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San Diego is home to beaches, a military base, a world-famous zoo, and many outdoor activities.
From urban towers with water views to beachfront resorts, we vetted the city’s best hotels.
Our picks are based on our own reviews and offer great amenities for a Southern California getaway.
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With beachfront resorts, contemporary downtown hotels, and intimate Spanish-inspired bungalows, San Diego’s hotels are as varied and exciting as the city itself. Whether your visit is for business, golf, world-class spas, the beach, or, of course, Comic Con, there’s a hotel to meet your needs.
To highlight the best hotels in San Diego, we made selections based on our own expert hotel reviews and experiences on property, and also set discerning criteria to determine the best hotels in the city. Though, if you prefer a vacation rental, we’ve got you covered too.
Whenever your travels next take you to San Diego, consult our list of the best hotels, from Coronado Bay to downtown, and Rancho Santa Fe.
Browse all the best hotels in San Diego below, or jump directly to a specific area here:
This bang-on-trend property in the heart of San Diego’s buzzing Gaslamp district is popular with younger travelers who appreciate a look and feel that’s equal parts trendy and modern and perks like complimentary wine at check-in.
There are 211 rooms set over 20 stories with the top four floors reserved for Skyline Collection rooms that have expansive views of San Diego and include touches like surfboard headboards, upcycled light fixtures, and shibori curtains. Every room is design-forward with crisp white linens and Atelier Bloem bath products and stocked with useful extras like yoga mats and umbrellas.
There’s also a posh rooftop pool, an on-site Mexican eatery that specializes in elevated street fare, and a pet-friendly attitude that treats your dogs like VIPs.
In downtown San Diego there are many corporate big-box hotels and it can be hard to find a middle ground between modern and intimate and a reasonable price point. Enter the Guild San Diego, a Tribute Portfolio Hotel from Marriott Bonvoy.
The hotel is a newer addition to downtown, housed in a century-old Armed Services YMCA. Yet rather than erasing the building’s past, the owners lovingly embraced its former life in an effort to honor San Diego’s rich maritime heritage.
Ornate, Italian Renaissance Revival exteriors were preserved, while run-down dormitory-style interiors were transformed into a sleek lobby. Well-appointed rooms feel upscale with modern velvet furnishings. But the standout is a tranquil but glam pale pink courtyard and urban garden that feels like you’ve been transported to the south of France.
Located on the historic grounds of Lane Field (the former baseball stadium for the San Diego Padres) and part of IHG hotels, the InterContinental’s downtown waterfront location offers a prime vantage point of the San Diego Bay and is a close walk from the Embarcadero, where the USS Midway Museum, Broadway Pier, and cruise ship terminals are located.
Housing 400 guest rooms over 19 stories, InterContinental San Diego is a mass of oversized windows overlooking the water with rooms that are above average in size and generally very affordable in price. Since the real draw here is the bay, splurging on a room that overlooks industrial buildings wouldn’t sit right — spring for a water view. There are also spacious two-room suites, ideal for families.
While there are cheaper downtown options in San Diego, the Manchester Grand Hyatt consistently delivers a high level of sophistication alongside friendly staff, plenty of on-site dining, and a central waterfront location.
With 1,628 guestrooms, including 76 suites, the hotel is huge but not impossible to manage. Rates are accessible in price too if you’re not specific about which incredible view you receive. And there isn’t a bad one; all rooms overlook either the Pacific Ocean, San Diego Bay, or downtown city area.
The hotel earns added appeal as the West Coast’s tallest waterfront hotel and is just steps from attractions like the Gaslamp Quarter, the USS Midway, and San Diego’s scenic Embarcadero.
Directly facing the ocean at the end of the Pacific Beach boardwalk, this beachy hotel’s waterfront location is gorgeous. There are 73 rooms and suites with rich wood furnishings, plantation shutters, and bright pops of turquoise for a tropical island feel. Book a room with an ocean view and watch as San Diego strolls, runs, bikes, and rollerblades by, and surfers catch early morning waves.
If you can’t choose between pool or ocean, know that the former directly faces the sand for a best-of-both-worlds lounging option. Beach buckets and shovels, toys, boogie boards, and bikes are available for guests’ use, and the hotel is well-located near attractions such as the San Diego Zoo, Torrey Pines State Beach, Belmont Park, Crystal Pier, and is just eight miles north of San Diego’s International Airport.
Coronado might be synonymous with the famous Hotel Del Coronado, but for a cheaper beach resort getaway, the Loews Coronado Bay Resort is a solid option without compromising on comfort or style.
Situated at the end of a private 15-acre peninsula, Loews Coronado offers a hip but relaxed vibe with a luxury lean, plus excellent grounds, amenities, and scenic 360-degree bay views.
Though beach access is located across a highway and requires a free hotel shuttle, there’s plenty to enjoy on-site including the large pool deck with reserved space for both adults and kids, a spa, and a terrace bar with ample views. It’s also a bit quieter than Hotel Del, surrounded by natural elements and removed from the city bustle. Rooms are chic and in line with the high-end Loews brand.
Once a presidential palace dating back to 1910, The historic US Grant is a posh hotel that’s also earned a spot on the National Register of Historic Places. The 11-story building was built by the son of Ulysses S. Grant, who named it after his father.
But it’s far from old and stuffy. Now operating as a luxury hotel, the interiors are magnificent, with large chandeliers, impressive columns, and artifacts that speak to the city’s history.
There are 270 rooms and suites providing a high-end, traditional experience not commonly replicated in the city. The hotel is also well-located near Balboa Park, the waterfront area, San Diego Zoo, and Petco Park. Luxury Collection hotels are also members of Marriott Bonvoy, offering a good opportunity to earn and redeem points.
Set on 21 landscaped acres outside of downtown San Diego, The Inn at Rancho Santa Fe, A Tribute Portfolio Resort & Spa, is an enticing option when you want to stay near San Diego, but not in the thick of it.
This calming escape is a member of Marriott Bonvoy and feels like a Mediterranean-inspired village with red-tiled roofs, mosaic details, Spanish-Californian architecture, and bubbling fountains. Swaying palms, leafy green trees, and tall cacti add color to the well-kept grounds.
Even starter Queen rooms are large with 325 square feet, sleek bathrooms, and peaceful terraces overlooking the hotel’s polished spaces. The design is rustic but contemporary, which creates a cozy, welcoming feel, especially if you upgrade to a room with a fireplace.
Located five miles from downtown San Diego, the Hotel del Coronado is a historic hotel and landmark that has hosted U.S. presidents, royalty, and movie stars for decades. If the Victorian-style resort looks especially familiar, that’s because it’s the direct inspiration for Walt Disney World’s Grand Floridian Resort.
Affectionately dubbed The Del or Hotel Del, the sprawling beachfront resort counts 28 acres and 757 rooms and suites throughout the massive original Victorian building, as well as a contemporary oceanfront tower, poolside cabanas, and luxury beach cottages and villas.
The main building showcases a variety of antique details such as a vintage iron elevator that requires an operator, while the oceanfront towers, cabanas, cottages, and villas each have their own vibe and tends to be more modern and beachy.
The beach is also a draw (and attracts crowds too as it is public) with on-site water sports rentals and wellness classes.
You might feel like you slipped away to the Spanish countryside when you first enter this sprawling five-star luxury golf and spa hideaway.
Housed on a lush 400-acre setting with Mediterranean tile work, the Fairmont Grand Del Mar appears pristine with arched windows, curved staircases, and a rose-tinted facade resembling a European palace. The hotel is also operated by the same team behind the ultra high-end Plaza Hotel in New York City.
There are 249 large, well-appointed rooms and suites, though you’ll likely spend most of your time wandering the pretty gardens or taking a dip in one (or all) of the four pools. For more activity, the resort is just a few miles from the beach, and there is also an 18-hole private golf club designed by Tom Fazio, and activities such as art classes, tennis lessons, yoga, cooking classes, and more.
Fairmont Grand Del Mar earned the distinction as a Forbes Five-Star and AAA Five Diamond luxury resort and also boasts a spa, kids club, nightlife, and dining.
For something more sedate than the crowded beach, or quieter than noisy downtown San Diego, head inland to the Park Hyatt Aviara Resort’s 200-acre estate in Carlsbad. The hotel overlooks golf greens, a wildlife sanctuary, and offers ample views of the ocean in the distance. The sense is overwhelmingly tranquil with well-kept common places to kick back after a few laps in the lavish pools.
A recent renovation delivered on well-appointed rooms, and a newly revamped grandiose pool has separate areas for adults and children.
That depends on what you want to do. Stay downtown in neighborhoods like the Gaslamp Quarter, Little Italy, or Embarcadero if you want to sight see with a central, urban base.
If you plan to spend most of your time on the sand, look to coastal communities in Pacific Beach, Ocean Beach, La Jolla, or Del Mar. Drive 25 miles up the 101 and you’ll find yourself in popular beach towns like Cardiff and Encinitas.
Or, for a beach base with easy access to downtown, consider Coronado Island.
If you want to revolve your trip around theme parks and attractions, you should consider a hotel’s proximity to places like the San Diego Zoo or Legoland in Carlsbad.
What is there to do in San Diego?
San Diego has a little bit of everything with a robust city center, military base, rich history, and beautiful beaches.
Watch surfers, take a dip in the ocean, take advantage of the nightlife in Gaslamp, stroll around Coronado Island, or check out the seals in La Jolla. There is also a major sports stadium, the San Diego Zoo, and beautiful parks such as Torrey Pines.
What is the best time to visit San Diego?
San Diego enjoys warm temperatures and sunny weather for most of the year. As such, there isn’t a major off-season when prices change dramatically. For nice, mild weather, consider a winter visit. However, when temps soar in summer, you might just see cheaper hotel prices.
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Texas is a big state with cosmopolitan cities, cowboy culture, and white-sand beaches.
Major cities and towns have great hotels, from luxurious splurges to quirky, affordable properties.
We compiled the best hotels across Texas in places like Austin, Dallas, San Antonio, and Marfa.
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They say everything is bigger in Texas, and when it comes to its hotels, that’s certainly true, too.
From beach resorts in Galveston for a family vacation to a high-end spa retreat in Lake Austin, or a funky rural abode off-the-beaten-path in Marfa, the Lone Star State has something for you.
I’ve spent the majority of this summer exploring the state, making the major cities my home base for a few weeks at a time, with weekend trips to other destinations. In doing so, I’ve stayed in and researched Texas’ best hotels, which I’ve compiled below. Whether you’re in town for business, a bachelorette, or a rodeo, start here to decide where to stay.
Browse all the best hotels in Texas below, or jump directly to a specific area here.
South Padre Island is southern Texas’ premier beach getaway, and a pretty affordable one, too.
The Isla Grand Beach Resort couldn’t have a better location right off the Queen Isabella Causeway, on a slice of prime beachfront real estate in the heart of South Padre Island. If you want to head off property for dining, drinking, or sightseeing, there’s plenty within walking distance.
But there’s so much going on at the resort that if you didn’t want to leave, you wouldn’t have to. While the majority of hotels on the island are big-name chains with limited amenities, the Isla Grand Beach Resort has two pools, sports courts, grassy lawns with hammocks, and several restaurants and bars, including a nightclub with live music pretty much every weekend.
There are 128 Cabana rooms spread throughout the property’s low-rise buildings, which can each fit three to four guests. If you’re traveling with the whole family, however, you might want to book one of the condos that have two bedrooms and full kitchens.
Just keep in mind that South Padre Island is a popular choice for spring break, so be mindful of the dates you book.
Marfa is a remote desert town in West Texas that’s an art lover’s dream, drawing everyone from low-key folk artists to the late Minimalist master Donald Judd. For boho-style travelers, the best lodging in town is El Cosmico, which is a glamping-style compound.
Spread across 21 acres are a series of off-kilter accommodations, from restored vintage trailers to yurts and tepees. While the trailers have kitchenettes and bathrooms, the other spaces are a little more bare-bones and share a bathhouse.
Inside you’ll find electrical outlets and a real bed dressed with colorful sarapes (Mexican blankets that you can even purchase), so you won’t be sleeping on the ground. For a slightly more comfortable stay, book the Cosmic Kasita, a hippie-chic tiny house. No matter where you stay, you’ll be surrounded by rainbow hues, Native American–inspired textiles, and a general boho-chic atmosphere. The goal here is to connect with nature, not your iPhone, so there’s no Wi-Fi in any of the accommodations, except for the main building.
Amenities are limited; stop by the provisions store to buy some beers, then head to the outdoor kitchen to grill your own dinner. There are, however, Dutch-style hot tubs that you can book for an additional fee, as well as free hammocks for snoozes or stargazing.
Located in North Austin, The Lone Star Court Hotel covers four acres on the quieter side of the Domain, a shopping, entertainment, and residential area that’s continually expanding. The retro-inspired hotel offers a resort experience with a modern twist through landscaped courtyards, lawn games, fire pits, a pool, and complimentary bicycles.
The 123 rooms open to large ranch-house breezeways with rocking chairs. Room interiors include classic Texas elements with sliding barn-style bathroom doors and cow-hide director’s chairs.
There’s live music every weekend and a food truck court including Aurora Venezuelan and Waffletaste trucks. In addition, there’s an on-site restaurant, The Water Trough, serving Hill Country-inspired dishes.
Though as a whole, Galveston is a family-friendly beach destination, the Hotel Galvez & Spa stands out amongst its neighbors for being a much more romantic, sophisticated option.
Ten years after the devastating 1901 hurricane wiped out much of the island, the Hotel Galvez opened its doors to welcome guests as the Galveston’s grande dame, and it’s been doing so ever since.
The hotel features a quiet, elegant pool area, a casual seafood restaurant, and a spa with eucalyptus steam rooms and a meditation garden. There’s also a full-service gym, but that’s about it in terms of amenities. You’re really here for the beach. Unfortunately, the Seawall Boulevard gets in the way of the sand, but it’s not too difficult to make the crossing every day.
There are 224 rooms in total and standard room types are divided by view — choose a Gulf-facing room — while suites are named after Galveston history and important figures, from Houstonian Howard Hughes to President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Each has classic, refined decor and a comfortable mattress with plush betting, while suites have sitting areas and wet bars.
On Mustang Island, a quiet, nature-driven beach destination between Port Aransas and Corpus Christi is the unassuming Lively Beach, a collection of eco-friendly condos spread out over 46 acres (11 of which are developed, and 35 of which are preserved wetlands).
The units range in size from a studio efficiency to a two-bedroom unit and are loosely based on the design of a traditional Moroccan riad with a courtyard in the middle. They also feature fresh coastal-cool decor and are connected to the beach by a private elevated boardwalk.
There’s no on-site restaurant or bar as guests are expected to use the kitchen in their condo, but there is a shared pool. For evening entertainment, the hotel is just a few minutes away from restaurants and bars.
If you love food, drink, music but don’t want the overdevelopment of most Austin neighborhoods, head to East Austin. There, you’ll probably drive right past this hotel because it looks nothing like one. The Heywood Hotel is located inside a 1920s Craftsman bungalow in trendy East Austin where it combines the homeyness of an Airbnb with the convenience of a hotel.
There are just seven rooms, each decorated with handcrafted furniture and local art. The Stearns and Foster mattresses are a particularly big hit with guests, who rave about their comfort.
But because the Heywood Hotel is more like a private home, there are few if any amenities. There are no restaurants or bars, for instance, but there is free Wi-Fi and loaner bikes (and helmets!).
You might write off Fort Worth as the uninteresting little sister to Dallas, but if you love Wild West history, you need to visit the Stockyards and stay at the Stockyards Hotel.
