Update 12:32pm CT, April 20: A spokesperson for Airbnb told the Daily Dot in a statement: “Art is covered in our AirCover policy and this Host is being supported through that process. We have suspended this Guest for violating our policies.”
Original story: While Airbnb hosts have accused guests of stealing items before, this person is going viral for a more confusing situation. In a viral TikTok, an Airbnb host reveals that a guest took down a painting in her living room and replaced it with a wildly different one.
In the clip, the host, Amy (@allbelong.co), shows a before picture of the apartment the guest stayed in. The living room features a black-and-white map of the world hanging above a black sofa. She says that has been the living room styling for quite some time.
She only noticed recently, while preparing for a Zoom call in the apartment, that her Airbnb looked different.
It seems the person who stayed in the apartment most recently replaced the map of the world with a larger piece of artwork. It appears to be a vintage airplane propeller with warmer coloring, including orange, red, and brown tones—a definite style departure from the black and white art it replaced.
“I have never seen this picture before in my life. I don’t know where it came from. Suddenly, it’s just hanging on my wall,” Amy says.
While some commenters were hoping the Airbnb guest was an artist on a mission to replace mass-produced art with their own original artwork in as many rental properties as possible, a Google Lens search debunked the theory.
The painting is being sold by major retailers, including Amazon, eBay, and Wayfair. Depending on where you buy it, the piece costs about $100 to $220.
“I gotta say, I was a little creeped out,” Amy says.
She adds that she looked around the rest of the apartment to see if the person left it somewhere, but it is “nowhere to be found.”
Amy says she’s never encountered a situation like this.
@allbelongco The weirdest thing a guest has ever done. #airbnb #airbnbstory #airbnbguest #airbnbthief #crazystory #story #fyp ♬ original sound – allbelong.co
The TikTok has more than 1.3 million views and thousands of comments. Amy captioned it, “The weirdest thing a guest has ever done.”
Some commenters said they recently saw a video in which the same artwork was stolen, but unfortunately, no one has been able to locate the TikTok.
Most commenters have their own theories about what happened.
“Someone broke it, at least they replaced it,” one person said.
“Probably switching items from Airbnb to other Airbnb’s to see if anyone noticed,” another wrote.
“They must have broken it or liked it and replaced it,” a commenter said.
Others thought the new painting looked better in the space.
“It’s an upgrade, honestly. The old one was bland,” a person said.
“I’ll be honest, I think the new picture goes better with room. I’d count it as a win” another agreed.
The Daily Dot reached out to Amy for more information via email.