We use Airbnb quite often from multiple Airbnb stays in Iceland to the adorable historic Airbnb we stayed at in Cuba and we have always been very pleased with our hosts and accommodations. One thing we always do when booking an Airbnb is to read all the guest's feedback and have a general rule of thumb to book an Airbnb that has more than five reviews. With a little bit of due diligence, you are bound to have a great stay.
Most of our Airbnb stays have been pretty average in size, so the penthouse in Vancouver was our first experience with an amazing rooftop view and extra amenities. Since we were traveling with several friends on this trip, we thought it would be the perfect opportunity to book something a little more luxurious since we would all be splitting the cost.
The check-in process was fairly simple once we got to the apartment building. The host gave us a passcode to enter and we proceeded to the top floor, which was the 35th floor. We were all squealing with excitement when we walked in to the bright and spacious living room. The tall, large windows overlooking downtown Vancouver was absolutely amazing! We immediately walked out to the balcony and took in the glorious views.
There were 2 bedrooms, 3 beds, 2.5 bathrooms, a large living room with a super-size TV, a kitchen, and 2 balconies with a barbecue grill, jacuzzi, outdoor furniture and fire pit. We shared the bedroom located upstairs that had a king-size bed with a full-size bathroom including a large, oval tub and separate shower stall. Our friends used the bedroom downstairs and the pull-out couch.
The penthouse was in a very convenient location in Chinatown near a grocery store, the train station, coffee shop, pharmacy and liquor store. We visited the grocery store and Starbucks almost everyday we were there since it was just a walk across the street. The grocery store is an Asian grocery store with fresh seafood, Asian snacks and bakery. We love Asian bakeries, so we bought lots of rolls and a loaf of bread. If you visit the Asian store in the morning, they give great discounts on the one-day old bread, which was still fresh in our opinion.
Since we visited Vancouver end of March, the weather was still a little cold (40 - 50 °F), so we didn't get to enjoy the balcony as much as we wanted to but we still went out to take in the incredible views as much as we could. When we had some down time, we all gathered around in the living room and watched a little bit of Netflix and had some good laughs.
A few downsides to this penthouse were the light controls, lack of window blinds or curtains and the loud neighbors. The light controls were super high-tech, so every night, we had a difficult time figuring out which switch turned on what. For example, the switch downstairs would also control the lights upstairs, so if we turned that switch off, it would go dark in every room and we would have to figure out how to individually turn on the correct lights in each room. We love technology but there's got to be a way to make those controls a little more simpler. We also did not like the fact that the penthouse had no blinds or curtains on any of the windows. People could clearly see inside our rooms and we would be woken up in the morning by first light. We also had very loud neighbors on the weekend. The adjacent apartment was also a penthouse being rented out, so there were several parties with loud people we could clearly hear on the other side of the wall.
Aside from the few negative experiences we had, we still had a great time staying at the penthouse. The host was very helpful and responsive and even stopped by to make us a makeshift curtain on our bathroom window so we could have some privacy.