Airbnb bans guest after residents rave warning

Council's noise team reported 'big event' to police

Friday, 16th June 2017 — By Alina Polianskaya

SHORT-TERM lettings website Airbnb says it has banned one of its “guests” for using a flat for a major party.

The peace was shattered on Saturday night in Warrington Crescent, Maida Vale, when strangers raved till dawn in what the council described as a “big event”.

Police were called to the property at 3.30am on Sunday despite having “no powers” to remove people from the home.

The party was part of a new trend of residential homes being treated like hotels and clubs through Airbnb.

An Airbnb spokesman said: “We have zero tolerance for this kind of behaviour. We are supporting the host and have removed the guest from Airbnb. There have been over 180 million guest arrivals in Airbnb listings and negative incidents like this are incredibly rare.”

But Westminster residents says they have faced many issues with short-term lets in recent years, with many complaints of people living next door to makeshift hotels and clubs.

John Zealley from the Paddington Waterways and Maida Vale Association said: “This is another public example that brings the issue back to the top of the agenda, especially as we reach the summer, which is a popular time for Airbnb.”

He said residents were concerned that people were buying flats in mansion blocks purely for the purpose of letting them out on a short-term basis to holidaymakers.

Mr Zealley added: “We get people coming into mansions blocks and flats, you get people who do not know what’s required in terms of disposal of rubbish and because they have no interest in being good neighbours they hold all- night parties or fit a lot of people into the flat, which causes noise and inconvenience for long- term residents.”

He said while they had no issue with people letting their flats out occasionally, they were fully supportive of the council’s rule that forbids people from renting out their homes for more than 90 days.

A spokesman for Westminster Council said: “Our noise team responded to a number of complaints in the early hours of Sunday morning at Warrington Crescent. Because this was such a big event and due to the nature of activity our officers reported the incident to the police.

“We will be in contact with the landlord and we are engaging with Airbnb at a senior level because we know how much disruption their activities can cause to residents.”

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