About this listing
Earlier this year, Airbnb sent a New York photographer/artist/writer called Todd Selby around the world to stay in 5 Airbnb properties. He went to London, Paris, LA, Tokyo and....... Marrickville. Airbnb and Todd thought ours was the most interesting Airbnb property in Sydney.
Yes, it does seem strangely inexpensive compared to many other Airbnb listings considering how big it is. That is deliberate. I find that keeping the price down means we attract more interesting people.
You've already decided to come to Sydney, so there is no need to tell you about the Opera House, Harbour Bridge, art galleries, those pesky kangaroos and all the rest. Sydney is a great city. I would love to see it as a tourist.
About the suburb
Marrickville is an older suburb not far from the city – maybe 4 miles (7klm)? The city is where the Opera House and Bridge and all that stuff is. It's a 14 minute train ride into the city from Marrickville – I work in the city, so I know. And the train station is a 6 minute walk from home – I timed that, too. Buses also go into the city, but I use the train so I have no idea how long it takes by bus - and I'm not going to take a bus into the city just so I can time it. You could drive into the city, but you'd be crazy – it's cheaper and quicker to take the train.
In the 1950s and 1960s, lots of Greeks settled in Marrickville. Then in the 1970s it was the Vietnamese who ended up here. So the suburb has an interesting mix of people and there is great (and cheap) food available in walking distance from home.
The airport is very close, but it's still a $25 taxi ride – they must take the long way. Depending on when you arrive, I might be able to pick you up.
About the apartment
Attached to our house is a two story building that was built in 1895 as a bakery.
Downstairs in this building, my wife (the artist) has her studio, so if you feel like mucking around with some paint or clay, she'll be happy to muck around with you. (If you're an artist yourself, you may never want to leave.)
Upstairs in the old bakery building is the apartment. This is a dedicated holiday rental. Nobody needs to move out for you to move in, so you won't find drawers filled with other people's underpants and stuff like that. The staircase between the two levels is open, but the apartment is very private. If Lisa and friends are in the studio downstairs, you will here a bit of chit chat. The apartment is one room about 95 sqm. Yep, it's a massive room. There is also a mezzanine with a single bed and ladder access. The photos show very well what the space is like. There is a fully equipped kitchen with decent knives and saucepans etc – I hate travelling and finding a kitchen equipped with cheap rubbish. It has a proper bathroom (behind the sliding red wall).
The apartment has wireless internet and a television and DVD player, but for those like me not into new gadgets, there are books to read and a turntable with a couple of hundred 70s and 80s records (they're those big round black things that people used for music last century). The furniture is very last century, too.
You can see the double bed in the photos. It's a proper bed – not a couch. There is also a single bed up in the loft.
On the downside, because it is a big space in an old building it can get a bit cool in the middle of winter and a bit warm in the middle of summer.
In the backyard there is a vege garden, chickens and a hammock. It's a pretty typical and slightly unkempt inner suburban backyard, not one of those fancy manicured ‘outdoor rooms' you see in magazines. It's so messy I didn't even photograph it. You can smoke out in the yard – and do a bit of gardening if you're inclined.
The separate house next to the bakery building is where I live with my family. There are four of us – two adults and two kids aged 13 and 15. The apartment is NOT a safe space for kids. The open stairs and ladder to the loft are not kid safe.
We can supply some bread, butter, vegemite (of course), tea bags, sugar, milk and that sort of stuff for when you arrive to get you started. But 200 metres up the road is a huge supermarket that stays open till midnight most nights. It's probably a 2 minute walk – I might time it one day.
The apartment is exactly how it looks in the photos. It's a cavernous space in an old industrial building with an eclectic collection of stuff. If you feel more comfortable in 5 star hotels where people put little chocolates on your pillow, this might not be the place for you.
Feel free to ask questions if any of the above is not clear enough. It's probably best that we correspond by email before you make a booking so there are no surprises or disappointments for either of us.
I can't think of any house rules, really. I hope you will respect the apartment.
It is a separate building, so you can come and go as you please.
It's not a place for parties, but I don't imagine many travellers have wild parties?
The backyard is for smoking. And gardening if you feel like it.
If in doubt about anything, you can ask us - we live next door.
See the blue door? That leads into the studio/apartment building. To the right is the house where we live.