Opened in 1907, the property has seen its fair share of cowboys, outlaws, and everyone in between. Renovated numerous times over the years, the Stockyards Hotel still maintains its nostalgic Texan charm without feeling dated.
There are 52 rooms, and the standard ones come in four styles: Native American, Western, Victorian, Mountain Man. The suites are named after famous Texans, such as Davy Crockett. The most impressive room, however, is the Bonnie and Clyde Suite. The bank-robbing couple stayed in this very room, which is now filled with historical artifacts, including Bonnie’s revolver.
Other than a restaurant, there aren’t many amenities. Thankfully, there’s plenty to do right outside the hotel, with restaurants, bars, shopping, and even daily cattle drives that keep the spirit of the Wild West alive.
Downtown Dallas isn’t the city’s tourism hub, but it’s worth a visit to stay in Dallas’ original luxury hotel, the Adolphus.
The property first opened in 1912 but underwent a major renovation in 2018 that breathed new life into the storied property. Modeled after a German castle, the historic beaux-arts structure is famous for its French Room, a fine dining restaurant kitted out with extravagant Murano chandeliers, Louis XVI-style chairs, and gleaming gilt accents. Don’t miss afternoon tea here.
But that’s not the only stellar amenity. There are two other restaurants and bars, which are more casual but no less spectacular in their offerings. On the rooftop, find a pool with private cabanas, and inside, there’s a 5,000-square-foot spa, including a couple’s treatment room with a private terrace.
Speaking of rooms, there are 407 at the hotel, each with 10-foot ceilings and sophisticated decor. Though the building might be more than 100 years old, the rooms are delightfully updated.
Houston is a city of neighborhoods, and the Museum District is best known for, well, its museums. Funky Texan hospitality group Hotel ZaZa has four properties across Texas, but the Museum District outpost is our favorite given its stellar location, over-the-top decor, and eccentric themed suites. This is a much more fun stay than you’ll find in a standard chain hotel.
At the pet-friendly Zaza, there are 315 suites, the most basic of which feature graphic-print headboards in sultry red and black. Things get crazier in themed suites where you’ll find a life-size astronaut statue in the Houston We Have a Problem room and mirrored walls in the Rock Star Suite.
Rooms aside, the decor in the public spaces is also quite flamboyant, whether at the bistro Monarch, which has a fantastic terrace, or the pool area with black-and-white striped loungers. Even the spa has bold art prints. Despite the loud decor, though, you’ll feel perfectly serene once you’re down on the table getting a massage.
Twice a year, the Round Top Antiques Fair draws thousands of shoppers to the eponymous Texas town located about halfway between Houston and Austin. But Rancho Pillow puts Round Top on the map all year long. Formerly an artists’ retreat, this 20-acre ranch owned by Sheila Youngblood is now available for other guests to book.
Accommodations range from the century-old multi-bedroom Red House to the Native American-style tepee, all ensconced in bright colors, bold patterns, and globally inspired textiles and antiques. A word to the wise: if you book the tepee, just note that you’ll need to use the outdoor bathhouse, as there’s no running water inside. Thankfully, there is air-conditioning.
The bathhouse is actually a communal space, in case anyone wants to enjoy bathing in the great outdoors. There’s also a saltwater wading pool, a shared mess hall and gathering place in the Barn, and outdoor activities like croquet and badminton.
When you think of San Antonio’s River Walk, you’re probably picturing the crowded mariachi-band-lined pathways of the central hub. But the North River Walk neighborhood, just across the river from the Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, is a far quieter, more upscale area just a short walk away.
Opened in February 2021, the pet-friendly, art-filled Thompson San Antonio is the sleek luxury hotel the city needed. Housed in a shiny new building, the property is poised to become one of the hottest food and beverage spots in town thanks to Landrace, which serves elevated Texas cuisine, and The Moon’s Daughters rooftop restaurant and bar, which is a lively place to party; its special event calendar syncs up with the lunar cycle for Full Moon parties. But no matter what’s going on in the night sky, there is live music or a DJ every Friday and Saturday night.
Not into the party scene? Head to the 5,000-square-foot spa to relax, or take a yoga class in the fitness center to ground yourself.
You can also retreat to your room. There are 162 of them, each with equestrian-inspired decor, a stash of D.S. & Durga bath products, and a high-end espresso machine. If you splurge on the Penthouse Suite, you’ll be treated to a private terrace and a pool table.
Just 15 miles outside of downtown Dallas is the exquisite Four Seasons Resort and Club Dallas at Las Colinas, an ideal weekend getaway for locals or a destination trip for travelers as part of any visit to Dallas.
The urban resort places wellness at the forefront, with an 18-hole golf course, 12 tennis courts, and a three-story sports club with classes like aerial yoga and mixed martial arts. For downtime, head to the spa, to the restaurant LAW (that is, Land, Air, Water), or to one of the three pools. If you brought your whole family, there’s a kids’ club to keep the little ones entertained.
With 431 neutral-toned rooms, you might expect the property to feel crowded, but everything is spread out enough that it’s quite serene.
Set in the centrally-located Galleria shopping hub of Houston, The Post Oak Hotel at Uptown Houston is arguably the most luxurious hotel in town — and potentially in all of Texas.
Its owner is local billionaire Tillman J. Fertitta, owner of the Houston Rockets NBA team, who spared no expense with this over-the-top property. In fact, it would fit in swimmingly among Dubai’s dazzling hotels, and not only because its design was inspired by the Dubai Opera House.
Amenities include a Miami-like pool and bar, four restaurants, a 20,000-square-foot spa, a salon, a 30,000-bottle wine cellar, a Rolls-Royce showroom (yes, in the hotel), and a multimillion-dollar art collection.
The 250 sophisticated guest rooms are a little less flashy with calming, neutral color schemes. But everything is luxe here, too, from the heated marble bathroom floors to button-operated curtains that open and close on demand. The attention to detail is high with Bluetooth connectivity and a toe ledge in the walk-in shower. Rooms start at 500 square feet and go up to the 5,000-square-foot penthouse with a private helipad.
Though it’s just 30 minutes outside of downtown Austin, the Lake Austin Spa Resort feels a world away from the city’s bustle. The luxury resort covers 19 lakefront acres with prominent water features and wellness programming.
As an all-inclusive resort, the vast majority of offerings are covered by the rate, from three gourmet meals made from ingredients grown on-site to morning yoga classes, water sports on the lake, and stargazing sessions with an astrologer. Think of this as an adult version of a summer camp, where mindfulness and fitness are the main focus. Regrettably, spa treatments are not included, but on the plus side, they’re available for day guests to book.
If you do choose to splurge and spend the night, you’ll stay in one of 40 French country-style accommodations, which range from quaint rooms with private meditation gardens to the elaborate Lady Bird Suite with a private hot tub. Each comes with fresh-cut daily flowers, Veuve Clicquot champagne upon arrival, a De’Longhi Lattissima Pro Espresso Machine, and toiletries with the spa’s signature lavender scent, created from plants grown on-site.
If you’re coming to San Antonio to party hard along the River Walk, Hotel Emma isn’t for you. But if you’re more interested in sampling gourmet cuisine, sipping on local brews, and taking artistic architectural photos for your Instagram, be sure to book a room.
Hotel Emma is housed in a century-old former brewery in the trendy Pearl District, and its designers, acclaimed hospitality firm Roman & Williams, kept much of the industrial-chic ambiance throughout.
In the guest rooms, brick walls display a patina of old paint behind embroidered curtains, while concrete floors are dressed in textured rugs. And while things might look rustic, they’re high quality. Bed linens, for instance, are Frette.
As for amenities, food and beverage are the focus at Hotel Emma, with each guest welcomed with a margarita. Dining options include the American restaurant Supper, the tavern Sternewirth, and the market-meets-bar Larder. There’s also a food truck at the rooftop pool, serving picnic-appropriate bites and frozen cocktails. After exploring the hotel, hop on one of the loaner electric bikes to go sightseeing downtown.
Because hotels in Texas are so varied, the answer depends on the type of trip you’re looking to take with your family.
For instance, you could go the beach resort route, in which case you might want to try Isla Grand Beach Resort on South Padre Island. Alternatively, the Stockyards Hotel provides Wild West-style fun for the whole family.
Which Texas hotels are good for couples?
For couples who want to connect with nature, stay at El Cosmico in Marfa for an intimate glamping experience. For a luxurious wellness vacation, pamper yourselves at the Lake Austin Spa Resort.
Are there Texas hotels on the beach?
Texas has 367 miles of shoreline along the Gulf of Mexico, which translates to several pristine white-sand beaches. While some beaches are in more remote wilderness areas, others have been built up into major beach towns, where you’ll find hotels of all shapes and sizes, not to mention restaurants, museums, and tourist attractions.
Check out South Padre Island, Corpus Christi, and Galveston for Texas’ best beaches.
Which hotels in Texas have rooms with a private pool or lazy river?
Texas might be hot, but private plunge pools and lazy rivers are somewhat rare at hotels across the state. The best hotel for rooms with a private pool is the Inn at Dos Brisas in Washington, a nine-room luxury ranch, while the hotel with the best lazy river is the Marriott Marquis Houston, which has a rooftop lazy river in the shape of Texas.
Are there COVID restrictions in Texas?
At the time of publication, there are no COVID-19 restrictions in Texas. People are encouraged to wear masks when social distancing is not possible, but masks are not a requirement.
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The Netherlands is open to US travelers.
Amsterdam has a wide range of hotels for every taste and budget from budget-friendly to five-star.
We chose the best hotels in Amsterdam based on location, price, amenities, and reviews.
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Amsterdam’s preserved Golden Age city center is teeming with picturesque canals, arched bridges, cobblestone streets, and centuries-old gabled houses, making it one of the world’s most beautiful capitals.
Packed into just three square miles are some 8,000 landmark buildings, from magnificent 17th and 18th-century canal-side mansions to medieval-era churches, glorious monuments like the Royal Palace, and world-class museums where scores of Rembrandts, Van Goghs, and Mondrians can be seen in a single day.
Featured alongside such rich sites are impressive hotels. Having lived in Amsterdam and after writing a guidebook on the city, I selected the city’s best hotels that are sure to delight both first-time and repeat visitors alike.
Browse the best Amsterdam hotels below or jump directly to a specific area here:
Amsterdam’s trio of world-class art museums — the Rijksmuseum, Van Gogh, and Stedelijk — are less than a 10-minute walk from this boutique hotel, which opened in 2020 after a two-year renovation. Originally built in 1910, the property retains many original classic details including marble fireplaces and wainscoting while incorporating fresh, contemporary design throughout.
Rooms feature sleek taupe leather headboards, comfy beds, designer lighting, and marble bathrooms. Entry-level Comfort Double rooms measure under 200 square feet and are better suited to solo travelers; trade up to the Deluxe category for high ceilings, floor-to-ceiling windows, and more space. One-bedroom apartments offer separate sleeping and living areas plus a kitchenette. Choose a room facing the courtyard garden for the quietest stay.
Grab a craft beer or pour a glass of organic wine from the honor bar and enjoy it out on the courtyard terrace surrounded by greenery.
The eco-friendly Amsterdam mini-chain’s first hotel is still its coolest, set in the magnificent red-brick former offices of the city’s gasworks and surrounded by verdant Westerpark. A cheery pink lobby cafe welcomes you upon check-in, but the real draw is the adjoining all-organic bar and restaurant Kantoor, a popular local haunt with a park-fronting terrace that’s one of the prettiest spots in town for a cocktail.
The hotel’s green cred goes beyond upcycled furniture to include water-saving showerheads, sustainable mattresses and bedding, and organic toiletries. Even heating and cooling systems and wind-powered electric are environmentally friendly.
Rooms are fairly spartan for a four-star property with gray flooring, white or wood-paneled walls, and contemporary metal furnishings. All have comfy Royal Dutch Auping beds, though larger rooms offer King-sized versions. Entry-level rooms measure a scant 193 square feet; it’s worth upgrading to a Big Double for more space, additional windows, and better views.
The hip Kimpton brand, part of the IHG group, overhauled this 1980s hotel, which incorporated three 17th-century houses, with marvelous results.
The open-plan lobby is bright and welcoming decked out with blue-and-white tile floors and sleek seating nooks where you can enjoy the free all-day tea bar or complimentary wine and snacks at happy hour. The hotel is also home to one of the best cocktail bars in the city, Super Lyan, done up in a colorful retro style. The location is ideal, just a few minutes from Central Station and the bustling shopping thoroughfare of Nieuwendijk.
Rooms feature elegant blue and gray hues with pops of floral, contemporary furnishings, and plush touches like Frette robes and Marie-Stella-Maris toiletries. Entry-level Queen rooms measure between 182 and 226 square feet, though the larger King Standards are a bit more comfortable. Suites, situated in the historic canal houses, have lovely period details such as wood-beamed ceilings and terraces with fantastic city views.
If you crave space, great amenities, and water views at a reasonable price point, consider this new aparthotel in Houthaven, a revamped former port area on the IJ River now teeming with edgy architecture.
It’s not as centrally located as our other choices, but it’s about a 15-minute walk (or just five minutes by bike) to Westerpark and the Jordaan, and a seven-minute free ferry ride to the trendy NDSM Wharf district.
Modern apartments feature a fully equipped kitchen with a fridge, dishwasher, and oven, a dining table, high-end Auping beds, and bathrooms with rainforest showers and Marie-Stella-Maris toiletries. Entry-level studios measure a very generous 366 square feet, with a King-sized bed and the sleeping and living areas divided by built-in shelving. For more privacy and space, the one-bedroom apartments offer a separate sleeping area, while the 650-square-foot two-bedroom, two-bathroom units can accommodate up to four people.
Most apartments have partial or full water views, but if yours doesn’t, head to the hotel’s Vessel restaurant for great views of the IJ harbor on its sprawling waterside patio.
Occupying five 17th-century canal houses in the heart of the trendy Nine Streets area, this stylish four-star hotel couldn’t have a better location. Like its sister properties in London and the U.S., the Hoxton Amsterdam exudes a cool vintage vibe that makes it a serious hit with the local hipster crowd, who you’ll find hanging in the dual-level lobby lounge outfitted with low-slung retro-style chairs, leather sofas, and a wood-burning fireplace. At the back is the buzzy Italian spot Lotti’s, a sleek, white-tiled room with a retractable roof for warm summer days.
Rooms come in three sizes, Shoebox, Cozy, and Roomy, and half offer views over the famous Herengracht canal. They feature a variety of historical details depending on the room, like original beamed or coffered ceilings and wood-paneled walls, though all have gorgeous herringbone floors, chandeliers, and leather headboards.
Cozy rooms with Double beds average around 183 square feet. There are also three top-tier concept rooms that differ in decor and may include a freestanding tub or marble fireplace.
Set in a canal-front high-rise on the quiet southern edges of the De Pijp district, this lavish hotel is known for its world-class dining with four restaurants garnering a total of three Michelin stars, and one Bib Gourmand.
The ground-floor Yamazato serves Japanese haute cuisine; Sazanka is a more casual spot with teppanyaki grilled dishes; the brasserie Serre features a lovely waterfront terrace; and the crown jewel is the 23rd-floor Ciel Bleu, with a stellar dual-Michelin-starred French menu.
Other amenities include the city’s largest hotel pool and a cooking studio hosting individual or group workshops. Hotel Okura is a member of The Leading Hotels of the World and offers program members upgrades and other exclusive benefits.
Like the rest of the design, rooms are modern and minimal, outfitted with sleek wood furnishings and a subtle blue and gray palette. Entry-level Superior rooms are large, measuring over 300 square feet, and the glass wall dividing the bedroom and bathroom gives the illusion of even more space. Those with city views are on higher floors and come with a bigger price tag.
