12 Decorating Tricks We're Stealing from Our Favorite Airbnbs

BRB, off to get some twinkly lights.

November  8, 2018
Photo by Airbnb

Does your home need a little sprucing up before the holidays? We love turning to one of our favorite sources of decor inspiration: Airbnb. It makes total sense: There are so many amazing rentals all around the world, and so many feature designs that are impressive, yet still livable. It's a great window into local styles and trends (and the beautiful photos don't hurt, either!).

The following are 12 stellar Airbnbs that we’re stealing design tricks from—and bookmarking for future trips!

1. Mood-Setting Twinkle Lights

Photo by Airbnb

You can add a welcoming ambience to any room by hanging up delicate twinkle lights, like the ones that decorate the outside of this adorable cabin in Vermont. It looks like it’s straight out of a fairytale—and the interior is wonderfully cozy, to boot.

2. Mixed Boho Textures

Photo by Airbnb

When you combine different materials and textures, such as faux fur, macrame, fringe, and even live-edge wood, the result is a cool, eclectic, and stylish vibe—check out this stunning rental in Joshua Tree for proof.

3. Cozy Hanging Chairs

Photo by Airbnb

Channel your favorite Insta-famous cafes with cool indoor hanging chairs. The decor of this popular L.A. loft, complete with fur-clad chairs hung from the ceiling, makes for a delightfully chic space that we’d happily spend an afternoon hanging out in. Don’t worry if you can’t actually hang chairs from their ceiling—you can easily recreate a similar grounded version instead.

4. Subtle Color in Neutral Spaces

Photo by Airbnb

Believe it or not, you can bring color into your home while maintaining a neutral vibe. This stunning loft in Copenhagen may have a bright, airy feel, but the pops of muted color make it the perfect spot to kick off your shoes and relax.

5. Stained Glass Accents

Photo by Airbnb

There’s something captivating about the beautiful colors and rich light of a stained glass window—so why not bring a one-of-a-kind, bold piece into your home? Just look at how unique this rustic New York cabin’s living space is thanks to a stained glass accent and lush greenery.

6. French Country Charm

Photo by Airbnb

Modern design is all about light, bright interiors, but don’t underestimate the power of a classic French country interior. The rich, warm tones and unique patterns are quite homey—just check out this Storybook Castle for inspo.

7. Indoor-Outdoor Living Space

Photo by Airbnb

You can make your entertaining space seem so much bigger when you embrace the concept of indoor-outdoor living. For example, this rustic converted barn has the most beautiful sliding barn door that can be opened to turn the patio and living room into one big space for gatherings.

8. Sloped Ceilings

Photo by Airbnb

High ceilings are all the rage right now, but we can still appreciate a quaint hideout. Don’t write off your little upstairs room with sloped ceilings as wasted space—check out how this San Francisco loft turned a small room into a stylish, comfortable escape. How amazing is the elegant wallpaper they added to the slope?

9. Concrete with Wood Accents

Photo by Airbnb

Raw concrete may seem harsh and unfinished to many people, but you can transform it if you use the right furniture and decorations. Case in point: This concrete tiny house has beautiful, warm wood fixtures that bring the space to life and make it a designer’s dream.

10. It's All About the Books

Photo by Airbnb

Scandinavian style can be chic, modern, and cozy all at the same time. You can balance out white backgrounds with nubby, warm textures—like the ones in this historic house in Norway. Plus, the floor-to-ceiling bookcase is an amazing focal point for a living room or office.

11. Wicker Accents

Photo by Airbnb

Can we bring back wicker? It has such a quaint, welcoming vibe—just look at how romantic this wicker-clad cabana is. Of course, you don’t have to take it that far. One carefully curated chair or side table might be all you need.

12. Homey Eclectic Touches

Photo by Airbnb

The most welcoming abodes are the ones that convey personality, so if you like it, do it! Decorations don’t all have to match or be one style of decor, as long as they tells a story, like this amazing apartment in Barcelona does.

Which Airbnb are you most attracted to? Let us know below!

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Jaye Bee
    Jaye Bee
  • Nancy McDermott
    Nancy McDermott
  • Gail Richards Dedrick
    Gail Richards Dedrick
Freelance writer, product tester & baking enthusiast.


Jaye B. November 21, 2018
None of the photos opened on my computer. I am linking from the e-newsletter. This is a recurring issue so I think the files are too large. Please advise your web designer who should know the limitations of e-mail clients.
Nancy M. November 20, 2018
I love the Scandinavian interiors but I’d have to do about 10 years of Swedish Death Cleaning to come close. I like the outdoor kitchen too but worry about bugs because I have no romance in my soul. So ultimately I’m for the barn. Actually I in a converted barn now. It is decorated a’la the Weasley house in The Harry Potter films: shambolic chic.
Gail R. November 20, 2018
The Weasley House is also my design inspiration!