At Airbnb, Black History Month has always been a time to celebrate the diversity of Black culture through the lens of travel with the goal of inspiring dialogue and learning.
This year has been no exception. From hosting an event celebrating Black-owned businesses in the Bay Area, to screenings of Black Panther with the Oakland Unified School District, to sponsoring a discussion on the evolution of Black travel at the Museum of the African Diaspora, Airbnb and [email protected], our Employee Resource Group, have spent the last several weeks thinking about, and celebrating, Black culture.
And this is just the beginning.
In the coming months, in partnership with the Museum of the African Diaspora and Nomadness Travel Tribe, we’re going to be launching a series of new Experiences, which will shine a light on Black communities and become a source of economic empowerment for hosts and their local communities around the world.
The Nomadness Experiences will span Los Angeles, New York, Washington D.C., San Francisco, Mexico City, and London. In the weeks ahead, we’ll share the details so that you can try one yourself!
Nomadness Creator and CEO Evita Robinson says:
“Our goal at Nomadness is to show the world that your ability to travel should never be limited by your race, gender, religious, or economic background. Airbnb is helping us make this dream a reality — and we couldn’t be more excited for the Experiences we’re building together.”
We are also launching an Experience with the Museum of the African Diaspora (MoAD) for guests to make art with the help and guidance of local San Francisco artists representing the African Diaspora. Mark Sabb, Director and Marketing and Communications for MoAD, tells us:
“We’re so excited to be working with Airbnb to help build a deeper understanding of the African Diaspora through our Airbnb Experience — which will combine contemporary art, programs, and events to show how interconnected all of our personal histories really are. Airbnb’s platform has given us an opportunity to bring in new guests to the Museum; and we can’t wait to welcome each and every one of them.”
Airbnb’s National Director of Partnerships, Janaye Ingram, is equally excited:
“Nomadness and the Museum of the African Diaspora explore and embrace Blackness across continents and connect the stories of Black people from around the world. It’s already been a privilege to have the opportunity to work with the Black communities and I’m more excited every day about the Experiences they are bringing to our platform that will share their unique narratives and culture with others.”
And here’s the good news: there are already a whole bunch of Magical Experiences on the Airbnb platform, organized and led by some of our many Black hosts.
Here are a few of our favorites:
“Step into the world of Harlem Renaissance poet Mr. Langston Hughes, and experience the brownstone he purchased and lived in with his family. Upon arrival, we will greet you with a glass of wine and a warm welcome before strolling through the home where you will learn about Hughes’ legacy. You’ll then take part in a poetry workshop taught by a local poet where you will create your own piece. If your schedule permits, you are invited to join us for our monthly open mic night—a live show where you will have the opportunity to share your work with the community.”
“AFROHAUS Brunch takes you on a musical journey across the diaspora. The.WAV has curated some of LA’s most talented and respected artists in the community. Featuring both acoustic and hi-energy music performances, poetry, art and dance from diverse cultures. Our concerts are electrifying sonic journeys, equal parts scripted and unscripted, full of diverse voices.
Rhythms, flavors, and roots always go together – sangria and samba, house music and waffles, each of our events feature chefs or culinary specialties from different parts of the World.”
“How many times have you bought postcards in a souvenir shop that looked nothing like what you actually saw while exploring the streets? Join me as we hit the streets of Oakland using postcards as our guide. We’ll be in search of the best local eateries, bookshops, and hangouts. On this scavenger hunt, we’ll use the imagery on postcards to guide us down Telegraph Avenue in Oakland’s Temescal neighborhood. As we find the location featured on the front of each postcard, we’ll stop to write, stamp, and drop them in mailboxes.”
“Welcome to an experience I call Sidewalk Safaris. I’ll take you on an anthropological expedition of Harlem’s fashion scene. You’ll learn about the history of Black fashion in America, because it all started in Harlem. For years, high fashion brands have come to Harlem’s iconic 125th Street to get inspired. We’re going to deep disco dive into this culture, using fashion as our lens. You’ll learn how fashion in Harlem has evolved, while always remaining innovative and empowering. We’ll visit the best local boutiques, browsing the racks for the hidden fashion finds that most NYC visitors miss. I’m going to reinvigorate your understanding of Harlem, and empower you with new, exciting, and informed style choices.”
Black History Month is an important time for reflection and motivation. But our work doesn’t stop on February 28th. Whether it’s trying one of our Magical Experiences or hosting one of your own, there are many opportunities to be a part of our growing, global, host-led community; together we can learn about our world and build a better, more adventurous, tomorrow.