With plenty of sites able to help you book your next vacation, it can be difficult for startups to come up with a fresh angle and capture the attention of travelers. But Spanish startup BeMate, which launched last September, seems to have done just that with a platform that allows people to book apartments in a variety of major cities in Europe, the United States, and South America and receive access to hotel-level services.
BeMate is attempting to offer the full hotel experience, meaning baggage drop-off and concierge service, for those who would prefer to stay somewhere a bit more unique and private. I did a search through their listings for Miami and found that you can filter down results by date, the number of people staying, the number of beds or baths required, or nightly fee. What is nice is that they offer a couple of ways to view available listings, allowing you to first sort by price or popularity and to then do the standard “grid” or view by map to see where the apartments are located and how much they cost to rent. In this particular city, choices ranged from $99 (I found even cheaper options in other cities) to more than $1,500. Like a lot of marketplaces, BeMate operates on a commission basis.
The hotel services are provided by an associated hotel (typically Room Mate, a prominent investor in the startup). In addition to Room Mate, investors include Room Mate-founder Kike Sarasola, Marc Canadell, Pilar Gonzalez, and another American businessman.
BeMate declined to reveal how many users they have at this, but does report that they have connected with apartment-owners in cities such as Madrid, Barcelona, Amsterdam, Miami, Mexico City, New York, Florence, and several other mid-sized Spanish cities, and plan to expand into London, Paris, and Lisbon this year.