VRBO Bear Stay property reviews
Read about vacation rentals where VRBO employees have stayed.
At HomeAway and VRBO, we love vacation rentals—and we love to stay in them, too! Since 2003, our employees have been enjoying the amazing properties listed on our site with their families, friends--and the VRBO bear. When they get back from their vacations, they love to tell us all about their stay. Read on to get the inside scoop from employees who share your love of travel.
# 108399 Aina Nalu, Lahaina, West Maui, Maui, Hawaii, USA, 2 BR, 2 BA, CONDO
Great location, great amenities, & perfect for families.
12/19/2014 - The booking experience with Coconut Condos was top notch. They laid out the timeline of communications during the booking process. I had the access code to the condo well before our trip and they sent me several emails during my stay to make sure we had everything we needed.
The pictures reflect exactly what you are getting in the condo. Yes, the bathrooms are just as nice as they look in the pictures. The slate tiles in the shower make you feel like you are at a 5 star hotel.
The condo is in the center of everything at Lahaina. Front street and the water is a short two block walk. Anything else in Lahaina is within blocks and is an enjoyable walk. You won’t need a car unless you want to explore the island or go to the baby beach (about a 1 mile walk).
The complex has two pools, two gas BBQ’s and one hot tub. There is a nice outdoor space with a TV next to the main pool. This was a favorite spot for us to hang out in the afternoon and we met several families with kids in the same age group from around the world. We used the onsite concierge to book a dinner cruise, helicopter tour, and whale watching excursion. You get all of the amenities you would expect at a luxury resort with a fraction of the cost.
I met fellow vacationers that have been coming to the same complex for 5+ years and I certainly understand why. I will be coming back here again the next time we come to Maui.
# 450120 Keystone Village, Homestead, Keystone, Northwest, Colorado, USA, 2 BR, 2 BA, CONDO
Get ready to hit the slopes!
12/18/2014 - This condo was perfect! When I arrived, I walked into this condo, plopped down and felt right at home. The entire condo was spacious and cozy. When I awoke in the morning and finally got out of bed (talk about a comfy bed), I walked into the living room to find the big windows facing the picturesque winter mountains. The condo faces the side of the mountains where the Keystone Ski Resort is located. At night the resort actually lights up the silhouette of the mountains around. It was nice and very peaceful.
The condo itself was great. The beds were perfectly made and very comfortable. The kitchen was roomy and stocked with everything I needed. Getting connected to the internet was easy as pie. Upon my return from a long day riding my board, the fireplace kept me warm and the big screen TV kept me entertained.
The location was great! The condo sits right on the route for the free shuttle, so my trip to the ski slope was really quick, and really easy. The shuttle runs late into the night so I did not have to drive anywhere.
The condo's owner came by and left me a nice care package while I hit the slopes at Keystone that day. She could not have been nicer! If I needed her, she was there without hesitation. Before my arrival she was very on point with any information I needed. I definitely plan on staying here again the next time I decide to forego my hibernation and hit the slopes at Keystone!
# 165586 Duomo, Florence, Firenze (Florence) Province, Tuscany, Italy, Europe, 3 BR, 1 BA, APARTMENT
Stay right in the heart of Florence!!!
12/12/2014 - I cannot say enough about how thoughtful our host, Claudia, and her staff were. When we arrived, we were greeted with a welcome basket of treats. We were greeted with other surprises as well, but I won’t give away all of their secrets.
The layout of this apartment was more spacious than we had anticipated. It was decorated with festive, tasteful holiday fare (Christmas season), which was a nice touch. The apartment and each room seemed larger than the online pictures. The gem for us was the hidden, upstairs loft-style sunroom. We spent a lot of our down time there relaxing and talking about the day’s sights and adventures, as well as reading and doing some online activities. The loft was cozy, but still had plenty of space for us to relax and unwind.
During our stay, our hosts loaned us a cell phone to use for local calls. A Europe converter plus was available for our electronics to charge, so we didn’t have to bring or purchase a converter. The wi-fi connection in the apartment was strong.
The apartment is located exactly in the heart of everything that we wanted to experience in Florence. There is an excellent restaurant across the street, and a local mart literally right next door. This apartment was close to the shopping district, as well as several restaurants, bakeries, gelato shops and other eateries. Museums, water canals, and the awesome Il Duomo di Firenze were nearby, all within a 10-15 minute walk from the apartment. A low-fee credit union ATM was 3 minutes away, too, which was a huge value add for us. The train station was in walking distance, which allowed us to avoid taxi fees.
All in all, we completely enjoyed this stay. Our hosts could not have been more helpful -thank you so much!
# 484410 Grand Turk, Turks & Caicos Islands, Caribbean, 2 BR, 2 BA, BUNGALOW
Having a grand time on Grand Turk!!!
12/10/2014 - Beachside Bungalow on Grand Turk is the perfect place for an idyllic tropical getaway. The house sits directly on a secluded beach with the Caribbean as a backyard. As soon as we walked into the house, we knew this would be the perfect pre-Christmas vacation.
We enjoyed watching the sunset each evening while lying in the hammock or sipping cocktails on the patio couch. The spacious master bedroom opens directly out onto the patio with perfect views of the beach. I can't think of a more relaxing way to fall asleep each night, listening to the waves, or to wake up each morning greeted by the sun and crystal blue water.
The large, well-appointed kitchen and market within walking distance made preparing meals easy. There are also a number of local spots for daily meals and drinks. The two cruiser bikes that came with the house made getting around the island even more enjoyable.
The house also has beach chairs, games and snorkel gear. The reef is just out the back door and is full of interesting sea life. The island is fairly quiet and the locals are very friendly and accommodating. The cruise ship port is at the other end of the island so you can choose to mingle with the passengers or enjoy the peace and quiet.
Drew was easy to work with and booking the house was a breeze. Arelys, the local property manager was very helpful and answered any questions that arose. There is plenty of information about the island in an easily accessible binder and the local cell phone provided was pre-loaded with minutes.
If you are looking for a quiet, relaxing beach vacation, this is a great spot to get away and unwind.
# 222730 Waterside Village, Steamboat Springs, Northwest, Colorado, USA, 3 BR, 2 BA, TOWNHOME
Shops, restaurants and slopes are just minutes away.
12/05/2014 - A great mountain getaway! The condo is ideally situated in the downtown area and the first stop on the shuttle from the airport. The unit was fully stocked as a home away from home. The views of the mountains and river are accessible from every room. All shops and restaurants are just a few steps away and it is great to have a natural food store in the same building. The slopes are a short 10 minute free bus ride away without having to park a car. The springs pool is within walking distance and a great way to relax at the end of the day. The owners have paid a great deal of attention in providing a comfortable stay.
# 122290 San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize, Caribbean, 6 BR, 5 BA, VILLA
Ready for an adventure!
