Having messed up the housing market in cities across the world, Airbnb is now aiming to make it impossible for all but the wealthiest hobbits to own their own place in the Shire, too. The first sign of the company’s expansion plans comes through a new listing that allows interested—and hopefully short—travelers to book a stay in one of the New Zealand hobbit hole sets used in filming The Lord Of The Rings and The Hobbit.
The Airbnb listing, hosted by site owner Russel Alexander, promises the first opportunity to date “to stay at the original Hobbiton Movie Set” featured in the two trilogies. Waikato, New Zealand’s Shire features “44 permanently constructed Hobbit Holes” and one of them, The Millhouse, will be set up to accommodate visitors next spring.
The Millhouse includes two bedrooms, an indoor fireplace, backyard, and “homey decor curated by the trilogies’ Creative Director Brian Massey.” It also comes with a TV and wi-fi, just like Frodo used to catch up on his stories and argue with other hobbits on hobbit Twitter late into the night.
Those who manage to book a two-night stay in the Shire will be given a private tour of the set and “an evening banquet in The Green Dragon Inn with a feast featuring beef and ale stew, whole roast chickens, freshly baked breads, and plenty of ale.” (Second Breakfast and Elevenses are also promoted in the listing.)
Competition for the three bookings is sure to be tight, as will demand for future Airbnb listings for other Middle-earth locations. For the time being, at least, we hope rental and sales prices stay affordable in the fetid orc-pits of Mordor.
Check out photos of the Shire set through Airbnb. Bookings open on December 14th with the two-night stays scheduled for March 2nd to 4th, 9th to 11th, and the 16th to 18th.
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