Upgrade to an Executive-level room for more space and access to the 22nd-floor Executive Lounge, with free drinks, snacks, and fantastic views.
With a prime address on Dam Square, the location of this five-star hotel is exceedingly central. Though the building dates back to 1855, much of its interior is quite modern. The somewhat bland lobby is outfitted with gray and red seating and usually full to bursting with the constant rush of hotel guests.
The property reveals its charming historical character in the Winter Garden, now the breakfast room, with a check board-tile floor, soaring iron-girder, and a glass ceiling. And even if you can’t afford a meal at the Michelin-starred White Room, be sure to take a peek at its opulent mirrored and stuccoed dining room, the oldest in Amsterdam.
As the hotel is comprised of an assortment of different buildings, rooms vary in size and shape, but the decor is uniformly clean and minimalist, with wood floors and a soothing white, gray, and maroon palette. Views run the gamut: Those at the front look out over bustling Dam Square, and at the back, over the neighboring Red Light District, while others watch over the quiet courtyard.
Entry-level Superior rooms are perfectly comfortable, measuring 280 square feet, and feature King-sized beds and generous bathrooms. Some of the Premium rooms and suites offer terraces.
Opened in 2019 in a trio of landmark 17th-century buildings on the Singel canal, this intimate boutique property blends gorgeous historical details and period antiques with eclectic contemporary craftsmanship. Restored original wood beams, wood and stone floors, and tilework are complemented by imaginative custom design, especially in its Signature rooms. For example, in the split-level Boat Builder room, you’ll find pieces made from recycled nautical items, like a vintage folding canoe reinvented as a ceiling light in the bathroom.
While all 14 rooms are on the smaller side — most measure around 300 square feet — 12 have canal views and many feature freestanding bathtubs. Even solo travelers can enjoy waterfront views from the tiny Single rooms, which measure less than 100 square feet. Entry-level Double rooms lack views, so it’s worth trading up to get one facing the canal.
COVID-19 procedures are as follows: “At Hotel The Craftsmen we constantly take the necessary precautions to keep our guests and staff in a safe environment. We strictly follow national health regulations and wearing a face mask is mandatory in the hotel.”
A 1970s-era public library on the Prinsengracht canal was transformed into this quirky, art-filled paradise, thanks to the stylings of renowned Dutch designer Marcel Wanders. Andaz is also a member of World of Hyatt, for the chance to earn and redeem points.
The sprawling lobby is an homage to “Alice in Wonderland” with oversized bright-red chairs and enormous bell-shaped chandeliers, threaded with Dutch influences, like the Delft-style tile work running up the soaring central atrium. Zany artwork abounds, including screens endlessly looping surreal videos. Even the garden with its checkerboard-tile flooring is stuffed with giant sculptures. If it all feels like design overload, head to the back of the hotel where the Bluespoon Restaurant offers a modern Dutch menu in (slightly) less eccentric surroundings.
Rooms are similar in tone, though thankfully more serene, with custom white furnishings and Delft-blue ceilings and carpeting (though be prepared for the giant kooky fish artwork on the wall). Entry-level rooms measure around 280 square feet and have interior atrium views. I think it’s worth upgrading to the garden- or canal-view rooms (or one with a terrace) to have an actual glimpse of the outdoors.
Made up of 25 interlinked historic canal houses sandwiched between the Prinsengracht and Keizersgracht, this luxury hotel fuses the Golden Age and the 21st century with gorgeous results.
In the lobby, contemporary jewel-toned settees sit beneath original wood-beamed ceilings. On one wall, a large, traditional Dutch still-life painting of flowers is actually revealed to be made of recycled plastic cutlery upon closer inspection. These whimsical design touches run throughout the property, such as the playful adult swing-set in the sprawling courtyard garden, though the upscale Jansz restaurant is more restrained. The ever-popular Pulitzer’s Bar maintains a classic, clubby feel, with leather armchairs, antiques, and a roaring fireplace.
Rooms are a mix of shapes and sizes, and like the rest of the hotel, blend historic interiors with bespoke design. Most feature a sophisticated palette of grays, purples, and golds, plus curving headboards mimicking the surrounding gabled roofs. The smallest is the 182-square-foot Cosy Room for single travelers, while Classic Rooms, which sleep two with either King, Queen, or two Twin beds, measure 270 square feet.
Four massive Collector Suites each have their own theme, such as the Art Collector, which is filled with quirky, contemporary artwork. Views vary depending upon the location, but those facing the canals are preferable. Upgrade to at least a Generous room for breakfast to be included.
This scene-y five-star is a member of Marriott Bonvoy and occupies two historic buildings. One is a 1920s telephone exchange, the other a 1906 bank. They’re located across from one another on the lower Spuistraat, just around the corner from Dam Square.
Both are equally stylish, though the larger Exchange building is trendier, housing the bright and buzzy sixth-floor W Lounge (also doubling as the reception area), the sleek Mr. Porter Steakhouse, and the rooftop pool and bar with jaw-dropping views of the neighboring Royal Palace.
The Bank building feels more refined with the hip X Bank concept store, the Michelin-starred Belle Époque brasserie The Duchess, and a swanky spa tucked deep within the former vaults.
The Exchange houses the majority of hotel rooms, which are cool and contemporary with a black, gray, and red palette. Open-plan Cozy Exchange rooms measure between 215 and 270 square feet and have atrium views; upgrade to a Wonderful Exchange for city views. In the Bank, rooms are classic with a black and gold design scheme and entry-level rooms are slightly larger, starting at 259 square feet, with views of the city or adjacent canal.
Built in 1578, this monumental building has a long, storied history. It first served as a convent and then for two centuries as Amsterdam’s City Hall until it was entirely overhauled as a five-star hotel in 1992.
As befitting its grandeur, the hotel’s impressive entrance is through a vast cobblestone courtyard that dates back to the 17th century. The stately lobby features original white marble floors and arched ceilings, and its cozy, book lined Library ‘Or’ lounge is scattered with plush sofas to enjoy afternoon tea.
There are multiple restaurants, including Bridges for gourmet seafood and canal views, as well as an inner garden terrace, which is a peaceful oasis for cocktails or a meal. A spa with a pool, sauna, and steam room is free for guests.
Rooms are decorated in a contemporary style with carpeted floors and modern furnishings, and the nice-sized marble bathrooms are stocked with high-end Hermès toiletries. Superior rooms with Queen-sized beds measure a generous 322 square feet and feature exposed brick walls, high ceilings, and large windows overlooking the courtyard. Classic rooms, measuring 269 square feet and with a double bed, are reserved for solo travelers, while interconnecting family rooms can accommodate up to four.
The Sofitel is part of the Accor brand, and members can earn and use reward points for their stay.
Tucked in a 17th-century former almshouse on the Keizersgracht canal, this five-star boutique gem impresses from the get-go with entry via a stone gate into a small courtyard, which lends a feeling of exclusivity. The Dylan is a member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World, which means members can get exclusive discounts and upgrades.
Common spaces blend history with sleek design. The lobby lounge features original wood-plank floors, tall paned windows, and low-slung black leather seating. Vinkeles restaurant, on the site of the former bakery, serves Michelin-starred French cuisine among original stone floors and exposed brick walls. Out back, a secluded garden terrace is lined with trees and scattered with dining tables and makes for the ideal spot for afternoon wine or cocktails.
Rooms, duplexes, and suites come in three styles: the copper-toned Loxura with wood floors and beamed ceilings; the more modern Serendipity with soothing gray tones; and the retro-style Amber with white-washed wood floors. Finally, top-floor Lofts boast gorgeous original wood beams and excellent views. Entry-level Luxury Doubles measure around 250 square feet and most rooms have canal views, though some overlook the back garden.
For 125 years, the venerable De L’Europe Amsterdam has stood on the banks of the Amstel River, in a gloriously ornate red-brick building with some of the best views of central Amsterdam.
It’s pure luxury from the first moment, as a top-hatted doorman welcomes you to the grand lobby swathed in rich red hues with sparkling chandeliers and enormous gilt-framed oil paintings. A member of The Leading Hotels of the World, De L’Europe Amsterdam offers program members upgrades and other exclusive benefits.
The elegant brasserie Marie (which doubles as a breakfast room) and its waterfront terrace overlook passing canal boats, while the snazzy Michelin-starred Bord’Eau (currently closed as of publishing time but due to reopen) is known for its top-notch wine list. The legendary bar Freddy’s serves classic cocktails in a dimly-lit, clubby environment with live jazz piano nightly. There’s also an upscale spa with a sauna and pool that is open to all guests.
Rooms are a jumble of shapes and sizes and decor varies, but expect a classic look with rich red or royal blue furnishings, patterned wallpaper, and dark wood accents. Superior rooms measure 270 square feet, and those with river views or a terrace come at a premium. For a true splurge, the all-suite Dutch Masters Wing has 23 opulent apartments, each featuring a replica of a famous oil painting from the Rijksmuseum.
Summer is the busiest tourist season, which is not surprising given the weather is at its best: warm (but not hot) temps and long days, with the sun setting as late as 10 p.m.
Spring (April and May) attract plenty of visitors as well, who come for the celebrated tulip season; however, it can be cool and rainy. September and October are less crowded, and temperatures are relatively mild.
Winters are dark, cold, windy, and rainy with very short days; avoid them unless you plan to spend most of your time indoors.
Which is the best area to stay in Amsterdam?
Amsterdam is an exhilarating mix of old and new. Traditional cafes are nestled alongside trendy cocktail bars, ancient churches are reimagined as contemporary galleries and clubs, and historical mansions now house hip concept stores and slick restaurants.
The central historic districts are where you’ll find most of the city’s attractions and thus, the largest concentration of accommodations. Of these, the Canal Ring is perhaps the most sought-after area and is the most picturesque with its 17th- and 18th-century gabled manses lining the Herengracht, Keizersgracht, and Prinsengracht canals. Some of the city’s smartest boutique hotels can be found here, usually an amalgam of centuries-old canal houses that together form truly one-of-a-kind properties.
The Old Center is, not surprisingly, Amsterdam’s oldest district, which encompasses Dam Square (on which sits the Royal Palace), the shopping thoroughfares of Kalverstraat and Rokin, and the infamous Red Light District. The Old Center is home to the grandest of the grande dames, among them the 1896 De L’Europe Amsterdam and the Hotel Sofitel Legend The Grand Amsterdam, set in a monumental stone building that once served as city hall.
What is the cost of a hotel room in Amsterdam?
Given its rich history and wealth of attractions, Amsterdam has swelled in popularity; in 2019, some 22 million visitors flocked to this city of just 860,000. As a consequence, its hotels have some of Europe’s highest occupancy rates and highest prices, with an average nightly rate of 184 euro (about $217) and four- and five-star properties charging several hundred dollars per night.
And while Amsterdam is a popular year-round destination, rates are generally higher during the spring, summer, and early fall—though August, surprisingly, can see slightly lower prices.
Is it safe to stay in hotels?
Hotels are implementing new cleaning policies to help guests rest easier. We’ve linked to the most up-to-date policies or provided COVID policy descriptions for each of the hotels so you can assess your risk level.
However, because the pandemic situation continues to evolve, it’s wise to read up on hotel cancellation policies and consider purchasing trip insurance to safeguard your travel investments, especially for overseas travels.
Due to COVID-19 restrictions and their ability to change, it is best to check ahead of time before booking if a hotel’s particular amenity, such as a spa, restaurant, or fitness center, will be open during your visit or require advance reservations.
What are the current COVID restrictions for visiting the Netherlands from the US?
There is currently no requirement to bring proof of COVID-19 vaccination or provide a negative COVID test if you are traveling from the United States to the Netherlands, and there is no requirement to quarantine upon arrival.
Travelers must present a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours of their flight back to the U.S., regardless of vaccination status. Only a negative antigen test is required (not a PCR test). You can make an online appointment for a rapid test at a test center here; however, you will need to be able to receive a text message on your phone for verification and test results (no more than three hours after the test).
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Costa Rica means rich coast, which is the perfect way to describe the ecologically diverse country.
Costa Rica has so much to offer, from cloud forests and rainforests to beaches and hot springs.
We found the best Costa Rica hotels, from family-friendly resorts to surfer hotels and eco getaways.
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Costa Rica’s name alone, which means rich coast in Spanish, tells you so much about what you’ll encounter here. Indeed, this small Central American nation that is flanked by vast swaths of Caribbean and Pacific coast is home to 30 national parks, more than 6% of the world’s biodiversity, six active volcanoes, and a warm and welcoming population.
I’ve visited Cosa Rica many times, from the Papagayo Peninsula with its uncrowded beaches and 600 square miles of protected wilderness, to hot springs, cloud forests, and the buzzing capital city of San Jose. And I can attest from a recent trip that the country is actively doing all it can to combat COVID-19 with safety protocols in place.
With so much on offer for tourists, Costa Rica is also home to stunning hotels to make your base. From jungle enclaves to beachfront resorts, these are the best places to stay in Costa Rica.
Browse the best Costa Rica hotels below, or jump directly to a specific area here:
One of the things that has always struck me in Costa Rica is how everyone here embraces the country’s slogan, “pura vida” (pure life). Similar to the way people in Hawaii say “aloha,” many Ticos — as the locals are called — will greet you by saying “pura vida.” And when you check into the Sano Banano Beachside Hotel, that’s exactly the friendly greeting you’ll receive.
El Sano Banano is set in the center of Montezuma, a bohemian beach town on the southern end of the Nicoya Peninsula, an area so healthy that it is home to some of the oldest living people in the world.
Downstairs is a popular local restaurant; upstairs is where you’ll find the rooms. There’s not much to this place. The hotel is simply decorated with colorful bed coverings and monochromatic tan walls and tile floors. There’s no pool, either, but if you’re craving a swim, the property has a reciprocal arrangement with a resort that’s just a 10-minute walk away.
But who wants to stay in the hotel or even use a pool when you’re in a setting like this? A block away from the hotel is a beautiful beach, and there are plenty of things to do in the area, from surfing and snorkeling to biking and ATV tours. If you love hiking, don’t miss the nearby Reserva Natural Absoluta Cabo Blanco, Costa Rica’s first national reserve.
For current COVID-19 policies call +011/506-2642-0638.
For a romantic and affordable location and a relaxing, child-free vacation, Hotel Banana Azul is your place. Everything is focused on quiet serenity. There are no telephones or TVs in the rooms and you’ll instead be lulled to sleep by the rhythm of nearby waves crashing. But if you can’t bear to be completely cut off from the rest of the world, there’s free Wi-Fi.
You’ll find 25 rooms ranging in size from a simple studio to a two-bedroom apartment. Some have a private plunge pool or a hot tub, and only a few have air conditioning; most are cooled by the ocean breezes. All the rooms are decorated with bamboo furniture and local art that references the jungle surroundings.
Spend your days lounging in the hammocks that hang all over the property, have a massage by the beach, or take a dip in the pool. If you’re itching to explore, a tour company located on-site can book canopy tours, river rafting, and hikes to Arenal volcano.
When I want to stay in the center of the San José action, my top pick is the Gran Hotel Costa Rica Curio Collection by Hilton, which is conveniently located near major museums and cultural institutions. Using the Gran Hotel as your base, you can easily scope out other San José attractions, from the Braulio Carrillo National Park to the Poás Volcano, one of the largest craters in the world.
The hotel originally opened in 1930 and was later named a national landmark (the only hotel in Costa Rica to have this designation). After taking over the property, Hilton’s Curio Collection gave it a revamp, adding a striking glassed-in upper level with a rooftop piano bar overlooking the National Theatre and a new fusion restaurant, Cultura5, with panoramic views stretching from the city to the surrounding mountains.