12/02/2014 - It’s true that some bears hibernate for the winter, but the VRBO bear enjoyed his December vacation in the western Caribbean at Villa Incommunicada, snorkeling and swimming off the coast of Ambergis Caye.
This villa is amazing. Three floors of very comfortable and well appointed rooms, with full kitchens stocked on request with all sorts of delicious foods. Sunrise views from patios, porches, and especially the roof top deck will greet you every morning. Watching the sunset from the cabana at the end of the dock over local rum with friends is one of the best ways to spend the beginning of an evening.
Each day brought another adventure, all organized by the concierge who lives on the property. Waking up in the morning to a delicious, prepared breakfast followed by walking the 70 or so feet to a private boat dock and immediately being able to board for snorkeling at the Hol Chan marine reserve or Shark Ray Alley is simply amazing. While bears prefer snorkeling with tropical fish, some of their friends enjoyed spending a day boating out to the Great Blue Hole for some advanced scuba diving. When you return, you’ll have your own pool to wash off the salt and sea.
While the concierge and his wife can provide you excellent meals (I recommend the Belizian stewed chicken) I also suggest making use of the outdoor grill or the three full kitchens you’ll find. With the ocean so close, it’s an easy day trip to fish or perhaps dive for lobster and conch and prepare yourself an excellent meal. Sandy beaches with picnics of fresh ceviche and fruit juices and rum are all within a short boat ride.
When you travel into town for evening fun, shopping, or the boat festival, please stop by Waruguma and enjoy some of the best pupusas this bear has ever enjoyed.
# 321790 Lift Condos, Warrior's Mark, Warrior's Mark West, Breckenridge, Northwest, Colorado, USA, 1 BR, 1 BA, CONDO
Peak 9 paradise in Breckenridge!
11/30/2014 - While some Bears prefer to eat Turkey with their families on Thanksgiving, the VRBO Bear prefers to hit the ski slopes in beautiful Breckenridge, Colorado. This condo at the base of Peak 9 was close enough to walk to the chair lift with all of our ski gear. Skiing was convenient because we did not have to deal with parking at the ski resort.
The inside of the rental was adorable! It was clean, charming, cozy, and well decorated. We immediately felt right at home and began relaxing in front of the large screen TV after a long day of travel. The living room was extremely comfortable and had all of the amenities we needed to have great time. We got so comfortable on the couch we almost went into Bear hibernation for the winter!
Upon exploring the rest of the condo we quickly realized that the owners take a great deal of pride in providing their guests with a 5 star accommodation. The condo offered everything promised in the listing and then some! The kitchen was well equipped and the bedroom was extremely comfortable. It was so cozy that we had a difficult time leaving the rental to see the beautiful sights of Breckenridge.
We spent most of our days on the slopes skiing and snowboarding at one of the best resorts in Colorado. At the end of the day we would walk back to the condo and put on our bathing suits to relax in the large hot tub. The hot tub was just a stone’s throw away from the unit. It was very clean, warm, and well maintained. There was also an amazing heated pool right next to it.
While the condo had everything we needed to cook great meals in the fully equipped kitchen, we preferred to venture to downtown Breckenridge for dinner each night. There were plenty of great dining options to choose from and we highly recommend Blue River Bistro which was one of our favorites. Downtown is only a short walk from the condo and we appreciated the nice scenery along the way.
The owners of the condo were extremely friendly and easy to communicate with. They were very quick to respond to our questions and they provided a helpful notebook inside the rental that offered a ton of great suggestions for local restaurants and activities. We would definitely stay at this condo again in the future, and cannot wait for our next trip to Breck!
# 4127 Xaman-Ha, Playacar, Playa del Carmen, Quintana Roo, Yucatan, Mayan Riviera, Mexico, 3 BR, 2 BA, CONDO
Enjoying the breathtaking views!
11/29/2014 - Xaman Ha was the perfect condo in Playa del Carmen for my friends and me. We arrived at the condo to find luxury at our footsteps. The views of the white sand beach, crystal blue water and impeccable grounds are breathtaking.
Xaman Ha condos are located right on the beach with a fantastic pool and grounds area to enjoy. The beach in front of the condo is fully equipped with comfortable beach chairs and umbrellas making it easy to enjoy the beautiful beach.
The condo was well stocked and comfortable for the 6 of us. We enjoyed the views from the balcony and the ease of getting to 5th street to hit up all the fantastic restaurants and shopping.
Xaman Ha is a fantastic place to get away with friends or family and enjoy the beaches and restaurants of Playa del Carmen. My friends and I will be back!
# 337680 Long Bay, Providenciales, Turks & Caicos Islands, Caribbean, 2 BR, 1 BA, COTTAGE
Enjoying the lounge bed on the secluded beach!
11/27/2014 - This Thanksgiving, the VRBO Bear decided the best place to spend the holiday was on a quiet, secluded beach on Providenciales, rather than watching football while stuffed with desserts. What a terrific decision!! As soon as we arrived, we were overtaken by the serenity and beauty of Long Bay. The house sits on a lot directly on the beach. There is another house next door, but still plenty of privacy.
We walked into a very clean, comfortable, and tasteful home. The first thing we did was kick off our shoes and walk out the patio door right to the beach. The beach was very clean and manicured nearly every day. There are many amenities available on the beach including kayaks, beach chairs, fire pit, and our favorite, the lounge bed. We brought our own snorkeling gear and had great diving. It’s a gentle beach, shallow, but still teeming with fish and wildlife. Many hours each day were filled by lounging beachside at Silver Palms, especially in the lounge bed!
The house has a kitchen which enabled us to cook most of our meals. We brought our own food and spices/seasonings, which is highly recommended. We bought fresh fish and cooked it on the grill located beachside as we sat next to our bonfire. Paradise!
Another huge benefit of Silver Palms Cottage is the location. This truly is a property for those that want to get away and have seclusion. That being said, it’s just a short drive to the tourist part of the island, Grace Bay, and all the restaurants and shops located on that side of the island. Because the house is on Long Bay, there is not any traffic and it’s very quiet, making it easy to melt away into full-on relaxation.
The owners are very friendly and easy to work with. If you are looking for a quiet and quaint cottage on the beach that is away from the tourists, this is a great spot for you. If you’re typically the ‘resort type’, consider this home if you want seclusion with peace and privacy. We found Silver Palms to be inviting and romantic, which was exactly what we wanted.
# 84068 Palmas del Mar, Humacao, Puerto Rico, Puerto Rico, Caribbean, 2 BR, 2 BA, CONDO
Enjoy the grounds or walk to the beach.
11/19/2014 - We loved our stay at this spacious property with stunning ocean views from the balcony and master bedroom. The community is very kid-friendly with lots of onsite activities (the swimming pool, children’s park, turtle-watching, and beach toys were all hits with our kids). The condo is walking distance from the beach, although the dragon swimming pool (with an ocean view) is where we spent most of our time.
