Often, travelers associate bed-and-breakfasts with snowy scenes, where guests are snuggled up alongside roaring fireplaces as they snack on homemade scones. Sure, these visions aren't off-base, but there are also amazing bed-and-breakfasts that cater to a summertime crowd, ready to nosh on some free eggs and bacon before hitting the sand. And since it is, in fact, summer, we decided to have our stats guy look into the most popular beachfront bed-and-breakfasts among our users right now. From the Keys to the Caribbean, here are the world's 10 most popular bed-and-breakfasts on the beach.
The 19-room La Mer Hotel and Dewey House is an upscale, adults-only “private enclave” built at the turn of the century on South Beach. With its breezy yet elegant style, beachfront dining terrace, and access to the pools, spa, and three bars of a larger sister hotel, this property offers the amenities of a resort, with a bed-and-breakfast atmosphere. Guest rooms are beautifully decorated in a classic style, and have flat-screen TVs, mini-fridges, and coffeemakers; some open to balconies. The property serves free breakfast, along with occasional treats like chocolate-covered strawberries, but there’s a pesky resort fee and minimum stays are occasionally required. For a more exclusive resort-style vacation, guests may want to consider the Ocean Key Resort and Spa.
The 18-room Cypress Inn on Miramar Beach is a mid-range boutique located in a quiet residential neighborhood next to the Pacific Ocean. The rooms are homey and romantic, and have a coastal California style that matches the setting. Some rooms have balconies offering spectacular ocean views. Fireplaces in all rooms and two-person jetted tubs in some add romantic touches. The free breakfast and evening wine reception with homemade desserts are appreciated perks, as is the resident massage therapist. There is access to a pretty coastal trail right outside the door of the property. Both Wi-Fi and on-site parking are free, but there’s little else in the way of facilities.
A quiet and remote getaway, the mid-range St Francis Resort is located on Stocking Island, a 10-minute boat ride from Exuma. With only eight rooms, the property is small and intimate, and guests report they often have the beach to themselves. The spacious rooms have dated decor and lack TVs, but they do offer private balconies with stunning views of the beach. The on-site restaurant is lively and draws plenty of boaters and daytrippers, so guests don’t get too isolated. Aside from that, there are few other features, but the real draw is the lush surroundings, nature trails, blue holes, and beaches. A free in-room breakfast, Wi-Fi, and transportation from George Town is also included in the room rate. Travelers who feel that St Francis is too remote could consider Melia Nassau Beach or Sunrise Beach Clubs and Villas.
The Southernmost House is an adult-only property in an historic Victorian home directly on the ocean and just off popular Duval Street. This 18-room, mid-range inn feels sophisticated but laid-back, and has hosted the likes of Hemingway and Capote. Its genteel sitting porches, antique furnishings, and original Tiffany-glass entrance canopy connect visitors with old Key West, while the spacious, individually designed guest rooms offer modern comforts, such as flat-screen TVs and mini-fridges. Free breakfast is served daily, and there’s a lovely zero-edge pool overlooking the ocean. Noise from Duval Street can infiltrate some rooms, and service is not always as personalized as some might expect from a bed-and-breakfast. Guests seeking a more intimate experience could try The Conch House Heritage Inn, which has daily happy hour.
The Ocean Lodge is a four-pearl lodge-meets-bed-and-breakfast that aims to be a home-away-from-home for its guests on the south end of Cannon Beach. The 45 rooms and suites include working fireplaces, kitchenettes, and some ocean views. With cookies and organic coffee in the lobby at all hours, a library full of books for all ages, free DVDs to borrow, and a free continental breakfast, the hotel is a popular choice for families (and their pets) who choose it as their home base on the Oregon Coast again and again. Note that there is no on-site restaurant and past guests have complained about noise from little ones.
For yachters exploring the BVI, Cooper Island Beach Club is a popular overnight stop. Thanks to its 30 mooring spots, fantastic on-site restaurant, and lively rum bar, the upper-middle-range inn is a welcome respite for the seafaring crowds that flock to its shores. But Cooper Island is more than just a pit stop. Its 10 eco-luxe guest rooms and laid-back atmosphere attract honeymooning couples and families with young children. Even locals like to head to Cooper for secluded staycations. While there’s no pool, spa, or fitness center, guests give Cooper high marks for its beautiful beach and the diverse marine life that can be spotted just off its shores. Travelers looking for a similar hotel with more amenities and dining options might prefer Scrub Island Resort, Spa & Marina, though nightly rates are higher and it isn’t as eco-friendly.
The Hip Hotel suits many tastes. It is both a romantic, unplugged getaway and a family-friendly lodging option. Extras such as cribs, high chairs, and the ability to request additional rollaway beds make this destination convenient for small groups, and people traveling with children. Other amenities, including dinners delivered to the beach, and the quiet, low-key environment also make this bed-and-breakfast suitable for couples seeking alone time. Guests will not find live entertainment, swimming pools, or on-site recreational activities here. Instead, the convenient location combined with the natural beauty of this beachfront property will please those who plan on adventuring outside the resort’s grounds the most.
Harrington House is a quaint mid-range bed-and-breakfast located right on Holmes Beach. Its 26 rooms — which include six bungalows with full kitchens — have charming island-style decor with lots of flower prints and wicker accents, and free Wi-Fi. Most units also have balconies overlooking the Gulf of Mexico, and a few have fireplaces. There is only a small heated pool here (plus another private one in the bungalows complex), but the property offers plenty of wonderful freebies that add value, including an excellent breakfast buffet, Wi-Fi, parking, kayaks and bikes, and daily homemade cookies. Kids under 12 are not allowed on the property, so families may want to compare rates at An Island Getaway at Palm Tree Villas, located a block from the beach.
Casa de las Olas is ideal for those who are looking for an eco-friendly, off-the-grid beachfront getaway; this budget boutique uses self-sourced water, gravity-based plumbing, and biodegradable products. It also has locally sourced products and food. The five rooms have ocean views; most have kitchenettes or kitchens and furnished outdoor spaces. Free breakfast is served at a communal picnic table, but other than the occasional lunch (requested in advance), guest have to venture farther down the Hotel Zone for meals, drinks, or any other attractions. The end-of-the-road location is great for privacy and escape, but travelers that want to be in walkable distance to the action could prefer the upper-middle-range Cabanas Tulum, which has more features — but also more of a price tag.
The 29-suite Neptune Hollywood Beach Hotel is a budget-friendly inn on the boardwalk. Suites are simple, but spacious and full of natural light courtesy of large windows; they include fully-equipped kitchens with granite countertops, and some also have wonderful ocean views. However, bathrooms are small and dated and housekeeping only comes three times a week. There’s a lovely outdoor pool with a barbecue area and some greenery, while the business center offers a computer and office services. Breakfast is included in the rates and guests can utilize free rental bikes.