A home without a roof, a boat garage or a tree house? These short-term rentals provide something that many large hotels struggle to create: completely unique experiences that you will remember for a long time.
While we love hotels for their comfort, sometimes we prefer something completely different, and then we turn to home rentals. Below are five places to stay that can afford to guarantee a memorable holiday.
A bed and no roof on Crete
A bit gimmicky, we’ll admit, but also full of charm, reviewers of this accommodation option describe it in terms ranging from “interesting,” to “a beautiful experience,” to “magical.”
Located in Palaiokastro near Heraklion on Crete, the “Summer Bed under the Stars,” hosted by Gabriella Damianaki, consists of the courtyard and remains of an old house; it has walls, furniture and a fireplace, but no roof. Located only 100 meters from the sea, guests are enticed by the prospect of spending the whole day outside, literally, before falling asleep in a cozy bed under the starry sky.
The place rooms three guests in two beds, and features outdoor shared areas, including a common kitchen, toilet and shower. Pets are welcome, and breakfast is included. It has a respectable rating of 4.26 stars. The rate per night in July is €38 (while we’re all for extending the tourist season, we would not recommend staying here after September).
A traditional boat house on Milos
You may have seen photos of Justin Bieber dining in one of Milos’ famous “syrmata” last year, or caught a glimpse of them on various influencer’s Instagram feeds. These traditional boat houses, with their brightly colored doors, are certainly picturesque, and the village of Klima, where this home is located, is considered the most colorful village of all. As an added bonus, every evening here boasts a spectacular sunset.
Traditionally, the ground floor of the syrmata functioned as the boat garage into which the boats were dragged by a cable (or “syrma”), with the fisherman’s living quarters located on the first floor, but in this house, the ground floor has been transformed into a beautiful Airbnb. It can house two people in one queen bed, and is fitted with a kitchenette and a bathroom in modern island style.
It has a good rating of 4.85 stars. The rate in July is €540 per night on weekends and €396 on weekdays, and there’s a 2-night minimum on bookings.
A cave on Mykonos
Only a 10-15-minute drive from the hopping bars and clubs of Mykonos’ Hora, this studio apartment has the perfect vibe for its surroundings: luxurious, yet at the same time, it looks as if it grew out of the ground itself.
Resembling a cave, it is actually built in and around the rocks of the steep hillside above the legendary Paradise Beach. It features a kitchenette, a private plunge pool, and an outdoor lounge area from where guests can enjoy an incredible ocean view and breathtaking sunsets. The apartment can room two guests in one bed.
It has an excellent 4.96 rating, and the rate in July is €300-350, with a 2-night minimum on bookings.
A sugar cube on Rhodes
Sugar cubes is often how people describe houses on the Cycladic islands. However, this modern sugar cube, or “monocabin,”as the architect and owner of this Airbnb, George, has dubbed the design, is located on the Dodecanese island of Rhodes. He hails from Rhodes, and so it had to be there, although the monocabins are actually being constructed in Italy, where his design studio is.
Modern, minimalistic and sleek, the bright white paint and a few well-chosen décor items still make this miniature house feel quintessentially Greek, and the location in Lalyssos couldn’t be better, reviewers agree.
The monocabin boasts a perfect 5-star rating (though it’s worth noting that it only has 10 reviews so far). The rate is €149 per night in July, and it has a 3-night minimum on bookings.
A fairytale treehouse in the Peloponnese
Waking up to the sound of birds singing is taken to a whole other… level… at this short-term rental in the Peloponnese. Built around the trunk of a tall pine situated on an organic olive oil farm near Amaliada, few places could make you feel more in sync with nature, while providing amenities like fridge, shower, and air-conditioning.
Surrounded by pine forest, olive groves and valleys overlooking the sea, you’re also near beaches and the archeological site at Olympia, so you won’t feel cut off from the world – unless you want to, that is. You just might be tempted to spend your whole vacation in a tree, treated as you will be by the owners to fruits, cheeses, wine, breads, and farm fresh eggs.
The tree house has a good 4.87-star rating based on 46 reviews. The rate is €175 per night in July, and has a 2-night minimum on bookings.