Ramon was very welcoming, and met us at the car rental office so he could lead us on the 1-hour drive to the property. That was helpful, since driving directions in that area can be confusing. Throughout our stay, Ramon and Evelyn were very responsive to our questions. They even came by one evening (at our request) to show us how to work the electronic/electrical appliances as we were settling in. Evelyn provided all the information that was necessary, including information about a baby-sitter.
The location, Humacao, is an hour’s driving distance from all the popular tourist destinations (El Yunque, San Juan, ferry ride to Flamenco Beach). So if you are looking to be away from the crowds, this is the place for you. The community is gated and very safe.
Groceries are available at a WalMart supercenter that is 4 exits away from the property. We chose to cook at home often. The kitchen was clean and well equipped with all the appliances we needed. It also saved a lot of money for us.
The condo is in fabulous condition. The basket of treats and snacks was very useful and thoughtful, and the coloring activity books were a hit. The views from the bedroom and balcony are awesome. We saw the sunrise each day from our bed. Vieques Island can be seen on the horizon, along with a beach chock-full of coconut palms.
All amenities/appliances are available, beds comfortable, beautiful interior décor (modern themed.) Thank you Evelyn and Ramon for an excellent vacation home. We couldn’t have asked for more, 5 stars!
# 29796 Ceiba, Puerto Rico, Puerto Rico, Caribbean, 3 BR, 2 BA, HOUSE
A Puerto Rican vacation paradise.
11/18/2014 - I decided a tropical Puerto Rican vacation was just what this Bear needed most in November. When I arrived at this hidden paradise I knew it would be difficult for me to ever want to leave. The drive from the San Juan airport to the house was as easy as could be and as I pulled up to the gated driveway I was anxious to explore the well-manicured grounds and take a dip in the luxurious, pristine pool.
The expansive, incredibly gorgeous views from the house took my breath away. It felt like I was on top of the world with such a spectacular panorama of the ocean. I could even see many of the smaller islands off in the distance. At night I was spoiled by bright stars and twinkling lights from the nearby towns. Being away from the hustle and bustle, but still just a short drive away to beaches and activities (such as El Yunque National Rain Forest,) this home had the best of both worlds.
The house itself was lovely with plenty of room for me and my Bear friends. The bedrooms were spacious and we all hibernated for many hours every night in the very comfortable beds. During much of our stay we took advantage of the gourmet kitchen amenities. I sure wish all my meals could have such a magnificent ocean backdrop!
The balcony was where we spent most of our time enjoying mugs of Puerto Rican coffee in the mornings and tropical cocktails in the evenings. We loved listening to the delightful songs of the coquis welcoming us to the island.
I can’t say enough how much this Bear enjoyed his stay on the island and we want to give a Big Bear Hug to Monica. Thank you for opening up your wonderful home to us. It truly was paradise!
# 278745 Mission Bay, San Diego County, California, USA, 3 BR, 1 BA, BUNGALOW
Beautiful views and weather to match.
11/10/2014 - What a wonderful getaway weekend we had at Bungalow by the Bay! Terri was a pleasure to work with, and the home was perfect. From the moment we pulled up to see the mini beach with chairs in the front yard overlooking the bay, to the time we left, we had a great experience.
The home was stocked with everything one could need and more. The weather was beautiful, and the home lent itself nicely to enjoying the breezes with plenty of windows and doors overlooking the bay or backyard hideaway. We enjoyed several sunsets from the comfort of the front yard utilizing the mini beach setup and chairs. There is such an amazing view of the bay, cars traveling on the street frequently slow down or stop to take photos! Just a few steps away from the front door are stairs to experience the beautiful views directly on the beach.
We chose exploring by foot rather than renting a car. There were a ton of great restaurants and beach activities within a mile or two of the home. When we wanted to relax, we were able to enjoy the home amenities such as the cozy hot tub when the evening temperatures were just right. We also loved sitting on the back porch soaking in the amazing weather. Downtown was a short 15 minute cab ride. The beds were very comfortable, and the shower always had plenty of hot water. The bathroom was also well supplied with essentials.
I fell in love with San Diego and this lovely home.
# 425608 Nashville, Middle, Tennessee, USA, 3 BR, 2 BA, HOUSE
Enjoying the morning air from the porch.
11/09/2014 - My buddies and I spent our vacation in Nashville. We selected this house based on its location and size. We received all of the information in advance and the keyless locks worked like a charm. Once inside it was a great setup. Each of us had our own bedroom and all were equally nice. The house was nicely decorated nicely with a warm, comfortable feel. The home was spotlessly clean.
The owners had some personal, welcoming touches. They left my buddies and I a note on the fridge as well as suggestions for activities in the area. The kitchen was stocked with more than the basics – sodas, beer, water, snacks – all in addition to more standard food items like coffee and milk. There were also games and easy directions for wifi, tv and other amenities.
The location was near Edwin Warner and Percy Warner Parks; we had great morning runs and beautiful fall views. We enjoyed the fact that we could get to the heart of Nashville in 20 minutes as well as enjoy the bucolic area.
I highly recommend staying at this house when you’re in Nashville. This place worked well for a “guy’s weekend” and I could see it work even better for a family or a few couples that wanted to travel together.
# 209238 Hale Ili Ili, South Kihei (Kamaole I & II Beaches Area), Kihei, South Maui, Maui, Hawaii, USA, 2 BR, 2 BA, CONDO
Steps away from the ocean and what a view!
11/08/2014 - While some bears hibernate in the winter, this VRBO Bear goes to Hawaii! Upon arrival, we were greeted by Kathy, the owner of this unit and business owner of Rentals Maui, Inc. She gave us a personal tour of the unit, the surrounding property, and all of the amenities. After the usual stress of air travel, it was so nice to receive such individual attention!
So.... where to begin?! The unit itself is on the second/top floor of this small, 4-unit property. It is very quiet as it's on a small side street (Ili Ili Rd.) off of the main S. Kihei Rd., and of course, right on the ocean. The building must be fairly new because it is in very good shape, both inside and out. You can see beautiful sunsets from the lanai and hear the soft surf at night. It's perfectly situated to see the green flash, which this bear has seen several times! Hint: an elevated position (not the ocean's edge) has a better advantage!
Leaving a towel and flip-flops ("slippers" in Hawaiian!) by the pool each morning, Mrs. Bear and I walked the short distance across grass and sand to the beach with mask, snorkel, and fins in hand. Within moments, we were at the reef in front of this unit swimming with tropical fish and turtles. Yes, you can drive to lots of beautiful beaches on this island, but it sure is nice to have one right in your backyard! In fact, you can see turtles poke their heads up to breathe from the lanai! And after a swim, what's more convenient than an outdoor shower just outside the gate to the pool! Not just a showerhead, but two additional faucets to rinse your gear and feet!
