No room at inn as Blue Wahoos Airbnb sells out in days
By mid-morning Tuesday, the main office number with Pensacola Blue Wahoos rang incessantly.
More than a hundred emails needed answered. Media awareness had gone nationwide and even into Japan where a newspaper in Osaka published a story.
Already, it was an innkeeper’s dream.
No Vacancy. A full month of 30-plus room nights were sold out.
A holiday weekend after the Blue Wahoos first announced their stadium and home clubhouse was now available for an Airbnb reservation, complete with exclusive access for up 10 people for $1,500, the swell of interest was beyond anyone’s wildest dream.
Beginning with the first guests coming this Sunday, the Blue Wahoos’ Airbnb stay at the bayfront ballpark is booked through the entire month of June. The Blue Wahoos are the first minor league, professional baseball team to offer such a concept and one of the few in any professional sports level.
“I think what we wanted to do is just create these experiences that people will remember for a long, time,” said Blue Wahoos team owner Quint Studer. “I mean, what a cool experience to be able to walk out of the (clubhouse) tunnel, onto the field and have it to yourselves. What a unique opportunity.”
The interest proves it.
Daniel Venn, the Blue Wahoos media relations director, announced the launch of the Airbnb and reservations page in a social media post at 9 p.m. Friday. Twelve hours later, the buzz started to build. ESPN picked up on the concept with a story on its web site and it took off from there.
“I was thinking ‘Just give this 24 hours’. People will notice,” Venn said. “Great ideas have a way of getting people’s attention.
And all of this started innocently enough, during a recent kitchen table discussion with Mallory Studer, a marketing business professional and daughter of Quint and Rishy Studer. Mallory has her own Airbnb listed and is well-versed in the concept.
“Why don’t you use the stadium as an Airbnb?” she said, telling her parents it could be popular and another way to generate revenue with baseball on hold, due the coronavirus pandemic.
“Mallory is an idea a minute,” Quint Studer said. “She just started clicking (websites) and seeing if we could do an Airbnb at the ballpark. And it just exploded.”
The beds were installed Tuesday, and later this week the entire home team clubhouse will be ready for the upcoming weekend of family visits. From that point, it will be non-stop vacation stays through June.
If the Blue Wahoos wanted to book July stays, those would already be sold out, too. But until official word from Major League Baseball occurs on whether there will be a partial minor league baseball season – or none at all – the team has put July Airbnb on hold.
Stadium becomes Airbnb:Blue Wahoos turn clubhouse, stadium into Airbnb experience
Disc golf course:Bubba Watson unveils disc golf course inside Blue Wahoos Stadium
“It has been crazy,” said Bailie Tate, a Blue Wahoos group sales executive and Pace High, UWF graduate. “We were technically filling up (for July) and I had to reach out to all of them to say if we aren’t able to play baseball here, then you will have this date you requested.
“Everybody has been nice about it. We have a long wait list going, so that is super exciting.”
In fact, now, the Blue Wahoos are planning to convert the visiting team clubhouse as well.
“I got a call from a youth league team with 15 players and three coaches,” Quint Studer said.“They would like to do an overnight with their 10-year-olds and their coaches.
“But 10 is all we can have (in home clubhouse under state guidelines). But you could put some in the visiting locker room and now all of sudden you have doubled the capacity.”
For $1,500 a group of up to 10 people can have exclusive access to the home clubhouse and its amenities. The clubhouse was renovated during the winter with new carpeting, high-end, all-wood locker, leather logo coaches, multiple flat-screen televisions, a ping-pong table and upgraded sound system.
What was planned as a players' dining area will be converted into a bedroom with two queen size beds, four bunk beds, plus a refrigerator, freezer, coffee maker and microwave.
Guests have use of the indoor batting cage with baseballs and bats, plus the field lights at the ballpark will remain on until midnight for field usage.
Check in time each day is 3 p.m. and check-out is at 11 a.m. the next morning, much like a regular hotel stay.
“We can really create some once-in-a-lifetime experiences for people, so it is very exciting not only for our stadium, but to highlight the community,” Quint Studer said.
All from a kitchen conversation.
“I’m glad Mallory gave this a chance and glad we jumped on it,” Studer said. “Now we have to continue to maximize it. And it was just a huge win.
