Photo: Marriott Marquis Chicago
If there’s one time of year that’s undoubtedly best for travel, it’s the summer. The weather is near-perfect pretty much everywhere and your boss is way more lenient thanks to summer Fridays. But with so many locations offering poolside accommodations and sunny rooftops for drinking, it can be hard to choose where to spend your weekend. Don’t worry, we have your back. Consider one of these U.S cities through the end of the season -- just a quick flight or drive and you're there!
This city is worthy of visiting pretty much any time of year. But Chicago comes alive in the summer months, as is evident if you’ve ever searched the hashtag #summertimechi. It’s true, though, that the warm months are really the time to stop by — when the city’s architecture is at its finest, Lake Michigan beaches are busy, and festivals and events likes Lollapalooza, Taste of Chicago, and Spring Awakening are happening all over. Stay at the Chicago Marriott Marquis, a brand-new hotel that spans 40 stories overlooking Lake Michigan, downtown Chicago, and South Loop.
Bourbon Street is always the place to be, but especially this year. The city is celebrating their Tricentennial, so there are special parties, symposiums, and more happening in honor of NOLA — think special events, seminars, concerts, firework shows, hotel specials, etc. What’s more: From June 21-24, Festigals takes over NOLA for an annual festival that empowers, celebrates, and supports women of all backgrounds and champions causes related to women’s well-being. Stay at Le Méridien New Orleans, a boutique hotel with a European flair, just like the nearby French Quarter.
Our nation’s capital is an easy trip from most eastern states and is bursting with a million and one things to do — not all of which involve stuffy museums (though those are worth checking out too!). Baseball fans will be especially thrilled, as the summer’s most anticipated baseball event returns to Washington D.C. after nearly 50 years. Experience five days of exciting action, capped off by the 2018 MLB All-Star Game. Plus, The Washington Nationals and the city of DC will welcome fans from across the globe for the 2018 MLB All-Star Week festivities July 13-17. To be smack-dab in the middle of it all, stay at the Marriott Marquis Washington DC, close to top museums, exhibits, and attractions — many of which offer free admission!
Photo: South Congress Hotel
If you’re a summer-loving, live music fan, the capital city of Texas is the place to be from May to August. The city of Austin is known as the Live Music Capital of the World and offers some of the best entertainment in the state — not to mention mouthwatering eats. But aside from the good tunes and bites, Austin's many parks and lakes offer opportunities for hiking, biking, and swimming at almost any point in the year, thanks to that year-round Texas heat. Because of the charming small-town feel paired with its big city offerings, Austin has become a leading travel destination and is home to many unique and vibrant boutique hotels throughout the city. Stay in the heart of the city at the South Congress Hotel on Austin’s iconic South Congress Avenue. Some of the city’s best shopping, dining, and entertainment is on this block, so be prepared to spend some cash.
This southern California city pretty much always has nice weather, but the summer is arguably some of the finest. Health lovers will have a field day with the infinite amount of fresh-pressed juices and seasonal, plant-inspired organic foods available on every block. To balance this out, beer lovers, too, can have some fun exploring the city’s craft beer scene, which is arguably one of its greatest attributes. Specifically, Saint Archer Brewing Company, known for its Mosaic IPA and outdoorsy-culture brews, is worth a visit. For your lodging, check out Kimpton Hotel Palomar, a high-end, sophisticated spot located just steps from downtown. Among its many amenities, two worth raving about include their modern-chic pool and vibrant Mexican restaurant that’s complete with a late-night taco window.
New York City
While most of the city’s residents flee to the Hamptons for hot summer weekends, this is actually the best time of year to visit the Big Apple. Not only is it less crowded, but there’s so much going on — even if you’re on a budget. From free outdoor concerts and movies to Shakespeare in the Park at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park and food trucks and festivals, it’s safe to say you won’t have a dull moment in NYC this summer. It’s also a great time to catch a ball game or a US Open tennis match. Stay at The Standard Hotel in the always-happening Meatpacking District (home to the majority of NYC’s clubs). The hotel is also home to one of the city’s best biergartens, The Standard Biergarten, which is always a go-to spot for locals in the summer.