their passions and skills and what makes the city so special, from the history of individual neighborhoods to its incredible culinary scene."
From learning the legendary New Orleans Bounce dance, to making glitter shoes with a member of a famous Mardi Gras krewe, to a walking tour that celebrates the powerful women of the 7th Ward, travelers can immerse themselves in New Orleans and explore a side of the city they might not otherwise get to see. Experiences can be booked by locals, too, as a way to meet new people and explore a different side of their city.
Below is just a sampling of some of the Experiences now bookable on the platform:
Modern Matriarch Tour of the 7th Ward: Join host Gia, a New Orleans native who spent years researching women of color in the 7th Ward, on a tour that allows you to experience the places where women have innovated, contributed to the community, and led the culture of New Orleans through food, art and business. You’ll visit local current powerhouses and the female business leaders and have the opportunity shop at their local businesses.
Craft Muses Shoes: Host Tracie is a member of one of the most popular and first-ever all female Mardi Gras krewe, the Muses. Known for throwing handcrafted glitter shoes from their float, Tracie will show her guests all the secrets to making a fabulous shoe that you probably won’t want to give away.
Music for the Mind, Yoga for the Body: Sometimes you need a break from the liveliness of New Orleans, and there’s no better place to do so than at host Ajax’s Magnolia Yoga Studio. Using the music of New Orleans as the background for your practice, guests will come out of this Experience feeling refreshed and re-energized for another day of letting the good times roll.
Learn the Legendary New Orleans Bounce Dance: Everyone knows that New Orleanians loves to dance, so kick your trip off with host Mika’s class to keep up with the locals. Mika will introduce you to Miss Moe Joe, a New Orleans native and dancer, to teach you the legendary New Orleans bounce Dance. After your class, Mika will take you out to her favorite spot to test out your moves.
Treme King Hollis Walking Tour: Host and King Hollis, a former Mardi Gras and Second Line "King of Treme," will give guests an insider’s look into the history and traditions of Mardi Gras and also introduce you to the local legends and lore that make New Orleans such a vibrant place.
Bayou Blue Crab Boil: Guests will join host Andre and meet at a boat to see the live blue crabs caught earlier that day. Next guests will watch as Andre prepares the boiling pot to cook the crabs, and then learn how to open, peel and eat the great catch of the day.
Gia Hamilton, host of the Modern Matriarch Tour of the 7th Ward says, "Modern Matriarch is an upcoming book and tour that was developed over years of research and oral histories with my grandmother and other elder women and mentors who shared their stories with me. My intention was to support visitors with getting to know the city from the perspective of powerful women who contributed to the 7th ward neighborhood and to see the homes, businesses and learn the stories of women of color today who are leaving their mark and creating cultural spaces."
When asked how her experience embodies the quintessential New Orleans experience, Hamilton says, "New Orleans is often times referred to as the most African or Caribbean city in the country and I share how this city acts as a portal of people, culture, and relics. In order to understand how many cities have been formed, shaped and influenced, you must understand the unique history of New Orleans.
During the system of plaćage women of color learn to subvert their power and use it to create generational wealth, free family members from slavery and to sustain matriarchal lines. During the tricentennial and beyond, I believe it is important to raise visibility of this lineage, celebrate those innovators and to inspire more to create opportunities for freedom, mutual respect and creativity."
– by Alexa Renée Harrison, associate news editor