Local Airbnb Host Named Best New Host in Texas
Yurt in the Trees Gets Nearly 5 Stars
By Brittany Anderson
DRIP SPRINGS — Booking an Airbnb rather than a traditional hotel room has become an increasingly popular choice for travelers in recent years and a local host was recently recognized for offering something unique to Hill explorers Country.
Derek Stevens and his wife Alex have been hosting guests in their treehouse-style yurt, called Tangled Oak Yurt in Dripping Springs, since January 2022. The superb listing and surrounding property, along with the Stevens’ impeccable customer service, have given them Recently earned the “Best New Host in Texas” Recognition by Airbnb.
The recognition is part of a larger Airbnb report last month that highlighted the best new host in each state.
The criteria to be named Best New Host included becoming a top-listed host in 2022, having the most guest registrations in that area, and achieving “Superhost” status on the platform. .
Derek said he and Alex, both from the Dripping Springs area, started brainstorming with his father about what to do with a family plot a few years ago. Eventually, the idea snowballed into creating an Airbnb.
“Between our discussions with him and my wife, we wanted to offer something unique among everyone else’s Airbnbs,” Derek said. “We kind of want to fall somewhere in between a rural camping experience with all the modern conveniences. We wanted something unique that would grab people’s attention; we wanted people to stay and explore the growing Dripping Springs area.
The yurt is conveniently located just 10 miles west of downtown Dripping Springs off Highway 290. It is also only 15 minutes from Blanco and 20 minutes from Johnson City.
“It’s nestled between a very popular growing area that has tons of wineries, breweries, wedding venues and more,” Derek said.
Currently, Stevenses Yurt has a 4.97 star rating with over 100 check-ins, garnering commendable reviews in areas such as cleanliness, communication and value. The yurt itself is a 16-sided wooden cabin with tons of windows and a 4-foot circular skylight dome. It is situated on 9 acres of land and nestled under the canopy of a 300 year old oak tree.
The yurt also has a front deck, swings, propane BBQ and fire pit and other comfort essentials like heating and air conditioning, queen-size bed, kitchenette, large bathroom and a Roku TV.
Of course, getting this recognition from Airbnb as a host isn’t easy. Derek said the key is to communicate with guests by being “always understanding and contactable”. Plus, it’s just a “very photogenic property”.
“We’re certainly very grateful and surprised,” Derek said. “From a hosting perspective, we wanted to offer all the little details that people might not think of. So before we opened, my wife and I stayed there and made a list of what would be cool, unique touches that people would remember.
You can book your stay at Tangled Oak Yurt at bit.ly/3IoF2aT. The Stevens are also in the process of building a second yurt on the property, which should open in about a month.