Summer

Looking to escape to the beach for one last summer hurrah? Well, have we got the place for you: New Jersey. Stay with me. The Garden State has 130 miles of coastline and, contrary to what MTV might have you believe, not all of those beaches are chockfull of Snookis and Situations. Cape May has some of our favorite stays on the Shore that are anything but typical (or trashy). At this seaside town, visitors can catch some waves, swim with the dolphins, go whale watching, shop ‘til they drop, and so much more. Of course, there are always boozy days on the beach a la our favorite guidos, but Cape May and other Jersey towns are proving that there’s a lot more fun to be had down the Shore than just keg stands and table dancing.

1. The Mission Inn

Mission Inn

Unlike the majority of the Victorian-style bed and breakfasts in the Cape May area — or anywhere on the East Coast, for that matter — the Mission Inn, built in 1912, was constructed in the classic California Spanish architectural style. Perfect for couples seeking a romantic getaway by the Jersey Shore, the upscale inn includes individually designed rooms (each themed after a different California mission) and an impressive home-cooked daily breakfast. And bonus: You’re only a block from sun and sand. Read More »

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Is all the talk of summer and beaches…bumming you out? Does the entire concept of humidity make you want to cry? If you see one more Instagram photo of “hot-dog legs” are you going to lose it? Good news! You’re not crazy or a heartless, sun-hating scrooge — and you’re not alone. The dogs days of summer are truly upon us, and sometimes it’s all too easy to dream of snowbanks and icicles (which will be a nightmare once we’re in the thick of winter — but then, of course, we’ll dream of sizzling sidewalks and sun galore). So if you’re already missing winter, here’s where you can travel right now where it’s 50 degrees or cooler. And, of course, we’ve found the coziest hotels nearby where you can properly embrace sweater weather by curling up in front of a fireplace that will chase the (all-too-welcome) chill away.

1. Melbourne, Australia 

melbourne

The Southern Hemisphere is where winter’s at, and one of our favorite destinations down under is none other than Melbourne, Australia. Known as Australia’s culture capital, this city situated on Port Phillip Bay is packed with Victorian buildings, museums, galleries, large parks, and gardens. The tree-lined streets and green spaces create a clean, eco-friendly vibe, which is probably part of the reason Melbourne has consistently been dubbed as one of the world’s most livable cities. During the winter months, locals enjoy ice skating, curling, and banishing the chill at the nearby Peninsula Hot Springs.

Stay: Hotel Lindrum

This modern boutique is located just a short walk from sights such as Federation Square and Melbourne Park. It lacks a fitness center and spa, but the features it does have are done well: The restaurant serves a nice breakfast buffet, and the cozy bar features a fireplace and a billiards table. Rooms feature sleek lines, dark wood accents, high-style light fixtures, and contemporary artwork, which combine to create a chic vibe. Read More »

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This weekend, New York City will truly be the “City That Never Sleeps” as throngs of locals and visitors alike rock out at the fourth annual Governor’s Ball. This three day music fest features headliners Outkast, Jack White, and Vampire Weekend, as well as dozens of others from across the musical spectrum. And next weekend, a dusty stretch of Tennessee will see thousands of  people camp out in the name of all that is rock ‘n roll at Bonaroo, where Mumford & Sons, Passion Pit, Paul McCartney, and Macklemore & Ryan Lewis lead a stellar line-up. It may be too late to book your tickets to either of these extravaganzas (of course, anything’s possible if you’re willing to pay ten times the original price on StubHub), but that doesn’t mean you have to kiss your quest for the perfect summer music fest goodbye. With June’s arrival comes a slew of stages across the United States that are set to get you dancing well into the summer nights ahead. Featuring everything from bluegrass to dupstep, these ten summer music fests are not to be missed. And true to form, we’ll tell you where to stay for each too.

1. Electric Daisy Carnival 

Photo Credit: Keith Hamm, Flickr Photo Credit: Keith Hamm, Flickr

Taking place in Las Vegas from June 20-22, EDC is an electronic music-lover’s (trippy) dream. Essentially one large rave replete with dubstep beats and neon lights, EDC attracts over 300,000 to The Strip for a chance to hear major DJs, such as Above & Beyond, Avicii, Martin Garrix, and Eric Prydz, spin into the wee hours. 

Stay: EDC takes place about a half hour away from The Strip, at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. But unlike at other festivals, revelers are not allowed to park on premises, and the Nevadan heat forces many to find A/C elsewhere. Thankfully, Vegas has plenty of hotel options at hand. The Palms, known for its crazy parties and celebrity stopovers, is an apt choice for festival-goers.  Read More »

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The Outdoor Pool at the East Hampton Art House Bed & Breakfast

The Outdoor Pool at the East Hampton Art House Bed & Breakfast

This elegant B&B in East Hampton, New York is exactly what its name suggests: a house full of art. Designed and decorated by the owners, Michael and Rosalind, who combine mutual talents in art and hospitality, the Art House features just four rooms with attractive touches such as hardwood floors, marble bathrooms with deep soaking tubs, and massive flat-screen TVs. But despite its small size, the hotel boasts all the amenities of a larger property – endless communal spaces, an outdoor pool, and a fitness center, just to name a few. With attentive and friendly owners, who serve up delicious breakfasts of waffles, omelets, and fruit, the Art House has the feel of a private Hamptons home while including all of the luxuries of staying at a high-end inn. With these luxuries, of course, comes pricey rates. And now that spring has sprung, it’s time to start making your summer plans — the Art House books up fast. If the summer rates are outside of your budget, the inn remains open year-round, and with cozy features such as gas fireplaces and a waterfall whirlpool, this B&B is a great escape no matter the time of year. Wanna know more? Check out more photos of the hotel after the jump or read our review now>>

