10 Affordable Hotels That Scream (Actually, Whisper) Relaxation

by  Donna Heiderstadt | Aug 14, 2018

You may have been too busy to notice that Wednesday, August 15th is National Relaxation Day. And while it may be too late to actually get away this week, you can use the day to book that Zen escape you’ve been meaning to treat yourself to. Here are 10 affordable hotels and resorts that offer seclusion, laidback ambience, and low-key fun—all for less than $225 per night—through fall, because there’s nothing like an astronomical hotel bill to kill your vibe.

The Yachtsman Hotel & Marina, Kennebunkport, ME

Kennebunkport, located on Maine’s Southern coast between Ogunquit and Portland, is a popular destination for those seeking seaside relaxation. Its allure in summer is obvious—beaches, lobster rolls, activities like sailing and bike riding—but this charming enclave rolls into fall with an even more laidback vibe, as summer crowds thin out. The place to enjoy it all is The Yachtsman Hotel & Marina Club, a new harbor-front resort comprising 30 bungalows with cheery decor. Complimentary kayak and canoe rentals plus a daily wine hour from 4-5 p.m. offer additional ways to unwind. From $229 per night in September and $199 per night in October.

Margaritaville Beach Resort, Grand Cayman

Is your favorite way to relax in flip-flops, living by the credo: It’s always five o’clock somewhere? If so, singer-entrepreneur Jimmy Buffett’s nearly one-year-old resort, set on a calm cove a short stroll from Seven Mile Beach on Grand Cayman, is well-stocked with the frozen beverage that helps you hang on. The 285-room Margaritaville Beach Resort Grand Cayman has upbeat Buffett tunes playing around its four pools (one with a swim-up bar), live music in the lobby, and in-room massages. From $155 a night this fall.

El Monte Sagrado, Taos, NM

Mantra-speaking, wilderness-loving, artists-at-heart should head to El Monte Sagrado in Taos to take advantage of discounted room rates over the next six weeks. This luxury, spa-centric resort—with its mountain-fringed backdrop and babbling brooks—is the perfect place for a soothing Southwest getaway. The property features casita-style rooms, local seasonal dining in its two restaurants, and a Living Spa that uses only natural and organic products. From $199 per night in August and $220 per night in late September. 

Hyatt Centric Park City, Park City, UT

Getting close to nature is easy at the 130-room Hyatt Centric Park City, where you need only to gaze out your window or step onto your balcony to bask in Utah’s scenic Wasatch Mountains and The Canyons resort’s ski runs, which are great for hiking and mountain biking in summer and fall. A heated outdoor pool and two whirlpools, a pet-friendly policy, and a free shuttle to downtown Park City make this hotel an appealing and accessible spot to unwind. Rooms from $199 per night.  

Oceans Edge Resort & Marina, Key West, FL

The Conch Republic doesn’t necessarily offer a mellow kind of relaxation—Key West is a party town, after all—but its anything-goes attitude and charming ambiance make it a terrific place to kick back and go with the flow—especially at the 175-room Oceans Edge Resort & Marina. Here, surrounded by green palms and white Victorian-Caribbean architecture, you’ll be far enough removed from the action of Duval Street and Mallory Square to chill with a good book (Hemingway, perhaps?) at one of the six pools. But the complimentary shuttle to downtown lets you be front and center for the fun, too. From $149 per night.

Hotel Terra, Jackson Hole, WY

If you want to be hypnotized into tranquility, it’s hard to beat Jackson Hole, where clear blue skies and panoramas of the Grand Teton Mountains clear the mind and energize the body. The effect is especially evident at the eco-friendly 132-room Hotel Terrawhere rustic lodge decor, an infinity pool, and a rooftop Chill Spa (and hot tub) instantly relieve tension. And wildlife safaris, fly fishing, horseback riding, golf, and hot air ballooning encourage guests to unplug and enjoy the outdoors. From $206 per night in October.

Aqua Kauai Beach Resort, Kauai, HI

Kauai is so lush and peaceful it's nicknamed “The Garden Isle,” and it’s a wonderful destination to leave the rush of modern-day life behind and embrace the pace of old Hawaii. With rustling palms overhead, the four oceanfront pools (two with waterfalls) at the 25-acre Aqua Kauai Beach Resort will have you feeling calm in no time. Attend a Nukoli’i Sunrise Ceremony held every Tuesday at 5:45 a.m., sign up for lei-making lessons, or order a Mai Tai and listen to live music on the Naupaka Terrace. From $209 per night.

Sedona Rouge, Sedona, AZ

Tranquility-seekers have favored Sedona for decades, where new-age philosophies, wellness spas, and a thriving artisan community create a Zen vibe—or maybe it’s just the energy vortex reportedly found amid the dramatic red rocks and desert landscape. Sedona Rouge, offering 103 affordable Andalusian-inspired rooms and a full-service spa, makes a great home-base for rejuvenation and exploration. And it’s dog-friendly, too. From $189 per night.

Mission Ranch Hotel and Restaurant, Carmel, CA

Set on 22 acres of rolling meadows, complete with grazing sheep, the Mission Ranch Hotel and Restaurant is owned by actor-director (and former Carmel mayor) Clint Eastwood and features 31 rooms set in 10 restored ranch buildings (the oldest is the Bunkhouse). It’s an ideal spot to read, play tennis, or stroll into downtown Carmel and browse its numerous galleries. From $145 per night.

Plas Bodegroes, Pwllheli Gwynedd, Wales

For something completely different—but divinely so—how about a country inn in a hard-to-pronounce town in western Wales? Located on the stunning Llleyn peninsula, Plas Bodegroes is a Georgian Manor that’s actually a restaurant with rooms (10 to be exact), but its peaceful setting and lush gardens make it ideal for a weekend escape centered around nature and the local ingredients used in its award-winning restaurant. From $155 per night.

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