Reviews,  Travel

Yurts So Good: A Weekend in Danville

Here’s the thing… I have a wee bit of an obsession with all things HGTV AND Airbnb.  Why?  Because HGTV has exposed me to so many different kinds of homes and Airbnb allows me to actually stay in them.  Why aren’t they working together?  Or…are they?  Hmm…

I’ve watched more than my fair share of tiny home shows on HGTV – Tiny Luxury (my fave!), Tiny House Hunters and Tiny House, Big Living.   From mini houses to Airstream trailers to shipping containers to yurts…my jaw has dropped, and my mind boggled as people have made such intimate spaces their permanent domicile.

And you know what…I want to stay in them all. 

For…like…a weekend.  So I am going to try and stay in every single kind of tiny and/or unique home that I possibly can.  Thank you, Airbnb, for making that a possibility!

Last weekend I was able to experience my very first tiny home – The Yurt at Danville.  It’s available via AirBnB here or via their website here.  Admittedly, I thought Danville was a real town, but the yurt is indeed located in a town just outside of Orlando called Geneva.

IMG_3522 (1)
The yurt at twilight minus the diamond-encrusted teenage vampires.

“Danville” is owned and operated by Dan and Deborah Shaw on a thirty-acre property that includes their home.  In addition to the yurt,  they also have several other rooms available to stay – The Man Cave (how I initially found Danville), The Treehouse and the Danville Bed and Breakfast.   After staying in the yurt, I can assure you that I plan on making return trips to stay in every room they have to offer.

That’s a treehouse!  Don’t you want to stay in it?  I do!

Dan and Deborah are the consummate hosts.  My best friend, Nicole, joined me on the trip.  I arrived a couple hours ahead of her, and Dan very kindly drove me around Danville to get the “lay of the land.”  The tour included stops by the treehouse, the Man Cave and the location for a future yurt.  At the Man Cave, I even took a spin on an electric bike.  Thankfully there are no photos or video evidence of my clumsy ride.

Shortly, after that, Nicole arrived, and we settled into our beautifully decorated and very, very comfortable yurt.  Dan had invited to his nightly Happy Hour in his Irish-style pub, so a little cheese and crackers were had in preparation for beer.  Lots and lots of foamy, delicious beer.

We sat with Dan and Deborah for hours sipping beer, eating chips and salsa and chatting.  Hours had passed, and phones weren’t picked up other than to view a video from Dan and Deb’s 50th anniversary back in December. We were joined a bit later by other Danville guests.  More chatting and laughter ensued before we decided to call it a night.

More Danville highlights…

Meet the yurt neighbors!  The alpacas, Gwynnie and RJ, and the cutest flock of fuzzy chickens.

A golf cart was made available to us to get around the vast property throughout our stay.  It came in very handy when we became friendly with a couple staying in the treehouse.

Golf Cart Ride
Scenes from a golf cart…

There are numerous places around the property to sit, swing, and relax.

Dan is a licensed pilot and for a nominal fee will take you up for a ride if the conditions are favorable.  I am a chicken sh!t and suffer from gnarly motion sickness, so I passed.  Nicole was game, so she flew the friendly skies with our friendly host.

Nicole and Dan getting ready for take-off.  I sipped coffee and kissed the ground.

And once Nicole landed, she went up in a gyrocopter.  How brave is she??? (I’m still a chicken sh!t)

A gyrocopter is like an open-air helicopter.  That’s my description, and it’s probably wrong.

Shortly after Nicole’s two aerials feats, it was time to head on home.  We packed up our things, got hugs from Dan and pinned the map in the yurt to represent that “we were here.”

There are so many pins in the map from people around the world, but look at how many Floridians have stayed at Danville!!!

Thank you, Dan and Deb, for letting us stay in your beautiful place.  I can’t wait to come back.

Work Hard.  Play Hard.  Drink Chard. (Or beer from Dan’s keg)


P.S. Rain on a yurt sounds divine.