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Summertime will soon be upon us — this week has already seen highs of 82 degrees in NYC! — and we can’t wait for long days spent strolling along the boardwalk. From Atlantic City to Santa Cruz, beach bums will strut their stuff down those sandy pathways, either taking in the views or letting loose on beachside coasters (or both!). Foodies will delight in summer treats such as saltwater taffy and Nathan’s hot dogs, and visitors can also play games, have their fortunes told, hit up unique shopping grounds, or just people-watch as the summer heat brings out some truly interesting characters. So bust out your flip-flops, spread on the SPF, and head to one of these boardwalks near you for some spring and summer fun in the sun.

1. Atlantic City Boardwalk, New Jersey

The Atlantic City Boardwalk is the oldest in the United States and the longest in the world.

First opened in 1870 and now spanning 5.5 miles, the Atlantic City Boardwalk is both the oldest in America and the longest in the world, garnering plenty of attention from East Coast visitors. Travelers fantasize about the Art Deco glamour and glitzy shows of Nucky Thompson‘s heyday while munching on saltwater taffy from the James Candy Company (in business since the early 1900s) or indulging in an order of deep-fried oreos. Others may try their luck in one of the many casinos that dot the boardwalk. Though Atlantic City was hit hard by Hurricane Sandy, loyalists are helping this shore spot bounce back with a vengeance.

Where to Stay: Mainstays such as Caesars bring back loyal guests, while boardwalk newbie Revel has been a hot topic in the tabloids (Beyonce performed her first post-baby show here, and Kanye announced that baby momma Kim Kardashian was expecting during his performance at the resort).

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Cold summertime cocktails. So hot right now. We’re visiting the best, trendiest hotel bars to find you the tastiest summer cocktails in NYC. Not only have we got the photos, we’ve got the recipes — directly from the bartenders — so you can make them at home. Grab your martini glass and hit the deck, you’re having a cocktail party.

This week we’ve got The Maritime. Previously, we’ve taste-tested The James Hotel, Hilton New York Fashion District, and The Standard Hotel.

Scene at The Maritime, New York

Scene at The Maritime, New York

DRINK #1: African Queen

African Queen

African Queen

Ingredients:

  • 2 oz Starr African Rum
  • 1 oz strawberry puree
  • 3 mint leaves torn
  • 2 limes squeezed

To make:
Shake and serve in large rocks glass and garnish with lime and mint.
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It’s not impossible to squeeze in a last-minute family trip before the kids are back at school. We’ve rounded up the most affordable, family-friendly vacations filled with some extra bonding moments for the end-of-summer-blues.

Orlando

Disney Animal Kingdom Lodge

Disney Animal Kingdom Lodge, Orlando

Disney Animal Kingdom Lodge, Orlando

Average Price: $226/avg. night
Pearls: Rating: 4.0 Pearls
Location: Disney World, Orlando
From the gazelles and giraffes freely roaming the grounds to the enormous pool with a waterslide, the safari-themed Disney Animal Kingdom Lodge was designed to amaze and delight children. Throughout the day, staff members lead (free) educational activities for children like craft-making, African drumming, or mini-lessons about the where giraffes come from. Here, even the learning is captivating.

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Cold summertime cocktails. So hot right now. We’re visiting the best, trendiest hotel bars to find you the tastiest summer cocktails in NYC. Not only have we got the photos, we’ve got the recipes — directly from the bartenders — so you can make them at home. Grab your martini glass and hit the deck, you’re having a cocktail party.

Last week it was Jimmy at The James, New York. This week, we’ve got Rare View Rooftop at Hilton New York Fashion District Hotel.

 

DRINK #1: Melon Mash

Melon Mash

Melon Mash

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ oz Bacardi Rum
  • ½ oz Triple Sec
  • ¾ oz Watermelon Juice
  • Splash of each Fresh Lime Juice & Simple Syrup

To make
Shake and strain serve in a martini glass.

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Stay Cool

by Hilary on July 22, 2011

Let’s just accept that it’s impossible to stay cool lately. Here are 5 ways to try to chill off.

Pool Day
Gansevoort Park Ave, New York City
Plunge, a bar at the Gansevoort, has an outdoor heated pool with views of Empire State Building.

Gansevoort Park Ave South, NYC

Gansevoort Park Ave South, NYC

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Wondering where to go for the best pool? What about the best luau? Or the best cocktail? Oyster to the rescue (as usual).

Best Pool
Delano Hotel, Miami

The huge infinity pool — also known as its “water salon” — at the Delano is a South Beach attraction unto itself. Live DJs, tasty food and drink, posh cabanas, and bungalows make for a sceney but still relaxing retreat — at least during the day, before the hordes of nonguests come to party. Music plays underwater, and an ornate silver table and chairs sit right in the pool. In front of the Philippe Starck-designed pool is a beautiful orchard of crisply manicured trees. A giant chessboard and huge mirror within the orchard, like the giant chair in the lobby, helps to create a surreal, Alice in Wonderland atmosphere.

The Delano, Miami

 

The Delano, Miami

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