The list of amenities is long for this unit (see main description) and there's not one thing we found missing or needed. Only fresh or personal items (e.g. food and the aforementioned snorkel gear) are things that you will want to get on your first day. After breakfast and morning swim, get out and see this lovely island. If you need suggestions for places to go, restaurants, or services, just ask Kathy or any of the helpful staff at Rentals Maui! Thanks to all of them, we had the perfect vacation! Mahalo!
# 308262 Lake Bob Sandlin, Piney Woods, Texas, USA, 3 BR, 2 BA, CABIN
Enjoying the Fall beauty from the porch.
11/07/2014 - When my travel companions and I arrived at the cabin on the lake, we were amazed by its natural beauty. Our first moments were spent walking out to the pier and enjoying a drink on the deck, watching the moon play on the calm lake waters, enjoying the stars and sounds of nature.
The bedrooms were comfortable and inviting. The heavy quilts were perfect to keep us warm on the cool nights. We fell into a peaceful sleep to the sounds of nature. We awoke early to watch the sunrise over the lake and even spotted some turtles swimming in the water. The comfy beds did allow us to sleep in a number of mornings, but the first one was special and we wanted to get started on enjoying our amazing property.
Late in the fall for East Texas, the trees were changing color still and beautifully stood out against the lake. We enjoyed watching the birds from the house decks and the hot tub. Late at night, we even spotted a raccoon! It was a treat to see so many animals we don’t typically find in the city.
On the few rainy days we kept ourselves entertained with the board game collection and watching old movies on the couch.
The cabin is very well kept and treasured. We found special touches throughout the cabin, small touches which made it truly feel like a home away from home.
# 378091 Belltown, Downtown, Seattle, Puget Sound, Washington State, USA, 2 BR, 2 BA, CONDO
Beautiful condo with a beautiful view!
10/27/2014 - When my travel companions and I arrived at the entrance to the Harbor Steps, we were taken aback by the beautiful modern design and luxurious allure of the building’s façade. We knew immediately that we had made the right choice in selecting this condo for our stay in downtown Seattle. Upon entering the lobby, we were greeted by a friendly concierge who provided the keys to our unit. We made our way to the elevator where I eagerly hit the button for our floor, waiting in anticipation to feast my eyes on what would be our new home for the next week. As we reached the door, I slid the key into the lock, turned it quickly and swung the door open wide (with some help from my companions, of course). They say first impressions are everything, and let me tell you, this property made quite the impression indeed.
The entry way alone made it clear that we had stumbled into something special. A few steps into the living area revealed a breathtaking, unobstructed view of Elliot Bay through the huge corner window. Ferries and barges floated by purposefully, unaware of their new admirers. The spacious room was flanked by a cozy bedroom and large bathroom (complete with washer and dryer) on the left and a grand dining area on the right. The table was set for six with exquisite dinnerware and a centerpiece that exuded elegance. Just past the dining area was a door leading out onto the patio where a cool, crisp breeze could be felt coming off the water. My companions excitedly made their way to the kitchen to investigate what they believe to be the most important room in a home. It was fully equipped with various appliances, utensils, dishes and sundries that would make short work of preparing a satisfying vacation dinner. They were ecstatic to also find a gift bag with assorted treats to help ease the tension from a long day of traveling.
The next stop was the master bedroom. I threw myself onto the giant bed and knew right away that this would be the best night’s sleep I had ever gotten away from home (which would later prove to be entirely accurate). The large dresser and closets on the opposite wall provided plenty of room for unpacking, leading to a feeling of belonging not afforded by living out of a suitcase. The attached master bathroom was equally large and the standing shower provided the perfect temperature and water pressure for a truly relaxing experience. I returned to the living room and curled up on the couch with my companions as we sat contented and comfortable, contemplating the courteous and creative custodians that concocted these conditions. We planned the following day’s excursions to Pike’s Place Market, the Seattle Art Museum and the Aquarium, all reachable with a 5 minute walk. This was a vacation we would not soon forget…
# 339330 San Luis Pass, Gulf Coast, Texas, USA, 4 BR, 3 BA, HOUSE
Just steps from the ocean!
10/27/2014 - What a relaxing beach getaway! As soon as I arrived, I walked up the stairs to take in the incredible views of the beach at sunset. The sound of the ocean waves, the setting sun across the ocean, and a drink in hand, this was the life for me!
The beach house was roomy, with more than enough space for our family of 8 (it could have easily accommodated 4 more bears). We enjoyed the huge family room and ample sized kitchen with views of the ocean; it was like being on a ship. We cooked a lovely meal with family all gathered around and even had a drink station set up without anyone stepping on any paws. We never felt crowded. After dinner, we gathered outside on the wrap around balcony to admire the stars glistening in the night sky. We even saw a few bears night fishing and hunting for crabs on the beach.
The bedrooms were roomy, with comfortable, inviting beds. I loved the fireplace and balcony off the upstairs bedroom. There was even a chiminea on the balcony for cool breezy evenings. I awoke to a beautiful sunrise and after a breakfast I ran right out onto the secluded beach, very clean and full of little shells to gather. I saw dolphins jumping, pelicans soaring, and fisherman casting their lines into the ocean. The little cubs joined me on the beach and we all played and sat for hours with hardly a soul around. The cubs loved running along the clean, sandy beach and wading in the shallow waters. It was perfect!
After a day on the beach, we came back to our great entertaining house, where we had fun sitting at the game table, playing one of the many games. We even got to brush up on our pool shark skills with the billard table upstairs.
# 387959 Rockport, Gulf Coast, Texas, USA, 3 BR, 1 BA, HOUSE
Enjoying time outdoors!
10/20/2014 - The sound of the ocean waves, the setting sun across the ocean, and a drink in hand, this was the life for us!
The beach house was roomy, with more than enough space for two of us (it could have easily accommodated 6 more bears). The Bear and his new wife stayed at Zelma's place for their honeymoon. This house is amazing, perfect to relax and unwind. We were truly fortunate because the new bride always felt that she needed to do something, but Zelma's place beckoned her to sleep in and take it easy. After the second day we were soothed into a state of honeymoon bliss.
The bedrooms were roomy, with comfortable, inviting beds. We loved the living room and the outdoor hammock and porch. The kitchen had lots of plates, cups, accessories and even a blender which made daiquiris a breeze. After our days on the beach, we came back to our great entertaining house, where we had fun sitting outside on the beautiful porch, playing one of the many games. We enjoyed watching television on a big flat screen with loads of channels.
Zelma's place is walking distance from tons of wonderful Rockport shopping and a skip from the beach. We went to the beach every day where the bear taught his new wife to fly a kite! We saw dolphins jumping, pelicans soaring, and fisherman casting their lines into the ocean. We passed the hours at many of the close restaurants and local bars. The lady bear loved running along the clean, sandy beach and wading in the shallow waters. This was the perfect getaway.
