With the holidays drawing near, hundreds of thousands of travelers will soon book rooms — but not at a hotel. Short-term rentals are gaining traction according to recent numbers posted by Airbnb, the online service that provides a platform for adventurous homeowners to rent unoccupied living space to travelers. In October, the company announced it had served 9 million guests since launching in 2008 — and of that amount, 5 million guests booked nights in the last nine months alone.
Last Friday night, I headed to The Book Cellar (the most charming, cozy bookstore on Earth, where I want to live forever) to talk feminism and pop culture with women much smarter than me: Writers Jessica Coen, Kate Harding, Jenna Sauers, Claire Zulkey and Alexis Chaney, who were in town to promote The Book of Jezebel, an “encyclopedic guide to lady things.”
Eric Close is one of the few stars of “Nashville” who doesn’t play a musician — but that doesn’t mean that the Midwest native will be able to avoid the stage forever. “People have been bugging me and saying I should take voice lessons and sing next,” he laughs. “I’d try it out.”
“All happy families are alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.” The opening line of Tolstoy’s novel Anna Karenina has been quoted so often you’d think it would have lost its significance by now. But whether in life or the imagination, family drama never ceases to hold our attention.
For Peter Roth, sitting still is a luxury. In 15 years working in hotels, Roth has moved his family 11 times, living in Spain, Venezuela, Uruguay, Ecuador, Germany, Russia and, most recently, Chile. That rapid pace means he’s never returned to any of the cities once he’s left — until now.
Nick Moretti, owner of Bucktown’s newly opened Chop Shop, had an ambitious vision when designing the hybrid butcher shop, bar, restaurant and event space. “I wanted to create a concept that could appeal to multiple demographics, as well as Chicago’s love of meat, music and craft beer and cocktails,” he says. “[Combining] all the things Chicago loves, under one roof, was something that hadn’t been done before.”
Bridget Blaney and Jeff Kaplan forged a fast friendship while working at Wisconsin’s Camp Kawaga during the summer of 2008. But it wasn’t until the next summer that Kaplan — who spent much of his childhood at the camp, then grew up to become its assistant director — mustered up the courage to pursue Blaney, who worked as the camp nurse.