The rooms are just as dazzling, done up in shades of cream with midcentury modern furniture. It’s no wonder Trip Advisor named this one of the “best of the best” in its 2021 Traveler’s Choice Awards.
For travelers who want to experience San José, but don’t want to stay right in the urban center, the Costa Rica Marriott Hotel Hacienda Belen combines the best of all worlds. This property is set on the grounds of a 30-acre historic coffee plantation just a 20-minute drive from central San José, with massive rooms in a sprawling hacienda-style property.
It’s hard to believe the city is so close when you’re staying in this lush paradise of palm trees and gardens, with views of the mountains and valley. But look a little closer and you’ll spot the skyline in the difference. For travelers who want to be close to the San José international airport, it’s just a 10-minute drive away, though you’d never know it when you’re in this quiet oasis.
Whatever your passion, you’ll find it here, from golf to tennis to a spa. Kids love it, too, with a dedicated children’s pool and a playground. There are multiple restaurants serving Peruvian cuisine, sushi, Creole cuisine, and more.
Manuel Antonio is where the rainforest meets the beach on the Pacific Coast. On a recent trip, we booked a one-bedroom villa at Alta Vista Vacation Rentals, which is set on a cliff in the Quepos area of Manuel Antonio with spectacular ocean views.
Though technically a rental property with four villas ranging from one to three bedrooms, it operates like a hotel with a concierge to welcome you, full security, daily housekeeping, and breakfast included.
The only thing missing is a front desk and a lobby — but we didn’t need that at all. The town of Manuel Antonio operates like one, a small grocery store is across the road, and many great restaurants and cute shops are just a few minutes’ stroll away. Plus, the concierge was always available on Whatsapp to answer questions or help organize excursions and services, like a private chef to cook dinner.
We loved rolling out of bed into our private plunge pool every morning and never needed to leave the property. We spotted almost as many animals from our pool as we did in Manuel Antonio National Park, including a baby sloth climbing through the trees, white-faced monkeys, macaws, parrots, and more.
Still, you won’t want to miss the many pleasures of this special destination, from ziplining to hiking in the national park. And about a 10-minute drive from the property is Manuel Antonio’s famous Espadilla Beach, where we took surfing lessons, went on a wave runner, and drank from fresh coconuts cracked right on the sand.
Costa Rica is known as one of the world’s most eco-friendly places and this boutique hotel in a lush cloud forest in the mountains of the Monteverde Reserve is a great example of the strides that this country has made when it comes to protecting the planet and its people.
The hotel is set on nine acres, two-thirds of which are untouched forests that are home to endangered species. There are programs dedicated to preserving the environment (from water management to energy preservation) and supporting the local community.
The property is simple but beautiful, decorated with wooden furniture that’s hand-carved right on the property. In keeping with the hotel’s eco-minded ethos, there’s no pool and no air conditioning (though as it’s set in the mountains, you won’t need it).
The emphasis here is on experiencing nature, and there’s so much to do, from yoga classes to private hiking trails right on the property. Fun fact: The Cerro Amigos trail leads to the highest mountain in the region.
Nearby, you can visit a coffee farm, go horseback riding, ziplining, or explore a wildlife refuge. The hotel also has immersive programs for farm-to-table dining and garden-to-glass cocktails, where you gather the ingredients yourself and learn how to make your own food and drinks.
For current COVID-19 policies call +011/506-2645-5201.
My husband still complains about the trip he made to Arenal — when he spent several days socked in by fog and rain and never actually saw the area’s famous volcano. So when we recently returned to Costa Rica, he wanted to check out a different volcanic area. We chose Volcan Tenorio National Park, which is home to the Celeste Waterfall, an iconic site that’s one of the most photographed locations in the country.
Walking into the lobby of Rio Celeste Hideaway Hotel — a secret getaway in the rainforest just a few minutes’ drive from the volcano and the waterfall — the soaring ceilings, carved wood furniture, and koi pond make you feel like you could be in Bali. But look up in the trees and you’re likely to spot a sloth hanging from the branches, reminding you that you couldn’t be anywhere but Costa Rica.
Our freestanding villa felt like a honeymoon suite with its romantic canopy bed, open-air rock shower, and spacious day bed, where our daughter slept. The sprawling terrace overlooked the rainforest, and there was nothing more relaxing than listening to the rain falling on the surrounding trees. It rained a lot in the morning and evening, but there were enough breaks in the weather to get out and explore (and actually see the volcano).
We were impressed with the excellent job the hotel did of blending romance, adventure, and a family-friendly vibe, making it appealing to all. There’s a huge pool, multiple hot tubs, plus a swim-up bar where they make cocktails for parents and mocktails for kids. And, of course, you can’t beat the nearby excursions like hiking through the rainforest to the Celeste Waterfall.
Costa Rica’s Guanacaste coastline is known for its great weather (it has very little rain and consistent heat from November to April), excellent surfing beaches, and the luxurious Four Seasons resort, which put the area on the map for many luxury travelers when it opened in 2004.
Set right near the Four Seasons on the Papagayo Peninsula is the Andaz, which costs about half the price and has just as much to offer, including three beaches, golf, restaurants, a spa, and more.
When I stayed at the Andaz, what I loved the most was its fun, Instagram-worthy vibe. Setting the tone is a purple VW van parked at the hotel entrance that makes for the perfect photo backdrop. And I still dream about the infinity pool, with its dazzling Pacific ocean views.
Built on the side of the mountain, the resort has a treehouse-like feel and its sleek, modern design is truly something to behold. The food in Costa Rica can be hit or miss, but not here: The hotel has several restaurants serving delicious traditional dishes, from empanadas to sopaipillas.
And not to be missed is a treatment at the Onda Wellness Spa, where the treatment rooms are hidden in the rainforest and most of the products are handmade using ingredients sourced in the surrounding area, from purple corn to brown sugar.
Costa Rica is small — roughly the size of West Virginia — but it is one of the most biodiverse places on earth, with 12 different ecosystems. So whatever you’re looking for, you’ll find it here, including rainforests, beaches, mountains, even a bustling city.
Where you go depends on what you’re looking for on a vacation. If you are an adventurous traveler, consider the Northern Highlands, including Arenal Volcano National Park, Vulcano Tenorio National Park, and Monteverde, where you’ll find ziplining, hanging bridges, river tubing, great hiking, waterfalls, and mineral-rich hot springs.
Sun worshippers and surfers will love the Guanacaste coastline, which is home to a number of beach areas (including the resort-friendly Papagayo Peninsula) and the Nicoya Peninsula (one of the world’s legendary Blue Zones, where people live the longest).
The rainforest meets the beach in Manuel Antonio, a prime place for sloth-spotting. Costa Rica’s Caribbean Coast is a little quieter and less developed. And then there’s the buzzing city of San José.
What is the best time of year to visit Costa Rica?
Costa Ricans think of the winter season (December through April) as their summer, and this is the most popular time to visit. It is when the weather is at its driest, prices are at their highest, and resort destinations are most crowded.
To find a deal and avoid the crowds, consider the rainy low season, which goes from around May through November.
Are there travel restrictions in Costa Rica?
Costa Rica does not require a COVID-19 test for entry, however, visitors — regardless of age or vaccination status — must complete a “Health Pass” at least 72 hours before their trip. Those who are inoculated must attach a copy of their COVID-19 vaccination card.
Up to now, all travelers have been required to purchase COVID-19 travel insurance, but beginning August 1, travelers who have a COVID-19 vaccine and minors under the age of 18 will no longer be required to purchase travel insurance to enter Costa Rica. You can read more about the requirements here.
And everywhere you go, you’ll find protocols in place to protect locals and visitors alike, from mask-wearing requirements to hand-washing stations for patrons to use before they enter a national park or even a roadside food stand. The country is meticulously clean, which adds to the feeling of safety. Costa Rica is also actively working to protect its population of 5 million people against COVID-19, with a goal to vaccinate at least 3.5 million citizens by the end of this year.
Should I choose a regular hotel or an all-inclusive one?
Whether you choose a regular hotel or an all-inclusive one depends on the kind of traveler you are. Some people prefer to have the freedom to go to local restaurants and explore on their own, while others prefer to stay at a resort where everything is included in one price, including food and activities.
There are also some small eco-friendly hotels in Costa Rica that are all-inclusive due to the fact that there are no restaurants nearby and don’t feel like a typical all-inclusive resort.
How cheap or expensive is it to plan a trip to Costa Rica?
The cost of a trip to Costa Rica depends on the accommodations that you choose and can range from budget to ultra-luxurious. Unless you eat at an affordable roadside stand called a “soda,” food at restaurants frequented by tourists is generally not cheap. Grocery stores can also be expensive (especially if you want to buy foreign food).
One area where it’s particularly hard to save is with a rental car. Travelers are required to purchase expensive rental insurance, which can be more than the cost of the car rental itself.
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San Francisco is an expensive city – but it has a surprisingly wide range of affordable hotels.
The city’s budget-friendly hotels have central locations, desirable amenities, and rates under $200.
We found the best places you can stay when budget is your most important factor.
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San Francisco is home to a world-famous skyline, the Golden Gate Bridge, stunning parks, an exciting food and arts scene, and is a major seat of tech. It also happens to be one of the most expensive cities in America.
As such, San Francisco is also, unsurprisingly, home to many expensive hotels. Though don’t let that deter you from visiting. There is an enticing array of cheap properties too. You just need to know where to look.
Some of our top hotel picks in the city effortlessly merge convenience with comfort, clever design details, high-tech touches, and affordable prices.
Browse all the best cheap hotels below, or jump directly to a specific area here:
Yotel has 203 rooms known as “cabins” with a substantial range of options to suit various budgets. Located on Market Street, the location is fantastic to explore the city.
Located within San Francisco’s famous Grant Building (which survived both the 1906 and 1989 earthquakes), the hotel design takes its cues from air travel, with the idea to keep everything close and convenient, such as airline-style self-service check-in kiosks. All cabins (the guest rooms) have smart TVs so you can connect your own devices and stream content, plus there is ample place for charging devices. We like the ability to customize rooms as guests can create their personal vibe through tailored mood lighting and adjustable memory foam beds. The rainfall showers are also a luxe touch.
The hotel is also home to Yotel’s signature Komyuniti Lounge concept, designed with spaces to co-work and socialize.
Cow Hollow Inn and Suites is a centrally located hotel near San Francisco’s quaint Cow Hollow district, which is just over a mile to Fisherman’s Wharf and only slightly farther to Pier 39.
Comfortable and clean, rooms have a well-lit seating and work area with free internet, both wired and wireless. Covered parking is also complimentary, which is a rarity for this city and packs significant added value.
Travelers love the well-maintained and noticeably large (even surprisingly so) rooms here, with coffee and tea-making facilities and large TVs. The location is also a prime one. Walk to the Palace of Fine Arts in 15 minutes, and easily reach many bars, restaurants, and other tourist-friendly attractions in a short walk.
This boutique hotel is located in the heart of Union Square, situated perfectly for sightseeing and business travel alike, with a highly walkable location. All stays are contactless, with a virtual check-in process and a keyless entry system.
The Inn at Union Square San Francisco has 30 hotel rooms and suites, all with high-quality bedding, comfortable pillow-top mattresses, and dark wood furnishings. The decor is sophisticated, with framed wall hangings and elegantly striped wallpaper. Here, you’ll also get high-speed wireless internet, flat screen TVs, and spa-like robes.
Hotel Zeppelin is a Union Square property that serves as a nod to the city’s spirit of rebellion and counterculture and the whole place embraces an avant-garde look and feel.
Starting at about 200 square feet, standard guest rooms have sleek black headboards, John Boos 36-inch work desks, blackout shades, luxurious bath amenities from ROIL, and complimentary high-speed Wi-Fi. Suites include vinyl on vintage turntables for an atmospheric touch.
Dining and drinking options include Rambler restaurant, offering California fare made with locally sourced ingredients, which is located in the space formerly occupied by Wolfgang Puck’s city institution, Postrio. The Mantel Bar is an intimate lounge near the lobby’s fireplace, just right for gathering with groups or a date. An array of formal meeting spaces are also available, ranging up to 4,000 square feet.
Hotel Del Sol is a member of Joie de Vivre, the boutique line from World of Hyatt. It’s a charming, well-appointed stay from a trusted brand with the chance to earn loyalty points, too, and an easy walk to the buzzy bars, shops, and restaurants of the tourist-friendly Marina District.
Once a midcentury modern motor lodge, this hotel has been transformed to offer boutique amenities and service. Guest rooms are spacious, bright, and airy with orange-painted walls that feel like a California beach house, plush beds, and cheerful decor.
Indeed, we’re a fan of the bright and whimsical, modern concept decor such as palm trees, hammocks, and the colorful lounge furnishings that dot the pool area in the courtyard. The affordable price point also includes Wi-Fi, daily breakfast, and fun guest perks such as milk and cookies that are served each afternoon in the lobby.
The 400-room Stanford Court hotel is meant to meet the needs of the digital-age traveler in a city known for tech innovation. A recent multi-million dollar renovation revamped the lobby, cafe, bar, porte-cochere, and fitness center. Look for a new modern color scheme and cool graphics, with design nods to the building’s history.
There’s a high-tech fitness center with Peloton bikes, Hydrow rowing machines, virtual personal training, and floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the only intersection of San Francisco’s famous cable car lines.
Other amenities include a tech loaner program, digital art installations featuring artwork by local artists, a Nod Hill sleep menu, a lobby lending library stocked with books on California and San Francisco, and a music room with vinyl from local bands and artists.
Entry-level rooms begin at 220 square feet and have 49-inch HD televisions with HDMI and USB Ports, USB outlets, and a mini-fridge.
The Orchard Garden Hotel is an eco-friendly hotel with LEED and Green Seal certifications for environmentally conscious — and budget-minded — travelers.
Located near the Financial District, Union Square shops, and many museums and attractions, Orchard Garden is well-loved for its central location and reasonable pricing that includes breakfast with all room rates. Service feels personalized, offering friendly details such as flexible check-in times, pending availability. Standard rooms start around 230 square feet, and junior suites have about 374 square feet with a separate sofa.
Roots Restaurant is open for breakfast daily, and also hosts meetings and events. Or hit the hotel’s rooftop terrace for views of the famed San Francisco skyline.
Located in the Tenderloin District, the Phoenix is known for being a fun, lively destination especially popular among creatives. It’s a 10 minutes walk from the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium and caters to a musical crowd with a distinctly rock-n-roll atmosphere.
There are only 44 rooms so there is also a strong boutique feel with rooms exuding vintage details like retro phones, midcentury modern furniture, and vibrant graphic artworks. Updated modern conveniences also include 42-inch flat-screen TVs with DirecTV and film channels.
Mostly, Phoenix Hotel is known for its pool scene (when San Francisco’s notoriously chilly weather permits), which I’ve frequented many times with friends. There’s even a mural from a local artist in the pool.
Guests also receive complimentary passes to the Kabuki Springs & Spa on weekdays, which is a San Francisco institution and offers an additional boon in value on top of the already cheap price.
Yes, the state of California fully reopened on June 15, 2021.
Where should I stay when visiting San Francisco?
San Francisco is a seven-by-seven-mile region, so you’ll never be too far from any attraction as the crow flies. Sightseers might want to stay around the Embarcadero, Union Square, or along Market Street, highly walkable locations where public transportation is also abundant and frequent.