Thank you for allowing us to stay at your amazing house, we will definitely stay again!
# 52692 Harpswell (N,S,E&W), Portland & Casco Bay, Maine, USA, 2 BR, 1 BA, HOUSE
Just steps from the ocean.
10/06/2014 - Eager to return to New England with fall colors setting in, this bear was rewarded ten-fold with this Oceanside cottage on Potts Point, finally finding a relaxing retreat to view nature’s splendid beauty.
The house is amazing - situated only a few steps away from the ocean. With provided kayaks and canoes, the water front became a paradise for beachcombing, allowing access to the sometimes peninsula that appears during low tide.
Ardell greeted me with a special handwritten note, a move I found to be most touching, an invitation to enjoy the house and the full comfort of the amenities provided. The kitchen pantry was amply supplied for this amateur chef’s needs.
The sunroom provided unparalleled views for watching the sunset over the ocean and for the adventurous folks in our party, the map room and well-curated guide book provided all the staging tools needed for discovering the additional beauties of the surrounding area.
I was able to witness the history of the house by viewing photos from days gone by at the lobster pound just a few hundred feet across the causeway. Needless to say, this bear is ready to make a return to this oceanside wonder and explore more of the natural wonders that await!
# 353194 Uptown-Carrollton, New Orleans, Louisiana, USA, 4 BR, 3 BA, HOUSE
Enjoy beautiful landscaping right from the porch!
09/29/2014 - The Oulala House in the Garden District of New Orleans is absolutely magnificent. Michelle, the host, was equally great. We were greeted by her upon our arrival and given a tour of the historic house, which was beautiful and spotlessly clean. We had 12 travelers on our trip and everyone stayed comfortably. There are plenty of bathrooms and beds to be able to sleep a large number of people.
The backyard is incredibly well kept with beautiful landscaping and the pool was clean and inviting. It was a great relief from the humidity and nice to come home to each day. Michelle has provided several binders with a great amount of information on local restaurants, bars and attractions in the city, which made it easy to figure out exactly where we wanted to eat and find interesting places in the city to check out.
The house is very conveniently located, right by the trolley tracks. For around $1, you can take a 30 minute trolley ride to Canal Street, which puts you near all of the big attractions and famous restaurants in the city.
# 404136 Downtown, Austin, Hill Country, Texas, USA, 1 BR, 1 BA, CONDO
Relax in this quiet cozy condo after a busy Austin fun-filled day!
09/25/2014 - Comfy Oasis in a Vibrant Downtown!
I, VRBO Bear, arrived tired from a long flight into Austin and was thrilled to find this hip, modern condo with such comfy beds waiting for me– even the sofa bed was comfy – Nice! I choose my own entry code for the front door security, so that was easy. There was a personal note from Trey and Brandy on the kitchen bar welcoming me. I felt like a celebrity – and I guess I sort of am. Awakening refreshed, I found everything I needed to start my day, from a large shower and fluffy towels to a coffee maker with filters to a fabulous bakery only a block away.
The location is ideal for experiencing Austin’s vibrant downtown. Though I had a car, I didn’t use it. I was able to walk and pedi-cab – now that’s a cool way to get around – everywhere I wanted to go. With such a nicely equipped kitchen, my friends and I stopped at Whole Foods for fresh grouper, greens, and fingerling potatoes that we prepared ourselves. Then it was a 10-minute pedi-cab ride to Austin City Limits for some live music – Austin style. We relaxed back at the condo on the upper balcony, facing the lights of downtown, with a glass of wine (I’m older than I look), and it was magical.
The next day, I discovered a “Pecan Street” festival in downtown. We saw great art, ate at amazing food trailers, heard live music, of course, and took a stroll around Lady Bird Johnson Lake. That night we choose a restaurant from the list provided by our hosts, and took in the Austin Ballet performance of Firebird! In a word, Spectacular!
Sunday, we all slept in – comfy beds, remember? Even though we were staying downtown, it was so quiet in that condo! It was hard to leave because we had hardly begun to visit all the fun places within walking distance, but we will be back! Thanks for making a great time so easy … VRBO BEAR
# 147152 Near North Side, Near North, Chicago, Illinois, USA, 3 BR, 2 BA, CONDO
Warm and cozy!!!
09/18/2014 - What a treat it was to stay at this spacious yet cozy Chicago condo! As soon as my paw stepped inside the front door and left the hustle and bustle of the street, I felt relaxed and at home.
I was greeted by the lovely woman who owns the place, Andrea. She was very helpful and hospitable and gave me some great restaurant recommendations. As she showed me around I started getting more and more excited about my stay. The master bedroom was comfortable with plenty of closet space. The attached master bathroom was well lit with a big jacuzzi bath in between his and her sinks! The two other bedrooms had plenty of space and each had a queen size bed. The second bathroom had a large double sink vanity and a great shower. As she showed me the main living area I was pleased by how spacious it felt! I was delighted by the wall-to-wall windows and large comfortable wrap around couch. All of which was overlooked by a clean, modern kitchen stocked with free coffee and tea, and good enough for any chef looking to make a meal.
Each day when I went I went out to explore the city, it was a breeze to get downtown because the condo is right next to Lake Shore Drive. I had many great adventures shopping on the Magnificent Mile, sunning in Millennium Park, throwing pennies into Buckingham Fountain, walking along the lake, riding the ferris wheel at Navy Peer and so much more. But every day I looked forward to heading home, taking a hot shower in my clean bathroom and making some tea in the tea kettle before plopping down on the comfortable sofa in my Chicago oasis. Every morning I woke up so refreshed that I thought I had been hibernating! The beds were comfortable, and the rooms were quiet and peaceful, they were just right.
I can't say enough good things about my experience here. It was clean, well stocked, well lit and really felt like a home away from home. I'm definitely going to stay here next time I visit the windy city. Thanks Andrea!
# 326077 Padova, Veneto, Italy, Europe, 4 BR, 3 BA, VILLA
Enjoying the panoramic view!
09/13/2014 - Ca’Contea is an impeccably designed countryside villa amidst the picturesque backdrop of the tranquil Veneto Region. I recommend booking Ca’Contea if you are interested in living like a local bear of Teolo nestled in the dramatic yet serene Euganean Hills, but want a relaxing sanctuary that’s still in paw’s reach from the more popular and busy destinations like Venice, Verona, Padova, Montegrotto and Abano Terme Hot Springs, and Vicenza.
Upon arriving at our private gated property, we found ourselves in awe of the blooming rose bushes, the fruit trees (fig, pomegranate, apple, plum, etc.) and the 12 acres of vineyards. The panoramic view from the villa allowed us to escape from our hustle-bustle city lifestyle and get immersed with the calming Euganean scenery. There was even an outdoor brick oven that overwhelmed us with the sense that we were in the true heart of rustic Italy.
