Book and Table to offer short-term stays in Valdosta

Published: Jun. 13, 2018 at 5:21 PM EDT
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By: Emma Wheeler | WCTV Eyewitness News

June 13, 2018

VALDOSTA, Ga. (WCTV) -- With last week's city council vote, the Book and Table will soon be more than just a bookstore. It will now also be somewhere to spend the night in Valdosta.

City of Valdosta staff say, with no other lodging downtown, it could help bring in more stores to fill spaces.

The owners are planning to market through Airbnb. The rental facility will be connected to the Book and Table on North Patterson Street, right next to Bennie's Alley.

Plans call for three bedrooms to be added downstairs, with each one available for short term stays-- no longer than seven days.

Tourism staff say the unique travel option could drive more people to check out Valdosta.

"People that list on sites like that basically become advertiser for our community," said Chris Hamilton with the Valdosta-Lowndes County Tourism Authority. "The more properties that are listed on sites like that, the more time people will spend perusing the options that exist. So, they're becoming advertisers for the community."

Tourism staff say it could also encourage more people to spend time downtown, and restaurants and stores to stay open later, bringing more money to the city.

There are already some Airbnb renters around Valdosta utilizing the website. The city says, as of now, there is no state regulation that specifically covers these units, but everyone is supposed to have a business license.

The city says because the rental units are connected to a commercial development, it's considered a motel. Airbnb rentals within homes or apartments would need approval to be listed as a bed and breakfast.