German hospitality startup Raus is putting tiny home cabins in remote destinations near Berlin.
Raus has a roughly 2,600-person waitlist and plans to open in 50 locations by the end of 2022.
Its most recent cabin was fully booked within 48 hours.
Why stay in a five-star hotel surrounded by other guests when you can vacation in a tiny cabin in the middle of nowhere?
If you've been asking yourself this since the start of the summer travel boom, you're not alone.
In October 2021, German hospitality startup Raus began placing cabin rentals in remote locations near Belin, giving city dwellers a nearby reprieve.
Raus hasn't been in operation for a full year yet, but the company is already seeing wild demand and thousands of people on its waitlist, Julian Trautwein, Raus' co-founder, told Insider.
Operating tiny homes in off-grid locations isn't a new hospitality concept.
In the US, companies like Getaway House and Moliving are doing just that, appealing to travelers who are tired of standard hotels and craving a break from cities.
And like other startups thriving in the tiny cabin-turned-boutique hotel space, Raus is seeing plenty of success in Germany.
The rise in local but isolated unique stays is the result of three emerging travel trends: the desire for off-grid, sustainable, and nearby vacations, according to Trautwein.
During COVID-19, more travelers began seeking remote vacations to recharge and unplug from crowded cities.
At the same time, eco-friendly vacations have steadily risen in popularity amid our ongoing climate crisis.
Source: Travel Pulse
And let's not forget about everyone's favorite topic: money.
Inflation and the rising costs of both air travel and gas have recently pushed more travelers to consider nearby destinations.
So it should be no surprise Raus' 10 locations have seen smashing success and nearly nonstop business.
The first cabin was designed in-house and set up in October 2021.
Shortly after, Raus was "overrun" with public interest, Trautwein said.
All of its units have hit over 95% occupancy levels since the rollout of Raus' first cabin.
When the company opened bookings through October for one of its newest builds, travelers booked the cabin out in 48 hours.
And Raus now has an almost 2,600-person waitlist, Trautwein said. Insider verified the waitlist.
To generate all of this hype, the brand relies on two cabin models.
The first accommodates up to two people, while the second — designed with an architecture firm — can fit up to four guests.
No matter the model, all of Raus' tiny homes are based on wheels …
… which decreases the units' impact on the environment and allows the cabins to be moved according to the company's needs.
Raus knows many of its guests are looking to unplug from big cities, which is why its locations are denoted by the level of remoteness and "on-grid" versus "off-grid" on its website.
"We wanted to create spaces for people to take time off to and take care of themselves," Trautwein said.
The cabins, which are each sustainability built in six weeks, were designed to have a boutique hotel room feel to make a stay "feel like an experience," he said.
The cabins start at €160 (about $167) per night with a minimum two-night stay.
Inside, there are amenities like a queen bed …
… expansive windows for views of nature …
… a kitchen with two stove tops, a refrigerator, and kitchen tools …
… and bathroom with a shower and composting toilet.
If you plan on working remotely during the duration of your stay, the cabin also has a small desk space.
For summertime vacations, there's a terrace for an afternoon bask under the sun.
But when it's winter, vacationers can use the fireplace instead.
To support all of these amenities off-grid, the cabin relies on solar panels and fresh water tanks.
Like New York-based Moliving, Raus' partners with local landowners to open new locations.
In one cabin, you might wake up to views of roaming animals.
In another, you'll have an expansive view of giant lush trees.
There's obviously a big emphasis on off-grid vacationing, but this doesn't mean the units are difficult to access.
Most of Raus' cabins are under two hours from Berlin, making them the perfect vacation destination for city dwellers craving an escape.
Looking ahead, the company already has plans to expand, which was inevitable for a young but thriving hospitality startup that now has minimal availability and a deep waitlist.
"So many people are looking for this new type of travel that is a bit closer to home, mindful, and very sustainable," Trautwein said. "We [thought we] should try to expand it, and that's what we've been doing."
Raus wants to operate in 50 locations by the end of 2022, a massive growth from the 10 units it is currently operating.
Beyond that, it's also considering expanding into nearby countries following an abundance of international interest …
… and is considering the possibility of rolling out more "unique stays" besides cabins.
"We're building a platform that is not only about accommodations, but also about products and services that provide you with a more immersive experience in nature," Trautwein said.
Read the original article on Business Insider