The historic countryside villa was completely modernized inside with a fully functioning kitchen, complete with local spices and cooking necessities. Next to the kitchen, a dramatic formal dining room was dressed to comfortably seat up to 14 bears – great for family gatherings or holiday meals.
On the lower level, there were 2 spacious living rooms full of eye-catching décor and all the comforts of home. Books, guides, maps, recommendations, comfortable sitting areas, wifi, games, and a big flat screen TV were all easily accessible.
Upon walking up the large brick stairs to the second floor, we noticed all the eclectic artwork and tastefully decorated interior as we approached 4 large bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, and a huge office – all with gorgeous views of the land.
Altogether, we are applauding Ca’Contea and we want to give Cristina a big bear hug for such a memorable lifetime experience. Thank you so much. We would love to return!
# 381655 Waipio, Hamakua Coast, Big Island, Hawaii, USA, 5 BR, 4 BA, HOUSE
Awesome view from the dining table on the lanai.
09/06/2014 - The sun was setting on Waipio Bay in a hundred different shades of pink and purple. Tree frogs were singing to one another all around us as a cool breeze blew through the house from a multitude of screened windows and doors as the VRBO Bear and his family arrived at our vacation rental Hale Io. The house was filled with traditional Hawaiian music.
Of course, since we are a family of bears, we immediately had to check out the beds! We roved excitedly all around the house and found that every room has a queen bed or bigger, each with plump pillows and a gorgeous view to wake up to. This house sleeps 10 in comfort and splendor. You have no idea how stunned you will be when you wake up in the middle of the night and see thousands of stars twinkling in the night sky!
We found the kitchen amply stocked with high quality pots, pans, utensils, dishes and knives. The pantry was stuffed with spices and the big butcher block counter invited us to make meals there. As a bonus, the grounds will provide (when in season) fresh guava, lilikoi, coconut, and grapefruit to add local flavor to your meals. But if you’re not the cook-it-yourself type, no worries! Honokaa is a 10-minute drive away and offers some great little restaurants. Whether it’s the peaceful lanai and organic ingredients at Green Market and Café or karaoke by talented locals at The Landing, the town has a little something for everyone.
The house sits on sprawling grounds with amazing views of the Waipio Bay, the black sand beach at the foot of the Waipio Valley, and Maui in the distance. Since bears are nature lovers, we hiked down to the Waipio Valley and spent a gorgeous morning on the beach. You can enjoy sitting on the beach listening to the surf, or you can go clambering over rocks to secluded overlooks. If you’re not a strong enough swimmer to brave the complex current where the river meets the ocean, you can just soak in the cool river a little upstream. It looks swifter than it is, and I can attest that sitting up to your neck in the cool river water and laying your head back on the sand is absolute bliss. The hike back to the top was tough, but there are paid shuttle vans that do the round-trip down and up from a little art gallery near Hale Io.
Hale Io genuinely feels like a home, with art on the walls and good books on the shelves and everything you could possibly need in the kitchen. The house has books and board games, a comfy pune’ to nap on, a luxurious pool and a hot tub to soak in. There are towels to take with you to the beach, bocce balls and beanbag toss games to play in the back yard, a waterslide, and outdoor showers.
Honokaa town has everything you need - a supermarket, a farmer’s market, a butcher shop, a friendly pharmacy, and a handful each of bars, restaurants and shops. We were impressed with how friendly everyone in town is, and how they all know each other by name. This town is the true essence of Aloha. It’s an hour or less to Hilo, Akaka Falls, or Kona! The Big Island is not that big, really, so Hale Io is just far enough away that you’re not living in the tourist mainstream bustle, but close enough that you can still easily get to all the sights and activities.
# 501529 Pointe West, Galveston, Gulf Coast, Texas, USA, 3 BR, 3 BA, COTTAGE
What a beautiful view!
09/05/2014 - What can I say? The VRBO Bear had a great time in Galveston thanks to this beautiful property that had everything we needed! With 6 adults and 3 kids we had plenty of room and felt right at home. We had a great time making breakfast in the kitchen every morning and dinner every night. The kitchen was lovely and had spices and pantry items already stocked. There were also many pots and pans, utensils, plates and glasses to use, we didn’t need anything else!
Access to the beach walkway is directly across the street from the house which was so convenient. It was perfect being so close to the beach and being able to walk over whenever we wanted – especially with 3 kids in tow and lots of sand toys to carry! We also went over to the Beach Club to enjoy the pool and views. It was absolutely beautiful and there was plenty of space without feeling overcrowded.
The home has a grill, which we did not use, but it was nice that it was provided just in case. There is also an outdoor shower on the back of the house which was VERY useful and we used it many times to wash off the sand from our feet after being at the beach. There are also beautiful views of the bay from the balconies on the back of the house and we got to see some beautiful sunsets.
Timo was very responsive and helpful in providing all the information we needed prior to our stay. He even sent an activity guide he created for things to do or restaurants he recommended. This beach cottage was the perfect place to get away from it all and relax on the beaches of Galveston! We had a great time and would love to go back!
# 346843 Palazzo, Gulf Resort Beach, Panama City Beach Area, Florida North West, Florida, USA, 1 BR, 2 BA, CONDO
The balcony views and breezes can't be beat.
09/04/2014 - This was our first time in Panama City and we came here to celebrate our marriage anniversary. We stayed here for 5 nights and loved every bit of it. The condo was beautiful and we enjoyed our stay here. The time we spent on the beach was unsurpassed.
The condo was well stocked and Kathy took care of even the smallest details to make sure we were comfortable and well cared for. We were pleasantly surprised to see fresh flowers awaiting us when we arrived. She even called us up to make sure we were comfortable and didn't need anything extra.
We spent hours on the balcony, enjoying the breezes and the view. We spotted dolphins, stingrays and a shark during our stay and one thing that stands out of all is the amazing view from the balcony.
The listing pictures don't do this place justice. Kathy, you have a beautiful beach condo - thank you for sharing it with us.
# 398950 Amsterdam, Netherlands, Europe, 1 BR, 1 BA, APARTMENT
Recharge and Relax!
08/25/2014 - We had been traveling through Paris and Bruges before reaching Amsterdam, but staying here was better than coming home. The apartment is located conveniently close to Amsterdam Centraal and is very easy to find. Tomoko welcomed us inside from the bustling city street. We were quickly in awe of how quiet and beautiful the 16th century lobby was in contrast to the noise and traffic just outside. After taking the elevator to the second floor, she walked us around the flat, room-by-room, and introduced all the features and nuances specific to the apartment. The home is beautifully decorated, sophisticated, and quiet (even with all the activity from the city just outside the windows). The unique slippers were a wonderful touch.
The apartment is well supplied with everything guests might need with several luxurious and comforting extras! The bedroom is very quiet, warm, and extremely comfortable: absolutely perfect after a long day of sightseeing, traveling, or a hard day’s work. The fresh ikebana and tatami space facing the large windows overlooking the water was beautiful and great for meditating. My favorite spot, however, was lounging on the couch to read or watch the activity of the city below with the windows open. They also have a fantastic collection of books on art, music, history and zen.
