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The Aloha State welcomes plenty of visitors from the nifty fifty and aboard each and every day, but apparently one town is calling back the welcome wagon. We guess all that tourist attention is a little too much, and residents of one town would prefer that you would snorkel, sun, and swim somewhere else.
Residents of Kailua on the windward side of Oahu aren’t really cool with all the attention that they’ve received, and it probably doesn’t help that even President Obama has stopped by pretty much every year for some rest and relaxation.
As a result the town’s neighborhood board has actually asked the state’s tourism board to kind of stop promoting Kailua as an overnight option, and that they would prefer that tourists not spend the night in town. The problem isn’t regarding sharing the beaches and parks—seems like they’re fine with that—it’s that the overnight guests don’t really create a sense of community.
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We've found the perfect vacation rental. Not a hotel room and not a time-share, but an honest-to-goodness home let out on Airbnb.com. After numerous stays in everything from boat cabins to futons in high-rise studios, we finally hit the jackpot with a ranch house* in Palm Springs, CA.
Now, Palm Springs may not be your cup of tea, but our slice of heaven in an unassuming neighborhood serves as a blueprint for successful vacation rentals everywhere, and all because it has these six things going for it:
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Pardon us for uttering two very dirty words: vacation rentals. Ew, right? Renting someone else's house is like, for old people and big families and stuff, not for cool people. Or so that's what we thought up until this week, because lovely little Jetsetter.com has gone and launched Jetsetter Homes, with villas and condos and beach bungalows (oh my!) to add to the variety of hotels regular Jetsetter already offers.
Yes, they'll be on limited sale. Yes, you can score a first booking credit of $500 if you book for at least five nights before the end of October. It's standard Jetsetter stuff, just taken to another level.
It maybe seems like there's nothing Jetsetter can't do, what with their grabbing the first discounted rooms at the Armani Hotel Dubai, offering the occasional private jet deal and even planning your trip for you if you're into that sort of thing. They still haven't quite gotten their grip around First Class seats on regular airlines, but that's something we're willing to wait for.
So the Tour de France ended yesterday and our favorite celeb Twitterer Lance Armstrong was not able to capture his former glory, finishing only in third place. Naturally, we had to check up on his Twitter page to see how he felt about that and while we were there, we learned that he used a vacation rentals agency to secure housing for his family in France.
Thanks to @homeaway for hosting me and my family in Paris
Let’s quit being technical about it; the summer travel season is upon us. If you haven’t booked your trip yet, you might want to think about a vacation rental. For the same price as a hotel, or sometimes less, you can often score more amenities and space. Unfortunately, you usually have to clean up your own mess—no maid service for us slobs.
If this type of accommodation freedom sounds up your alley, we've compiled a few of the best sites to help you pick out your dream home away from home. Just make sure that you register your rental with HomeAway before you send your payment to the owner. It’s totally free, and you’ll be covered up to $5,000—just in case the place is a little less than what was described.
Mexico City International Airport's most famous (and only?) resident Hiroshi Nohara has moved out after spending 117 days in Terminal 1. Absconding with a mysterious woman known only as Oyuki, the now-clean shaven tourist is shacked up in an apartment in the Distrito Federal according to the newspaper Reforma. Oyuki says she invited the traveler to her place so he could sleep in a real bed.
Nohara's actually left the airport once before--to tour Azteca Stadium--but this time, he says, he's not going back. His tourist visa is set to expire in March, though how (or if) he plans to leave Mexico then is still unclear.
Though Nohara seems to have found his place in an unusual way, vacation rentals were a big trend in 2008, with families trying to keep lodging costs down and single travelers looking for crash pads that were big enough for Parisian dinner parties. The titan of the short-term rental space is HomeAway.com (and its offshoots), but different countries have their own local sites, Frugal Traveler Matt Gross reports, like Pap.fr, Kamernet.nl, Vivastreet.it. And of course there's always Craigslist, which now has a version for just about everywhere. Including Mexico City.
· Man Living at Mexico Airport Has New Home [AP, via Google]
· Lessons From the Frugal Grand Tour [NYT]
· Japanese Tom Hanks Can't Get Enough Of Mexico City [Jaunted]
[Photo: China Daily]
Ok, it's official: We're tired of winter. Want to meet us down in San Juan del Sur to go surfing? We'll be on the next flight to Managua, if you're game.
Yeah, yeah, we sort of panned SJDS a few months back. But that was when the winter weather was still revving up, and we were feeling righteous. Nowadays, we're all about getting our shred on, no matter who we have to fight for the waves.
Truth be told, even though it's "discovered," SJDS still maintains a pretty hassle-free scene. The place to get plugged in is Ricardo's, a foreign-surfer mecca right on the main drag. You'll get a ride to the beaches, find someone to surf with and probably have one too many Victoria beers. In other words, it'll get the job done.
When it comes time to pick a beach, we stick to the Moon Guide's picks: Bahia Majagual is always a must. But south of SJDS you'll find Playa Coco, which makes up for a lack of surf with great swimming. We'd be happy to check out either right now.