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How the AutoCamp founder is building the world’s first Airstream hotel chain

For creating the ultimate summer camp for adults, AutoCamp founder Neil DiPaola is one of Fast Company’s Most Creative People of 2019.

How the AutoCamp founder is building the world’s first Airstream hotel chain
[Illustration: Matt Carlson]


“Not much has changed in the camping industry since, well, the beginning of time,” says AutoCamp CEO Neil Dipaola, whose pioneering hotel company, which hosts travelers in chic, aluminum Airstream travel trailers in locations such as Santa Barbara, California, is now enticing both novice and experienced campers to enjoy the great outdoors. After opening an AutoCamp in a redwood grove near the Russian River in Sonoma County in 2016, Dipaola is debuting another, in June, outside Yosemite National Park, that includes 80 Airstreams, 15 luxury tents, and a handful of prefab cabins. There’s also a mid-century-inspired clubhouse (with a store that sells s’mores kits and rosé) and a communal fire pit. Dipaola says it costs 30% to 40% less to construct an AutoCamp than a traditional hotel, and the rooms are easy to set up and move. Also, the trailers are bookable in all seasons. AutoCamp, which raised $115 million in January, is securing land in other iconic outdoor locations, reportedly including Cape Cod, Massachusetts, and expects to announce at least three new AutoCamps within the next year.

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