If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to spend your golden years in a home, perhaps a short stay at one might sate your curiosity.
In a post on TikTok on Friday (Sept 8), Rie, who goes by username Crybabytubby, shared how she went for a stay at an Airbnb in Johor Bahru (JB) but found herself gaining temporary residency at a charity home for the disabled and chronically ill instead.
The 27-year-old who works in the media told AsiaOne that the incident happened back in July 2022.
She explained to us that she had only booked the place, Johore Chesire Home, because she and her friend wanted to extend their JB trip by one night but their previous accommodation was fully booked.
The home only cost them $39.97 and was a convenient 15 minute drive away from their first accommodation.
But this short drive led them past two cemeteries to a more remote location as compared to the other Airbnb homes that they had previously stayed at in JB.
Comes with 10pm curfew
In the images she shared on TikTok, Rie showed the front entrance of the Airbnb location with a large rolling metal gate and high metal fences stretching into the distance.
"Looking a bit [suspicious]," she jokingly wrote on the image. She also uploaded photographs of the corridor and the room, both of which appeared well-maintained and quite simply decorated.
The toilet in the room she booked was also wheelchair accessible and quite spacious, she added.
However, the location unexpectedly had a curfew for Rie and her friend where past 10pm, the large gate would be locked and they would need to call security to enter the residence.
The front gate also had a large "welcome sign" – a white billboard showing that the Airbnb is actually part of the Johore Cheshire Home, a shelter for the chronically ill.
Later on, Rie said she checked the reviews on Airbnb and realised that other visitors had mentioned that Johore Chesire Home was indeed a place for the chronically ill.
Another screenshot that Rie shared with us of the Airbnb listing revealed that the room had been described as a "modern designer room".
"While the listing was marketed as having modern design rooms, I did not do extensive research or question the part where they mentioned 'you will rest well knowing your contribution is helping the residents of Johor Chesire Home'," Rie admitted.
"I should have done more research instead of thinking that it was just the name of an apartment building and should have checked online that it was actually a charity home," she said in hindsight.
Upon realising that this was not your usual Airbnb, Rie and her friend eventually checked out within an hour.
'It didn't feel right': Rie
Rie told AsiaOne that during their short time there, they did not encounter any other Airbnb guests and noted that there seemed to be "many rooms available".
As to why they didn't stay the night, Rie explained that "it didn't feel right" vacationing in a place meant to help the chronically ill and people with disabilities.
"I prefer to have my holiday in an alternative location as I empathise with them and want to ensure that their comfort and privacy is upheld," she said.
She also said she was worried about making the residents there feel uneasy.
"In order to get to the room that I have booked, I would have to pass by all the residents having their daily activities in the common area there," she explained.
"I was afraid I may make them uncomfortable by having a holiday there, as it is meant to be their safe space."
According to Rie, the owner has since deleted their account and removed all their listings from Airbnb.
AsiaOne has reached out to Johore Chesire Home for more details.