THE BLOG
10/15/2013 06:42 pm ET Updated Jan 23, 2014

Ivy League Only: Your Money is No Good Here

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It's common for graduates of Ivy League universities to hold their life to a higher standard.

Apparently, AirBnB just doesn't cut it for the elite searching for discount accommodations. If you graduated from Harvard, you do not want to stay in an apartment owned by a state university graduate.

For Cinderella, it was the glass slipper, and Goldilocks just wanted her porridge at the right temperature.

But for elite alumni, the search for the perfect host or trusted tenant just got a little bit easier.

Ivylla is a new global startup designed as the upscale alternative to AirBnB or Craigslist. It's for the traveler or host searching to eliminate the riff raff (alumni of inferior institutions, or, heaven forbid, non-college graduates).

Ivylla's tagline is "Quality Places for Quality Friends."

"Quality" is euphemism for "Exclusive." Are you good enough to rent my apartment? Are you good enough for me to rent from you?

I dare say, an uneducated person must not reside in my home, lest they infect its atmosphere with their ignorance or lack the reverence for all the fine and precious things I have collected.

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Considering the cost alone to attend the 'top universities around the world" and the required 2200 plus SAT averages, it is safe to assume that these fellow graduates are listing comfortable accommodations, right?

So, don't wave your cash at me. Your money isn't good enough. If you haven't got the credentials, you can't rent here.

Ivylla's terms and conditions state that members are accepted through various verification processes, including designated university affiliation and member referrals.

'Owner Profiles' include a name, degree obtained and year of graduation, industry, interest and language. Although the prospective rate per night is listed, the example profile on the home page states "Willing to offer free or discount to alumni."
Ivylla's LinkedIn profile also states "...some of the hosts may even be generous enough to offer you the rental for free."

This is the same members-only elite business model that powered the rise of Facebook. Today, few people remember that originally Facebook was limited to Harvard students, then it broadened out to the whole Ivy League, and then to just about anybody

In fact, many of the elite, old-money clubs around the country and in Europe operate the same way. Members of a prestigious club -- The Athletic Club, The Brook, the Union Club, or the Larchmont Yacht club -- usually get reciprocal privileges at other clubs at reduced rates when they travel. If you are a member of the Century Association in New York, you can rent an affordable room at the exclusive Garrick Club in London.

Are we reverting back to the Great Britain's elitist class system, where even a millionaire (let's say, Kate Middleton) is still considered a commoner? Didn't we fight a revolutionary war to break away from that sentiment?

Or is it almost a breath of fresh air, in our nouveau riche culture, that money can't buy everything. Like getting into an exclusive New York Co-op or one of the exclusive private yacht clubs -- no matter how big your boat is?

Write: jfleetwood@aol.com

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