Airbnb to fund some of Ireland’s most historic homes which may see some listed as accommodation

Properties will be given ‘expert guidance and workshops’ as well as financial aid

Airbnb has agreed to provide funding for the development, maintenance and restoration of some of Ireland’s most historic homes which could see some previously off-limits properties appearing on the accommodation platform for the first time.

The collaboration will see the launch of Capacity Awards, a fund available to members of Historic Houses of Ireland which Airbnb said would be “innovative and potentially transformative for many of these properties”.

In addition to financial aid, the properties will be given “expert guidance and workshops” from Airbnb “to help them understand how to showcase and maximise their properties’ potential on the platform”.

Airbnb noted that a large portion of these homes are in rural areas that rely heavily on tourism.


“Coming together to revitalise heritage sites, the partnership will encourage travel to these areas, and drive important benefits to local households and economies,” the company said.

Hannah Flynn of Roundwood House, an 18th-century Georgian estate in Mountrath, Co Laois, said some of the additional income the property earns from visiting guests “goes toward maintaining the historical aspects of the property, but our guests also spend money in many of the local businesses, which is so important for the community, especially when times are hard.”

She expressed the hope that more sites similar to Roundwood House could “access the support to restore and maintain their own properties, as well as drive tourism to their local areas.”

The chairman of Historic Houses of Ireland Thomas Cosby said members were custodians of “some of the most beautiful historic houses and gardens in the country” and said that with the new fund “more of our members will be able to open their properties to tourism, increasing local spend and employment in their communities.”

Amanda Cupples of Airbnb noted that Ireland’s historic homes “contribute to the beauty and heritage of rural Ireland, and together we hope to restore, preserve, and promote these incredible sites.”

Conor Pope

Conor Pope

Conor Pope is Consumer Affairs Correspondent, Pricewatch Editor and cohost of the In the News podcast