[FESTIVAL] The 911 and Our Guest the Nurse

Former Community Manager in
London, United Kingdom
Former Community Manager

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This topic is part of the CC Hospitality Festival.

It was written by @Brian1613  for the Community Center.




I’ve had so many wonderful interactions with guests! One, in particular, was where I believe that both my team, and Airbnb were at their very best. 


Last March, we hosted a very COVID-weary nurse, boyfriend, and her parents. They were supposed to go to St. Maarten, but travel to the island was halted.


We were their “plan B.” 


My Guest Care staff put together a lovely welcome package, with special treats, and a really lovely card that we designed in-house. My teaching kitchen does scratch-bake daily for our guests. We welcome our guests personally, and a batch of my fresh key lime cookies await them with their house guest book.


On the second day, I was baking kanelbullar (Ka-neel-BOO-lar), a beautiful, fragrant Swedish cinnamon roll with a hint of cardamom. All of a sudden, there was a smell that wasn’t cinnamon rolls: It was sewage. Looking out at our pool deck, it was everywhere.


Our 96-year-old home, on the National Register of Historic Places, had an equally old sewer pipe collapse. Our emergency plumber confirmed the worst. This wasn’t a quick fix. 


We contacted Airbnb immediately. Working with them, we found another place that made our guest happy. They cancelled the remainder of our active reservations, so we could work on repairs. 


I felt so badly, for these nice people. We had clearly let them down. Yes, we refunded their money, without a thought.  I also had my staff pull out a gift card for their complete stay, which we gave them, with our profound apologies. Every kindness that we’ve ever done has been rewarded back to us tenfold. It’s not just about the money. It’s about living a life, hosting, that enriches us all.


Our building’s problems were more profound. We’ve been closed for some time, getting permits, and struggling through COVID shortages, to get our place remodeled. In that time, while we plan new things for our future guests, I have truly missed the day-to-day interactions with our many visitors from around the world


Some people see hosting as renting a room, or a house. We see it as hospitality, as bringing people experiences, and comfort, that we would give to our families, and close friends.  


We look forward to inviting our favorite nurse back to the new Epic, when we reopen this winter.



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