I think the neat part is not only having people creating ideas outside of our own staff, but seizing and going with it. Not to come up with reasons why we can’t do something, but figuring out how to make it happen.”
Bill Vilona is a retired Pensacola News Journal sports columnist and current senior writer for Pensacola Blue Wahoos/Studer55. He can be reached at [email protected]
Pensacola Beach Airbnb & Short-Term Rental Regulations are important to any investor or host thinking about starting a short-term rental property. We've pulled together data and information from government and other sources to make it easier for you to not just see the regulation and ordinances on short-term rentals, but also get an overview of the short-term rental activity and potential, real estate prices and trends, and population size and growth.
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The information on this page is an overview of this particular market and was organized by BuildYourBnb.com based on the 2020 data.
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The 9 Coolest Airbnb Homes in Pensacola, Florida
These are the best Airbnb homes in Pensacola, Florida. Pensacola is a waterfront city in the north of the U.S. state of Florida. Its extensive white sands, year round warm climate and protected beaches make it a popular holiday destination. The city was one of the earliest European settlements in the U.S., and Historic Pensacola Village is a museum complex containing original 19th-century buildings.
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Check out our favourite Airbnb homes in Pensacola right here:
Huge Beachfront home with Private Pool
This is a newly renovated and beautiful beachfront vacation home featuring a private heated pool, and direct beach access. Furnished to a high standard with lots of luxury touches its the perfect home for a large family gathering or reunion. Large living areas provide plenty of room for relaxing and all amenities have been provided for your stay in this Pensacola Airbnb home. $698 per night.
A Peaceful Beach Getaway with Stunning Views
This brand new constructions provides spectacular views of the Gulf. This villa features a private swimming pool and is located on the pristine white sandy beach of Pensacola Beach. Relax in the elegant, modern decor, and comfortable accommodations and experience incredible Gulf views. Just walk a few steps to the beach that is right outside your door. $999 per night.
A Beachfront home with a Private Heated pool
This beautiful beachfront Pensacola Airbnb home has a true coastal feel and a private heated swimming pool. Enjoy the amazing ocean views from the broad porches, private elevator. There are 3 floors of beachfront decks spanning the entire width of the house where you can enjoy the stunning sunset views over the Gulf of Mexico. Beachfront living at its best. $698 per night.
A Stylish and Elegant beach vacation home
This home in situated the sought after gated community of Pinecrest in the midst of the areas other most popular neighborhoods. Enjoy the use of the community pool and walk just steps to the Emerald Coast`s most beautiful beaches. Relax on the beach and swim in the sparkling ocean, or explore the areas many shops and restaurant choices. $787 per night.
A Mid century modern ‘Old World’ beach cottage
This cottage is ideally located on the South side of Rosemary Beach, “Pappas Cottage” is steps from the white sugar sand beaches and adjacent to the Eastern Green and features old word design elements. Just a short stroll to the community pool, or hop on a complimentary bike for an effortless cruise to local restaurants and luxury boutique style shops. $798 per night.
A Beachfront home with Private Pool and Elevator
This vacation property is a beautiful new luxury custom beachfront home with elevator, a private heated pool and a game room. Open and spacious living spaces, perfect for entertaining. Enjoy swimming in the pool or enjoy the stunning ocean views from one of the gulf front porches available on any of this Pensacola Airbnb homes 3 levels. $998 per night.
A Multi-Level beachfront home with Views
This family friendly multi-level beachfront home sits directly on the beach and Emerald Coast. This large home comfortably sleeps up to 16 adults and is perfect for families vacationing together. Relax on one of the ocean front decks and enjoy the sparkling ocean and sunset views from this tastefully designed property. $1000 per night. $1000 per night.
A Enormous beachfront home on the Gulf of Mexico
The largest house on the beach. This enormous home is directly across from the Gulf of Mexico with unobstructed beach views and is just a short walk to beach. With the sound at its back it offers spectacular views from every room. Relax on one of the balconies and enjoy the sunsets with a glass of wine. $900 per night. $900 per night.
