A New Year a New start
Kia ora, kei te pehea koe.
Greetings to all the Airbnb Team, the creators, the hosts, and the travellers!
I hope this finds you, your families and friends well, in whatever wonderful country you hail from, or are wandering to.
2020 has been a rough time for the world. Covid19 has caused us to stop our lives. It has stopped our businesses, our social interaction, our normality. But in doing so, has also made us look around at ourselves and one another, the value of life has increased in our hearts and minds as we strive to overcome this debilitating and devastating pandemic that has changed our lives. I salute you all for keeping each other safe and well, for checking on neighbours we would never have spoken to, to ringing our parents more regularly, for spending time with children in a more focused way. For loving more.
Kia Kaha. (stay strong)
We are one today, this, the first day of 2021
I am thrilled to be involved and to start our year writing this piece for you.
My name is Kristan Lopes. I live in a paradise, called Whangamata, a beachside town in New Zealand. Population around 5,500 but, in summer and peak times, this explodes to around 100,000 lovely, barefoot, escapees from the drudgery of big city anonymity, work, eat and run lifestyles, and...traffic!
Our beautiful and blessed environment, allows us to swim, surf, kayak, fish, and dive for beautiful 'kaimoana' seafood.. straight out of the sea and shell. After a day on the water tired and spent from kayaking around islands, there is nothing nicer than fish and chips or pipis and cockles on one of the local free bbq areas dotted around the harbour.
My love of life and the sea led to purchase a wee yacht called Magic. So that my family and I could wake up upon the water wherever we chose to be. She's a lovely 8mtre Moonraker design, with 4 'berths', including a hatch which may look into the deepness of the milky way overhead, whilst one enjoys a read by Wade Davis,next to a solar charged light. She comes with a generous galley and of course the all important porta potti! i scrubbed her, I put on the pirate hat and lavished her with a few lovely sheepskins and some crisp sheets! Bliss!
This love of sharing the wonder of life has lead me to my latest venture here on Airbnb. I wanted to create a unique space and a complete experience for the traveller and adventurer. In turn it has created me!
The 'Magic' experience is ever evolving. I have been operating only a short time and I am pleased to say that the wonderful travellers whom Airbnb have put under my care whilst upon Magic, have been most generous with their joy, their humour and of course their tolerance to the all to familiar teething problems that everyone has.. Even down to that flutter of anticipation of meeting a complete stranger, telling them they are now a pirate, loading them onto that tiny dinghy (or one of my fishing kayaks) pointing at the boat and saying, here's where the adventure starts!!
Oh the faces of some of my marvellous guest who embrace the experience of something completely different from their normal lives. Bravo to each and every one of them. And as they paddle off feeling fully in control of their destiny, I like to yell from the shore "Mind the stingrays!"
Our beautiful harbour is home to a lot of stingrays some resident and some just to breed. Others like to hide from the orca which is seen on occassion to round them up. Marvellous team work..
I keep my phone on me and fully loaded at all times... I want my guests to be safe but to also feel safe enough to immerse themselves in the wonder of boat-life and the different perspective and sense of freedom it offers.
However, having a yacht on a swing mooring is not with out incident! Once I have had to kayak out to the dinghy late in the evening, as the sun was setting across the lovely harbour, Godwits recently flown in from Alaska dotting the sandbanks along the channel where Magic is.. and tow young ladies clinging onto the next boat, hysterical with so much laughter that they were disabled from starting that baby 2hp Evinrude to make it 50 metres back to Magic. Gorgeous! but also an unforgettable experience.
Of course the young ladies were thoroughly generous with their review and I look forward to seeing them back on New Years. In the 4 man tent with double bed out the back..
I started with having fishing kayaks (complete with life jackets sea anchor fishing rods and a handy dandy kit of lures and lines) which I said i would rent additional daily, however I just seem to now include it in the stay. It's all part and parcel for my guests to enjoy every second of the adventure.
Magic is ever evolving. I have a lot to learn and to polish up on certain areas. I see and make changes everytime. There is maintenance but also many factors to consider whilst on board and getting to be on board! The review is really important to me. Of course I aim for superhost status, but providing the all round experience to the best of my ability, and receiving constructive criticism, is the right way to provide that.
Once the gas bottle had run out,(my fault entirely of course but one i wont forget again to check) once the solar panel charger unit needed rebooting and once i had forgot to mention the portapotti used only one squirt to flush...
I have been incredibly lucky and huge thanks to Airbnb for allowing me to share what I love with people from all walks of life. I hope that all hosts have joined up with the first responder option that Airbnb has provided. This enables us to say thank you to those who have facilitated and taken on the strain of the emotional and physical well being of so many of us. I urge everyone to get on board as a host.
I love it so much all i can say is.. watch this space, Im expanding, I have big plans and hopefully I get to write another christmas story next year to fill you in on Magic and what I have planned and will achieve this wonderful new year.
So Let us raise a toast this day, to Airbnb, and to you all, Happy Newest of Years and may the gods above shine brightly upon your path.
Oh my gosh @Kristan13, what an adventure you're providing for guests! Adding your place to my bucket list - it's giving me such wanderlust 😍
It sounds like you've learnt a lot along the way too, which is all part of the fun!
I'm intrigued by what your catch contains in the pic of the fishing kayak? 🎣
Kia Ora Kristan,
Whangamata is a beautiful place to escape to and another of those coastal hubs that draw crowds.
Thank you for your post and sharing your ‘Magic’ - All the best for 2021 with your hosting journey and welcome aboard the STR wave.
Hey @Kristan13 ,
Kia Ora from across the ditch! Umfffff.....you’re story makes me want to drop everything and head to your part of the world right away!!! In one word this post is well...er...‘Magic-al’, shall we say 😉
I’ve saved your listing in my favourites, so don’t be surprised if you see me down your way with three other wanna-be-pirates in my wife and my two little munchkins (aged 5 and 2.5) who revel in pirate stories, especially where there is a prospect of finding some treasure.
Magic seems to have everything we never knew we wanted...tight spaces, seclusion from society, aquascapes, and myriad of sea creatures for company. I’m sure my kids would find great amusement in trying out the Porta- potti...the name in itself is so catchy. Besides, how can one look past the offer of kayaks, crab pots, beach bbq’s and fish and chips.
We’ve been toying with the idea of campervaning across NZ, something that we’ve never done before; NZ seems to be the perfect location to have this experience. Maybe we can add ‘Magic’ to our ‘To Do’ list, as we’ve never lived in a boat before (barring the house boat experience in Kerala, South India).
All the best with this project band you expansion plans.
Thanks once again, for giving us all a great start to the New Year.
To endless traveler!