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Imagine if you could have a lavish house designed by the legendary Spanish architect Antoni Gaudí all for yourself at almost no cost. Stop imagining and start believing, because soon you’ll have the chance to rent Casa Vicens, Gaudí’s first Art Nouveau masterpiece in the city of Barcelona, on Airbnb for the price of just $1.
Where’s the catch, you ask? It’s a one-time opportunity for an overnight stay offered to up to two guests later in the fall. Booking opens at 10am Eastern on July 12 on a first-come-first-served basis, so you have to be lucky enough to be the first to hit the “reserve” button.
Built as a luxurious summerhouse for the family of Manuel Vicens i Montaner in 1885, Casa Vicens was Gaudí first-ever commission in Barcelona and one of the first buildings of the Art Nouveau movement. Blending Moorish and neoclassical architectural motifs, the spectacular building represents Gaudi’s signature style of vibrant textures and organic forms. In 2005, Casa Vicens was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site together with five other buildings in Barcelona designed by the famed architect. In 2017, a local bank that had purchased the house in 2014 transformed it into a museum. This fall, after 136 years in private hands, it will host guests for the first time as part of the dreamy vacation package.
The host, a worker at the museum named Emili Masferrer, clarifies on Airbnb that this exclusive experience is “not a contest” and that the symbolic price of $1 (plus taxes and fees) was made just “in order to be able to correctly process the booking.”
The lucky visitors will receive a private tour by Masferrer, who will take them on a deep dive through the building’s history. They will also be treated to a Gaudí-inspired Michelin star menu in a stunning dining room, a nightcap in the smoking room, and a full Mediterranean breakfast the next morning in the lush, private garden.
There are a few things to keep in mind before booking. Visitors must adhere to the local COVID-19 guidelines, which remain strict compared to the United States. For example, if you’re a group of two, you must show that you live in the same household to minimize the risk of spreading the virus. Also, children and pets are not allowed.
“We are excited to give guests the opportunity to experience this house as Gaudí designed it — as a nature oasis,” said Masferrer in a statement by the museum. “We are deeply committed to the preservation of Gaudí’s cultural heritage and it will be a great pleasure to share the building’s secrets and rich history with whoever books.”
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