This apartment was like a quiet retreat with the option of diving straight into the pulse of the city. It’s a perfect escape to recharge and find your center.
# 553661 Pointe West, Galveston, Gulf Coast, Texas, USA, 3 BR, 2 BA, CONDO
What a spectacular view...Galveston at its best!
08/24/2014 - I love Pointe West, La Sirena, and Clem and Tre! The pictures do not convey the beauty and size of the unit and the spectacular view. The second I walked in the unit I gasped at the view and ran right over to the huge balcony and the view took my breath away! I have been to Galveston several times in my life and there is no place like it!
The beach was well manicured and the infinity pool and beach club made us feel like we were at a true beach resort. The amenities inside the unit were impeccable from the Henkel knife set to the Calphalon pots and pans. The unit is so spacious (much bigger than what the pictures convey) and comfortable. There was plenty for the Bear cubs to do - from the beach, to the pool, and they met other cubs to play with and ride bikes. We felt very safe and secure.
Beach toys, floats, and much more were provided. I can’t say enough how much we enjoyed our stay and how helpful Clem and Tre were with directions, arrival, and all the questions we had while we were there. We will be back next year! In my opinion if you go to Galveston this is the only place to stay!
# 67476 Truman Annex, Key West, Key West Area, Florida Keys, Florida, USA, 2 BR, 2 BA, CONDO
Key West equals Key Fun!!!!
08/23/2014 - This was our first visit to Key West and what an amazing trip it was! We arrived at this large, beautiful condominium completely stocked with amenities that made us feel right at home. Our first relaxing view of Key West was from our second floor balcony overlooking a tropical and lush flora and fauna surrounding a heated pool. Right from the beginning we knew this trip was going to be a success.
The location of our Truman Annex condo could not have been better. The central location of our unit was perfect - we were in walking distance of the most popular and beautiful attractions in Key West. The unit is a VERY short walk to Fort Zachary Taylor which had some of the best and easiest beach access in all of Key West. Staying at Mike’s beautiful unit gave us the chance to explore Key West without having to worry about a vehicle, since with this great location we could easily walk to all popular restaurants, museums, and even the most southern point of the USA!
The interior of the unit was very tropical and Florida at heart. The grill provided on the balcony gave us the chance to cook up some locally caught fish and have a more intimate dinner on the balcony. The kitchen was very spacious with plenty of amenities to help with cooking and prepping food. The unit also provided our very own blender to spice up our night with margaritas!
Mike, the owner of the unit, made himself available at all times for any questions we had about the unit or nearby attractions. He was very helpful making sure we were able to find the complex and unit when we arrived. When we come back again Mike’s unit in the Truman Annex will DEFINITELY be our number one choice to stay at. We’d like to thank Mike and his family for hosting the VRBO Bear and providing unforgettable memories that we’ll share for a long time.
# 281128 North Shore Sydney, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, South Pacific, 3 BR, 3 BA, VILLA
Check out the harbor views!
08/23/2014 - This house was fantastic, especially the wide panoramic view of the harbor. The entire back of this house is VIEW, VIEW, VIEW. You can see the glimmering ocean in almost every window. It is stunningly beautiful and made me realize what a pretty city Sydney is.
The rest of the house is quite nice as well. There is a large commercial stove in the kitchen that would make even the most serious chef happy. The living room is open and spacious with nice clean comfortable couches and an entertainment /music system anyone would love. We did not watch too much of the huge 60+ inch TV, though, because the view was outstanding and the beach was just took a short walk down the road. While we were down at the beach we noticed several nice restaurants along the shore. All are good but the Bathhouse restaurant on the ocean was our favorite.
But this review is about the house. When you go downstairs there is a kids’ room with 3 beds, a bath, a big 60 inch TV, Xbox360 and plenty of built in toys to play with. You may have a hard time getting your kids out of the house but the beach down the road usually did the trick for us.
I have saved the best for last. The owners’ retreat is fantastic and includes a reading lounge, a clean open dressing area with large closets, and a truly breathtaking view. The furnishings are nice and the bed is quite comfortable, but the view is simply historic. We found ourselves waking up slower each day just so we could lie in bed a little longer and enjoy the fantastic view.
There are many other items to mention as well - the private pool, the fantastic indoor- outdoor dining area, and the top notch furnishings.
Everything about the house was professional and easy. The property agent was fantastic and a pleasure to deal with. Mosman was an easy ferry ride into the CBD of Sydney. Close to the beach. Close to the zoo. Great neighborhood. We will certainly be looking forward to staying here again.
We very much enjoyed our stay. The house is the best vacation rental we have stayed in.
# 407415 French Quarter, New Orleans, Louisiana, USA, 0 BR, 1 BA, STUDIO
A quiet oasis at the end of Bourbon Street.
08/22/2014 - The condo was a quaint little spot that was conveniently located at the very end of Bourbon Street which made it easy to walk to everything, whether it be history or nightlife! A perfect place for two people with a lot of privacy from neighbors and any outside noise. The condo was on a really beautiful street with lots of trees and pretty houses, and made us feel right at home.
We really enjoyed the security of the building. The apartment being inside the building made us feel very secure and stowed away from the high energy of New Orleans. It was a great place to settle after a long day of great food, live music, and taking in the city with my best friend. The bed was big enough for two and the kitchen was perfect to store all of our yummy leftovers. Cindy was very helpful with the rental information, had really good nearby recommendations, and was easy to reach for questions. Definitely would stay here again!
# 34056 Village of La Jolla, La Jolla, San Diego County, California, USA, 4 BR, 3 BA, COTTAGE
Enjoying the sun & sea.
08/17/2014 - We were blown away when we arrived at this beautiful cottage with its ocean view and plentiful windows that let the sea breeze drift through the house. Its three ocean-facing patios were perfect for enjoying breakfast or the breathtaking sunset while watching the waves roll in. The view from this gorgeous house is truly spectacular.
The trail that spans most of the beachfront was right across the street and excellent for an invigorating morning jog. We loved being able to simply walk down the street and relax on one of the many beaches or use one of the supplied boogie boards to play in the surf, and the outdoor shower on the back patio was great for rinsing off the sand. In the evenings, we had our choice of cooking out on the grill, using the fantastically outfitted kitchen or walking to one of the excellent restaurants nearby. The street on which the house is nestled was very quiet at night and inviting to beach visitors, picnickers, joggers and folks walking their dogs during the day. It was convenient to have a big, secure garage for our car, as parking can be hard to come by in busy La Jolla. Unless you plan a lot of day trips into San Diego, however, a car really isn’t necessary as there are fantastic beaches, restaurants, museums and activities within walking distance of the house.