P.P.S. This a non-sponsored post.  I just really, really love using Airbnb.


    • lauriegannon1

      I was a little worried about the AC situation since it was June in Florida, but it was super comfortable. I want to go back. Like…now. 🙂

  • J Armstrong

    I was going to use Air BNB but I chickened out. I guess I was worried that I would be scammed or worse stranded. Maybe some more reviews of that site will build my confidence up with it. Oh I think tiny homes are fascinating just don’t know if they are practical in the long haul?

    • lauriegannon1

      I have had really good luck with AirBnb. I definitely recommend reading the reviews. They will give you lots of great information.

      I can’t imagine a tiny home is practical for my lifestyle (I don’t think it could hold all of my kitchen gadgets!) but for weekend getaways I am totally down.

    • lauriegannon1

      It was so much fun. The one thing I wish I had done was taken a spin on one of the segways. I will have to do that on my next trip!

  • Kelly Berryman

    I must be getting old, because with the design changes, I had a hard time finding where to comment! I want to go to Danville. That looks amazing. I’d crash the gyrocopter, so I’d have to be the photographer.

  • jplagens

    Wow. Fun trip. I would have loved more pics of the inside of the yurt.
    I’m with you. No way gonna fly in those little toys!! Sounds like Your hosts made the stay wonderful.

    • lauriegannon1

      I have a few but they didn’t quite do the place justice (there was also a kasplosion of luggage). I will get more interior shots next time. 😀

      I was happy playing around on the toys that kept me grounded but I am glad she enjoyed the plane ride!

  • Jacqui DeBono

    I love yurts. They’ve become so popular! Never stayed in one though! Here in Europe Air BnB is very popular. I love the concept of it! Sadly it’s become so big that it’s running into problems with local governments and legal issues because of pressure from hoteliers who don’t like the competition!

    • lauriegannon1

      I am so glad I stayed in one. I definitely want to do so again and absolutely recommend it.

      Oh yes…there are definitely some “growing pains” with AirBnb between hotel chains and local governments. Some neighborhoods in the States won’t allow people to AirBnb their homes.

    • lauriegannon1

      I would love to stay in the treehouse during another trip. It’s so sweet! Dan and Deborah added so many special details to “Danville”. It’s so much fun!!

  • Tara

    That sounds so fun! How exciting to travel and try out different Tiny little homes, especially the luxury homes. I would love that for a weekend getaway. Thanks for sharing!

    • lauriegannon1

      Hi. Annie! I really wanted to pet them but they were very shy. I obnoxiously said their names over and over in my “dog voice”. They weren’t having it. 😉

    • lauriegannon1

      I am such a fan of Airbnb! I found an apartment in Charleston with a sun room and private rooftop terrace, a guest house on a river in Tampa. It’s so much fun to stay in such unique spots. I love and highly recommend it! 🙂

  • ninalehan21

    Danville Bed and Breakfast – sounds amazing 🙂 oh my god, look at the man cave. oh Cheese crackers <3 ! awww look at the fuzzy chickens 🙂 thank you for sharing your experience

    • lauriegannon1

      The Man Cave was pretty wild! I wish I had been able to get a picture of the “little town” Dan created within a hangar. Danville was a treasure trove of fun!

  • Le

    I am obsessed with Tiny Homes as well. This past weekend there was a tiny house tour here in DC. Seem like you had a wonderful time!

    • lauriegannon1

      It was really fun to stay, but totally get waiting with a new baby. Congratulations on the new addition to your family! 🙂

  • eviebraithwaite

    Looks like such a fun trip! I’d love to stay in an Air BnB one day – the Yurt looks amazing! And them alpacas are adorable haha, great post!

    • lauriegannon1

      Thank you so much, Evie! I really can’t wait to go back to experience more of Danville. The alpacas are so cute and so very shy. 🙂

  • Princess Quinn

    This is a great place to stay! I love it because it close to nature and there are many things to experience.

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