Vizeat lets you book a home cooked dinner when you aren't home. It's a relative newcomer to the new world of the shared economy; in this case, hosts in various parts of the world offer to cook you dinner in their home (or castle as the case may be).
Have you ever been on vacation for a week or so, and by day 5 you are sick of eating in restaurants? Or you've come to a place where you don't know anyone, or want to know more about the local culture? This is where Vizeat comes in. It functions as a sort of AirBnB for dinners.
There is a meeting of the minds between World-Eats and Camille Rumani, one of the founders of Vizeat. We believe that people bond over shared meals, that cultural differences start to melt away over a dinner table and that eating together is just plain good fun. As Camille say, the dinner table is one of the original social networks!
Recently, Camille answered some of our questions about Vizeat.
When did you start Vizeat?
We started VizEat, in it's beta version, in February 2014 and it was ready for the world in July 2014.
*What prompted you to create Vizeat?
Jean-Michel and I decided to create VizEat based on our own experiences of meeting locals during our travels. Indeed, Jean-Michel had the unique opportunity, during a trip to the Andes, to eat with Indians on the banks of the Lake Titicaca.
As for me, I realised during a University exchange in China that most people who could not speak Mandarin had not had the opportunity get a good understanding of the Chinese culture. This is precisely this type of experiences that prompted us to create VizEat. We wanted travelers to be able to live an authentic experience around a meal, as we consider the table to be the first and original social network.
Can you tell a story about an actual Vizeat dinner?
Cécile, a host on VizEat, welcomed once four Canadians guests, her husband did not actually know that it was through VizEat and was not too enthusiastic about receiving strangers. It went on so well that after 15 minutes Cécile's husband decided to open a Champagne bottle! The next day the guests came back to their house to offer them a present. Since then, Cecile receives every weeks loads of emails asking about her recipes; she became the French cuisine reference!
Travelers are frustrated about not being able to connect with locals.
What has been easy or fun about launching Vizeat? What's been a surprising challenge?
It has been pleasantly surprising to notice how easy it was to convince people about our concept, indeed a lot of them have experienced being frustrated about not meeting locals while traveling, thus, unexpectedly to us, VizEat's concept came through as obvious.
I guess the main challenge we've had has been transforming this enthusiasm from people regarding VizEat into posting their meals!
*And finally a bit more about you personally. Have you always been interested in food? in web-tech?
I always have been passionate about food and cooking, and I guess it is a also because, as a French person, gastronomy is a big part of my culture. Living in China made me realise the importance of learning from other cultures and sharing that heritage of mine, it's precisely there that I had the idea of creating VizEat. Jean-Michel who founded VizEtat with me has always worked in web-tech and we are both really fascinated about the new innovations and uses of digital technology, especially when we meet people in real life, which VizEat takes quite literally!