How to convert the comfort and convenience of a luxury hotel into an authentic local experience—this was the challenge our expert Erica Berman took on, and succeeded at beautifully, in the creation of her company Haven in. Her 20+ years in the luxury apartment and villa rental business has lead her to expand from one studio apartment in Paris to dozens of exquisite properties in various European destinations. Erica tells us more about the evolution of Haven in below.
It all started with a good idea (and, frankly, a good view).
“My parents are the kind of travelers that only stay in 4-star hotels; the kind who want to explore on their own during the day, but return to something luxurious, full service, and familiar at night. Soon after my move to Paris in 1992, they decided it was time for a visit. As Mom and Dad prepped for their stay, I had an idea. They needed to see the city I fell in love with through the eyes of a local. I would convince them to stay in a friend’s newly renovated penthouse apartment that came with a big bonus: a balcony and a killer view of the Eiffel Tower.
“Not only did they agree, but after their apartment stay, they couldn’t stop raving. Though they’d visited Paris before, this was a fresh vision and a new kind of luxury: living like a local in as if they, too, were Parisians, if only for a while.
“That’s when the idea sparked. If my 4-star hotel, comfort-loving parents could enjoy, even prefer, this type of hotel-alternative experience, certainly other travelers would, too. I took a leap, bought a charming studio in Montmartre with a friend, renovated and decorated it, and spread the word that it was available for rent for vacation stays.
“Being the early days, I marketed in magazines, faxed information, and sent printed photos by snail mail. It was old fashioned and slow. There was no website or even email. Things have greatly changed since the early 1990s and that adorable studio is no longer mine, but it was the incentive to start on a new and exciting path.
Today, Haven in has more than 50 boutique rental listings in Paris, Provence, Tuscany, and London. My team is here to help other creative travelers and luxe lovers to have that same authentic experience and their very own home-away-from-home just as my parents did, all those years ago.
“We are a business built on the joy of discovery, from unearthing the best local spots and tasting new flavors, to simply helping you get to know a new part of yourself in a new place—somewhere you feel at home, whether it’s for a vacation, an extended stay, or a lifetime.” —Erica Berman Creator, Haven in
Learn more about Haven in and enquire to book at their many extraordinary villas and apartments at this link.