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From the Musée d’Orsay to the house from ‘Up’: Airbnb’s iconic new stays

Have you ever dreamed of staying at the house from 'Up'? Now is your chance
Have you ever dreamed of staying at the house from 'Up'? Now is your chance Copyright Ryan Lowry
Copyright Ryan Lowry
By Saskia O'Donoghue
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With its new Icons list, Airbnb is opening up a multitude of incredible experiences to just a handful of guests.

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Airbnb is well known for promoting unusual - some may say gimmicky - listings, ranging from Barbie’s Dream House to Shrek’s Swamp from the animated classic.

For May, the holiday rental company has launched a new category they’re calling Icons.

Eleven have been released so far, ranging from a once-in-a-lifetime stay at Paris’ iconic Musée d’Orsay during the Olympics, to a night in the balloon festooned house from Pixar favourite ‘Up’.

None of the Airbnbs on offer are permanent, meaning very few people will be able to try them out.

If you’re keen, though, the Icons are featured in their own category right on the company’s homepage.

Most will be free to stay at and guests are able to request to book through the app.

4,000 lucky guests will be randomly selected and will receive a digital golden ticket. That number will be whittled down again by Airbnb after they’ve decided the most worthy winners, who will then be granted exclusive access to one of the stays.

Here are some of the most exciting options.

Celebrate the Paris Olympics with a unique stay at the Musée d’Orsay
Celebrate the Paris Olympics with a unique stay at the Musée d’OrsayFrederik Vercruysse

See the Paris Olympics from a unique perspective at the Musée d’Orsay

For one night only, on 26 July, just two guests will get the chance to sleep in the Musée d’Orsay’s iconic clock room in the heart of the French capital.

This will appeal to lovers of the Games, especially considering that the space has been transformed by Mathieu Lehanneur, the designer of the Paris 2024 torch and cauldron.

Situated on the fifth floor of the museum, a former train station, the clock itself has become a must-see spot for visitors to Paris, but this is the first time it’s been offered for an overnight stay.

Featuring a unique “floating” bed, as well as a replica of the Paris 2024 torch, guests will be able to enjoy a private tour of the museum, which features art from the likes of Van Gogh, Renoir, Manet and Monet.

26 July happens to be the evening of the Paris 2024 Opening Ceremony so, whether you have tickets to the Games or not, this would be the perfect place to soak up the sporting atmosphere along the river Seine.

Sports fans can apply for this experience until 21 May.

Float - literally - in the house from Disney and Pixar’s ‘Up’

2009’s ‘Up’ remains as one of the most popular - and tear jerking - films from Disney and Pixar.

For fans of the emotional animation, Airbnb has recreated the iconic house which travels around the world, powered by balloons.

While you won’t be going around the globe in this particular property, located in Abiquiu, New Mexico, it really does float.

“Icons take you inside worlds that only existed in your imagination - until now. As life becomes increasingly digital, we’re focused on bringing more magic into the real world. With Icons, we’ve created the most extraordinary experiences on Earth.”
Brian Chesky
Airbnb co-founder and CEO

Held up by a crane and bedecked with 8,000 balloons, both the exterior and interior of the house are identical to those from the movie.

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Guests will be ‘hosted’ by the animated star of the film, Carl Fredricksen, at the house which sleeps up to four people - and just four people.

With this Airbnb - and all the other ‘Icons’ - the company says: “First, we’ll randomly choose a set of potential guests. Next, we’ll review their answers for unique perspectives and connections to the icon. Then, we’ll invite selected guests to book.”

You’ll have until 14 May to request a visit.

Attention to detail has been paid to the 'Up' house, located in Abiquiu, New Mexico
Attention to detail has been paid to the 'Up' house, located in Abiquiu, New MexicoRyan Lowry

Whizz around Italy during a stay at the Ferrari Museum

For fans of motor racing, this experience will be at the top of the list.

At the Ferrari Museum in Maranello, Italy, two lucky guests will be able to sleep on a bed crafted from the same leather as Ferrari seats and head to Emilia-Romagna’s Grand Prix as a VIP.

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While the ‘Up’ house has a fictional host, this trip will be overseen by a real life icon. Visitors will get the chance to take a lap with former racing driver and Ferrari ambassador driver Marc Gené around the company's Fiorano test track in a Ferrari 296 GTB.

Back at the museum, guests will get a private tour and, while sleeping on the unique bed, will be surrounded by some 110 elite trophies won by Ferrari cars and their drivers.

Like those cars, be quick with this one - entry to win a stay closes on 6 May.

Ferrari fans can sleep surrounding by the iconic cars at the museum in Italy
Ferrari fans can sleep surrounding by the iconic cars at the museum in ItalyThomas Prior

Which other experiences are Airbnb offering to guests?

Icons is, according to Airbnb, “a new category of extraordinary experiences hosted by the greatest names in music, film, television, art, sports, and more.”

Other Icons on offer by the company include not just stays but also one-off experiences.

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Film fans can stay overnight with Bollywood star Janhvi Kapoor at her family home in Chennai, India, with the actress herself as host.

On the other side of the world, in Minneapolis, Minnesota, fans of late musician Prince will be offered the chance to explore his former home, most notable for being featured in the 1984 film ‘Purple Rain’.

It’s never been open to the public before, but lucky guests will be able to spend the night and take part in an exclusive studio session.

Prince fans can stay at the musical icon's former house in Minneapolis, Minnesota - for the first time ever
Prince fans can stay at the musical icon's former house in Minneapolis, Minnesota - for the first time everEric Ogden

In Milan, TikTok superstar Khaby Lame is offering a very unique experience to fans. This one is less about sleep, as you will be staying up all night. The gamer will host fans in a one-of-a-kind gaming loft that Khaby designed himself, who will then face off with him in a Fortnite Battle Royale.

If you have exceptional stamina, you may want to apply for the chance to go on tour with Feid, the reggaeton superstar, for an entire week.

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Joining him on his FERXXOCALIPSIS World Tour, you’ll be treated as part of the crew for rehearsals, ride along on the tour bus - and get backstage access for every show.

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