Once More to the Lake

When the beach has dried up, it’s time to head to a lake — for relaxation, charm, and still-waters-run-deep calm.

Villa d’Este
The spot:
Lako Como, Italy
The scene: The ultimate, awesomest, most Old Europe glamour lakefront hotel. Go ready to rock your inner count or contessa.
The black book: Enter the gates and just don’t leave. Book a room in the main building and spend a few hours exploring the ramparts and trails in the surrounding gardens and hills.

Grand Hotel
The spot: Lake Michigan, Mackinac Island
The scene: Stately and elegant yet totally quaint, on an island of gingerbread buildings, where there are no cars, just bikes and horse-drawn taxis.
The black book: Tour the whole eight-mile loop, stopping for incredible views. The island is famous for fudge, and it doesn’t get better than at Murray Fudge Shop in the Murray Hotel.

mohonk!Mohonk Mountain House
The spot: Lake Mohonk, New York
The scene: The 1869-built National Historic Landmark will rekindle the Dirty Dancing Kellerman’s fantasies you never knew you had.
The black book: Paddle a canoe around the lake then have your biceps soothed with one of their excellent massages.

Mountain Harbor Resort & Spa
The spot:
Lake Ouachita, Arkansas
The scene: A family-run resort surrounded by Ouachita National Forest with outdoor activities galore: boating, fishing, and diving.
The black book: Book a signature spa treatment using locally found crystals, then look for your own at the only public diamond mine in the world, Crater of Diamonds State Park, about an hour away.

redfish!Redfish Lake Lodge
The spot: Redfish Lake, Idaho
The scene: Tent tested, cabin approved, and as dreamy mountains-lake-and-trees as you can get. Get a room with a kitchen (unless you’re always in the mood for elk) and spend your days hiking, hammocking, and trouting.
The black book: Need to wander? Drive through Silver City ghost town or take a dip in the roadside natural hot springs you’ll pass on your way in.

Taj Lake Palace
The spot: Lake Pichola, Udaipur, India
The scene: A marble marvel surrounded by mountains and palaces. Supremely romantic.
The black book: If going all out (hello, honeymooners), book the Khush Mahal suite, a former queen’s chamber with an antique swing.