It’s a promotional opportunity for the company, clearly, to spotlight the 125% growth in its number of listings in China in the last year and the 3.3 million guest arrivals over the last year in those properties. But for the four who win, the experience will truly be unique and the bragging rights unquestioned.
The accommodations will be located in one of the towers, a large bed installed with fine quality linens and blankets—necessary because although plexiglass will cover the ceiling and windows allowing the moon and stars to show through, there’s also the possibility of cool night air. A dining table will be set up for a multi course Chinese banquet, each course illustrating a particular aspect of Chinese culture, and accompanied by traditional musicians. Portable bathrooms are being brought in (or guests can wander down the Wall to permanent facilities.)
The sunrise functions as a wake up call for guests to hike through the countryside surrounding the 13,170 mile long Wall. Official historians will be alongside to detail the 2600 years of history, the contributions of the various dynasties, intricacies of construction and purpose along with current preservation efforts. Guests will also be given the opportunity to learn other aspects of Chinese culture such as calligraphy and seal engraving, activities generally offered on other, more typical, Airbnb stays, before they depart.
To enter, participants need to do a bit of writing, explaining why it is more important now than ever to break down barriers between cultures and how they want to build new connections. They need to enter by 11:59 PM Beijing time on August 11th on the listing page for the Great Wall on Airbnb’s site. The four winners (plus a guest each) will be in residence for a night each during the time period September 4-8th and other non-Wall prizes are included—air tickets to Beijing from the nearest international airport (or ground transport if the winner lives within 100 miles of Beijing), a regular Airbnb accommodation between September 3-9 (except for the night on the Wall) and three meals a day.
Laurie Werner, Contributor