House-swapping and couch-crashing websites have changed the way people travel (think a joyful Kate Winslet discovering the black out blinds in her Hollywood dream house in The Holiday), but a new twist on the concept has come to L.A. One Fine Stay provides listings of houses that owners are putting up for rent while they are out of town (or otherwise not home). The service calls itself the “unhotel” and has recently expanded from London and New York to Paris and, to our delight, Los Angeles. One Fine Stay provides all of the normal amenities you would expect from a hotel—fresh linins and towels, cleaning services, and even an iPhone for directions and sight-seeing inspiration, all the while ensuring that guests live like a local. Sounds like just the thing for hotel-averse in-laws and other out-of-town-visitors, don’t you think?
We browsed through the L.A. houses available the week of Christmas. Here are the listings that had us wanting to pack our bags for an in-town stay:
Santa Monica: Marguerita Avenue
One Night: $1,964; One Week: $13,747
This house has a "1920s-era Spanish Colonial Revival foundation," but, by gosh, it also has a pink tub in one of its bathrooms. Adorable pastel wallpapers, five bedrooms, and this very California pool—we’re sold!
West Hollywood: North Vista Street
One Night: $300; One Week: $2,100
Located “smack-dab” in the middle of West Hollywood, this would be a great choice for those who like to rest by day and dance by night. Plus, it’s an authentic way to live like a classic Hollywood couple: The owners of this one bedroom are both in the Industry; one is an agent and the other is a producer. Cue the fabulousness.
Beverly Hills: Canyon House
One night: $400; One Week: $2,800
A classic 1930s abode with a modern interior, this looks like a vunderbar place to get some peace and quiet close to the glamour of Beverly Hills. Think edelweiss: small, white, clean, and bright. This house has two bedrooms, a sweet little pool, and natural light that sings of California living.
Venice: Rose Avenue
One Night: $306; One Week: $2,142
The perfect beach escape. We want to drink wine at the bar in the kitchen and then drink more wine in the WC’s huge bathtub.
Hollywood: Hollywood House
One Night: $405; One Week: $2,835
It’s a fallacy that the Hollywood Sign is visible from everywhere in Los Angeles, but in this house full of homages to classic Hollywood films, a view of the L.A. icon is practically part of the decor. Black and white like a tuxedo, this two bedroom also features a red (and we mean red) bedroom. This isn’t your bland bedroom at the Holiday Inn.