Airbnb creates $1 million competition to build fantasy homes

Business
Billy Porter

FILE – In this Jan. 26, 2020 file photo, Billy Porter arrives at the 62nd annual Grammy Awards at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. Airbnb is setting aside $1 million and enlisting the help of Porter to launch a competition to create what it calls the most unconventional and unusual liveable spaces on the planet. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP, File)

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Interested in building a fantasy home that looks like a boot? Or a UFO? Or some other unusual design? Airbnb is setting aside $1 million and enlisting the help of Billy Porter to make it a reality.

The company is launching a competition to create the “most unconventional and unusual liveable spaces on the planet,” it said in a statement Tuesday.

Airbnb has made headlines in the past with quirky vacation rentals like one shaped like a baked potato in Idaho, and a mansion in Malibu designed to resemble the one Barbie made famous.

Now, it’s inviting people to create memorable designs of their own by applying for the program a nd writing an essay about their wild idea.

The Emmy-winner Porter and the architectural firm MVRDVwill be part of a panel that picks 10 winners, But the winning designs won’t be judged just on style: They also have to demonstrate “feasibility, sustainability and social good,” according to Airbnb.

“The only thing better than pushing the boundaries of style is empowering others to do the same,” said Porter in a statement.

The houses are expected to be built from June to December.

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