Luxury properties rented through Airbnb are hosting illegal alcoholic parties for young, affluent night owls for young, affluent night owls despite the risk of the coronavirus spreading, as The Mail was able to demonstrate on Sunday
A three-bedroom apartment in a £ 3.5 million listed townhouse in London's trendy Soho district was used for four events during the month.
More than 100 teenagers at one of these events – some arrived in sports cars and many wore expensive jewelry – packed onto the property, where they swallowed Veuve Clicquot champagne and inhaled "hippie crack".
A party at the upscale Carlisle Street apartment on July 25th was so loud that it was searched by Westminster Council law enforcement officers at 3 a.m. Photos show kitchen sideboards moaning with half-empty bottles of champagne and liquor and abandoned nitrous oxide canisters strewn around the bedrooms.
A party at the upscale Carlisle Street apartment on July 25th was so loud that it was searched by Westminster Council law enforcement officers at 3 a.m. Photos show abandoned nitrous oxide canisters scattered around a bedroom (picture)
Photos show kitchen sideboards moaning with half-empty bottles of champagne and spirits (picture)
In addition to a DJ, a professional sound system and a bar, the organizers had hired two bouncers, one of whom was found with a "clicker" that showed that 106 people had been pushed into the property (picture).
In addition to a DJ, a professional sound system and a bar, the organizers had hired two bouncers, one of whom was found with a "clicker" that showed that 106 people had been pushed into the property.
A night shift worker at the neighboring Residence Hotel remembered the series of noisy events and said, "I couldn't believe what I was seeing.
“As the night went on, more and more people came and the party got louder and louder. And it happened week after week. "
Mahesh Tulsiani, who rents his apartment for £ 710 a night, said he had no idea it was about to be converted into an illegal pop-up nightclub when a "well spoken and polite" man came to collect the keys.
Mr Tulsiani, who received a noise notice from the council and who became one of the first property owners in the UK to receive a ban notice under the new Covid-19 lockdown rules, added that he was considering legal action against the men who had rented the property.
Mahesh Tulsiani, who rents his apartment for £ 710 a night, said he had no idea it was about to be converted into an illegal pop-up nightclub when a "well spoken and polite" man came to collect the keys. Pictured: cups and cans from the party
The apartment has now been removed from Airbnb but was still available on other short-term rental sites last week, including Booking.com and Expedia. Pictured: an online ad for the apartment
"We made it very clear that parties were banned and horrified when we found out what happened," he said.
“We know these men who rented the property were not blacklisted by the short-term renters. Frankly, we believe that they could do more to stop these parties by putting in better controls. "
Landlords forced to install CCTV to prevent party-goers from taking over
Desperate homeowners resort to installing cameras to prevent illegal Airbnb lockdown parties.
BBC broadcaster Hannah Fry recently discovered that the owners of a property her family had rented had video surveillance installed on it. “I rented a lovely country house for a vacation with my family and found that there are cameras right outside the bedrooms that record everything. I mean … that's not okay, is it? What would you do? “She wrote on Twitter.
According to Airbnb rules, hosts must make it clear to a guest whether there are security cameras or other recording devices in or around the property.
In May, an Airbnb landlord discovered 12 revelers snuck into his apartment for a lockdown party after watching his CCTV doorbell.
The landlord said he had received a booking for the apartment in Notting Hill, west London, and warned the client that only two people could be in the property at a time.
But he was woken up at 1am by a phone call alerting him of activity on the doorstep. In a CCTV clip of the doorbell, at least 12 people sneak into the property.
The footage shows two men first unlocking the front door before a woman tries to duck under the camera so as not to be seen entering an illegal rave.
The problem has gotten so bad that even Airbnb property neighbors are installing cameras. One man claimed on social media that he put cameras on his windows and front door because 22 of the 25 properties on his block belonged to the same person who rents them out for parties.
The apartment has now been removed from Airbnb but was still available on other short-term rental sites last week, including Booking.com and Expedia. A Booking.com spokesperson said: "We have conducted a thorough investigation and are working proactively with Westminster Council to resolve and prevent such problems in the future."
Expedia said it has "paused future bookings for the property while we investigate".
While this may come as a relief for the immediate neighbors, research by The Mail on Sunday shows that there is no shortage of young people eager to party after the lockdown – and neither of organizers willing to make money.
Last week we told how 140 revelers pushed onto a canal boat for an illegal rave in East London that openly consumed Class A drugs.
When Home Secretary Priti Patel condemned the “selfish” organizers of illegal raves this weekend, local residents told grim stories of loud parties. Siobhán McSweeney, a star on Channel 4 sitcom Derry Girls, took to Twitter to complain about problems in her Westminster area.
