“It’s only March,” they said. “We’ve got plenty of time to plan for summer,” they said.
And then they didn’t, and summer was fair but unexceptional.
Don’t let that be your story. Instead, use this: our annual Summer Rental Guide, flush with seven stellar vacation homes for your dog-day wanderings.
Time is on your side, assuming you act fast.
The Malibu Beach House
There’s no pool at this Malibu Beach House, but you’re steps from the cool clean waters of the Pacific, and walking distance to Nobu and all of the shops on the main drag. This place is serene, with an open air design that’s soft and tidy, making it an ideal place to recharge your batteries this summer.
The North-of-the-Border Hacienda
Santa Ynez is the closest you’ll get to owning your own Sierra del Madre ranch without jumping Trump’s hypothetical wall. Spend your days hiking, cycling or wine tasting. Spend your evenings and nights at Rancho de los Colores, a 3,300-square-foot hacienda with terracotta tiles, vibrantly painted walls and a backyard bar and pool area built for fiestas. And the California king bed and fireplace in the master are a grand place to sleep one off.
The Tahoe Retreat For The Whole Fam-Damn-ily
North Lake Tahoe
You’ll fly into Reno, take a short drive and spend a long weekend with your brood by the crystal clear, soul-invigorating waters of Lake Tahoe. Itinerary: wake up every morning in this house at Brockway Springs Resort, where a private beach and clubhouse are steps away. Spend your days on the mountains or in the Lake. Evenings, you’re watching the sunset from the deck, running the grill and making sure your favorite microbrew doesn’t go flat.
The Pond Hopper
When you’re on the Gold Coast of Oahu, you want as much of the outdoors as you can get. This village at Diamond Head gives it to you, with all rooms facing seaward. The trailhead that leads up to Diamond Head Volcano is close. So is downtown Honolulu — an underrated eating city — though you’ll probably want to spend your evenings cooking in: there’s a spa, a pool and a great BBQ area on the back porch.
The Country Club Hub
Palm Springs in the summer months is Sexy Beast hot. But hey, some people love that. Some people also love golf, tennis and world-class spas, and this is ground zero for that. Pools are required for such a weekend jaunt, and the infinity pool at this award-winning 1959 hillside pad overlooks the palm-fringed streets and purple mountains surrounding the desert oasis. It was recently renovated but still sports all the postwar swagger this town is famous for.
The Fourth of July Shindig
There’s something about the weathered wood of a Cape Cod-designed house that screams America. This particular home in Santa Barbara is an ideal spot for national holidays. Memorial Day. July 4th. Ah, hell, any long weekend. It’s literally on the beach and has a pool and plenty of room for paddleboarding and volleyball. Inside: a gourmet kitchen and beds to accommodate 10 heads. It’s also a short UBER to downtown Santa Barbara. Definitely book at table for one night at The Lark, and grab wine at Les Merchants and The Collective before arrival.
Because boats. This dockside house on Coronado — that little island in the sun off San Diego — has a 160-foot floating dock. So if you’re renting a boat (or piloting yours down from L.A.), you’ve got it handy. The four-bedroom house sleeps 10 and comes with a pool, kayaks and paddleboards, and it’s well-suited for days on the water. At night, head over to the mainland for nightlife. Might want to book a water taxi.