Airbnb joins Ministry of Tourism and ANCI to promote small-town Italy with “Italian Villages” project

MiBACT is dedicating this year to promoting Italian villages. In the same year, we’ve also launched a national project called, Italian Villages, to share the value of these locations and their communities.

Showcasing these Italian small towns to travelers from all over the world means to focus on unique landscapes, traditions and cultures, improving local economies and encouraging trips taken off-the-beaten-track and sustainable tourism.

The project, sponsored by ANCI, the National Association of Italian Municipalities and developed in collaboration with MiBACT, the Ministry of Cultural Heritage, Activities and Tourism, will see more than 40 villages all over the country spotlighted through a range of different programs.

Pisticci, Basilicata

The project was launched today in Palermo, Sicily, in the presence of – among others – Joe Gebbia, one of the founders of Airbnb; the Mayor of Palermo, Leoluca Orlando; representatives of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism and Palermo’s Airbnb host community.

Also, for the first time, we also presented a report highlighting the positive impacts of home sharing in small villages across the country. You can download it here.

The report, Sharing Rural Italy, highlights that:

  • Hosts based in rural areas have earned almost €80 million in the past year.
  • There have been over 540,000 guest arrivals choosing to stay in rural Italy over the typical tourist hot spots. While average guest group size is 3 and listings were based in villages counting only hundreds or very few thousand inhabitants, this is almost equivalent to the population of a city such as Genua.
  • There are around 30,000 listings, with hosts typically earning an extra €1,600 a year.

Torella Del Sannio, Molise

Three villages (Lavenone in Lombardy, Civitacampomarano in Molise and Sambuca di Sicilia in Sicily) will have three public spaces repurposed throughout 2018 thanks to the collaboration between Airbnb and the local community, like we did with Civita di Bagnoregio earlier this year. As happened for Civita, Airbnb plans to gather artists and designers and transform the buildings in unique listings that will encourage guests to visit the three villages.

The curator of the project will be Federica Sala. Discover more here

Lavenone, Lombardia
Civitacampomarano, Molise
Sambuca di Sicilia, Sicilia
Civita di Bagnoregio, Lazio

From today, twenty villages, one for each Italian Region, are being promoted internationally, on a dedicated platform: http://italianvillages.byairbnb.com.

The website connects hosts living in these villages with travelers that are interested in discovering a less familiar part of Italy. The villages being promoted are Aieta (Calabria), Apricale (Liguria), Asolo (Veneto), Barolo (Piedmont), Bevagna (Umbria), Bitti (Sardinia), Città Sant’Angelo (Abruzzo), Cividale del Friuli (Friuli Venezia Giulia), Dozza (Emilia Romagna), Étroubles (Val d’Aosta), Furore (Campania), Mezzano (Trentino Alto Adige), Moresco (Marche), Pisticci (Basilicata), Poggiorsini (Apulia), Sabbioneta (Lombardy), San Casciano dei Bagni (Tuscany), Sperlonga (Lazio), Savoca (Sicily) and Torella del Sannio (Molise).

A further twenty small villages will be promoted on Airbnb’s social media platforms.

We’re excited to make this announcement and pledge our commitment to support small villages and hosts across some of the most beautiful landscapes in Italy.  Home sharing isn’t a new concept for rural hosts, in fact locals have been opening up their homes for decades.  But by using technology, we can play a major part in helping to revitalise these villages, empowering locals to share their communities, their culture and their heritage, while boosting the local economy.”

Joe Gebbia, Airbnb Co-Founder, speaking at the launch

To discover the villages involved and to get updates on the Italian Villages project, check out this page and map.

Barolo, Piemonte