"If you're a landlord at @Airbnb_uk, rent a party house in a residential area for you," she tweeted yesterday.
“When you rent a place with the intention of having a rave with hundreds of people in the middle of a pandemic. If you go to one of those parties knowing how people died alone, horrible – F *** YOU. This is getting ridiculous now. We neighbors have filed a trillion complaints. The property is listed on Booking.com and Airbnb. Parties / raves / clubs are prohibited. Turn it off! & # 39;
Across Westminster there were 30 complaints about illegal parties last month, up from 12 in June and only one in May. One of them on Soho Brewer Street contained 80 people living in two apartments in the same building.
Councilor Heather Acton, Westminster City Council Cabinet Councilor for Public Protection and Licensing, who led the campaign against short term rental parties, said: “Our community is increasingly angry with the number of noisy, disruptive and unsafe parties in homes across Westminster.
"Of course the pandemic has had a huge impact on many people's social lives, but we are now seeing residential properties turn into 'pop-up' nightclubs where more than 100 people come in for unlicensed music events, often accompanied by drug trafficking Crowd in small apartments. It is a dangerous trend that causes significant disruption and lives at risk if participants ignore social distancing guidelines. "
Mr Tulsiani, who received a noise notice from the council and who became one of the first property owners in the UK to receive a ban notice under the new Covid-19 lockdown rules, added that he was considering legal action against the men who had rented the property. Pictured: nitrous oxide canister and an empty bottle in the apartment
City Police Commander Ade Adelekan said, “Unlicensed music events are illegal and the Met will not allow these unregulated and often dangerous events to take place.
"The communities don't want these disruptive events on their doorstep and we would ask anyone with information about events that are being organized to contact the police."
Earlier this month, Airbnb put a global ban on all parties and events on its lists.
It has also banned under-25s with repeated negative reviews from using its platform in the UK, France and Spain to book entire properties in their area.
When asked about the Carlisle Street apartment, an Airbnb spokesperson said, "We have no tolerance for illegal activity, we have removed guests from the platform at this point and the listing is not available on Airbnb."
"Illegal raves made me fear for my son's life": Selfish night owls at an Airbnb party are accused of contracting clouds of cannabis smoke in a four-year-old boy who was short of breath
Jonathan Bucks for the Sunday Post
Selfish night owls at an illegal Airbnb party were accused of contracting a four-year-old boy with clouds of cannabis smoke.
Adam Jones, 30, said his son Theodore, who had been self-isolating for months due to shortness of breath, suffered an attack after acrid smoke blew into the family's home.
He said two apartments on the Luxury Grange Apartments block in Coventry have had a series of illegal parties since March, with dozens of revelers coming and going at any time of the day or night.
"It's been hellishly for months with parties that start at 10 a.m. and last until 4 a.m. the next morning," said Mr Jones.
Adam Jones, 30, said his son Theodore, who had been self-isolating for months due to shortness of breath, suffered an attack after acrid smoke blew into the family's home
“There is loud music, drug use and general anti-social behavior in all communal areas.
"It scared me and my son to go outside."
The IT engineer is particularly concerned about the risk of people constantly introducing Covid-19 into the block. "Whenever we go outside I tell Theodore not to touch the railings on the stairs or door handles," he added.
"We always find nitrous oxide canisters in the parking lot and I tell him not to touch any of them."
Despite repeatedly informing the property owners about the parties, Mr. Jones claims that nothing was done to stop them.
Last night, both properties were still available on Airbnb. Priced at £ 226 for a minimum of two nights, one listing describes it as "a luxurious, tastefully decorated, modern two bedroom apartment in a quiet and great new development with excellent amenities" adding, "Well suited for business travelers, couples and families Solo adventurers who like and appreciate luxury. & # 39;
Mr Jones said the parties began imposing the lockdown in March. In the worst case, Theodore developed breathing problems at 3 a.m., which Mr. Jones attributes to him when he inhaled cannabis smoke. "I didn't know if I should go outside and pass all the people who drink and smoke," he said. “I was also nervous about taking Theodore to the hospital where he would take the risk of contracting the virus.
"It is outrageous that I was put in this position because I feared for my son's life because of these selfish people."
He described weekly parties during the summer with often around 40 night owls. Housekeeping staff came in to clean up the mess before more people arrived.
“They trashed the common area and parking lot. The owners are definitely breaking the terms of the lease, but they don't seem to care, ”he said. Mr Jones also alleged that calls to the police went unanswered and that he and other local residents are now considering installing video surveillance to prevent further illegal occurrences.
"I can't believe that we have to put cameras in our block of supposed luxury apartments to protect ourselves," he said.
West Midlands Police, Airbnb and Morris Homes, who manage the apartment block, did not respond to a comment.
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