Areas like Hayes Valley and North Beach are popular for shops and dining. The Castro is especially desirable for LBGTQ travelers, with a historic, trend-setting, and lively gay community and event calendar.
What should I avoid in San Francisco?
San Francisco has a substantial homelessness problem; there are currently about 8,000 unhoused people living in the small geographic area. Some of the associated issues — drug addiction, and yes excrement on the streets — are well known to locals, but may surprise visitors to a city with so much wealth.
Traffic is also a major problem throughout the San Francisco Bay Area and locals take pains to avoid rush-hour traffic patterns and event traffic such as related to ballgames and parades.
How much does it cost to stay at a hotel in San Francisco?
As the seat of much of the country’s tech money, the San Francisco Bay Area and its environs are notoriously expensive across the board, from the cost of living to hotel stays. While there are many pricey hotels in the city — ranging upwards of $1,000 and more — there are plenty of appealing, budget-friendly options on our list in the range of $200 and under.
When’s the best time to visit San Francisco?
Maybe you’ve heard the quote attributed to Mark Twain: “The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco.” That is to say, it’s often cool and breezy in San Francisco at any time of year. Be prepared and always bring layers. It may surprise some visitors that the fall months offer some of the warmest temperatures in the city, and crowds are thinner, too.
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With shingled cottages and miles of beaches, Cape Cod is a quintessential New England getaway.
We rounded up the best hotels across the Cape, including Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard.
From quaint inns and motels to family resorts, our picks have pools, beaches, and ocean views.
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Long a favorite summer retreat for the New England set, Cape Cod attracts millions of visitors to its golden beaches, historic villages, and rolling dunes dotted with gray-shingled cottages.
A great Cape Cod hotel makes it easy to take advantage of all such offerings. Stay in a quaint cottage where you can have toes in the sand next to your front door, or opt for a lavish resort with glittering pools and sprawling lawns sprinkled with hydrangeas.
Browse all the best Cape Cod hotels below, or jump directly to a specific area:
With 46 nautically-themed cottages overlooking Nantucket Sound in the Cape Cod town of Yarmouth, accommodations are located around a village green and set just off the beach. Room types include studio, one-bedroom, two-bedroom, and three-bedroom private cottages.
Book by the day or the week for rooms that include Queen-sized beds, TVs, free Wi-Fi, kitchens or small kitchenettes with a mini-fridge, microwave, coffee pot, and a toaster. New linens are available upon request and pets are not allowed.
Rooms are cozy and welcoming, with a homey feel, though, the unbeatable location is the real star. There are five acres on property that include two picnicking areas, and although there’s no restaurant, there are several eateries across the street.
COVID-19 procedures are not available online but include: Deep disinfection performed prior to every arrival, limited housekeeping, wristbands on the beach.
Set among the candy-colored gingerbread houses of Oak Bluffs, this boutique property stands out for its size, housed in a grand 19th-century former hotel overlooking the harbor. It’s also the largest hotel on the island with 95 rooms. True to its name, the interiors are playful, with contemporary furnishings in bold colors and whimsical hanging chairs in the sprawling, open-plan lobby.
There are plenty of nostalgic touches, too, like wood tennis rackets as artwork and a game room off the lobby stocked with vintage board games. Grab a snack from the Camp Canteen and relax on the expansive porch with soothing views of the sailboat-dotted harbor.
While on the small side, rooms are bright and cheerful, with punchy geometric-patterned fabrics in shades of blue, green, and yellow. They feature high-tech amenities such as USB ports, Tivoli Bluetooth radios, and smart TVs. Entry-level Queen rooms measure less than 200 square feet; you’ll need to upgrade for those offering partial water views from the veranda, and rooms with full water views come at a premium.
The hotel is open seasonally, from May through October.
Set in the heart of the oldest town on the Cape, this quaint inn harkens back to its original history as the Patriot headquarters during the Revolutionary War, and later, a tavern and inn that hosted notables such as Henry David Thoreau. Though the historic structure was destroyed by a fire, the current building certainly looks the part with gracious interiors inspired by traditional colonial-style design.
The inn has multiple dining rooms, with the glass-enclosed Conservancy being the loveliest, and the fireside Music room being the coziest, while the Tavern at the Inn is ideal for a drink or casual meal. The property, which includes the main house and several wings, is nestled among beautifully manicured grounds that include a seasonal heated outdoor pool and patio. The hotel also features the Beach Plum Spa, and guests have free access to a state-of-the-art fitness center in town.
Individually decorated rooms are big on colonial charm with canopy and four-poster beds, fireplaces, and balconies. Entry-level Traditional rooms are on the first floor of the Jarvis Wing, adjacent to the main building. For better views and more space, trade up to a Superior room on the second floor of the main inn. A $15 breakfast voucher is included in the rate.
The hotel’s namesake was a wealthy shipowner, who built this three-story red-brick mansion in 1845 in the heart of the island’s whaling town. Today it’s home to this elegant, year-round inn, whose beautifully refurbished interiors — gleaming wood floors, crown molding, marble fireplaces in the lobby/library — are complemented by period-style furnishings and antiques.
The property also includes the white-shingled Daniel Webster House next door, where 13 guest rooms are located, in addition to a flower-filled garden. The hotel’s Nantucket Prime steakhouse features a formal dining room, as well as a more casual bar and patio dining.
Along with a continental breakfast, guests can take advantage of free afternoon coffee and snacks, beach chairs and umbrellas, bicycles, on-site parking, courtesy town car service, as well as access to the spa at the White Elephant, the hotel’s sister property.
Rooms are individually decorated in a traditional style that can mean floral wallpaper, spindle beds, wood floors, and chandeliers. Entry-level rooms include those with double beds in the main house and Queen beds in the Daniel Webster House; both are snug, measuring around 200 square feet. The main house’s King Corner rooms are particularly light and bright.
Surrounded by 1.5 acres of rolling lawns and flowering gardens, this charming 1820 gray-shingled inn is a five-minute walk to Nauset, one of the Cape’s best Atlantic beaches. While the common areas are pleasant, the highlight is its outdoor space, which includes a seasonal pool with a tree-lined deck, a sprawling courtyard patio with a fire pit, and green lawns dotted with hammocks and Adirondack chairs. A buffet-style continental breakfast is included.
Rooms are scattered throughout several buildings and each is uniquely decorated in Cape Cod style with nautical motifs and local art. Some rooms have working fireplaces, private entrances, and distant views of the ocean. Entry-level Petite Queens are indeed petite, measuring 120 to 150 square feet, and are located on the first floor of the North wing with views of the pool or backyard. Slightly larger Deluxe Queens are set in the historic main house and some offer ocean views.
The inn is open seasonally, from mid-April through October.
Departing from the traditional nautical-themed decor found in many a P-town bed and breakfast, this boutique hotel sports a refreshingly modern, bohemian-chic vibe. Bright common areas highlight natural materials with light-wood floors, straw light fixtures, and macramé-style pillows scattered atop bentwood chairs. Big picture windows frame the verdant tidal marshes just across the street.
Rooms are similarly chic with polished concrete floors, straw lighting, platform beds, comfy built-in sofas, and minimalist black-and-white photos. They are all on the small side with entry-level King and double Queen rooms measuring 235 square feet, but they do feature spacious patios or balconies. Deluxe rooms offer a bit more space at 322 square feet, while the 1,200-square-foot, top-floor Lark Suite has its own rooftop deck, a fireplace, and a full kitchen.
Outdoors, there is a seasonally heated pool, three fire pits, and a sprawling waterfront bar reserved for guests with communal picnic tables atop the sand. While there’s no restaurant, the hotel partnered with local favorite, The Beach Market, to deliver sandwiches and salads.
Note that the hotel is open seasonally, from May through October.
This charming bed and breakfast has an unbeatable location in central P-town’s bustling commercial district, adjacent to the iconic Pilgrim Monument Memorial.
The inn is comprised of four historic buildings dating from the 1800s, surrounded by flower gardens, and threaded with pathways and stone bridges. Multiple sun decks, garden seating, and an outdoor fire pit offer areas to relax. The made-to-order breakfast changes with the seasons and is served either outside on the deck next to the goldfish pond, or in the Great Room with a cozy gas fireplace.
Rooms, named after famous personalities like Jane Goodall, Julia Child, and Virginia Woolf, are scattered throughout four buildings and arranged around a tranquil courtyard. Individually designed, mostly in a classic style, they feature gas fireplaces, kitchenettes, and Tempur-Pedic mattresses.
Layouts vary, with rooms ranging from entry-level Value Rooms (the smallest measures just 163 square feet with a Queen-sized bed) up to an 838-square-foot, top-floor one-bedroom apartment with a King-sized bed, a living room lit by skylights, a full kitchen, a private deck, and a sauna. Many rooms have balconies or decks, and some have spectacular views of the towering Pilgrim Monument.
The very definition of a romantic New England retreat, this 19th-century white-clapboard inn is tucked along the tree-lined brick sidewalks of Edgartown, a former whaling town turned celebrity retreat.
The Gothic Revival building is beautifully appointed with antiques and fine art, and the fireside drawing room is perfectly inviting. But the large wraparound porch and garden-facing sun room are the best spots to relax and enjoy the complimentary afternoon tea with fresh scones. Guests have access to the spa, which includes a fitness center, steam shower, and sauna. A full breakfast is included as well.
The 17 individually designed rooms and suites come in a variety of layouts and sizes. All have a colonial theme with patterned wallpaper, antique furnishings, coastal artwork, and floral headboards on King-sized beds. Entry-level standard rooms are located on the first and second floors, while top-floor Deluxe rooms feature skylights and kitchenettes and look out over the property’s garden. The hotel is open seasonally, from May through October.
Nantucket is famous for its postcard-perfect downtown comprised of historic cobblestone streets, 19th-century shingled buildings, and steepled churches. A more rugged kind of beauty can be found on its less-developed northeast coast where the five-star Wauwinet sits on a quiet stretch of Nantucket Bay beach.
The Relais & Chateaux property is the definition of classic New England refinement with its stately gray-shingled exterior, broad porches, and pristine green lawn with white wicker chaise lounges. Topper’s restaurant, which specializes in seafood, is a local mainstay and its breezy waterfront terrace is especially popular for lunch.
The original 1875 inn is where most rooms are located. There are also four cottages across from the main house with larger suites. Each is uniquely designed but all feature classic decor in soothing blue, gray, and cream tones. Entry-level rooms come with garden views and are a bit on the cozy side at around 200 square feet. Upgrade to a Superior for more space and a seating area, and know that rooms with bay views come at a premium.
With a magnificent oceanfront location, a quarter-mile of private beach, four restaurants, and a vast array of amenities, this luxurious resort is a top summer destination for well-heeled families.
Built as a hunting lodge in 1914, the main house commands beautiful ocean views from its expansive veranda. There is a huge heated waterfront pool, kiddie pool, and hot tub, plus Har-Tru tennis courts, croquet, and volleyball areas. A seasonal complimentary daily boat shuttle offers access to the Cape Cod National Seashore’s North Beach Island just across the cove. Or for a fee, you can charter a boat from the hotel’s fleet. Save time for a round on the adjacent nine-hole golf course, or use the spa’s seasonal outdoor pool, hot tub, steam rooms, and saunas.
Complementing the main inn’s original wood-beamed ceilings and hardwood floors are traditional antiques, period-style furnishings, and handcrafted ship models. Relax in the expansive lobby or fireside lounge, and when the weather is fine, head to the sprawling patios at The Veranda or the oceanfront Beach House Grill for a cocktail or casual meal. The signature Stars restaurant is an upscale affair, serving farm-to-table dishes in a formal dining room with panoramic water views.
Main house guest room have their own balcony or deck. Entry-level Deluxe rooms, with Queen-sized beds and neutral-toned modern furnishings, overlook the back of the inn, while pricier Ocean View rooms offer water views. There are also cottages, some with gas fireplaces, as well as adults-only spa suites with hydrotherapy tubs, steam showers, and fireplaces.
Open year-round, the property is a member of The Leading Hotels of the World, which means members can receive exclusive discounts and upgrades.
Nestled on the “elbow” of the Cape, this five-star oceanfront property attracts an upscale crowd and is particularly popular with families thanks to spacious accommodations and an abundance of amenities.
Some 22 historic buildings make up the 27-acre resort, which counts two beaches — including the particularly lovely Pleasant Bay beach — two outdoor pools (one an adults-only lap pool), a fitness center, and Har-Tru tennis courts. Guests have access to the adjacent members-only Cape Cod National Golf Club and the nearby Cape Cod Rail Trail offers 36 miles of flat paved bike paths.
Five restaurants and bars include a refined spot for seafood; a clubby, tavern-style fireside restaurant; and a seasonal beachfront bar.
Rooms are done up in soft blue and taupe hues that reflect the surrounding water and feature a blend of modern and traditional furnishings. All offer a private deck or patio and most have water views. Entry-level Garden View rooms measure 360 square feet with patios facing the gardens. There are also Cape Cod-style cottages scattered throughout the property, and family-sized rooms, range from 400 to 505 square feet with seating areas, fireplaces, and large decks directly overlooking the water.
The resort, a member of Preferred Hotels & Resorts, is open seasonally, from April to mid-December.
Cape Cod is a roughly 70-mile-long, crescent-shaped peninsula that juts out into the Atlantic in Massachusetts. It includes two islands, Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket, and is divided into four regions, each with its own distinct personality and rich history.
What is the best area to stay in Cape Cod?
Closest to the mainland, the Upper Cape is home to some of the oldest towns in America including Sandwich, which dates back to 1639. Mid Cape is considered the urban hub with the biggest population and largest city, Hyannis; this is also where most people catch ferries to the islands.
Once you reach the “elbow,” or the Lower Cape, you’ve entered quaint towns such as Chatham, Orleans, Harwich, which are home to some of the region’s finest beaches, including Nauset Beach.
The Outer Cape also includes miles of pristine beaches, seagrasses, and sand dunes, plus the 43,000-acre Cape Cod National Seashore, and has a wilder, more remote feel. That is, until you reach the easternmost tip and Provincetown (commonly referred to as P-town), which is a bustling LGBTQ enclave known for its artsy vibe and eclectic nightlife.
Finally, there are the islands: Nantucket, with its picture-perfect cobblestoned historic district, and the showier Martha’s Vineyard, which regularly lures celebrities, former presidents, and royalty.
When is the best time to visit Cape Cod?
There’s nothing quite like summer on Cape Cod. Long sunny days spent at the beach followed by grilling out with fresh seafood as warm evening breezes lap by. There’s fresh seafood and ice cream to eat, and when the tide slinks out far on the bay, there’s nothing quite like walking out as far as the eye can see.
But while the warmer months are certainly a draw, the shoulder and off-season periods present a rare opportunity to savor the Cape too, sans crowds, with cheaper hotel prices, to boot. The beaches are still lovely to stroll and there’s a calmer, more local vibe to savor. Just know that many businesses shutter in winter, so some dining and shopping may be limited.
What kind of hotels are on Cape Cod?
On Cape Cod, you’ll find hotels of all sorts, from beachy motels and cottages to luxe five-star hotels with chic spas and a posh crowd.
For this list in particular, we also included several B&Bs or inns, as we believe they offer strong value in terms of price, location, and room type. Many hotels in Cape Cod are expensive, and these alternate lodgings offer an accessible way to visit that won’t cost a fortune. They also tend to be more personable and exude character. However, because most inns are located in smaller, historic properties, they may seem dated or show signs of wear and tear.
Additionally, many properties are seasonal and close for the winter.
What is there to do in Cape Cod?
The beach, of course. The Atlantic side of the cape enjoys wide stretches of beach framed by dramatic cliffs with large rolling waves. Keep your eyes peeled for passing friendly seals, as well as sharks.
