The Story Exchange, Valeria Pasmanter, Spare Rooms Buenos AiresYour Name: Valeria Pasmanter

Business Name: Spare Rooms Buenos Aires, a company that rents rooms in shared apartments and homestays in Buenos Aires

Type of Business: Tourism

Business Location: Buenos Aires, Argentina

Twitter   @spareroomsba

Reason for starting
The passion for promoting positive exchange experiences has long been an important part of Valeria Pasmanter´s life. It began when she worked for AIESEC (an international NGO) generating work exchange programs for students abroad. And it continued to follow her closely when she worked in the USA and Mexico. And it was that same desire to make sure foreigners feel comfortable in their adopted city that prompted her to start Spare Rooms Buenos Aires. Tired of hearing the same complaints from demoralized foreigners in Buenos Aires, that: they pay inflated rates because of their accent, they’ve had a bad experience living with Argentines, they lost time and money in a worthless search. She decided to start this project, with only one concept in mind: Spare Rooms Buenos Aires is committed to improving your exchange experience, by finding the right room for you in Buenos Aires, the one that best suits your preferences and priorities.

How do you define success?
I define success for almost five years we are in business and have grown since then. In June 2008, we started with one room and now we get have 370 rooms in Buenos Aires. People trust us and realize that we are a serious company.

Biggest Success
Each person who has stayed in a room is a great success for us! Work that we like is a success for us. To help other people to find a place to sleep, in which they feel comfortable is a success for Spare Rooms Buenos Aires.

What is your top challenge and how have you addressed it?
Being in different provinces of Argentina. And little by little we are getting there, first in Cordoba and Mendoza now.

Who is your most important role model?
My model is my dad. He, through his daily example taught me the culture of work, responsibility and to be devoted to one single thing and focus on it. My dad is the one who grew up poor and he built a medium company.