Although staying at a hotel-style resort is often a convenient and reliable option, it can also be predictable and pricey (room service, resort and mini bar fees, hello!). As an alternative, condo and guesthouse rentals are popular, but as we’ve discovered through trial and error, not all experiences with companies such as Airbnb, HomeToGo or Vrbo are created equal.
So, on your next girlfriend getaway, family vacation or solo retreat, why not get the best of both worlds and book an apartment-style resort?
If you’re traveling with a finicky group, this type of lodging may save you money and give you more breathing room for your buck. Thanks to attractive amenities like full kitchens or kitchenettes, spa treatments, fitness activities and wellness classes, you can make time to prioritize self-care. To sample the suite life, here are four options in idyllic settings.
The Lorca in Shandaken, New York (TheLorca.com/catskills)
Nature lovers will find serenity and bliss at the Lorca, a wooded community of reimagined homes in the Catskills of upstate New York. This Black woman–owned property includes two cozy cottages, a large cabin, a streamside house and a farmhouse, each outfitted with homey touches like fireplaces, claw-foot tubs and fully furnished kitchens. For groups, the Lorca offers wellness and nature retreats, and outdoor fire pits are perfect for s’mores and campfire cooking. Guests are encouraged to explore the peaceful surroundings and nearby towns like Phoenicia and Woodstock.
Lovango Resort & Beach Club in the U.S. Virgin Islands (LovangoVI.com/)
If spending your vacay in a private villa equipped with three bedrooms, a full kitchen, living and dining rooms, patios, outdoor showers and a private pool sounds enticing, then put this private USVI resort on your wish list. Lovango is accessible via a ferry hop from St. John and St. Thomas and boasts sweeping ocean views. Other lodging options include luxury glamping suites and tree houses. With their stay, resort guests also enjoy complimentary amenities like private beach access, snorkeling, a beach club, daily housekeeping and continental breakfast.
Jakes Hotel in St. Elizabeth, Jamaica (JakesHotel.com/)
To get to this off-the-beaten-path, family-run boutique hotel on the rustic south side of Jamaica, be prepared for a bumpy ride and a two-hour trek from the nearest airport. But once you arrive, you’ll find a campus of artfully designed, boho-chic oceanfront bungalows, cottages and villas nestled on Treasure Beach. Garden-view rooms are more budget-friendly, while cottages and villas with multiple bedrooms and full kitchens are pricier. Liven yourself up with a rum punch at the famed Dougies bar, dine on farm-to-table fare at one of the onsite restaurants, and wind down with pampering treatments at the open-air Driftwood Spa. This year, the renowned Calabash International Literary Festival returns to Treasure Beach.
Andaz Mayakoba Resort Riviera Maya in Riviera Maya, Mexico (AndazMayakoba.com/)
Welcome to this fantasy island. Overlooking the sparkling Mexican-Caribbean coastline, Andaz Mayakoba is spread out over 590 acres of oceanfront, preserved mangroves and lagoons. Propped on a white sand beach, the resort offers an open-air design concept with upscale accommodations, a pool with a view, nature trails and palate-pleasing culinary experiences. Suites feature Mayan-inspired decor, private plunge pools and large living areas. Some also have kitchenettes with pantries and separate dining areas. To soak up the setting, bike or take an eco-cruise around the complex.