Why stay in a hotel when you can opt for a once-in-a-lifetime change of scenery?
I recently got back from my trip to California and thanks to Airbnb, I had the opportunity to live like a local. I guess as long as you’re willing to give up the privileges that comes with staying in a hotel (like 24hr service, in-room dining, butlers to carry your luggage and fresh sheets every day), then it’s no question why you shouldn’t book yourself a stay at one of the Airbnb properties your holiday destination has to offer. Just think about it – you get to immerse yourself in the city’s culture, befriend the neighbours, go grocery shopping at the town supermarket, take a jog around the community park and above all, live in a type of house you know you’ll never be able find in your own country.
With that said, here’s a list of homes you should check out the next time you’re in America. It doesn’t matter which state you’re going to be visiting, there’s always a place you can call home – even if it’s just for a few days.
1. California – Malibu Dream Airstream
Ladies, hands up if you’re a fan of Taylor Swift and Karlie Kloss cos this was the exact location where their famous Vogue shoot was shot! Think scenic drives up dirt roads, gorgeous sunsets over the pacific ocean, panoramic views of the iconic Malibu beach, all whilst being surrounded by nature and wildlife. As stated clearly in the listing by the owner, this is one place you should consider if you’re 1. someone who’s into adventure (as hiking is one of the must-do activities here) and 2. is absolutely ready to give up tel service for a few days (given that there is no reception where this airstream is located).
So while the idea of having no internet for a week sounds horrifying, I’m actually loving the idea of having a quiet place to unwind. To all the men reading this: The patio also makes for the perfect location if you’re thinking of proposing to your girlfriend *wink*
2. New York – Manhattan Loft
You’ve watched Friends, you were sad when How I Met Your Mother ended, you laughed along with Max and Caroline on 2 Broke Girls and you wished you could be BFFs with Blair Waldorf from Gossip Girl. You might not have been able to move to New York like how your 16-year-old self wanted you to, but hey, if you’re ever in the concrete jungle, why not book this property we stumbled upon!
Located just 5 minutes by cab to lower Manhattan, this stylish 1500 sqft loft is one even Carrie Bradshaw would approve. 9 out of 10 reviewers mentioned that this is the home to stay in if you’re looking for the ‘real NY experience’. Not only that, the building has a rooftop garden that provides a stunning view of the city’s skyline! One all your friends would be jealous of once they see your pictures on Instagram.
3. Montana – Luxury Safari Tents
What better way to get a taste of the great American outdoors than by staying just minutes away from the world-famous Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming? Being surrounded by mountains isn’t the only thing that has got me hooked to this property. As someone who isn’t keen camping, I would definitely not mind spending the night in this cabin-style tent as not only does it come equipped with a king-sized bed, it also boasts state-of-the-art amenities like a wood burning stove and private bathroom (which is very important). Talk about taking glamping to a whole new level!
4. Wisconsin – Frank Lloyd Wright’s Schwartz House
Now this is one house history buffs and architecture fanatics would appreciate. Considered by many as the greatest American architect of all time, Frank Lloyd Wright built this house based off a design drafted in 1938 for Life magazine. Situated in Two Rivers, a quintessential small fishing town, this red-brick home is perfect if you’re travelling with family or with friends since it’s spacious enough to hold up to 8 people. This is the ideal home if you’re into cookout dinners, card games by the fireplace and deep conversations along the riverbank.
TIP: Reviewers recommend booking this place during the winter as nothing beats the sight of snowfall on the lawn.
5. Idaho – Dog Park Inn
Think there’s no way you could take your obsession for dogs to a whole new level? Well, think again cause this beagle-shaped B&B is every dog lovers paradise! Located at the edge of Cottonwood in rural Idaho, this one-of-a-kind guesthouse accommodates up to 4 people and was built back in 1997 by chainsaw artists Dennis Sullivan and Frances Conklin. Doesn’t matter if you’re young or old, this quirky stay is a unique experience for those who’re on a cross-country road trip and would like to stop by and enjoy a few days of fishing, hiking or horseback riding.
Bonus: According to reviewers, Dennis and Frances never fails to keep the place stocked up with treats and they’re always happy to share their life’s stories with you. After seeing how this 30-foot high dog house turned out to be, I would sure love to hear them!
6. North Carolina – Nature Lover’s Retreat
I don’t know about you, but every time I read a Nicholas Sparks novel, this is the type of house I envision the main female character staying in. I can already picture it – how she wakes up to the sound of birds chirping, standing by the brick patio as she admires the view of the woods while sipping her morning coffee and parking her 4×4 in the driveway whenever she returns from a grocery run in town.
Tucked away in nature yet centrally located, this Asheville cottage is cozy enough for couples who’re looking for a relaxing retreat as you’re guaranteed to be surrounded by refreshing mountain air. Don’t be surprised if you stumble across groundhogs too!
7. Hawaii – Beachfront Pipeline Solar Home
If you’re into surfing, swimming or just watching the view of waves hitting the sands, then this beachfront home is one that will make all your luau dreams come true. Given that it’s located adjacent to the famous Banzai Pipeline (aka a surf reef break located in Pupukea on O’ahu’s North Shore), this eco-friendly listing has checked all the boxes in my dream tropical vacation list. With coconut and bamboo interiors, along with a deck fit for a BBQ party, I can’t imagine how I would ever want to return to the city after experiencing the feeling of waking up to the sounds of the ocean.
Side note: While the place can stay up to 7 guests, I think this beach shack is also suitable for couples on their honeymoon as I’m pretty sure the hotels in Hawaii looks just the same as the beach resorts we have back home. So if different is what you’re looking for, you know what to do.
8. Alaska – The Mayor’s Cabin
Probably one of my fave American Airbnb listing yet, this log cabin seems like a pretty authentic way to experience Alaska – be it in the summer or winter. Rustic on the outside and modern on the inside, this cute little place (750 sq ft) is located in Anchorage, Alaska’s largest city. From dog sledding, river rafting, ice hiking and hunting, there’s so much one can do when on vacation in this US state. What makes it better? Knowing that after all the heart-pumping activities you had to go through, you get to go back to a cozy home where you’ll be able to snuggle on the sofa with a good book and a cup of hot chocolate.