A woman was assaulted in her own home after a New Year’s Eve party at the apartment she rented out through Airbnb descended into debauched chaos.
Christina McQuillan’s flat in Fulham was trashed after the tenant who hired it through the accommodation website threw a party for 100 people.
She returned to her home in Buer Road shortly before midnight to find it rammed with revellers and a couple having sex in the bedroom while a crowd watched.
The 31-year-old said the floor to her recently renovated home had been ripped up, walls scratched from where furniture had been moved, the TV torn off its bracket and stools broken. Cigarette and cannabis joint butts also littered the floor. She estimates the repair bill to be £3,000.
Neighbours had complained of loud music and the smell of cannabis coming from her £500,000 garden apartment, prompting Ms McQuillan to cut short her own New Year’s celebrations.
And when she and partner Henry Boorman tried to break-up the drug-fuelled bash she was punched in the stomach.
Ms McQuillan, who works in publishing, said the party only stopped when the power was cut and police arrived.
She said Mr Boorman had met the female guest, who had been charged £128, and given her the key. She claimed she was going to a party and would only be using the flat to sleep in.
Ms McQuillan said they first suspected something was wrong when they heard loud music while they ate dinner with neighbours next door. They emailed the tenant, who said she was going out and promised to turn down the music.
But a few hours later, when Ms McQuillan and her boyfriend were at a party in Kingston, they received calls telling them to go back to their flat and call police.
However, they were advised it was a civil matter, and told they would have to get the revellers out themselves.
Ms McQuillan said: “It was shocking. It was really scary.
“When we got there the doors were wide open. There was loud music and everyone was smoking drugs. We found the girl we had rented the flat to and told her to stop it as we had rented it to one person not 100. She refused.
“People were counting down to midnight and they were really abusive to us for stopping the party.
“My boyfriend then went into the bedroom to turn off the power. There were two people having intercourse on the bed while a crowd of people were watching. It was disgusting.
“People were leaving, there were a lot still inside. I had my hand on the door to make sure no one came back in when a man with a hoody scratched me and punched me in the stomach.
"My partner called the police to tell them I had been assaulted, after which five police cars turned up.”
She said the police then broke up the party but people continued to arrive, eating chicken and throwing the bones on their doorstep.
Ms McQuillan said: “We were advised to go by the police as we might get abuse if we stayed.”
A Metropolitan Police spokesman said: “We were called just before midnight on New Year’s Eve to a flat in Buer Road. A female was assaulted. A 31-year-old was punched in the stomach. No arrests have been made.”
The flat is normally offered for £83 a night. It boasts underfloor heating and is described as being “self-contained with all the mod cons on a quiet safe street”.
A spokesman for Airbnb said: “We have zero tolerance for this kind of behaviour and have removed this guest from our platform.
“We are also in contact with the host and are providing them with our full support.”
Anyone with information on the assault can call Hammersmith and Fulham Police on 101.
Ms McQuillan also vowed to stop using Airbnb.