Airbnb Host Inadvertently Rents Apartment Out for “XXX Freak Fest” Orgy

Business Insider
Analyzing the top news stories across the web
March 17 2014 11:12 AM

Man’s Apartment Trashed as Airbnb Guest Preps for “XXX” Orgy

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Not the kind of sharing Airbnb imagined.

Photo by Chris Weeks/Getty Images for Airbnb

This post originally appeared in Business Insider.

When Ari Teman put his apartment up for rent on Airbnb this past weekend, he saw it as an opportunity to make a few bucks. Airbnb is a site where people can rent out their houses and apartments for short periods of time.

But Teman ended up getting a little more than he bargained for when he arrived home to find that his apartment had been destroyed to the tune of $86,000 while being prepped to host an orgy. 

After discovering what happened, Teman crafted a public explanation —"Dear AirBnB, No Thank You for the XXX Freak Fest" — detailing what exactly went down. 

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This is how it happened, says Teman: A man named "David," who had good renter reviews on Airbnb, emailed Teman, interested in renting out his apartment. David said he needed a place to host his brother and sister-in-law for a family wedding. 

According to Teman, he gave David the keys on Friday afternoon, went to dinner, and then returned to the lobby of his apartment to get his luggage from the doorman before leaving town.

It was there in the lobby where he saw David telling others "they're shutting us down."

Nervous, Teman googled the Gmail address and phone number David had provided him during their correspondence on Airbnb.

The search of the phone number brought up this tweet from February, directing eager partygoers to Teman's apartment:

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Screenshot

Teman rushed to his apartment to find it in shambles; dismantled furniture and belongings had been tossed into a back alley behind his apartment, presumably to make room for guests. 

This is what his apartment looked like just hours after he left it.

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Courtesy of Ari Teman

His belongings had been tossed on the street:

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Courtesy of Ari Teman

Officers from the NYPD 10th Precinct were called to the apartment, where David confirmed that he had agreed to rent the apartment from Teman. David also answered the phone connected to the number advertising the "XXX Freak Fest" at Teman's building.

Teman credits Airbnb for its quick response. 

Airbnb immediately had a locksmith come and change the locks and put Teman in a hotel for the weekend (perhaps longer). The company also wired him more than $20,000, according to Teman, and is complying with authorities. 

Airbnb provided the following statement to Business Insider:

Over 11 million guests have had a safe and positive experience on Airbnb and problems for hosts and guests are incredibly rare, but when they happen, we try to help make things right. We were appalled when we learned about this incident and we took immediate action to help this host. The individual who rented this space has been permanently removed from our site. We've reimbursed the host for damages to his apartment and ensured he has a new place to stay. In the days ahead, we'll continue to work with the host to assist him with his additional needs and we will work cooperatively with any law enforcement agencies that investigate this matter.

Caroline Moss is a tech reporter for Business Insider. Follow her on Twitter.

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