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Paul is amazing!

My wife and I stayed with Paul at the tail end of our honeymoon. Paul is amazing!

Quite honestly the best airbnb host I've had yet. He's very good at communicating -- we were in constant contact in the weeks leading up to our visit. We got a bit delayed at the airport so we arrived a little later than expected, but Paul was very accommodating. His condo is located in a nice little neighborhood with a bunch of cafes and restaurants in walking distance, and Old San Juan is a short taxi/uber ride away. If you need a recommendation, just ask Paul! He's very knowledgable of the city and has tons of info!

The condo itself is very very clean, modern, and has a nice zen vibe. You get a private bedroom (with separate keys) that has its own television and an attached private bathroom. We felt more pampered than being in a five-star hotel and more at home than our own apartment! If you're looking for a great time in San Juan, Paul is your man!

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How to be a great Airbnb guest

 

Here are ten tips to ensure you and your host both have a fabulous experience.

BEFORE YOU BOOK

Read the listing thoroughly.

Rather than messaging the host to ask about amenities like public transit and internet access, you can probably find the answers you’re looking for by reading through the listing. Reviews are also an invaluable resource for finding out more about the property, location and host. You’d be amazed at how many hosts have told me people have written to them just to ask what the nightly rate is for the room. It’s right at the top of every listing in big, bold font!

Fill out your profile.

The #1 complaint I hear from hosts is that they get tons of requests from people with no profile picture and no verifications. You’re renting all or part of someone’s home, so it’s only right that they should have a vague idea of who you are. Upload a photo and verify your phone number and email address. Bonus points if you actually put a sentence or two about yourself!

Send an introductory message.

Even if the host doesn’t require you to message them before you book, it’s just good manners to send a short note along with your booking request. Introduce yourself, say who you’re traveling with and explain why you’re coming to visit their area. This isn’t a faceless hotel, it’s a friend you haven’t met yet!

Let them know when you’re coming.

Tell the host what time you plan to arrive so someone can be there to greet you. If you’re delayed along the way, try to let them know as soon as possible.

DURING THE STAY

Keep it clean.

Yes, you probably paid a cleaning fee and are totally within your rights to leave the place looking like a mess, but do you really want to be that person? I try to leave rentals looking approximately how they were when I found them, which is apparently so unusual that hosts rave about how clean I am! But I don’t even clean. I just wash my dirty dishes, make the dirty bed and place trash in the trash can. It’s the very definition of “the least you can do.”

If there’s a problem, let them know!

Instead of leaving a bad review after the fact, give the host a chance to fix any problems during your stay. Your host wants you to have a good time as much as you do! A nice review (and maybe even a repeat client) is good for business. Whether it’s a leaky faucet or you’d just like some new sheets, a host would rather fix any issues now than only find out about it in your review.

Follow house rules.

Most Airbnb listings have some basic house rules: no smoking, keep it reasonably quiet late at night, etc. Be kind to them (and the neighbors!) by following them.

Chat up your host.

This is of course totally optional, but if the host lives in the same property as your rental, I highly recommend chatting them up a little bit! We’ve become really good friends with a lot of our Airbnb hosts. They may offer to take you to brunch at their favorite local cafe, give you a ride to a cool market or recommend off-the-beaten track tourist attractions for you to visit. They’re full of ideas that are guaranteed to be better than the tips you get off the internet, and you’ll enjoy the satisfying feeling of superiority that comes with having a local’s knowledge.

Leave a thank you note.

We’ve had hosts cook dinner every night, give us wine, take us for rides around town, and even leave gift cards to the local bakery in our room. If it’s something the host doesn’t usually do for other guests, be flattered because it means they like you! Also, be polite and leave them a little thank you note when you leave. If you can afford it, a small gesture like a cheap bottle of wine in return for their over-the-top kindness will make them remember you long after you’ve gone!

AFTER YOU LEAVE

Leave a review.

It will take approximately 90 seconds of your time to click those little star ratings and write a few sentences about your stay. It helps the host and, even more importantly, helps the next guests make their choice. (Do it for me! I love reviews!) If you include details like walking time to major attractions, proximity to public transit, etc, you’ll be doing future Airbnb users a huge favor!

Did I miss any tips? Put your recommendations in the comments!

(written by Kit Whelan)

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This is truly an oasis in San Juan

"Our only regret was not booking longer with Paul. This is truly an oasis in San Juan-- close enough to the beach, old San Juan and the freeway to do whatever it is you came for, but far enough from the touristy main drags to feel like a local. You will probably want a rental car, but it's not essential. We had a car and had no problem finding a place to park on his street. Check in was a breeze. The entire place is clean and immaculately decorated (I even got some tips from Paul for myself!) and he has clearly thought of everything to make your stay enjoyable. My favorite part was the hammock chair on the front porch for relaxing. Just wonderful."

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Cugino d'America

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Paul è il "cugino d'America" che ogni Italiano sogna. La sua ospitalità è quella di un parente lontano che ti accoglie calorosamente, attento a quei dettagli che ti permettono di sentirti a tuo agio come a casa. La moka Bialetti e un delizioso cornetto caldo ci attendevano ogni mattina. L'appartamento è arioso, con una bella veranda, tutto decorato con gusto. La camera da letto era confortevole e pulita. Altri ospiti occupavano le due stanze rimanenti, ma la convivenza e la condivisione degli spazi comuni e del bagno non ha dato alcun problema. Il quartiere è tranquillo, anche di notte, non lontano dalla fermata del bus che porta al centro e nelle vicinanze di un piccolo supermercato aperto 24/24, nonché di alcuni ottimi ristoranti. Paul è stato gentilissimo, sempre molto disponibile ad aiutarci in qualsiasi nostra necessità: basta chiedere e lui si fa in quattro per darti una mano! Torneremo sicuramente a trovare lui, Nacho e Puggy nel nostro futuro viaggio a Porto Rico!

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The utmost quality experience

"I had such an incredible stay with Paul in Miramar. His charming and friendly demeanor will make you feel immediately right at home. Paul pays such close attention to detail to ensure his guests have the utmost quality experience. From the soothing aromatics in the most unexpected places, to an immaculately clean apartment, Paul does a fantastic job of creating a spa-like experience for his guests. The bedroom was serene and private, had its own air conditioning unit and plenty of airflow. The bathroom and kitchen are shared spaces; however, Paul was very accommodating and pleasant, creating space for my toiletries and groceries. I felt like I had open and free access to both areas at all times. The neighborhood felt extremely safe even at night. Everything is within walking distance. Beaches were about a 20 minute walk; grocery shops, cinema, and great authentic cuisine is within steps. Paul recommended top-notch, local dining & beaching spots, as well as recreational activities. I left feeling like I experienced everything San Juan had to offer, and then some. I wouldn't think twice before booking my next stay with him, it doesn't get better than this!"

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