A Luxury Oceanfront Airbnb home with Private Pool
The Kiva Grand is a beautiful beachfront custom family home on a 2 acre gulf front dunes lot. Enjoy the stunning beach views and surroundings. Take a dip and cool off in the large beachfront pool or soak in the hot tub and enjoy the outdoors. Luxury beach living at its best in this Pensacola Airbnb property. $948 per night.
The Best Family-Friendly Airbnb & VRBO Vacation Rentals in Pensacola, Florida (October 2021)
Jump to:Pensacola Beach| Downtown Pensacola| Navarre| Gulf Breeze
Pensacola BeachPensacola Beach is a fun destination for families who enjoy water sports, beautiful beaches, and a lively setting. Below are some great vacation rentals in the area for families.
Pensacola Beach 20th Floor 2 BedroomsThis oceanfront condo is a great place to base yourself during your time in Pensacola Beach. Definitely consider this option, as it has hundreds of reviews from previous guests, earning it a high rating. The large complex has plenty of activities for the whole family. Everyone will find plenty to do with the included swimming pools, beach access, fitness center, and sauna. There's something special about a vacation rental with an ocean view, too. You will love hanging out on the balcony, soaking in the atmosphere. Featuring 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms, there's plenty of room for up to 6 visitors here, so add it to your must-see list. There's plenty of space here for the whole family or group to hang out. You can either go out to eat or just stay in and cook all of your meals in the kitchen. It's equipped with everything you need with a microwave, coffee maker, dishwasher, stove, and oven. There's also plenty of space in the living room and dining area, too. The master bedroom has a king-sized bed and nice furnishings, so you'll be able to relax in style. With a nice queen sized bed, you'll be sleeping soundly. You will also find a coffee maker, television, and parking at this vacation rental. Staying here will make your trip to Pensacola Beach fun and convenient.
Gulf Front Family Friendly with Two PoolsIt's hard to find a place like this, so check it out before it's booked up. This 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom beachfront condo can fit up to 6 people. This is a family-friendly place with enough room for everyone. Or, it could be good for a group of friends. You'll really feel like you're on vacation with this property's ocean view. This place also has a great balcony where you can relax and enjoy the nice views.
You'll find a king sized bed in the master bedroom, too. For those who enjoy cooking, there's a full kitchen with a microwave, coffee maker, dishwasher, stove, oven, and refrigerator. There's also the living room and dining area offering more space to guests. Included with this property is a coffee maker, television, and parking.
Staying here also gives you access to the concierge, fitness center, and tennis. The property is conveniently close to golf and tennis. Add this one to your wish list!
Sealife - Beach House
Toilla Segunda, Pensacola Beach, Florida
Guests love the convenient location near the beach. Included with this property is a coffee maker, games, and a grill. This amazing house has everything you need, and provides it all with style, too.
15th Floor: My Blue HeavenGuests love this condo because it has amazing views and sits right on the beach. It makes a great place to stay for your vacation in Pensacola Beach. The 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom vacation rental has room for 6 people. This is a great option for a family as there's room for everyone. This place will quickly feel like a home away from home.
After Dune DelightThe list goes on and on with this beautiful condo in Pensacola Beach, so add this one to your wish list. The location of this beach vacation rental is perfect. Located right by the beach, this is a great spot for a vacation. With a nice balcony, you can relax and enjoy the weather.
The kitchen is well stocked with a microwave, coffee maker, dishwasher, and stove. You'll be able to spread out through the living room and dining area here, too. This is a family-friendly place with enough room for everyone. The master bedroom has a king-sized bed and nice furnishings, so you'll be able to relax in style. The cozy queen-sized bed will let you relax and enjoy your trip. The condo also includes a coffee maker, television, and parking. Places like this get booked up quickly.
Large Pensacola Beach CondoThis is a 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom oceanfront condo that is roomy and stunning. It can accommodate up to 6 guests. There's plenty of space here for the whole family to hang out. The comfortable king-sized bed in one bedroom is perfect for couples. There's even more space to hang out in the living room and dining area. The fully equipped kitchen has everything you need such as a microwave, coffee maker, oven, refrigerator, dishwasher, and stove. Have some wine on the balcony in the evenings. For the price and everything that's included, this rental is a great option.
Beach Front at Pensacola BeachThis spacious 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom beach condo is amazing, and has room for 4 guests. This place will quickly feel like a home away from home. You'll really feel like you're on vacation with this property's ocean view. Relax on the balcony and enjoy the views. This property is a nice and affordable condo for a smaller family.
