The Last Remaining Blockbuster Is Becoming a Temporary Airbnb
Why not try and make it a Blockbuster night?
The world’s last surviving Blockbuster Video has remained a tourist destination for years, attracting film loving pilgrims from all over the globe with its soft blue and gold glow and promised return to simple times gone by.
But with COVID-19 continuing to ravage the country, the oft-visited Bend, Oregon, movie haven has been forced to adjust its tourism policies.
Rather than shutting its doors, store owner Sandi Harding decided to repurpose the location—for a limited three-night window—into a 1990s Airbnb time capsule replete with a pull-out couch, bean bag chairs, a box TV and VHS player, and “new” release films from the era.
“As the last standing location in the world, our BLOCKBUSTER store is an ode to movie magic, simpler times and the sense of community that could once be found in BLOCKBUSTER locations around the world,” Harding, who has owned the store since 2004, wrote on the Airbnb listing.
“Over the past few months, we’ve been missing the regular visits from friends, neighbors and tourists from around the world. So, we’re opening our store to three quarantine pods of Deschutes County guests for a socially-distanced movie night, just like those of decades past!”
Local Blockbuster fans will have a chance to book the location, which can sleep up to four people, for a single night on either Sept. 18, 19, or 20. The inevitably brief booking window officially opens Aug. 17 at 1 p.m. PT.
Guests fortunate enough to call the store home for a night will have it to themselves for the entirety of their stay, Harding said. Cleaning prior to guest arrival, meanwhile, will be done in accordance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines, and face coverings, hand sanitizer, and disinfecting wipes will all come complimentary.
As for the cost of the one-night rental? Just $4, one cent more than the price of a new-release video rental.
Scores of ’90s enthusiasts who fail in their booking quest will still be able to visit for a limited time to see the temporary living room layout, Harding noted. The last video rental stronghold also offers merchandise through their online store, purchases Harding says continue to help “support our staff and community during this challenging time.”
So, if you’re in the Bend area, why not try and make it a Blockbuster night?
“Crack open a two-liter of Pepsi before locking into a video game … and help yourself to some NERDS, Raisinets and popcorn (heavy on the butter),” Harding wrote.
“And remember, the store is all yours for the night! So let loose, blast the boombox and wear your favorite ‘90s denim so that you feel right at home in another era.”
Read the 2021 Gardening Issue
To read: Click on the right and left arrows at the edge of the box to turn pages; to make the text larger, click on the fullscreen icon in the lower-right corner (desktop) or in the center (mobile).