On the bay side, the calm still waters are great for families with small children, and at low tide, the water draws back for miles, leaving the sandy bay floor to explore and take long walks.
Rustic seafood shacks serve local catches, while the signature Cape Codder, a mix of vodka and cranberry juice, is ubiquitous in local bars and taverns.
There are also many great trails for running, walking, biking, and beautiful state parks for exploring or camping.
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Lake Tahoe mixes year-round outdoor activities with lively casinos and dining.
Boutique lodges and full-service hotels attract families, couples, and adventurers.
Hotels start in price from $100 to $399 per night, depending on the time of year.
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The largest Alpine Lake in the United States, Lake Tahoe defers only to the five Great Lakes in terms of size. This scenic, enduring spot located on the border of California and Nevada has been popular since the turn of the 20th century, with a global reputation sealed when nearby Squaw Valley staged the 1960 Winter Olympics.
Since then, this natural wonder has evolved as a tourist hotspot. It is most well known today for its ski resorts, crystal clear lake waters, and hiking trails, but motorcycling, golfing, hunting, and gambling also make up a sizable chunk of its allure.
I’ve been visiting the region for many years and have witnessed the development of the region as a tourist destination, and with it, some of the best hotels in the country, whether you seek a rustic base to hit trails or a luxury lodge to indulge in pampering spa treatments.
Browse all the best Lake Tahoe hotels below, or jump directly to a specific area here:
This unpretentious, family-friendly lodge has a sense of the old-fashioned about it, but in this case, that feeling adds to the appeal rather than making it feel dated. The entry-level rooms are atmospheric and chalet-like. With two Queen beds and plenty of room for a small family to spread out, there’s great value to be found here.
Set just outside Tahoe City, the location is tranquil and scenic. Easy access to the nearby ski slopes and the lake itself is a particular selling point. The on-site, riverside restaurant has become a destination in itself, and apres-ski lovers and fans of New American fine dining flock here year-round.
Arguably the best value hotel in the region, this affordable property veers towards a hipper, younger crowd. The ironic modern art of kitsch woodland scenes evokes a trendy city hotel, while the comforts of plump leather sofas and fire pits mean that you’ll feel at home in the mountains.
The in-room decor is whimsical, with camping lanterns and railroad ties for clothing racks that are all part of a playful approach to ski resort life. The location is central and the property is just a short walk from Lakeside beach.
For visitors on a budget, it’s a stylish, well-loved property with more than a little character. The hotel also offers a solid range of amenities (ski kit storage, restaurant, picnic area, and small private beach) for a budget-conscious hotel.
The thoughtful interior design helps this larger chain property retain a sense of place with stone fireplaces and wooden beams that conjure up a classic alpine ambiance.
The modern units are well-suited to couples and families that prefer a more residential style of stay, with living spaces and handy kitchenettes.
The real draw here, though, is the facilities and location. A large spa and heated outdoor pool make for a blissful retreat and the hotel is conveniently situated next to the Heavenly Gondola, with the peaks of the Heavenly Mountain Resort within easy striking distance.
Complete your stay by taking part in the numerous activities offered such as hikes, yoga, and kids’ camps.
This bijoux, 22-room lodge has been a popular fixture for over 50 years, and it takes great care to maintain its original high standards and levels of comfort. Overlooking the south shore of the lake on Ski Run Boulevard, the lodge is just a hop and a step from the Heavenly ski resort and the dining options of South Lake Tahoe.
Stylish contemporary interiors in brown and cream earth tones are complemented by stone fireplaces and evocative wooden exteriors. The guest suites come with kitchenettes for easy self-catering for those who prefer to dine in. It’s the ease of access to the skiing, though, that most guests return for, and slope aficionados can be at Monument Peak or East Peak within minutes by shuttle.
This eco-conscious modern lodge has been constructed with an impressive amount of reclaimed or recycled materials, resulting in a high-end, European-style alpine hotel. Chic minimalism is the order of the day in the rooms, with luxury details such as leather-framed platform beds and heated floors in the bathrooms — a real boon in winter.
The property is well-placed for downtown Truckee but surrounded by some of the lake’s best scenery and outdoor pursuits. Activities like skiing and cycling can be arranged with the in-house concierge.
The healthy on-site dining at Stella, with its menu of farm-to-table veggie dishes and more, is an equally exquisite experience.
A private beach area on the north shore of the lake awaits at this elegant outpost of the Hyatt Regency brand. The location, in Incline Village, neighbors the Diamond Peak Ski Resort, giving the hotel some seriously attractive outdoor options year-round. And with a casino attached, there’s also a fair amount of choice for fans of the indoors.
Mountain views abound from the contemporary chalet-style rooms that deliver impressively luxurious accommodations even at entry-level. Guests with a special occasion or looking for standalone accommodations may want to splurge for the lakeside cottages that come with kitchenettes and unbeatable scenery.
The hotel also just announced a new menu of outdoor activities ranging from morning meditation sessions to guided hikes, plus a ‘dry land boot camp’ to help guests prepare for the winter sports season.
This cute boutique property dates back to 1960 when the Winter Olympics were held at Squaw Valley and around North Lake Tahoe. Thanks to its high levels of design, the hotel has a timeless and elegant aesthetic, allowing the hotel to easily compete with luxe newcomers.
The rooms are inarguably contemporary, with iPod docks, Keurig coffee machines, and anti-allergen room filtration elevating them beyond the rustic. The hotel itself basks in lovely mountain views and offers a cozy, pampering apres-ski scene with its fireplaces and fire pits.
The location is as central as it gets, with very easy access to all those world-class ski slopes.
Technically, this wonderful property is a bed and breakfast as opposed to a full-service hotel, but its standards and standing are so high that it’s a natural fit for the best places to stay in the Lake Tahoe region.
The interiors are evocative, beginning with a three-story stone fireplace replete with mounted elk’s head lording over the striking lobby space. Nine units are split between lodge rooms in the main building and four cabins spread across the scenic grounds. Couples seeking a romantic retreat may want to consider their more luxurious cabins, decked out with leather armchairs and roaring fireplaces.
All of the accommodations present an elevated rustic-chic vibe and the location in South Lake Tahoe is an alluring one that’s just a short drive to the lake itself.
There’s been a hospitality industry here for over a century, and this Tahoe City inn is a chance to experience some authentic old-school charm without sacrificing comfort. The cottages date back to 1938, and the pine walls and stone fireplaces retain that timeless sense of style.
The amenities, including the bathrooms, are modern, though, and there’s fast Wi-Fi. Guests can also enjoy the property’s private beach after a complimentary country breakfast. There are even Adirondack chairs for relaxing beneath the canopy of pine trees, and Squaw Peak and Twin Peaks ski resorts are close by for a more active day out.
Regular guests of the Ritz-Carlton brand know that there’s a reliable consistency to the level of service and comfort. This gorgeous, tree-framed property in Truckee is no exception.
The hotel comes with its own mountain concierge and offers the only ski-in, ski-out access in Lake Tahoe, which some will find well worth the higher price. The indulgent slopeside spa and exceptional dining options are among the most sophisticated in the region, and with lake access and two outdoor pools, it’s a property that scales the heights of relaxation. In-room gas fireplaces and marble bathrooms complete the posh picture.
Lake Tahoe is especially popular in the prime summer and winter months. Late November through early May especially sees an uptick in visitors as skiers and snowboarders of all levels flock to the region.
For the cheapest prices, look in shoulder seasons like fall.
What is the best place to stay in Lake Tahoe?
Given its size, there are a number of choices in terms of towns to stay in. South Lake Tahoe (the largest town) and Tahoe City top the list, with historic Truckee, Tahoe Vista, Homewood, and Incline Village also offering a number of accommodation options.
Is it safe to travel?
Of course, during these times of COVID-19, Lake Tahoe is subject to the same potential restrictions and safety precautions as the rest of the country and you should check for any local changes in regard to mandatory policies or quarantine periods.
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Las Vegas hotels are lavish, large, and also much cheaper than you might expect.
Many top hotels start in the double digits and are located on or near the Strip.
The best cheap Vegas hotels in 2021 are based on our reviews and ratings from trusted travel sites.
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Las Vegas is filled with eye-popping entertainment, attractions, and plenty of ways to drop a lot of cash – but that doesn’t have to extend to your hotel.
There are so many cheap hotels in Las Vegas that the price may seem like a typo. And in Sin City, cheap doesn’t mean dismal. Many of Las Vegas’ best hotels start well under $100, and in many cases, under $50 in low season.
As an LA resident who covers travel and entertainment in Vegas regularly, I’ve certainly taken advantage of those deals. And now, as travelers emerge from COVID lockdowns, I’m highlighting the best cheap hotels in Las Vegas. And if you find yourself with cash to spare, we rounded up the best Las Vegas luxury hotels, too.
Browse all the best cheap Las Vegas hotels below, or jump directly to a specific area:
After a stint as the SLS Las Vegas, this property has returned to the building’s original roots as the Sahara Las Vegas. As part of the rebrand, the property underwent a $150 million revamp, including an updated casino, renovated hotel rooms and corridors, an upgraded spa, and a new hotel lobby.
We found the entry-level rooms to generally be well-appointed, sleek, and super cheap. It’s also one of the most convenient places to stay if you have business in or near the Las Vegas Convention Center.
Bally’s Las Vegas Hotel & Casino is one of the oldest hotels on the Las Vegas Strip, but thanks to a recent renovation to tower guest rooms, it feels new again.
The hotel is part of Caesars Entertainment and is one of the most affordable hotels on the Las Vegas Strip. We stayed in and reviewed a King Resort room while attending one of the busiest trade shows of the year and were impressed by the generous size, comfort, and cleanliness, as well as the access to an on-site monorail station.
With nice, basic rooms available squarely in the two-figure range, Planet Hollywood over-delivers on value. We also enjoy staying here for the electric energy and casino floor, which always feels lively. There is top-tier dining from the likes of Gordon Ramsay, and designer stores at the Miracle Mile Shops, all on-site.
Planet Hollywood is also a great spot to just chill out. The Spa by Mandara is excellent and the pool boasts dozens of cabanas and is the only Vegas pool with a wave machine.
As the name implies, rooms at Paris Las Vegas feel European-inspired, with a fashionable color palette, Versailles-inspired fixtures, and chic marble detailing. Plus, there’s plenty to do on-property that makes staying here especially exciting, including dining at Gordon Ramsay Steak, or 110 feet above the Strip in the Eiffel Tower Restaurant.
We suggest relaxing by the Soleil Las Vegas pool to enjoy a view of the tower, or get pampered at the full-service Voie spa and salon.
Palms Casino Resort recently completed a massive property-wide $690 million renovation with newly revamped rooms and suites available at shockingly low prices.
When we stayed here, we felt downright pampered in our guest room, which came with a striped marble bathroom, deep soaking tub, and 65-inch TVs. The Palms is also home to a restaurant from famed chef Bobby Flay, and a new spa that sprawls over three stories. Plus, the buffet is only $17, a fraction of what it costs elsewhere.
COVID-19 status and policies: Palms Casino Resort is temporarily closed, and does not currently have an expected reopening date.
The Signature is an all-suite hotel set back from the MGM Grand’s main resort and casino but is still easily accessible to it by indoor walkways. There’s no casino on-site, which means the crowd is less rowdy, and the hotel feels peaceful. There are fewer amenities too, though all of the restaurants, entertainment, and wellness found at MGM Grand are just steps away.
We once used the Chase Sapphire Reserve card to book here and scored extra perks such as free upgrade, late checkout, and complimentary food and beverage credit. Spacious suites are quiet and include spa baths, flat-screen TVs, separate sitting areas, balconies, and kitchenettes for an apartment-like experience. It’s a great fit for a family or someone in town for business on an extended stay.
Another central, non-gaming option, Vdara is adjacent to Aria at CityCenter and is a totally smoke-free and casino-free property. This makes it a great option for those who prefer to focus on work, relaxing, or traveling with kids in tow.
The all-suite property has amenities like kitchenettes with microwaves, stove tops, fridges, and cookware. Add an additional $50 per night and bring your pup along, too. We stayed here and recommend it as a solid option when you want to be near CityCenter in spacious rooms, but without the casino bustle.
Caesars is one of the Strip’s older properties, but it’s always iconic and attracts bold-faced names and ventures. Recently, that included Lisa Vanderpump’s Vanderpump Cocktail Garden restaurant, as well as celebrity chef spots from Gordon Ramsay, Bobby Flay, Guy Savoy, and Nobu Matsuhisa. There’s also the 4,100-seat Colosseum at Caesars Palace theater which hosted a Mariah Carey residency.
There are 4,000 guest rooms in six towers, many of which have been smartly renovated with marble bathrooms and flat-screen TVs, which we reviewed to highlight how they’ve adapted to COVID. Pro-tip: upgrades here cost just dollars and can make a huge difference.
Among our favorite features — although not always the best thing for a budget-minded trip — is the attached Forum Shops mall, as well as the glam pool deck.
Located on the Las Vegas Strip within the CityCenter complex, Aria is a glittering curvilinear property with a 150,000-square-foot casino, 16 restaurants, and more than 4,000 rooms. Opened just a decade ago, rooms still feel brand new with fully tricked-out tech. A one-touch room control system operates features like lighting and climate control, and I’ve felt pretty pampered by making those changes without even having to move around the room.
Plus, Hakkasan Group’s Jewel nightclub is located here, as is a huge spa with 62 treatment rooms, and three pools including the Liquid pool club for grown folks.
This five-star Las Vegas Strip resort can go well above $100 in busier seasons, but if you travel midweek or in winter, you might find a rate right around $100 (before the daily fee, of course).
The high-end hotel has 80 restaurants — including Thomas Keller’s Bouchon — a glittering casino, the Grand Canal Shoppes, and a pool deck that covers 1.2 acres, and every room is a suite, and huge, starting at 650 square feet.
We’ve stayed here often for work, as the Venetian connects to the Sands Expo & Convention Center, and enjoyed luxuriating in a suite with a sunken sitting area, dining table, and two high-def TVs. Each also has a luxurious bathroom with an oversized soaking tub, separate glass-enclosed shower, and marble counters. Guests are also granted access to the Canyon Ranch Spa Club gym.
Las Vegas draws all kinds of travelers: gamblers, groups of friends, couples, ticket holders to big-name entertainment, hotel enthusiasts, families, business travelers, and first-timers eager to see Sin City.
And with prices starting well under $50 per night, there’s plenty of choices to go around too. But cheap doesn’t have to mean low quality. In addition to the criteria noted above, our picks for top cheap hotels in Las Vegas all factored in the following:
Price: Of course, when compiling the best budget hotels, price is a top point of consideration. All the hotels we chose start under $120 per night in low season, which most often means midweek during peak summer or winter.
Rooms: We don’t want a case of ‘you get what you pay for,’ and so all the properties in our list of the best cheap Las Vegas hotels include rooms that were recently renovated. They might not be as fancy as other Las Vegas hotels, but they’re also not as expensive.
Location: We only considered hotels on or very near to the Las Vegas Strip.
Experience: Our team of writers visited and personally stayed at every hotel on this list. Most have reviews for you to read and consider, too.
Ratings: We also consulted past reviews and ratings from others on trusted traveler sites such as Trip Advisor, Booking.com, and others.
Safety and cleanliness: We only selected hotels that prioritize the health and safety of guests with new COVID cleaning policies.
FAQs: Cheap Las Vegas hotels
Where is Las Vegas?
Las Vegas is located in the southern tip of the state of Nevada, near the borders of both California and Arizona.