You'll be able to cook all of your meals in the fully-equipped kitchen with a microwave, coffee maker, dishwasher, stove, oven, and refrigerator. Enjoy meals or relaxing in this property's living room and dining area. You'll find a king sized bed in the master bedroom, too. One of the bedrooms also has a queen-sized bed.
Staying here also gives you access to the fitness center and tennis courts. A coffee maker, a grill, television, and parking are also on the list of amenities. This location is also close to golf courses, too. This place is just a few minutes away from Pensacola Beach Pier, Portofino Boardwalk, Native Cafe, and Hemingway's.
Starboard Village Condo at Pensacola BeachThis condo is perfect for a large family or group. The 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom beachfront condo has a great location. Nearby is Pensacola Beach Pier which is 1.5 miles away and Pensacola Naval Air Station which is 8.5 miles away. You'll also be close to plenty of restaurants, activities, and shopping.
You can take in the fresh air from the balcony and enjoy some time to unwind. You'll be able to cook all of your meals in the fully-equipped kitchen with a microwave, coffee maker, dishwasher, stove, oven, and refrigerator. Enjoy meals or relaxing in this property's living room and dining area. With a large king bed, you'll sleep very comfortably. With a nice queen sized bed, you'll be sleeping soundly. A coffee maker, games, a grill, and television are also included.
3-Bedroom Family-Friendly Beach CondoFor anyone that wants a fun-filled vacation in Pensacola Beach, this 3-bedroom, 3-bathroom waterfront condo is a great vacation rental as it can accommodate 7 visitors. There's plenty of space here for the whole family or group to hang out. With a view of the water, it's hard to beat this location, too. The fully equipped kitchen has everything you need such as a microwave, coffee maker, and oven. You'll find a king sized bed in the master bedroom, too. With a nice queen sized bed, you'll be sleeping soundly. The children will love the bunk beds found in one of the bedrooms, too. There's even more space to hang out in the living room and dining room. Parking, internet, and a coffee maker are also on the list of amenities.
With hundreds of reviews, this property has earned an excellent rating from previous guests. Why not spend some time out on the balcony with a meal, your morning coffee, or to take in the evening weather?
Located less than five miles away you'll find Pensacola Beach Pier and Portofino Boardwalk. This is a comfortable option for anyone headed to Pensacola Beach.
Downtown PensacolaDowntown Pensacola has many historical homes and a rich culture that families appreciate. Below are some great vacation rentals for families in the downtown area.
Historic Downtown Bayfront New Home
Seville Historic District, Pensacola, Florida
The balcony offers a chance to spend time outdoors. Take in the nice weather while you stay here. Other amenities include a coffee maker, a grill, television, parking, internet, and a garage. This is a great spot to enjoy your next trip to Pensacola. Here you'll be situated in a great location close to Pensacola Civic Center, Historic Pensacola Village, and Saenger Theatre.
Unique Historical Cottage
Southeast Pensacola, Pensacola, Florida
As an added bonus, your pets are welcome, too. Staying here will make your trip to Pensacola fun and convenient.
Downtown Oasis - New House
Downtown Pensacola, Pensacola, Florida
The kitchen is well stocked with a microwave, coffee maker, and oven. Everyone can also relax in the living room and porch. Several bedrooms have queen sized beds, which is great for everyone to relax. They are very well furnished. At this place, you'll also have parking, internet, a coffee maker, games, and a grill.
The Gathering House: Downtown Pensacola
Downtown Pensacola, Pensacola, Florida
This property is located conveniently close to the beach. Why not spend some time out on the balcony with a meal, your morning coffee, or to take in the evening weather? Also on the list for this house is a coffee maker, a grill, and television. Check out the photos!
The Red Door in Seville Historic District
Seville Historic District, Pensacola, Florida
There's a king-sized bed in one of the bedrooms. One of the bedrooms also has a queen-sized bed. One of the bedrooms also has bunk beds which is great for the kids. The microwave, coffee maker, and oven in the full kitchen will let you cook all of your meals if you like. There's even more space to hang out in the living room, dining room, and porch. And more amenities are found here such as parking, internet, and a coffee maker.
