Building a tradition at the Milan Design Fair

Salone del Mobile, the design fair that convenes once a year in Milan, Italy, is the largest event of its kind. And as a company with a passionate focus on design, it’s also an important annual event for Airbnb and our community of hosts and guests, both in Italy and beyond.

Last year, Airbnb joined forces renowned design firm Fabrica, whose international designers created products and corresponding rituals that represented belonging and moments of welcome specific to their hometowns. The outcome was an interactive installation at the beautiful Palazzo Crespi in Milan, which was open to the public for the first time during the installation.

This year, we expect to see a record number of guests staying in Airbnb homes, and Salone del Mobile (also known as the Milan Design Fair) will serve as a powerful example of the ways that Airbnb can bring significant tourism impact to a city during a major event. It will also demonstrate the ways that Airbnb is a flexible way for cities to dynamically add much-needed accommodations supply during such events.

We project that over 24,000 total guests will be staying with Airbnb hosts in Milan for this year’s design fair. This represents a spike of more than 2x from surrounding weeks in Milan. And we expect that more than half of these guests will be staying outside the historical city center, bringing tourism income to many parts of the city that don’t typically see it.

We are seeing the biggest spikes in guests (compared to last year) from design capitals in Asia (Bangkok and Seoul) as well as guests coming from up-and-coming design cities in the Netherlands (Utrecht, Rotterdam).

And roughly 30% of the Airbnb hosts welcoming visitors during the Design Fair will be hosting guests for the first time or will be hosting their first booking in at least six months. This shows that Airbnb listings are an important way for cities to dynamically add flexible accommodations for major events. For a city like Milan, Airbnb can help to quickly and significantly increase the city’s overall tourist capacity.

We look forward to celebrating this year’s Salone del Mobile with our community as we continue to build on the marriage of two of Italy’s strongest traditions: hospitality and design.