House of Carbs: the Big Idaho Potato hotel mashes competition
From ABC-TV’s popular morning show "Live with Kelly & Ryan" to People magazine to USA Today, the Big Idaho Potato Hotel made international news within hours of its launch on Earth Day.
Eight years ago, the six-ton potato created by the Idaho Potato Commission, made headlines when it rolled out of Boise on a flat-bed trailer with a mission to promote Idaho’s most famous agricultural commodity, the Idaho potato. After logging more than 200,000 miles on America’s highways and byways, it was time to retire the famous spud. A member of the Tater team that traveled with the Big Idaho Potato Truck for two years, Kristie Wolfe, ingeniously transformed the sturdy tuber into a cozy Airbnb. It’s now permanently planted on an expansive field in South Boise with breathtaking views of the Owyhee Mountains.
“The Big Idaho Potato Hotel allows people to experience Idaho in a unique way,” said Frank Muir, president and chief executive officer of IPC. “The IPC was happy to let Kristie convert a hallmark of the Idaho potato brand into a permanent destination that can be enjoyed by visitors from all over the world.”
The Big Idaho Potato Hotel has generated close to 1 billion media impressions to date, and the media still can’t stop talking about it. Highlights from the launch include:
- Coverage on more than 100 local TV stations
- Pick up in 27 countries outside the U.S. including: Australia, Brazil, Canada, England, Finland, France, Ghana, Germany, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Korea, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Scotland, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, and Vietnam
- Featured in over 800 news articles including US Weekly, Travel & Leisure, Fast Company, New York Post and NPR
- A slew of creative descriptions, including “House of Carbs” by The Irish Post; “New ‘Spud-Tacular’ Airbnb Rental” by KNWA-TV Online; and “Carb lovers rejoice!” by People magazine.
- Inclusion in People magazine’s “5 Things We’re Talking About” page alongside Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga, Game of Thrones and The Avengers
- A multi-post Instagram story by supermodel Bella Hadid who has over 24 million followers
- $1 million value in advertising equivalency
If you’re wondering what happened to the Big Idaho Potato Truck, it’s still on the road turning heads. The new potato it’s hauling is made of fiberglass, which will last for many years.