Nearby is Pensacola Civic Center which is 0.4 miles away and Historic Pensacola Village which is 0.3 miles away. Also, this is a pet-friendly place. Add this one to your bucket list!
NavarreFamilies that love nature will appreciate Navarre. This quiet community has pristine white beaches and a relaxed vibe. There are also a number of vacation rentals in the area that are great for families. Below are just a few.
Sunshine For RentThis is a 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom beachfront condo that is large and gorgeous. It can accommodate up to 6 guests. With space for the whole group, this is a great vacation rental for the entire family. Parents appreciate the large king-sized bed in one of the bedrooms. There's also the dining area offering more space to guests. The kitchen is well stocked with a microwave, coffee maker, oven, refrigerator, and dishwasher.
This property has hundreds of reviews from other guests, it should be on your list because it has earned such an excellent rating. The balcony offers a chance to spend time outdoors. Take in the nice weather while you stay here. Nearby is Gulf Breeze Zoo which is 7 miles away and Hurlburt Field Visitor Center which is 10 miles away. If you're looking for comfort and convenience, this is a great condo for everyone in the family.
Navarre Towers CondoFor anyone that wants a fun-filled vacation in Navarre, this 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom oceanfront condo is a great vacation rental as it can accommodate 6 visitors. This is a family-friendly place with enough room for everyone. Or, it could be good for a group of friends. The kitchen is convenient, well stocked, and of course has everything you need to cook all of your own meals with a microwave, coffee maker, dishwasher, and stove. As parents, you'll appreciate the large king-sized bed in one of the bedrooms where you can have your private and quiet time. One of the bedrooms also has a queen-sized bed. Everyone can also relax in the living room and dining area. And more amenities are found here such as a coffee maker, a grill, television, and parking. Staying here also gives you access to the fitness center and tennis courts. With a nice balcony, you can relax and enjoy the weather. You'll also find Nature Walk, Wabi Sabi Day Spa, TC's Front Porch, and Cactus Flower Cafe less than 5 miles away. Places like this get booked up quickly.
Navarre Beach House - VRBOWith room for up to 6 people, this is a 2-bedroom beach house that makes for a perfect Navarre vacation rental. With a nice balcony, you can relax and enjoy the weather.
As for the interior, this house has all of the comforts you need. Cook all of your meals in the kitchen, as the refrigerator, dishwasher, microwave, and coffee maker are provided. This is a great way to save money and let everyone enjoy their time together. This is a great option for a family as there's room for everyone. Other amenities include a grill, television, and internet. If you're looking for comfort and convenience, this is a great house.
Serenity in NavarreNeed a oceanfront condo in Navarre? Add this one to your must-see list, because it has plenty of great features. This vacation rental is perfect for a large family or friends group. If you're looking for comfort and convenience, this is a great condo. The extra space of this 3-bedroom condo is an added bonus. Multiple bedrooms in this condo have king sized beds, which is a nice luxurious touch that is hard to find elsewhere. This place also has a living room and dining area, which will let you relax comfortably on your trip.
The kitchen in this condo is very nice, and with a microwave, coffee maker, dishwasher, stove, oven, and refrigerator you'll be able to cook for everyone. You'll also have access to the fitness center and ping pong table. Why not spend some time out on the balcony with a meal, your morning coffee, or to take in the evening weather? If you're looking for comfort and convenience, this is a great condo.
Corner CondoThis beach condo is a popular option in Navarre, as it has 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. This property is a nice and affordable condo for a smaller family. The large king-sized bed in the master bedroom is romantic, cozy, and inviting. One of the bedrooms also has a queen-sized bed. The full kitchen is well stocked and convenient, and features a microwave, coffee maker, and dishwasher. There's also plenty of space in the living room and dining area, too. Relax on the balcony and enjoy the views. You'll also find amenities such as a coffee maker, games, a grill, television, parking, and internet.
This place is just a few minutes away from Nature Walk, Wabi Sabi Day Spa, TC's Front Porch, and JJ Chagos. Check out the photos!
