A North Carolina couple has revealed how they built an incredible Harry Potter-themed Airbnb treehouse which is hidden underground – and can only be accessed through a ramshackle-looking tent that leads to a 12-foot slide down to the property.
Mike, 65, and Caroline Parrish, 45, have been married for 16 years and have spent the last seven years building vacation treehouses, even launching their own company, Treehouses of Serenity.
In February of 2022, the couple expanded their business to include a seventh treehouse in Asheville, North Carolina, a Harry Potter-inspired property that they call ‘The Alchemy’, and which is now available for rent on Airbnb for $396 a night.
And true Harry Potter fans will immediately recognize the resemblance between the ‘Alchemy’ tent – which comes complete with cloaks and a sorting hat to give guests the full Hogwarts experience – and the tents in which the book and video series’ characters stayed in during the Quidditch World Cup in the fourth installment of the series, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.
Mike, 65, and Caroline Parrish, 45, from North Carolina have revealed they built an underground Harry Potter themed Airbnb that is hidden under a tent(seen right) and can be reached by sliding down a 12-foot slide
In February of 2022, the couple expanded their business to include a seventh treehouse in Asheville, North Carolina, which they call ‘The Alchemy,’ and it costs $396 per night
The unique home includes a 12-foot slide(pictured right) and colorful Harry Potter themed décor making it the perfect staycation
The home features one-bedroom and one-bathroom and is said to sleep four people in the queen-sized bed and the futon
Mike and Caroline have spent the last seven years building treehouses and launched their own company, Treehouses of Serenity
The Parrishes began building the whimsical treehouse fit for a wizard in August 2021 and officially opened it to Airbnb guests in February 2022.
The couple was inspired to build the unique home while searching through Pinterest where they happened upon a photo of an underground bunker.
Mike and Caroline knew they wanted to create an entrance that would shock guests so they decided to make the entrance an unexpected camping tent.
They added that they thought it would be ‘cool’ to have guests arrive and ‘think ‘what in the world is going on here?’ And then they come into the tent and find the slide.’
The DIY-savvy couple wanted to the treehouse to look ‘solely like a tent’ from the outside.
It often takes Mike and Caroline around six to eight months to build a fully equipped treehouse, but it varies depending on the project.
The Harry Potter-themed treehouse cost the couple $300,000 to build and is available to rent on Airbnb for $396 per night.
Although the couple initially thought the slope of the mountain would be a challenge, they found it was ‘perfect for giving people that treehouse feel or that underground feel.’
The property even comes with cloaks and the infamous sorting hat to give guests the full Hogwarts experience
The Parrishes wanted to fool guests when they first entered the tent, so when guests first enter, they are greeted with rustic furniture and a colorful rug prior to sliding down to the wizarding treehouse world
Mike and Caroline wanted guests to feel like they just stepped out of a J.K. Rowling book so they added a shower curtain(pictured left) with all four Harry Potter houses and quidditch snitch string lights(pictured right)
The Parrishes began building the whimsical treehouse fit for a wizard in August 2021 and officially opened it to Airbnb guests in February 2022, sharing the vibrant treehouse with Harry Potter fans around the world
Although the outside of ‘Alchemy’ appears to be a dull tent at first, once guests enter they’re met with a 12-foot slide which leads them to the underground home that resembles wizarding world of Harry Potter.
The tent sits on top the property’s roof, so guests can slide right on into the one-bedroom home which is said to sleep four guests with a queen-sized bed and a foldout futon.
Inside, the home is filled with vibrant colors and décor meant to mimic those seen in the iconic Harry Potter films.
The floor is covered with colorful rugs stacked upon each other, and the walls are covered in various fabrics from a warehouse in South Carolina.
The couple said they ‘tied knots in the fabric and put flags around the top to make it more whimsical.’
The fabric isn’t the only thing that give guests a whimsical feeling, Mike and Caroline also hung quidditch snitch string lights on the wall and four cloaks – making sure each guest gets their very own chance to become a wizard.
But the magic doesn’t stop there, there’s also a quidditch snitch ceiling light, a sorting hat, and various Harry Potter themed throw pillows.
