KEITH T. DENNETT | New South | CONTACT
A Cessnock retiree is setting up a profitable side hustle today, listing the cubby house in his backyard as a luxury AirBnB.
After working for 25 years in the nearby Austar coal mine, it’s understood local retiree Gary Bortoli (53) has turned to a number of small part time roles to keep cash coming in, including working weekends as a stretch limo driver in the Pokolbin region.
However after being blown away by sheer volume of Sydneysiders flooding the Hunter each weekend, Gary told The Advocate he realised he could pocket an easy grand by putting his deathtrap tree house he built in 2002 up for booking.
“The whole Valley is pumping with tourists, from Friday to Sunday you can barely find an empty grapevine that doesn’t have some twat from Sydney posing for a photo.”
“Most of the hotels are charging like a bull in a china shop for accommodation, can you believe people are forking out $500 a night at the Best Western!”
An empty nester, who’s children left the family home over 10 year ago, Gary’s admitted he needed to give the treehouse a small makeover to justify its $350 a night price tag.
Speaking to The Advocate’s Hunter bureau reporter from the 4th rung of a perilous wooden stepladder, Gary said it wouldn’t take much to revamp the whole setup into a quirky accommodation space loved by city types.
“I’ve given it a sweep to ride all the funnel web spiders out and hammered back in a few nails that’d decided to grow towards the sun, honestly this thing could sleep two newly weds no worries!”
“I’ve got an empty wine barrel I’ll setup as an “outdoor fire-pit”, plus some logs to sit on, honestly put the words “adventurous treehouse escape” in the listing and it’ll be booked for months.”
“Now hand me the nail gun will you, I think there’s a little brown snake in the roof that needs tending to.”
More to come.