Gulf BreezeAcross the bay from Pensacola is Gulf Breeze. The area is a popular birding destination, but also has great snorkeling and hiking, which families appreciate. Gulf Breeze Zoo is also a fun family destination in the area. For families who want a tranquil setting where they can relax in nature, enjoy good seafood, and enjoy a peaceful setting, this is the place. Some of the best vacation rentals for families are listed below.
Gulf Breeze Paradise with a PoolWith space for the whole group, this is a great vacation rental for the entire family. The 3-bedroom, 2-bathroom house has a great location. Not too far away you'll find Pensacola Beach Pier, Pensacola Naval Air Station, Historic Pensacola Village, and Pensacola Civic Center. This amazing house has everything you need, and provides it all with style, too.
With a large king bed for the parents, you'll sleep very comfortably. Also, there are bunk beds in one of the bedrooms for the children. And with a swimming pool and easy beach access within a short drive, you really can't go wrong here.
Gulf Breeze Vacation RentalThis house is a great place to base yourself during your time in Pensacola and Gulf Breeze. Featuring 4 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms, there's plenty of room for up to 12 people here, so add it to your must-see list. If you're planning a trip with the family, you should definitely consider this large house. If you just want to eat in, the fully-equipped kitchen with its microwave, coffee maker, oven, and refrigerator will let you cook all of your meals. Everyone can also relax in the living room and dining area. This house also has modern amenities such as parking, internet, a coffee maker, and a grill. This place will quickly feel like a home away from home.
Gulf Coast Vacation Home in Gulf BreezeFor anyone that wants a fun-filled vacation in Pensacola and Gulf Breeze, this 3-bedroom, 2-bathroom house is a great vacation rental as it can accommodate 10 visitors. Ideal for a larger group or a big family, this roomy house has plenty of room to spread out. You can either go out to eat or just stay in and cook all of your meals in the kitchen. It's equipped with everything you need with a refrigerator, dishwasher, and microwave. You'll find more than one bedroom with a queen sized bed, too. Included with this property is television, internet, and a coffee maker.
It's also pet-friendly! This is a comfortable option for anyone headed to Gulf Breeze.
For more information on accommodation in Pensacola, check out The Best Airbnb & VRBO Vacation Rentals for Couples in Pensacola, Florida, The Best Airbnb Vacation Rentals in Pensacola for Groups, and The Best Airbnb VRBO Rentals in Perdido Key, Florida.
Pensacola Blue Wahoos list stadium for Airbnb rentals
If the idea of late-night batting practice or eating a meal at home plate sounds appealing, the Pensacola Blue Wahoos are willing to make that a reality.
The team, the Double-A affiliate of the Minnesota Twins, has listed Blue Wahoos Stadium in Pensacola, Florida, on Airbnb. The Blue Wahoos say it is the first time that a baseball stadium is available on the rental service.
For $1,500 per night (plus fees), up to 10 guests are granted access to the stadium, which includes use of the team's clubhouse, batting cage and field, along with a batting practice setup.
"Guests are welcome to hit from home plate, play catch in the outfield, run the bases, enjoy a picnic in the outfield, or find other creative uses for the field!" the listing reads.
The bedroom next to the clubhouse sleeps 10, and a staff member will stay on site for security and to answer questions.
The Airbnb offer is one of several alternative uses for the stadium amid the ongoing pause to the major and minor league baseball seasons due to the coronavirus pandemic. The baseball field is offered on weekends as a nine-hole disc golf course designed by team co-owner and professional golfer Bubba Watson, and a movie and fireworks night is scheduled for the end of the month.
There was even actual baseball played at the stadium Saturday, as a local tournament was held on the field.
If you list it, they will come to Pensacola
It’s a common activity for people everywhere: finding a home online and imagining what life would be like living at someone else’s place. These days, through rental services like Airbnb, you can spend a night at some of those beautiful and awe-inspiring dwellings, trading in the traditional hotel experience for something a little homier while on vacation. Cozy cabins, upscale condos and beachfront properties are just some of the many options you can find on Airbnb’s website.
If you are looking for a getaway in the Pensacola area, however, you’ll want to bypass all of them for what may be the most unique rental around: Blue Wahoos Stadium, home of the Double-A Southern League’s Pensacola Blue Wahoos.
