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Havering leads way as Airbnb guests look to outer London

PUBLISHED: 17:00 15 February 2016 | UPDATED: 17:21 15 February 2016

Raphael park. Picture: Dara Khaled

Raphael park. Picture: Dara Khaled

Dara Khaled

Is it the Green Flag parks or Romford Market, Upminster windmill or the £4 cinema? Whatever it is, Airbnb’s London guests are flocking to Havering.

The borough experienced the biggest increase in London for the number of nights booked on the home-sharing website last year with 161 per cent.

More and more guests are opting for the delights of the capital’s lesser-known spots rather than the traditional, central areas.

Airbnb’s UK general manager James McClure said: “Airbnb hosts are promoting a cultural boom in London, supporting local attractions and hidden gems in lesser known parts of London.

“Our community is driving a renaissance for many attractions and experiences in London’s outer boroughs, spreading the benefits of tourism beyond the city centre to communities regular Londoners call home.

Mayor of London Boris Johnson, said: “London continues to break records for visitors from across the globe, who come for the unbeatable cultural attractions and heritage to be found here. But as more tourists seek out the new, the idiosyncratic, the hidden, the local, it is important to stay ahead of the game and capitalise on their desire to explore the lesser known gems London has to offer.

“Last year I launched my cultural tourism vision for the capital and as Londoners, we have a key role to play, with favourite spots and insider knowledge to pass on. This report shows that many Airbnb hosts are already doing this, inspiring visitors to explore more of the city, be it a specialist local museum, a small theatre, a secret cinema, a traditional pub or a quirky café. In doing so they are ambassadors, helping to promote the very best of what London has to offer.”

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