The 7 Coolest Rhode Island Digs on Airbnb

You need a getaway, but do you really need to leave Rhode Island? Book a fancy local abode and call it a vaca.

A while back, I was reading a piece in New York Magazine about one of my favorite travel resources, Airbnb, and learned that two of its co-founders met right here in little Rhody. Our small world gets smaller.

According to the story, RISD alumni Brian Chesky ’04 and Joe Gibbia ’05 got the inspiration for Airbnb, a website where people can rent out lodging, during a design conference in San Francisco in 2007. The duo rented air mattresses out of their three-bedroom apartment, and an idea was born.

Airbnb’s humble beginnings are no match for today’s version: You can hunker down in a tipi in Spain, sprawl out in an Italian castle or, right here in Rhode Island, rent the sweetest coastal cottage, a rustic retreat or a hip city loft — sans air mattresses and nary a host in sight. Read on for our favorite Rhode Island rentals:

Old Schoolhouse in Tiverton

Cost: $225 per night

Sleeps: 4 people

Best features: It’s a 200-year-old schoolhouse, which is awesome, but the interior is completely renovated and modern. Walk around the five-acre property and discover gardens, goats and even a few chickens. (Bonus: the owners don’t mind if you poach a few eggs for breakfast. Can’t say the hen mothers will feel the same.)

 

Trendy Victorian in Newport

Cost: $650 per night

Sleeps: 12 people

Best features: You’ll feel like a genuine Newporter in this adorably decorated abode, just a few steps from trendy Broadway. Spend your nights barhopping or hanging in the hot tub on the private back deck, then cozy up around the outdoor firepit.

 

Woodsy Lakeside Cottage in Chepachet

Cost: $125 per night

Sleeps: 4 people

Best features: The cost, for one, is ridiculous — especially considering the views and the tiny beach primed for freshwater boating and unparalleled leaf peeping. Rumor has it, the hosts sometimes leave a couple bottles of vino for guests. Private beach, woodsy location, free wine: Could it get any better?

 

Fido-Friendly Cottage in Little Compton

Cost: $100 per night

Sleeps: 2 people

Best features: If your best friend gets around on four legs, this is the spot for you. The decor is retro and fun, and the backyard is fenced in with a hammock and lounge chairs. What’s more, the beach is a short two-mile jaunt down a scenic country road.

 

Beachfront in Portsmouth

Cost: $610 per night

Sleeps: 8 people

Best features: Instant access to a sandy beach below, plus a cozy stone fireplace for warming up with the family. The price and location is right for groups and reunions.

 

Artist Loft in Providence

Cost: $198

Sleeps: 6 people

Best features: Step right in and instantly transform into a cooler version of yourself: wet bar, pool table, massive gas fireplace, chef’s kitchen, modern bathroom (complete with a urinal, high-five for the ladies!). Get your city kitty fix in the heart of the Jewelry District.

 

Chic Houseboat in Newport Harbor

Cost: $500 per night

Sleeps: 3 people

Best features: The Belefonte is a boat, so good luck trying to find a better view of the water. Sun yourself on the upper deck, host your best Topsider-clad friends for cocktails then stretch out in the queen-sized bed (yes, queen-sized — it’s true!) when it’s time to wind down.

 

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