Although the property sits atop a mountain, the Airbnb is still fully equipped with heat, electricity, air conditioning and full plumbing.
And while the tent may seem outdated from the outside, Mike and Caroline made sure to fill the home with modern appliances and amenities.
The kitchen has vibrant green cabinets, a microwave, a refrigerator that’s been made to look like a bookshelf, and a coffee machine.
Although the treehouse is small, Mike and Caroline made sure the magic continued at every corner with their wizard throw pillows(pictured left), and a quidditch book(pictured right) written by none other than J.K. Rowling herself
The walls are covered in various fabrics from a warehouse in South Carolina to add an even brighter touch to the tent, The couple said they ‘tied knots in the fabric and put flags around the top to make it more whimsical’
It often takes Mike and Caroline around six to eight months to build a fully equipped treehouse, but it varies depending on the project; Mike hired contract workers to build the 12-foot slide in the home which added an extra step to the building process
The outside of the home includes a side entrance for guest who would rather not slide into the underground Airbnb and there’s even a separate tent that is a sitting area with a firepit the Perrishes call ‘Enchantment’
While their first property, ‘Sanctuary,’ is built like a traditional treehouse, their others are sure to provide anything but an ordinary experience; one of their treehouses is even built on stilts and two are underground.
Although Mike and Caroline had become treehouse building pros, they did face some obstacles along the way.
One of the main challenges the Parrishes faced was the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic. This proved to be especially difficult when their contract worker tested positive for COVID-19, which resulted in the project getting shut down for two weeks, and the pandemic problems didn’t end there, the couple also faced issues getting materials due to supply shortages.
Another obstacle Mike and Caroline faced was creating the property’s roof.
The couple added that they spent a lot of their time on the roof as they needed to make a framework for the roof, enforce it with steel beams, and then pour concrete into the framework.
The steel beams were the most ‘critical’ part of the home and the couple added that it was because ‘a steel beam is not like a wooden beam,’ and that once they cut the steal beam, there was no going back and they had to make sure it was ‘right and in place.’
The couple added that they spent a lot of their time on the roof as they needed to make a framework for the roof, enforce it with steel beams, and then pour concrete into the framework
Although the property sits atop a mountain, the Airbnb is still fully equipped with heat, electricity, air conditioning and full plumbing, and modern appliances
Mike and Caroline knew they wanted to create an entrance that would shock guests so they decided to make the entrance an unexpected camping tent
TikTok user and friend of the Parrishes, Hannah(pictured above) visited the home and shared a video to her TikTok where it gained over three million views and users immediately fell in love
The Parrishes came up with the concept of treehouse rentals in 2015 and launched their company in 2016 and have been building cozy properties alongside the Blue Ridge Mountains.
They’ve built a total of seven properties so far including ‘The Alchemy’ and first got the idea to bring treehouse rentals into Asheville while watching ‘Treehouse Masters.’
In 2015 the couple began seriously considering building the cozy rentals and although they had ‘traditional treehouses’ in mind, the couple said their plans ‘evolved.’
Mike and Caroline Parrish then appeared on season two of DIY Network’s ‘The Treehouse Guys’ where they successfully built their first treehouse, ‘Sanctuary.’
From there, their business took off and the Parrishes built five more tree houses before building ‘The Alchemy,’ including a Lord of the Rings inspired treehouse they call ‘Dragon’s Knoll’ and an elevated wheelchair friendly treehouse they call the ‘The Perch.’
TikTok users quickly fell in love with the property and many described it as a ‘dream come true’
Guests can grab their spell books and enjoy their coffee at the large kitchen counter or the small kitchen table near the windows and catch a glimpse of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
The home also has a bathroom with green walls and a shower curtain that pictures all four Harry Potter houses.
And just like their other properties, ‘Alchemy,’ has stunning views of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
The outside of the home includes a side entrance for guest who would rather not slide into the underground Airbnb and there’s even a separate tent that is a sitting area with a firepit the Perrishes call ‘Enchantment.’
‘Myyy dreams come true this is amazing,’ commented one user. [sic]
Another user said: ‘Holy wow!!!!!! This is incredible.’
A third user added: ‘My dreams have come true.’