In short, it's called Airbnb. It's a website - a community marketplace - founded by Brian Chesky (CEO, Co-Founder) and Joe Gebbia (Chief Product Officer, Co-Founder). Both of them used to study in the same university and on the day of the graduation, Joe said Brian that one day they will start a company together and guessed what. It became reality.
It all started with Brian Chesky who was having problem looking for a a place to stay when he was in San Francisco for a conference. All the hotel rooms was fully booked and he had to pay a lot for the rental during those period due to the conference. That's when an idea struck, they decided to create a temporary bed and breakfast as they were pulling their air beds from the closet to sleep on. Eureka! That's how the concept of airbnb apartments were created.
Airbnb.com was launched but nobody noticed them until their 4th launch in August 2008. They never gave up. Their idea is to take people online and bring them together offline. Currently they have 35,000 properties in 8,000 cities in 165 countries. From the site that nobody noticed, to a community where people welcome each other into their home, with a price of course. But what better way to travel and learn one's culture if not through witnessing directly how one lives? I am really glad to stumble upon this website and hope one day when I travel elsewhere on my own again, I will opt for staying with a local rather than in a hotel. Hope the price will be cheaper and hope the host is cute haha!