“We compare it to staying at Cinderella’s Castle,” said Blue Wahoos President Jonathan Griffith. “We ran with the idea from there and figured out what kinds of experiences we can do. We can do walk-up music when each person comes up to the plate in batting practice, we can put videos on the video board and we can even do fireworks for them.”
For their efforts in finding a unique way to provide entertainment, generate revenue and gain media coverage, the Blue Wahoos were named the winners of Minor League Baseball’s May Promotion of the Month.
The Blue Wahoos have been busy creating a wide variety of promotions and events for their fans since the season was delayed. Their work has included offering curbside meals, a disc golf course designed by co-owner and pro golfer Bubba Watson, movie nights and fireworks shows. During a period when stay-at-home orders were much stricter, their next big idea came in the form of the Airbnb.
“It all starts with our mission here, which is to improve the quality of life in our community, and I think all of our staff lives by that,” Griffith said. “This was an idea we came up with over a month ago, and as soon as we were able to introduce it, we put it into action. With everything we do we ask if it’s good for our community.”
The basic premise is no different than any other Airbnb listing: a group of up to 10 people can each sleep in their own beds in the ballpark for $1,500 a night. The rest of the booking is anything but common, with guests able to use the ballpark’s amenities and live out their dreams in a once-in-a-lifetime stay. Griffith said fans have held birthday and bachelor parties, movie screenings and even a puppet show posted to YouTube that has over 4.5 million views.
Guests have full access to the field, clubhouse and batting cages. Additional experiences can be purchased to add to the stay, including a fireworks show and a catered dinner from the team’s chef. The team has formed a committee to figure out what other kinds of unique experiences they can create as part of the package.
The Blue Wahoos announced their stadium’s listing on Airbnb for the first time with a tweet at 9:04 p.m. CDT on May 22. Within 24 hours, all 33 dates available were booked. Major media outlets from across the country picked up the story, including ESPN, Sports Illustrated, CNN, The Washington Post and USA Today. TV stations and news publications in countries like France, Japan and Germany covered the story as the Blue Wahoos became the first professional sports team to list on Airbnb.
“It really put us on the map. We’re making world news with this, and it helps our community and helps people get to know Pensacola and what a great place it is to visit,” Griffith said.
The team had a waiting list of over 200 fans by the end of the weekend they announced the promotion. The Blue Wahoos added additional dates, and by June 9, had sold 68 bookings.
While the idea came from the unique circumstances facing the team this year, the idea is intended to live on past 2020.
“This is something that I can see going on forever, until people stop wanting to stay at the ballpark,” Griffith said. “We wouldn’t do this during seasons, but as soon as a season ends, from basically September to February we’re going to be an Airbnb.”
Early returns from guests are overwhelmingly positive, with one couple even driving 34 hours roundtrip from Missouri to live out the dream of spending a night at the ballpark. As stay-at-home orders across the country continue to lift and businesses reopen, Griffith thinks that what his team has been able to do can be a blueprint for others.
“My advice to everyone else is to do it. If you can generate an extra $200,000, how great is that? What we’re trying to do is keep people employed and keep our payroll,” Griffith said. “It’s different work for sure and we’re going to be doing odd jobs like cleaning beds, but we’re able to keep jobs and that’s what’s most important to us.”
Anyone attending a baseball game has likely thought about what it would be like to roam free in the clubhouse, playing a game on the field and enjoying their favorite movie on the video board. In Pensacola, that dream has become a reality.
Ben Boynton is Associate, Communications at Minor League Baseball.
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Pensacola minor league team lists stadium on AirBnB for $1,500. It’s booked up.
PENSACOLA — A Florida team is selling people the “ultimate baseball experience” by putting their oceanview stadium up for rent on AirBnB for $1,500 a night.
The Pensacola Blue Wahoos say guests will have access to the clubhouse, a large bedroom, the batting cage and the field.
"Guests are welcome to hit from home plate, play catch in the outfield, run the bases, enjoy a picnic in the outfield, or find other creative uses for the field," the listing said.
And although the listing had no reviews, the stadium has been fully booked through July.
The team said on a Facebook post that it was waiting to hear more on the schedule for the 2020 season from league officials before opening more dates for vacation rentals between July and October.
The Minor League Baseball delayed the start of the 2020 season as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
The Wahoos are a Double-A affiliate of Major League Baseball’s Minnesota Twins.
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