What is the best time of year to visit Las Vegas?
Las Vegas is located in a desert climate, so you can expect hot, hot summers and cool winters. No matter when you visit, it’s likely to be chilly at night. Early winter and spring, however, offer the nicest, mildest weather when it will be the most comfortable to stroll the Las Vegas Strip or lounge at the pool.
Though, if you’re planning to spend most of your time indoors on the casino or convention floor, the weather likely won’t be a big factor when considering the time of year to visit.
What are the cheapest and most expensive times of year to visit Las Vegas?
You’ll often find the cheap deals on hotels in Las Vegas midweek in summer, or in the winter, after New Year’s Day, through early spring. Once the temperatures turn milder, expect prices to rise and stay high through the end of the year.
Of course, much of Las Vegas tourism revolves around a robust convention calendar, which can also drive up hotel prices. Holidays too, see an influx of crowds.
Why are Las Vegas hotels cheap?
Because Vegas resort operators make a huge chunk of their profits down on the casino floor, where the house always has the advantage, cheap room rates are offered to attract guests who will then spend their money on slots and tables.
Beware when booking though, as a resort fee could inflate hotel prices much higher. I’ve seen rooms for $50 per night with an $80 daily resort fee. Of course, in high season or during big events, all rates are subject to change, and starting price points can soar.
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Mexico is packed with desirable vacation destinations, many of which are well known to travelers.
Comparatively, Mexico’s lesser-traveled resort areas offer fewer crowds and unspoiled environs.
Our top places include hotels in destinations like Punta Mita, Mayakoba, Oaxaca, and Careyes.
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I’m a professional travel writer who has visited Mexico many times for work and leisure, both with and without kids. So, I’m often the go-to resource for those looking for recommendations on places to stay in the country.
Even prior to the pandemic, I preferred to avoid heavily trafficked tourist regions in favor of more under-the-radar destinations (often nearby and easily accessible from those busier spots) that offered comparatively quieter beaches and peaceful resorts.
My favorite is Punta Mita, less than three hours by direct flight from L.A., and a short car ride from Puerto Vallarta. And it’s hardly an outlier – areas like Mayakoba, Oaxaca, and Careyes are regions that may be well known among frequent travelers to Mexico, but less so with first-time or casual travelers.
Here, we rounded up several Mexican destinations that might not yet be on your radar but should be.
Browse all the best hotels below, or jump to a specific area.
These are the best hotels in Mexico that aren’t in tourist hot spots, sorted by region and price.
Punta Mita is located along Mexico’s Pacific coast on the north end of Banderas Bay in the state of Nayarit. It’s about 20 miles from Puerto Vallarta, accessed via a short car ride. The destination is actually a 1,500-acre private peninsula, a gated area that is home to the Four Seasons Punta Mita, St. Regis Punta Mita, and other posh properties.
Easily accessed from the Puerto Vallarta airport (which is itself served by many airlines, including low-cost carriers with direct flights), the Four Seasons Punta Mita feels like another world.
There are two secluded beaches at this paradise, separated by a dramatic clifftop perch that makes an unforgettable private dinner destination for a special occasion. There’s an adults-only pool and an infinity-edge all-ages pool, plus a serene lazy river that almost feels like it meanders naturally through a jungle.
There are multiple dining options including the sprawling Dos Catrinas restaurant that anchors the center of the resort. Bahia by Richard Sandoval is right on the sand, and Aramara serves upscale Asian fare.
Newly renovated rooms are out of this world with entry-level lodgings that come in at a sprawling 645 square feet of indoor-outdoor space with room for three adults or two adults and two kids, sophisticated beachy decor, and marble bathrooms.
As a parent traveling with young children, I can’t say enough good things about the kids club here. It’s like a luxurious summer camp that kids will never want to leave and comes included with the room rate, which makes for an outstanding value if you use it to its fullest.
Overall, this property is one of my favorites in the world for family travel and the place we’ve chosen for many major occasions and milestones.
Just about 30 miles from Cancun is the 500-acre development of Mayakoba (technically in Playa del Carmen, though far more peaceful and remote).
Mayakoba encompasses 620 acres of lagoons, jungles, and beaches along Mexico’s Riviera Maya. The private gated community is home to an array of full-service resorts, all designed with the goal of preserving and enhancing the native landscape. In addition to the Fairmont and Banyan Tree properties that made our list, other attractive options include Andaz, Viceroy, and Rosewood, which also come highly recommended.
This 45-acre property is an enormous full-service resort offering 401 rooms and suites, including 34 suites with an array of beach and lagoon casitas. Standard guest rooms are generously sized at 436 to 480 square feet, with abundant natural light, a private terrace or balcony, and large spa-like bathrooms with marble accents and soaking tubs.
Book the property as an all-inclusive — or not as you prefer. Activities include nature trails, biking, kayaks, catamarans, tennis, golfing on the renowned El Camaleon golf course (host to the only official PGA Tour event in Mexico), and scenic boat tours through the canals.
Of course, lounging waterside is the main draw, with white sand beaches and several pools on property. The Willow Stream Spa offers signature Mayan treatments and the hotel is pet friendly and family friendly, with the Discovery Kids Club and a water slide at the main pool.
Dining options are so plentiful and woven throughout all the Mayakoba resorts. Take a complimentary town car ride to any of the other hotels where you can dine and still charge your meal to your room.
Banyan Tree Mayakoba bills itself as the most sustainable five-star resort in a region known for them. It recently underwent a $50 million expansion, debuting 34 private beachfront pool suites and the new Sands Beach Club, which has an infinity oceanfront pool, all-day dining restaurant and raw bar, beachfront lounge, a larger interactive Rangers Club for kids, and ocean view massage rooms operated by the Banyan Tree Spa.
Banyan Tree Mayakoba offers 120 villas, which all come with indulgent private pools and terraces. It’s the only all-pool villa resort in the Riviera Maya. Even the smallest rooms among them clocks in around 1,700 square feet with high design and thoughtfully curated details such as included bicycles at each. While the resort is lavish and inviting, it’s easy to spend your entire trip within your room, swimming in your own pool and spreading out on the various living spaces, with every need tended to by a butler.
Oaxaca is a state in southern Mexico steeped in historic architecture and indigenous culture. Its capital city of the same name is dotted with charming colonial buildings often made of green volcanic stone. The baroque Catedral de Oaxaca stands in the main square, El Zócalo.
Parador De Alcala is a boutique hotel located in the heart of the historic center between the Santo Domingo de Guzmán Ex-convent and the Zocalo.
Here, 21 rooms and suites take over a restored and converted eighteenth-century mansion. The lodgings are distributed over three levels with high ceilings and most have access from a stunning colonial courtyard. All rooms have marble flooring, Egyptian cotton sheets, and a soft color palette highlighted by natural light.
El Patio restaurant is located in one of the hotel’s central atrium spaces, offering full traditional Oaxacan breakfast. A terrace, garden, and chaises lounges surround the pool deck, which offers 360-degree views of the city.
NaNa Vida Hotel Oaxaca is situated right in the center of Oaxaca City, about 1,500 feet from Santo Domingo Convent, and steps from restaurants and bars for easy and relaxed sightseeing. The San Pablo Cultural Centre and Macedonio Alcalá Theater are just blocks away.
Rooms are unique, artful, and stylishly outfitted, with colorful bedding and intricately patterned bathroom tiling. Many elements of the decor are made by local artisans.
You will not find a pool in this boutique property, but you can relax in the sunny courtyard and enjoy full breakfast on weekends (or pastries and coffee during the week). At a soap bar, guests can select their own scents for bespoke soaps, using 100 percent natural and vegan ingredients, for use during their stay.
Costalegre is a 150-mile long stretch of the Mexican coast on the Pacific within the state of Jalisco, between Puerto Vallarta and Manzanillo. It features an array of beaches, capes, and bays, plus charming seaside towns and villages.
Careyes is the place you go when you are in the cognoscenti … or at least you’ll certainly look like you are when you visit. Founded by Gian Franco Brignone in 1968, this unique resort has been continuously family-owned and operated since then, exuding a vibe that combines a sultry Mediterranean feel with the ultra-saturated colors and unique architecture of Mexico. Think eccentric, arty, and focused on wellness and the natural environment.
El Careyes has infinity pools, lighted tennis courts, restaurant dining, and a private access beach club. The resort is comprised of bungalows, casitas, villas, and so-called “Ocean Castles,” which are opulent, dreamy lodgings. Entry-level accommodations are brilliantly colored bungalows located directly on the sand overlooking the Careyes Bay just steps from the sea and beach club.
The property spans over 35,000 acres including the biosphere reserve. The so-called “Careyes Wonders” on-site include spiritual-feeling spaces that guests can visit (or book for events), including La Copa del Sol, an 88-foot diameter cup-like structure that is acoustically and visually arresting, and definitely sets this place apart.
Careyes also has a lively event calendar, including the chicer-than-Burning-Man, Ondalinda Festival.
This town is located in the western state of Jalisco. It’s famous for — of course — the production of the famous Mexican spirit. Located near the Tequila Volcano, its outskirts are awash in fields of the main ingredient in the spirit: blue agave. An array of local distilleries and haciendas offer tours of the production (and tastings too, of course).
Casa Salles Hotel Boutique opened in Tequila in 2020. The site that had been used for Salles family celebrations over the past 60 years is now a destination with 25 intimate guest rooms. Located within walking distance of the town square and other tourist landmarks, Casa Salles Hotel Boutique is an ideal launchpad.
Guest rooms are thoughtfully appointed with built-in furnishings, private bars, seating areas, smart TVs, and rainfall showers. Large Master Family Suites have room for seven adults, with sliding glass doors that open to private balconies overlooking a picturesque mango grove and gardens.
The hotel also offers a lively restaurant, Mango Cocina de Origen, serving regional Mexican cuisine. There’s also a pool, banquet facility, and spa, and the La Guarreña Distillery, producer of El Tequileño tequila, is located adjacent to the hotel.
This is the lively capital of the Yucatán, the peninsula state that separates the Gulf of Mexico from the Caribbean Sea, and is also home to Cancun and Playa Del Carmen.
Rich in Maya and colonial history, the city’s centerpiece is the Plaza de la Independencia, bordered by the colonial-era churches Mérida Cathedral and Iglesia de la Tercera Orden, both built with relics from ancient Mayan temples.
The hip, stylish Diplomat is well situated in the city’s historic center, within easy walking distance of many historic monuments, cathedrals, and parks, plus tons of eateries and shops. The hotel boasts colonial architecture and a beautiful pool.
Entry-level suites are high on style and comfort with colonial tiles, smart TVs, sound docks, included high-speed Wi-Fi, Nespresso machine, fans, premium linens, and air conditioning.
Snacks and fresh cocktails are served on arrival, and an ever-changing vegetarian breakfast is also included and served daily. Guests have access to a tea and coffee bar with fresh juices and champagne in the morning, as well.
The weather differs by region across the country, but generally, September through May is a good time to visit Mexico.
Mexico gets much of its rain throughout the summer, but these may be quick and isolated showers that won’t derail a trip.
The Gulf of Mexico area sees hurricanes from late July through early November. It’s hottest in April and May, and the busiest seasons are during the Christmas holiday and spring break periods.
What is the best Mexico hotel on the beach to avoid crowds?
Secluded beaches dot the country’s coastline. The island of Holbox is a small 26-mile island within the protected YUM Balam nature reserve and offers pristine, crowd-free beaches, enjoyed by hotels like Villas Flamingos or the Mystique Holbox by Royalton.
Elsewhere, Four Seasons Punta Mita has the advantage of being located a short drive from Puerto Vallarta airport, but boasts a pair of very quiet beaches all to itself.
Can I drink the water in Mexico?
It’s generally not a good idea to drink water from the tap in Mexico. Opt instead for bottled water, even while brushing your teeth. Be mindful of ice and avoid getting it in your drinks unless you can confirm it’s made from safe water.
What are the best Mexico hotels for couples or families?
As a parent of young children, I’ll always pick a Four Seasons anywhere in the world for top-notch service that accommodates families indulgently and seamlessly, with included kids clubs and incredible all-seasons programming. So, the Four Seasons Punta Mita is my go-to pick in Mexico for families.
And while many of Mexico’s most well-known adults-only resorts for couples are located in popular destinations like Cancun, couples seeking romance might find it a treat to visit a hotel like Casa Salles in less-frequently visited Tequila, where spirits tasting makes for memorable, grown-folks-only fun.
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Travel is back just in time for summer and there’s nothing quite like a beach vacation.
We found the best beach hotels for families in the U.S. for travel with little ones or a reunion.
The best beach hotels for families have great amenities, affordable prices, and beautiful locales.
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After a long pandemic, and with vaccinations widely available, many Americans are ready to travel. For families this summer, that likely means a beach trip. They’re outdoors, accessible, and a whole lot of fun.
In many cases, beach vacations are a short drive – or a short flight – away and make for easy re-entry to traveling, as they require less pressure to see sights, tour indoor cultural arenas, or dine inside.
To that end, we compiled the best family beach hotels and resorts in the U.S. that cater to every member you want to bring along, from toddlers to teenagers to the grandparents you haven’t seen in two years. And we even found the spots that welcome the dog you adopted for company during the pandemic.
Browse all the best beach hotels for families below, or jump to a specific area.
For lovers of historic properties and quiet family trips, The Beachmere Inn is ideal. Established in the late 1880s, the inn is owned by the third generation of a family with deep Maine roots. It shows in everything from weekly lobster bakes to rooms with balconies and patios that showcase magnificent coastline views.
Throughout the decades, the original Victorian building was joined by four others. Amenities in each vary from fireplaces to balconies or terraces and kitchenettes. For families, Beachmere South and Beachmere West have modern suites, while Heathstone Cottage has four bedrooms.
To get to the beach, which is both sandy and rocky the way Maine beaches are, you’ll navigate the 1.25-mile Marginal Way ocean footpath from the expansive green lawn. Other activities include sunbathing, holiday events, and snowshoe tromping, and the Bistro serves three squares per day, but you can always also walk to nearby Perkins Cove or the center of Ogunquit for more.
If you judge how family-friendly a resort is by the water features for children, then welcome to Sea Crest Beach Hotel. Here, there’s a beach with towels, umbrellas, and chairs, plus on-site water sport rentals. Pools are saline, not chlorine, and are both indoors and outside. There’s also a Jacuzzi and baby pool. In short, there’s a way for every member of the family to get their swimsuit wet, from infant to great-grandpa.
Out of the 253 Cape Cod-style guest rooms and suites, oceanfront rooms have west-facing balconies, patios, or decks to enjoy the sunrise and sunsets, and come with crisp linens and green accents (including plants). Others have gas fireplaces or views of Buzzard’s Bay, but all have mini-refrigerators, work desks, and efficient, free Wi-Fi.
All kids’ activities — and there is a generous amount of programming to choose from — are supervised, so you can feel safe leaving little ones to play beach games while you do downward dog nearby. And speaking of dogs, you can bring yours, although you do have to crate canines when they’re left in the room.
This beachfront family-style resort sits directly on the white sands of Pensacola Beach and features the area’s largest lazy river (in addition to another pool). That river, complete with waterfalls, bridges, and islands, also hosts daily pirate shows and mermaids who swim alongside hotel guests like manatees.
The 206 guest rooms overlook the Santa Rosa Sound, but not all have a balcony. It’s definitely worth the upgrade to score a private patio overlooking the sugary beach and for capturing Instagram-worthy images of the Gulf of Mexico sunsets. Rooms include a mini-fridge and microwave. Request family rooms for bunk beds and a gaming console, although they may not need it if they’re entranced by the on-site arcade.
