Airbnb guests can now sleep in a midcentury modern ranch house inspired by the “king of rock ‘n’ roll” Elvis Presley, who apparently stayed at the home during his 1956 tour, as local lore would have it .
Four friends converted the well-known home at 3416 S. Crysler Ave. in Independence, about 10 miles east of Kansas City, Missouri, and began hosting guests on Feb. 15, according to the Kansas City Star.
The home has changed hands multiple times over the years, with listings using its Elvis ties as a selling point, and has never been open to the public.
“Elvis slept here! By many accounts it’s true! The King himself used this as his ‘home away from home’ while touring in the late 50s and 60s,” the most recent listing stated.
Cody Bellah, co-owner of the house, told the Star that “everyone” knows its storied history. Bellah and his partners bought the home for $460,000 last year and spent $200,000 on renovations, he said.
The Kansas City Star reported that Elvis, who was 21 at the time, may have sought refuge at his friend’s house to flee the Municipal Auditorium Arena after crowds of fans forced him off the stage after only 20 minutes on May 24, 1956.
“Elvis fought his way clear of the hysterical swarm of teen-age girls that broke through the police lines, then he jumped into a motor car parked in the corridor backstage and was off like a frightened gazelle,” Kansas City Times reporter Bill Moore wrote at the time.
After combing through land records, obituaries and accounts of four more Kansas City performances in the 1970s, Bellah said he used the process of elimination to try and figure out who Elvis would have stayed with while he visited.
According to Bellah, Bessie Cole — a “friend of Elvis” and the wife of a prominent local dentist, both now deceased, who built the five-bedroom, 6,000-square-foot home in 1955 — could have been why Elvis crashed there.
A real estate agent that had previously listed the property told Bellah, he said, that Cole had influenced a lot of the home’s design, most notably a guitar-shaped pool, possibly for a famous friend.
Kansas City was Presley’s 73rd show out of 110 in 1956, according to Graceland. That year, he performed on a variety of stages, from TV sets to auditoriums to high school gymnasiums to a university’s field house, traveling more than 41,000 miles from city to city and stopping in 26 states. And as local lore has it, Presley stayed in the home.
The house sleeps 16 guests and features a heated indoor guitar shaped pool for year-round entertainment.Reservations already stretch into the fall, but hopeful guests can book their stay on Airbnb for about $550 during the week and $1,300 a day on weekends (pricing does not reflect dates when there are big events).
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Camille Fine is a trending visual producer on USA TODAY’s NOW team.
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