Field of Dreams Blossoms Into Award-Winning Idaho Flowerpot Airbnb

Flowerpot AirBnb

By Dianna Troyer 

As she planted 4,000 flowers, Krista Hansen envisioned they would bloom into a living landscape painting and surround her flowerpot-shaped Airbnb near Burley in eastern Idaho.

“I chose lavender, zinnia, cosmos, and sunflowers for their hardiness and to have something blooming throughout the growing season,” said Hansen, 60, as she planted in early summer. “For autumn, people can pick pumpkins, gourds, and Indian corn.”

Hansen and her daughter Whitney Hansen thought their idea for the Idaho Flowerpot and accompanying 2-acre u-pick field was “weird enough to win” and submitted it in a contest sponsored by Airbnb’s OMG!

Whitney, a financial coach in Boise, happened to read about the contest on the internet.

“We were taking a walk and thought of a flowerpot Airbnb because we love flowers,” said Krista, a Realtor and skincare advisor. “It would be ideal to build it on land I own that my dad had once farmed near Burley.”

The Hansens were among 100 winners who each received $100,000 to build wacky rentals worldwide. More than 10,000 plans were submitted.

Whitney invested about 40 hours into the application and submitted it in June 2022. She described their construction plans, planning and zoning approval, financial projections, and location. The rental’s Instagram account is the Idaho Flowerpot.  

The flowerpot stands 24 feet tall with a 20-foot circular base. The first floor of the 430-square-foot interior has a bathroom and living room. A spiral staircase leads to the second-floor bedroom, while the flat roof is a lounging area. The exterior is terra-cotta-colored stucco, so it looks like a clay pot.

After they were notified in October they won, the Hansens had 10 months to complete their pleasantly peculiar project. Whitney began searching for a builder. 

“I googled ‘round vacation rentals’ and found grain bins in Lava Hot Springs,” she said. “I called the owner and asked who his contractor was.”

Riley MacButch of Pocatello embraced the eccentric project and built it in about three weeks in spring. The rental was challenging because it is circular as well as slanted.

“The exterior walls tilt outward to 100 degrees in a circle, which equates to the circumference of the roof overhanging the circumference of the base by almost 4 feet, Riley said. “My laser ‘level’was crucial to the construction; a standard carpenter’s level was useless on a project like this.”

For the exterior walls, he used ¼-inch plywood that was flexible enough to form a curve.

Riley described the Idaho Flowerpot as “more like a giant wood sculpture than anything else,” he said. “The fact that people get to live in it is a bonus.” ISI

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