After searching for places when our home exchange did not work out, we finally settled on an AirBnB rental that looked promising. I was a little suspicious that all of the reviews only seemed to mention the colors of the walls and not much else. However, desperate times and all that as the saying goes.
As it turned out there were a couple of good things about this apartment. The location was well situated for getting around the city by walking or metro. We were no longer dependent on Uber. Aldo assisted us with our luggage up the 70 plus stairs, which would have been a killer otherwise. The building has two elevators, but apparently, they are decorative only. Neither one works.
Chloe, who owns the apartment, claims she and her husband are around all the time for any needs. We never did meet or speak with Chloe, but that did not matter. Aldo bought us some freshly ground coffee for the French press coffee maker. These are where the positives end. After Aldo left, we really noticed the surroundings.
To say this apartment has a kitchen is a stretch of the imagination. There is a sink with a cold-water tap as one generally sees outside a building to connect a hose to. On a makeshift table, there sits a three-burner gas camper stove. This ‘kitchen’ area is postage stamp sized with the filthiest stains on the floor making one wonder if the Board of Health would condemn it if inspected. The unsanitary feeling made it difficult to want to cook in there.
The refrigerator and microwave are in the living area closet. Both were dirty; the refrigerator still had goods from the previous guest. The freezer has unidentifiable things in it that needed eviction. Alerting Aldo to this situation caused him to have the cleaner come clean.
Going into the bathroom for the first time, we found the toilet was dirty. There was no toilet brush, so it was not possible to clean. The bathroom floors are as disgustingly filthy as the kitchen or so old they are permanently cruddy. With a stained or dirty tub and sink, the entire apartment had a gross feeling. We wrote Aldo about the condition of the apartment, his claim is years of use have stained the tiles, which are ceramic. This should have been in the description, because they are so ugly, we never went without shoes or slippers.
The tub makes one want to wear bathing sandals. To add to the misery, there is no hot water in the sink either. The mirror is away from the sink, so the only hot water for shaving is by running the shower.
Because the bathroom window is permanently stuck open, we found a number of mosquitos coming in that window. Each morning, we both found multiple insect bites.
The dark colored walls, which others seem to admire, need a fresh coat of paint, but still they absorb a great deal of light. The lighting is horrendous. Most rooms have a single bulb hanging from a wire from the ceiling. It is difficult to read or do much of anything once the sun goes down. Clamp on flexible desk lights are in the living area and both bedrooms, but none create enough light to be of much use.
Both living room chairs need a good cleaning, but they slope at a 90-degree angle, making sitting for longer than a few minutes very uncomfortable. We had to use the mishmash of other chairs to prop our legs up to keep from sliding down the front of the chairs.
After the cleaner was presumably there, the toilet, freezer, and microwave were untouched. There still was no toilet brush. Food crumbs on ‘dining area floor’ were still there afterward.
Advertised as quiet, the dogs in the building are released into the inner courtyard and start barking late at night and again early morning. The downstairs neighbors are loud and the sound echoes up. Only backpackers or bohemians could tolerate this place.
AirBnB really needs to investigate. This property is a disgrace. The tiles need professional cleaning, replacement or paint over them. I would place bets that the majority of the reviews are phony based on the limited content and mention of the wall colors.
Confirmation Code YD2SXZ Receipt # 2134534667