Last summer, this Paris neighborhood had more Airbnb guests than actual residents

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Image: AP Photo/Jacques Brinon
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The Wall Street Journal published a cool data interactive this week: How Airbnb is taking over Paris (paywall). Among the most interesting tidbits is that in the Marais, a popular Airbnb neighborhood, the number of travelers who rented out homes via the service last summer actually outnumbered the residents. The Journal notes:

During summer 2014, 66,320 people stayed on Airbnb in the neighborhood’s two arrondissements, slightly more than the 64,795 who actually live in them, according to 2012 figures.

It’s a striking figure, but of course most of those Airbnb guests would stay for just a few days at a time, so on any given night there are likely more residents than Airbnbers bedding down the neighborhood.

Airbnb describes the centrally-located neighborhood thusly: “Le Marais’ classic Parisian streets and cafes strike a delicate balance between well-traveled tourist hotspots and local-favorite hangouts.” Americans made up about a quarter of the neighborhood’s Airbnb guests, followed by Australians and Brits.

While Le Marais is one of the most popular neighborhoods, Airbnb users have swarmed all of Paris in the past five years, going from 144 guests in the summer of 2009 to 517,821 last summer, according to the numbers Airbnb gave the Journal.

Airbnb confirmed the numbers to Quartz, and international numbers suggest that growth is not just a Paris phenomenon—at the end of 2013 there had been 6 million Airbnb users. To date the there have been about 40 million, Airbnb told Quartz.

Airbnb’s massive growth is bad news for Paris’s hotel industry, whose luxury hotels have already seen a decline in occupancy since October 2014, according to the Guardian. This was exacerbated by a drop in tourism after the Charlie Hebdo attack in January.