Airbnb plans to revolutionise the way we taste the world with its new food-focused experiences that tap local knowledge.
A feller from Leeds who came to fame cooking French food and a South African bloke whose restaurant is in Adelaide make for an interesting choice to kick off a campaign promoting Sydney's food scene. But Marco Pierre White and Africola's Duncan Welgemoed nonetheless proved more than equal to the task of launching what Airbnb calls the biggest announcement in its history.
Having disrupted the accommodation landscape, Airbnb is setting its sights on food. But not restaurants. Instead, the Flavours of Home program, part of Airbnb Experiences, which is now offered in Sydney, along with Florence, Paris, Tokyo, New York and many other cities, helps travellers dive into a city's unique food culture with the help of locals.
White is all for it. "The most memorable travel experiences are when I can immerse myself in local food culture and discover the hidden gems of distinctive cuisines," he says.
A Monday Hong Dinner.
Vietnamese restaurateur Angie Hong, of Thanh Binh restaurant, now opens her Sydney home for Monday Hong Dinners. Guests prepare and sit down to a three-course meal with Hong and her family. Other food-focused experiences include a behind-the-scenes visit to Rockpool Bar & Grill, tours of the city's hidden bars and coffee shops, and foraging for native herbs. These join more than 1,800 Airbnb experiences in 29 other cities.
"Not everyone has the chance to share their home," says Sam McDonagh, Airbnb country manager for Australia and New Zealand, "but they can still share the city they live in."