• Monika
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About Me
The Evergreen State College
Artist & Entreprenuer
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Hey, I’m Monika!

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I laugh at myself more than pretty much anything. I used to own a bar on Capitol Hill in Seattle. Now I manage my duplex in Seattle and I I also run an artist residency program in New Mexico called Starry Night Retreat, which is where The Blue Room is. Doing that takes me away from Seattle periodically, and it is a lifelong dream to have created a place that values artists and creatives by providing them a place to make new work in an inspiring setting. When I am in Seattle I periodically consult with small business owners to help them with their operations and books. Boring as it sounds, it is actually pretty fun, and I love my clients.

I have owned my duplex in Seattle for 6 years, and my four plex in Truth or Consequences for 12 years. At both of them, I have literally had my hands on every piece of the place. I have learned a lot about renovation and property management in the process, which has been interesting and has been really useful with the artist residency program in New Mexico. In New Mexico, I have one unit that is for vacation rentals and the others are for artists, so if you are looking to spend some time with artists form all over the world, this is your opportunity!

I also really love to travel. Some of my family is from Argentina, and I have been there as well as Mexico, the UK, Switzerland, Italy, Spain, Morocco, Turkey, Greece, Belgium, the Netherlands, France, Norway, and of course, it being so close, Canada. I have also traveled to 40-odd of the 50 states. I love road trips, train trips, airplane trips... you get the point. Experiencing other cultures is a great adventure for me, as is learning phrases in other languages. As a global citizen I want to be able to thank a person in their own language when I am visiting their country, so I always try to learn to say please and thank you in the local language wherever I visit.

My goal is to provide a comfy and affordable place to stay, no matter how long you stay for. That means a safe, secure, and clean place to make my home away from home - even if it is only for a night or two. I'm not one to need 5 star amenities in fancy hotels where I just end up with hidden fees for things like a candy bar or wifi or whatever. I'm much happier if I can spend my money on things around town and experiences in a place I've never been before.

This summer I have big garden plans for the front yard in Seattle, and in New Mexico. I have friends who have already started seedlings in anticipation of our summer season. (!) I totally believe that Seattle has the best summer in the entire US, and the summer in New Mexico, hot as it is, is one of the most beautiful place I've ever seen a summer sunset.

My long term dream is to bring these two facets of my life together - AirBNB and artist retreats - and run artist residencies and retreats in several cities that also have space for vacationers so that the two groups have more opportunities to overlap, swap ideas, and hang out like, say, over a good campfire or a cold beer. I think everyone is a creative in some way or another, and I like to encourage that in people whenever I get the chance. But like I said, that's a long term dream. In the meantime, I hope you enjoy your stay!