There’s even more entertainment outside, starting with nightly “dive-in” movies shown on an inflatable screen at the pool. Or, head to nearby Quietwater Beach Boardwalk where you can arrange for fishing charters, lessons, tours, or equipment for paddle-boarding, kayaking, and biking. A miniature golf course and another arcade are within walking distance, along with restaurants.
Reinvented and reinvigorated, San Diego Mission Bay Resort is a colorful and family-friendly place to enjoy the beach and waterfront pools, including a wading pool for the littles. And there’s more to just playing in the sand and water. At night, free activities like bonfires and s’mores nights and Friday night movies are on offer.
For even more engagement with the surroundings, the resort arranges water sport rentals for everything from paddleboards to pontoons. Families can also rent surrey bikes or beach cruisers to ride around the city. Or rent a fully-equipped cabana for the day and chill.
The resort features games around the property like giant chess, checkers, scavenger hunts, and more so kiddos can’t get bored. Meanwhile, after you’ve lounged, adults can indulge in the spa or get the adrenaline going at the fitness center. And everyone can swing a racket, toss some foul shots, or practice their serve on the tennis, basketball, and volleyball courts.
Recently renovated, the oceanfront Marriott Myrtle Beach Resort & Spa at Grande Dunes is an oasis of classy comfort in north Myrtle Beach. Close to the championship golf courses at Grand Dunes and great family entertainment at Barefoot Landing and Myrtle Beach Boardwalk, this tropically designed paradise welcomes you with generous rooms and amenities.
Guest rooms are soothing, done in white and natural hues with a wave-patterned rug. They feature balconies or floor-to-ceiling window views, which either face the ocean or resort. Make sure to upgrade if you desire a balcony overlooking the Atlantic.
For families, the ocean and outdoor pool are a toss-up. You can spend all day playing in either, but the pool waterslide may eventually win out. With the fitness center and spa, parents and grandparents can maintain their wellness routines and even take like-minded kids with them, where the spa has services for little ones as well.
Long Branch, a popular beach destination for families from the New York and New Jersey area, receives some elevation with this beautifully designed resort. Located in the Pier Village section of town, this recently debuted beachside hotel is sufficiently entertaining for families by itself. Yet it’s also surrounded by shops and restaurants, making it even more enticing.
Sophisticated, modern rooms boast walls of framed black-and-white photos, globe reading lamps hovering over dark wood headboards, and a polished sitting area that leads out to terraces. Take advantage of the terrycloth robes and slippers while sipping a Nespresso after spending a day surfing the waves, which are right outside the door.
There is also a spa, salon, and fitness center, plus a playroom with gaming systems and bike rentals. As a family, enjoy the high-end beach and pool options, all with concierge service, and dine on-site at any of the chef-managed venues before taking part in the resort-sponsored festivities, often tied in with the surrounding Pier Village venues.
This resort is perched on a bluff, overlooking the windswept coastline. Take the steps down to walk it, surf it, run your dog on it, or beach comb with your kids. It’s hard to tire of this kind of beauty.
But when you do, you have the spacious and modern Hallmark Resort Newport to retire to. Owned by and run for families, the resort is filled with plush furniture and varied amenities. Relax in the indoor saline pool or sauna, perk up with a workout in the fitness room, or indulge in a couples’ massage while the kids hit the playground.
Rooms and suites vary, but all feature stunning oceanfront views and have either balconies or patios, microwaves, and mini-fridges. And for those cool summer evenings or colder shoulder season days, many rooms offer gas fireplaces to snuggle up next to with a good book.
With the widest stretch of beach and the longest waterslide in Waikiki, Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort has a lot going for it. If you can’t get your kids out of the water, this is the place to bring them, where the five pools include a 10,000-square-foot Super Pool and the multi-layered Paradise Pool with thrilling waterfalls.
Colorful and lively, the resort is designed with contemporary tropical Hawaiian influences. Choose from the newly renovated Tapa Collection rooms to Village Towers with balconies or lanais. When they call this place a village, they’re not kidding; there are at least four different sections.
And while this village may not raise your children, it’ll certainly keep them occupied with everything from lei-making to hula lessons. Meanwhile, you can do Tai Chi or yoga before the whole family indulges in a Starlight Luau on the Great Lawn.
Who says beaches have to be all about the ocean? For a non-traditional waterfront vacation that involves less sun worship and more water time, check out Mirror Lake Resort & Spa, where the private beachfront comes with complimentary watercraft usage. Lake Placid lives up to its name in terms of beauty, but also provides thrills for anglers, boaters, and more.
Inside, the resort is designed with plenty of natural wood, and family rooms have bunk beds or pull-out couches, marble bathrooms, and more than one bedroom in some cases. Many have fireplaces next to floor-to-ceiling windows or balconies that frame lake and mountain views.
The Adirondacks is a super place for an active family, and the resort has hiking and mountain biking trails next door. For less adventurous folks, the gardens provide a soothing stroll, and the European spa is a must. Dining at The View, a highly awarded restaurant, is also a prerequisite, although younger children might prefer the more casual Cottage Café or the restaurants on Main Street, just a brief walk away.
Completely transformed in 2021, the Opal Grand Oceanfront Resort & Spa takes over where the Delray Beach Marriott, and before that the Seacrest Hotel, left off. Located at the intersection of ultimate beach relaxation and busy cafe society, the renovated property is now a landmark resort that combines laid-back, Caribbean-influenced design with contemporary urban conveniences.
Only steps from the ocean at the corner of Atlantic Avenue and A1A, the resort features a number of accommodations, ranging from standard rooms with a variety of views to spacious suites and luxury villas with kitchens. While all standard rooms are decorated in clean maritime hues and have coffee makers and mini-refrigerators, upgrade to an oceanfront view with a balcony at the very least.
While the beach is not private, the resort has teamed up exclusively with Waves Surf Academy to provide guests with board rentals, surf lessons, and more. Among other activities, the kids’ club and a seasonal youth surf academy keep the young ones busy while parents can stretch out at the pool or take advantage of spa offerings. Dine on campus or head out at night into the lively scene that is downtown Delray Beach.
As the only beachfront hotel in town, Jupiter Beach Resort & Spa takes its responsibilities seriously. Not only does it cherish its 1,000 feet of natural shoreline, but it also makes sure you do the same with beach services galore that include food, beverage, chairs, umbrellas, water sports rentals, fishing charters, and more. Or, if you’re more into lounging under native shade, hammocks sway invitingly in the sea breezes and there is also an oceanfront pool.
At night, family-friendly movies are shown and you may also revisit the beach with a local expert for a Sea Turtle Walk to spot nests.
Room decor harkens back to a British Colonial kind of tropical vibe, with mahogany wood and warm rusts, browns, and golds dominating the color scheme. Textiles range from rugs to floor-sweeping drapes to bed bolsters. They’re the kind of accommodations where, after a full day of sun and a seafood dinner at Sinclairs Ocean Grill, you want to blast the air-conditioning and tuck everyone in for the night so you can start over again in the morning.
With nautically inspired architecture and a premier, beachfront location, The Ritz-Carlton, Fort Lauderdale is all about its natural surroundings. Ocean (or Intracoastal) views from rooms and balconies contribute to the feeling of beachy paradise, and for spa-lovers, the treatments incorporate minerals, salts, and other elements from outside the door.
When kids tire of the beach — where towel and chair service starts at 9 a.m. and closes at 4:30 p.m. — the heated infinity pool on the elevated, 29,000-square-foot tropical pool deck is a worthy draw. It’s also a great place to watch the sunset. If you prefer to see it set while working out, the fitness center also faces the ocean.
On the other side of the hotel, however, is a completely different scene. The street is lined with restaurants, cafes, boutiques, and you can arrange for fishing charters and tours at nearby marinas or take the water taxi to other parts of the city.
Perched on 500 feet of Laguna Beach’s famous shoreline, the Surf & Sand Resort dedicates itself to making families of all shapes and sizes welcome. Seasonal kids’ programming includes ice cream happy hours and pop-ups on the pool deck, Little Picassos art classes, kids camp with crafts, and pizza parties.
For the family, dive-in movies, barbecues, and s’mores and hot chocolate all vie for attention, and older kids and adults will certainly appreciate the variety of daily fitness classes on the beach, not to mention the menus at both the spa and the restaurants. If these pale after a few days, the town of Laguna is a brief walk away, filled with art galleries, boutiques, cafes, and more. Hiking trails, which run through both canyons and coastal bluffs, are also nearby.
The hotel offers 167 beachfront rooms and suites decorated with original art, accented by fine linens, and stocked with a mini-bar. The difference between the ocean view and oceanfront rooms is not the view but a balcony and a soaking tub in the marble bathrooms, which only come with the latter. Otherwise, the generously sized rooms, starting at 400 square feet, are designed with a California cosmopolitan mindset, and the effect is very much like staying in a friend’s well-appointed apartment that just happens to overlook the Pacific.
Comprising four different sections, or “neighborhoods,” The Victorian (the original building), The Cabanas (with terraces), The Views (new since 2021), and Beach Village (cottages), the grand, 130-year-old Hotel del Coronado is one of the best family resorts in Southern California. But it’s not only the accommodations that make it so.
Want to learn to surf? Book one-on-one instruction, and don’t worry, the water sports rentals have everything from boards to wetsuits. Entertainment ranges from movie nights to museum tours to live music. While there’s plenty for kids, including an activity center, there’s also a lot of fun for parents, grandparents, and guardians, with fitness classes that include mermaid tails in the pool and spin bikes on the sand.
Dining and shopping, with some of the latter being renovated for reopening in fall 2021, are also absorbing, with numerous options. The Spa & Salon also offers abundant indulgences for self-care when the magic of the sun, sand, and surf wear off a little. If they ever do, that is.
Located in Cape Elizabeth, just seven miles north of Portland, Maine, the ecologically friendly Inn by the Sea commands a mile of sand on Crescent Beach that guests access by strolling through lush nature. The entire 61-room and suite property, which is also landscaped with indigenous flowers and bushes, attracts native birds and butterflies and is an Instagram lover’s dream.
Because Crescent Beach is spacious and the property limited, the beach never gets crowded, though there is also a pool. On cooler evenings, it’s also extremely pleasant to sit on the expansive patios and balconies that rim the rooms and suites, which are decorated with a variety of lush textiles, metallic accents, and marble countertops.
A spa provides ocean-inspired treatments that use seaweed, salts, oils, and marine peptides. Dinner at Sea Glass, one of the best restaurants in the area, is an inventive adventure in seafood, especially if you order the tasting menu. The chef also is a whiz with vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free, and egg-free dishes.
Whether you want to catch crabs and fish from the bracing Pacific or simply enjoy them by the fire at the signature restaurant, Meridien, Headlands Coastal Lodge & Spa is delighted to oblige.
As the name indicates, you really couldn’t get closer to the water than here, where the Nestucca River meets the Oregon coastline.
Choose from one of the 33 King or Double Queen rooms, all of which has 440 square feet (or more, if you request a corner room) and poetic views of Cape Kiwanda’s waves and Haystack Rock through picture windows. With luxe rustic furnishings, cast-iron tubs, gas fireplaces, and amenities that range from a Bonavita brewing system to a Bluetooth lantern speaker, there’s no need to upgrade to a two- or three-bedroom cottage unless traveling with a group.
While Tidepools Spa, which has an outdoor hot tub, and the restaurant are sophisticated, everything here is about the natural world, the adventures to be had in it, and the relationship with the small, unpretentious Pacific City community.
This lavish Hollywood resort is located between Miami and Fort Lauderdale, bridging the land between the beach and the Intracoastal, so it’s essentially surrounded by water.
After a $100 million renovation that was completed in 2017, the hotel emerged with 1,000 rooms and suites, most of which have views of the waves. Rooms have either a sunrise or sunset color scheme, depending on which side of the resort they face. The lobby is dramatic, with floor-to-ceiling windows at the back where the indoor-outdoor wraparound Hotel Bar is located. That lobby also contains eight noteworthy restaurant concepts that range from Geoffrey Zakarian’s Point Royal to the Diplomat Prime Steak House.
While the beach offers jet skiing, ocean kayaking, and paddleboard rentals, younger family members also appreciate the Dip + Slide water park with a lagoon pool. There, parents can keep sight of the kids while enjoying the poolside spa and lunch service.
The kids’ club, Ocean Ambassadors, relieves parents of duty so that they can enjoy The Diplomat Golf Club and The Diplomat Tennis Center, too.
With a bowling alley, an ice-skating rink, and a nightclub all in the lowest level alone, this hotel practically screams fun. But that doesn’t mean it lacks luxury. The tropical greenery and sleek modern decor stuns from the moment you walk into the posh lobby.
Custom and exclusive are two words that guide you through the EDITION experience, from the La Labo bath products to a fragrance crafted just for the hotel. Sip creative cocktails and trendy bites at Matador Bar or outdoors at Tropicale. Follow with a dip in the serene pool to soak up Miami’s Art Deco feels and beach breezes. Finish with an exquisite pan-Latin meal at Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s Matador Room.
Standard rooms, larger than average for Miami Beach, are tastefully decorated in driftwood and white with marble bathrooms, wood paneling, and a variety of natural textures. Feather mattresses with pillow tops and duvets ensure an excellent night’s sleep.
What are the best states for family beaches in the US?
While everyone’s definition of what constitutes a family beach differs, most people with babies and small children agree that coastal states where the water is warm and gentle, like Florida, are ideal. And states that offer waves to surf, such as Hawaii, Oregon, and California, are attractive for teens and young adults.
On the East Coast, families fill beaches from Maine to the Carolinas. Depending on what your family lifestyle is like, you might prefer to visit well-known prestige spots like Kiawah Island, Newport Rhode Island, Hilton Head, or The Hamptons for family tennis and golf after a few days of sunbathing. Or, you might opt for easygoing destinations like the Jersey Shore or Myrtle Beach with boardwalk fun in addition to the ocean.
How much does a family beach vacation cost?
Family beach vacations can run the gamut from budget to luxury depending on where you go and when. Hawaii, California, New York, Rhode Island, and Florida remain some of the most popular, and priciest, states for family beach vacations (depending on the region).
For more wallet-friendly stays, consider states like New Jersey, Maryland, Virginia, and Georgia.
And while there are always deals to be found, consider going on a beach vacation in the shoulder season to somewhere like North or South Carolina, Maine, Oregon, or Massachusetts if savings are your top priority. September or early May still see excellent weather in most beach destinations with far lower prices than during peak summer or winter dates. Additionally, keep in mind that peak weekends and holidays like Memorial Day and the Fourth of July typically see beach hotel prices surge.
Weekday and weekend rates will also change during weekends and holidays. Resort fees range widely but often include bicycle rentals, barre or yoga classes, happy hours, or breakfast.
What should a family beach resort have?
The best family beach resorts and hotels offer beach access, first and foremost, plus programming and activities that address both individuals, ranging from small children to grandparents to the family dog, as well as the family as a whole. These include kids’/teen clubs and rooms, welcome packages, discounts, packages, games, and nightly entertainment.
Make sure to read the fine print, especially where it concerns younger children and family pets. Many hotels say they are friendly to both, but their actions say otherwise. In some cases, small children are prohibited from certain types of accommodations and dogs can’t leave the room, or can’t be left in the room. So know before you go.
Most hotels have reopened following shutdowns due to COVID-19 with new safety procedures in place. While you’re more likely to encounter other people in common spaces and have more interactions with staff, experts say that with added caution, it is safe to stay in a hotel. We also recommend following CDC guidelines and wearing a mask in public, using hand sanitizer, and following social distancing.