Montréal-based luxury vacation rental company Luxury Retreats has been acquired by Airbnb, a U.S. online hospitality business. No financial terms were released, however, the Globe and Mail reported Airbnb paid between $200 million and $300 million in cash and stock. Luxury Retreats will continue to operate as a standalone entity in the short term, with Founder and CEO Joe Poulin joining Airbnb as a luxury specialist. Airbnb said it will invest in Luxury Retreats, which offers over 4,000 homes in 100 destinations worldwide. Luxury Retreats raised about $20 million from Canadian venture capital firm iNovia Capital and other investors, including 2015’s $11 million Series B round.
February 15, 2017
Airbnb, the world’s leading hospitality company, today announced it has acquired Montreal-based Luxury Retreats, a luxury vacation rental company offering over 4,000 homes in 100 destinations around the world. Luxury Retreats CEO Joe Poulin will join Airbnb and lead luxury homes, reporting to Airbnb co-founder and CEO Brian Chesky and the Luxury Retreats team will remain based in Montreal. Luxury Retreats offers high-quality listings, world class concierge service and a range of amenities and the acquisition will complement Airbnb’s work to provide a variety of homes and experiences to travelers, particularly those visiting traditional vacation destinations.
“From airbeds in an apartment to castles to villas, Airbnb has always been focused on providing a broad range of amazing experiences and trips,” said co-founder and CEO Brian Chesky. “I have spent countless hours with Joe and his team and seen firsthand their passion for delivering amazing hospitality and unforgettable experiences in spectacular places around the world. They share our values and I’m excited to work with the Luxury Retreats team to serve more travelers. The incredible energy and talent in these teams will help support our mission and grow our community and I’m confident that we will expand our team in Canada in the months and years ahead.”
“Montreal is known as an innovative city that is looking forward,” said Montreal Mayor Denis Coderre. “I’m pleased that a large company like Airbnb has chosen to invest in Montreal by their investment in Luxury Retreats and that its activities will continue to be based here. This proves that Montreal, as a large metropolis, is open to the sharing economy when it is done correctly. Having recently met Brian Chesky and Joe Poulin, I am convinced that they will find in Montreal an ideal place to invest and continue their activities.”
In the short-term, Luxury Retreats will continue to operate as a standalone entity. Over time, Luxury Retreats listings will be highlighted and integrated into the Airbnb community. All of the approximately 250 members of Luxury Retreats team will join the Airbnb global family and continue to focus on bringing more high-quality listings to the Airbnb community. Airbnb and Luxury Retreats anticipate continuing to invest in the Montreal office, adding additional employees and resources to the Canadian team in the years ahead.
“Airbnb has revolutionized global hospitality, connecting a vibrant community of hosts and guests to deliver a tremendous amount of unique travel experiences,” said Luxury Retreats Founder and CEO Joe Poulin. “Brian’s vision, values and approach mirror what Luxury Retreats has been focused on in the luxury market since 1999. We are thrilled to join the Airbnb family with a continued commitment of delivering quality, luxury travel experiences.”
The Luxury Retreats team provides concierge services and access to its support team, as well as dedicated villa specialists to help guests find the perfect villa. These services and support will be maintained as Luxury Retreats joins the Airbnb community. Examples of Luxury Retreats listings include this villa in Tuscany and this seaside retreat in the Turks and Caicos.
Founded in 2008, Airbnb’s mission is to create a world where people can belong when they travel by being connected to local cultures and having unique travel experiences. Its community marketplace provides access to millions of unique accommodations from apartments and villas to castles and treehouses in more than 65,000 cities and 191 countries.
With Experiences, Airbnb offers unprecedented access to local communities and interests, while Places lets people discover the hidden gems of a city as recommended by the people that live there. Airbnb is people powered and the easiest way to earn a little extra income from extra space in a home or from sharing passions, interests and cities.