WSJ. Magazine hits newsstands this Saturday in the Journal's weekend paper, and the magazine has offered us an exclusive preview of its September décor feature! This month, in "There's No Place Like (Someone Else's) Home," former Domino editor Rita Konig takes readers around the world to visit five exquisite residences that also double as hotels. "Most of these tranquil home-away-from homes are run by rather remarkable women with wonderful taste, an appreciation for simple, delicious food and a fondness for bringing unique decorating style to a remote setting," says Konig. So if you appreciate the finer things in life and don't need all of the bells and whistles of a resort or traditional hotel, think about planning your next vacation at one of these getaways, which are a lot like, well, paradise.
Casa de Madrid — Madrid, Spain
"Staying at Casa de Madrid is like being put up by a rather grand friend of a friend of your mother's," Konig says. The décor of each room of the seven-room hotel is inspired by a storied place around the world, such as Rome, Japan, and India. While there's no hotel restaurant or even a dining room to speak of, the neighborhood offers plenty of eateries, and Konig says, "in true Spanish style, wine and tapas are laid out in the sitting room before you go out for the evening."
Ocean View Club — Harbour Island, Bahamas
Located right on the water of a Caribbean island famous for its pink sand beaches, Ocean View's nine bedrooms are "colorfully decorated with the wonderful ease of various lamps, odd tables, local art and things gathered from here and there — a look that is very Bahamian with an element of mismatched European style," Konig says. The food is as fresh as can be, and only the hotel guests and their friends can dine on "the hotel's calm, sun-dappled patio."
Trasierra — Seville, Spain
"Walk through the large wooden gates into the rose-and-lavender-scented courtyard of this 16th-century olive oil and wine farm," and your heart will skip a beat, Konig says. With 19 whitewashed bedrooms dressed with faded chintzes and delicate accessories, this Southern Spanish getaway is "quite simply the perfect fusion of the Spanish countryside with old English charm."
Read more about these impeccably run houses and discover a few more, and start planning your next great escape!