Labor Day weekend may be upon us, but that doesn't mean we're ready to pack up our summer whites or hang our beach towels just yet. We may need one more warm-weather getaway to tide us over to summer 2017. While most are getting busy with back-to-school hustle, coastal towns everywhere are emptying, leaving beaches pristine, untouched and ready for our arrival. With lowered off-season rates and the sun still shining, we think September may be the best month to hit the beach.
Still dreaming of lobster rolls, mai tais, and cool ocean dips? We searched the world's best coastlines for your next escape. From the cliffs of the Amalfi Coast to the rip tides of Waikiki or the forgotten boardwalks of the Jersey Shore, we rounded up the buzziest beach resorts to visit this September. So pack your high-waisted swimsuits, summer stripes, and straw bags—we're taking off, destination #foreversummer.
If tech gadgets, hyper-customization, and stunning architecture float your boat, check into Cabo's new Mar Adentro hotel. The new stunningly designed property is ultra contemporary—its stark white buildings connect to each other with walkways that seem to float over a deep navy blue infinity pool. Though the interiors are designed to allow guests to digitally control every aspect of their stay, from lighting to temperature and curtains, the décor is far from techie-looking. Instead, the rooms are drenched in bright Mexican sunlight and decorated in tones of warm-off whites and natural textures.
If Snooki is the only thing that comes to mind when thinking of the Jersey Shore, it's time to re-adjust your mind-set. The much buzzed about Asbury is the first hotel to open in the area in over 50 years, reviving the area into an Insta-worthy hotspot. On the agenda: sunrise yoga sessions, movie nights on the rooftop, and live shows in the lobby bar. The décor is a mix of wicker pendant lights, plywood furniture, beachy stripes, and rock 'n' roll accents. Only a short one-hour drive from Manhattan, The Asbury is like Brooklyn by the shore.
If unabashed luxury is more your speed, check your bags at the chic Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc in the south of France. The iconic hotel is where Slim Aarons shot much of his poolside photography in the 1970s. First built as a private residence in 1870, the imposing mansion-esque villa first opened as Grand Hôtel du Cap in 1889. Over the years, this institution has seen its share of AAA-lister guests: from F. Scott Fitzgerald and Ernest Hemingway to the Kennedys and Karl Lagerfeld. Bon voyage!
The Thompson Playa del Carmen, the hotel brand's newest and first Caribbean outpost, which landed on Mexican shores this past November, is a design lover's delight—with original art, midcentury accents, and brightly colored rooms. Enjoy a sun-splashed vacation on the beaches of Playa del Carmen, not far from popular Tulum, where you can visit ancient Mayan ruins or dine at one of the many local restaurants that transformed the sleepy town into an international foodie destination.
Bask in your own private pool overlooking the mediterranean sea at the Grace Santorini. The geometric masterpiece is perched high in the Caldera clifftop and boasts impeccably designed rooms and an outdoor jazz bar. The décor is largely white and minimal—as to not obstruct the jaw-dropping views beyond. Some rooms feature private plunge pools where you can admire the signature Greek sunsets. Not too shabby.
Across the Mediterranean Sea on the Spanish island of Formentera, enjoy the Balearic life at the Gecko Hotel & Beach Club. Enjoy cocktails on the terrace, have a yoga session, or explore the juniper-dotted beaches on the island. The smallest of the Balearic Islands (which includes also Mallorca, Menorca, and Ibiza), Formentera boasts crystal clear waters, beautiful marine wildlife, and idyllic weather. You'll never want to leave. If it's good enough for Leandra Medine, it's good enough for us.
Hit the Beach
Back on the northeastern seaboard, the crowds are set to desert the quaint New England island of Nantucket, making it the perfect time for a quiet visit before winter hits. Be one of the first to stay at Greydon House, the much-anticipated Roman and Williams–designed hotel set to open any day now in an 1850s Greek Revival mansion. An exclusive first look at the property promises glossy shiplap interiors, weathered brass accents, beautifully layered antiqued interiors, and even a rooftop garden. Quick, the season's last lobster rolls are waiting.
If puttanesca sauces, Amalfi lemons, and Vesuvian olive oil sounds like your idea of food heaven, check in at the luxe JK Place Capri. Off the picturesque Amalfi coast stands the Italian deco-inspired estate overlooking the Tyrrhenian Sea. Far from hip or edgy, this hotel prides itself on classic excellence and quaint nostalgic charm. Get greeted by seersucker-clad placers—and it'll feel like Labor Day never even happened. Grab a Vespa and explore the islands' Roman ruins or rocky beaches. Arrivederci!
With the latest wave of hipster retro-nostalgic hotels came Waikiki's latest hotspot, the newly opened Surfjack. A far cry from the generic resorts that dot the Hawaiian coastlines, this 112-room hotel is a breath of fresh air—think 1960s-inspired interiors, surf memorabilia, and an impressive collection of patterned wallpapers. Perhaps their most noteworthy feature is the pool—imprinted with the saying "Wish you were here," a nod to vintage Hawaii postcards. Pack your bags, sip on a mai tai to the sound of aloha tunes, and hang ten.
Anything interior designer Celerie Kemble touches turns to gold as far as we're concerned. So naturally when we heard she opened a hotel in the Dominican Republic last year, our ears perked up. The property is a delightful mix of Caribbean lacy gingerbread architecture and quirky Palm Beach–inspired décor that's signature to Kemble. Originally opened as a private retreat for the designer, her husband, financier Boykin Curry, and other notable investors, such as fashion designer Lela Rose and architect Richard Meier, the property is now open to the public. Why wait?
Stay Sun Smart
Few dreamlands exist that are as picturesque as Le Sirenuse on Italy's Amalfi Coast. The hotel opened in 1951 after a group of brothers turned their summer house into a 58-room resort. Quite the vacation home isn't it? Over the years, the hotel has become one of Italy's most luxurious and prized destinations for bright-eyed honeymooners. With the intimate feel of a private home, the resort boasts classic coastal Italian décor dotted with antiques and an impressive art collection. Experience la dolce vita perched high above the Positano cliffs.