After a fun-filled day, we absolutely adored falling asleep to the sound of the crashing waves right outside our bedroom window. We had an amazing experience and we can’t wait to return!
# 458848 Mt. Crested Butte, Crested Butte Area, Southwest, Colorado, USA, 4 BR, 5 BA, HOUSE
Ahhhh, mountains and meadows. You can't beat the great outdoors!
08/16/2014 - The Alpenglow Chalet was the perfect place for the bear and her family to spend a week exploring the mountains. Our favorite thing about the house was the proximity to some of the most beautiful hiking trails we’ve been on. Crested Butte definitely lives up to its reputation as Colorado’s wildflower capital of Colorado. We loved Cary and Regina’s suggestions for hikes and made good use of the many hiking guides they keep in the house.
Returning to the fully stocked kitchen, outdoor fireplaces and hot tub after hiking was just what we needed after long days on the trails. We continued to enjoy beautiful views of the mountains from the comfort of the home, as the place is surrounded by them. There is nothing like watching the sun set over the mountains from the front deck! I would highly recommend this house to friends and family and would love to return someday.
# 305364 Paris Arrondissement 5, Paris, Ile-de-France (Paris Area), France, Europe, 1 BR, 1 BA, APARTMENT
Enjoying this charming apartment!
08/10/2014 - The moment we walked into this charming apartment we knew we were right at home. The pictures do not even do it justice. It was much larger than we expected and had an amazing view. It was nice opening up the windows and seeing all the people below but also nice to be able to close them and enjoy the quiet when needed. The building itself had an old charm that really made us feel that we were living like true Parisians. The location was absolutely perfect. There were so many great attractions and restaurants within walking distance and the metro was just around the corner. Alexandre left some great restaurant and local attraction recommendations, which we were very pleased with! We will definitely stay here again when we return to Paris in the future.
# 464676 Magens Bay, Northside, USVI - St. Thomas, Caribbean, 4 BR, 4 BA, VILLA
You just can't beat Caribbean views like this!
08/09/2014 - VRBO Bear reporting for duty! It has been a while since I’ve been to the Caribbean, and as I was browsing and daydreaming of the beach, I came across the Villa Bijoux Bleu listing and I knew I had to see this place for myself! A few quick emails with Kelle, and I had everything booked.
My travel companions and I were greeted by Shary, who led us to grab some groceries (gotta have plenty of honey and salmon around, of course) and took us to the villa. The pictures are accurate, but nothing compares to seeing it in person. The patio and courtyard are beautiful, with lush landscaping. The pool is luxurious and includes a waterfall and grotto. The outdoor kitchen is fully stocked, and we made full use of the Green Egg smoker!
The inside of the house is just as beautiful and inviting as the outside. The house is not only decorated wonderfully, but they have provided everything you could need. From towels, to cooking utensils, to coolers and beach stuff, it was all there for us to use. We spent several evenings cooking and relaxing by the pool, and it seemed like being at home, with a beautiful view of course! Speaking of the view, the entire back side of the house is a patio balcony with an amazing view of the ocean. It was easy to spend hours on the balcony, lounging in a hammock, cooled by the breeze.
We were given a packet with information about the house, and most importantly, suggestions on restaurants and activities. All of the suggestions were great. We checked out some snorkeling spots, a few beaches and as many restaurants as we could fit in. A few places of note: there is a convenience store within a short walk, a great restaurant called Thirteen just down the road from that, and Magen’s Bay, one of the most beautiful beaches in the world, is less than 10 minutes’ drive away! All of the recommendations were outstanding.
Kelle, Alfred and Shary were amazing hosts. We arrived the day after a tropical storm, and there were slight interruptions in power across the island. I was in constant communication with one of the team about status and schedules. They made us feel very comfortable and it was only a very minor inconvenience.
Overall, the house is wonderful, the staff treats you like a VIP, and the location is fabulous. I cannot recommend Villa Bijoux Bleu enough!
# 7511 Crystal Beach, Scenic Gulf Drive West, Destin Area, Florida North West, Florida, USA, 5 BR, 4 BA, HOUSE
Relaxing is style!
08/09/2014 - Upon our arrival to this vacation home in Destin, FL, we walked on to a wraparound porch and into the beach house called Sunny D. While we knew we had made a good choice early on, we immediately realized the pictures of the property just didn’t do this place justice. The bunk room with its Xbox 360 was a hit with the boy cubs. The tower room was perfect for our princess cub who wanted to get away from her little brothers. Papa and Nana Bear had their own separate casita to retire to for the night.
We enjoyed having the outdoor shower to clean up before we came inside. The wraparound porch was perfect for eating ice cream in the evenings. The bedding was heavenly.
Best of all the gear! This place is set up for a family with plenty of bear cubs. Strollers, pack n play, sand chairs, umbrellas, lots of sand toys, and even an awesome cart to tote it all down to the beach. The beach cruiser bikes were a delight to ride a block to the white sandy beaches. The place was professionally decorated but still felt like our home away from home! Everything was cub friendly which we appreciated even more since we were able to relax.
# 103436 Kaanapali Royal, Kaanapali, West Maui, Maui, Hawaii, USA, 2 BR, 2 BA, CONDO
Wow, what a view!
08/07/2014 - Wow, were the first words out of our mouths when we walked into the condo. What a view through the living room window past the Lanai and overlooking the golf course out to the Pacific Ocean; natural beauty everywhere! My son instantly ran upstairs and squealed with delight at the view from the upstairs bedroom. The condo was huge and had everything we needed and more. The King size beds were so comfy after the long plane ride. We slept like babies. The mornings were peaceful and I enjoyed my coffee every morning on the lanai overlooking the gardens while listening to the birds and the sound of the trees swaying in the wind. I haven’t been this relaxed in a very long time.
You can take a quick stroll to the beach or hop on the green trolley to Whalers Village, Kaanapali Beach or Black Rock in minutes. There are also several Luau’s to choose from just a trolley ride away or you can walk to Eco-Skyline next door and head to the mountains for Ziplining.
We like to stay active and explore and were delighted on how close this home is to everything we wanted to do. We didn’t have to spend a lot of time in the car going place to place. It was a short drive to Front Street shopping, the Maalaea Harbor, and all the natural wonders of the Island. You have to check out the Nakalele Pt Blow Hole and the Tide pools near Poelua Bay. After our long days of having fun, the condo was the perfect place to kick back, enjoy a home cooked meal and the beautiful sunsets. Whether you want to snorkel with the turtles, jump from the rocks, play in the surf, shop till you drop or RELAX, this is the Greatest Place to Escape.
# 421500 Northwest Hills, Austin, Hill Country, Texas, USA, 7 BR, 5 BA, HOUSE
A restful relaxing place for everyone!
08/02/2014 - From the moment you walk in the door of this palace and take your first glimpse of the breathtaking view, you have the distinct impression that you are now Master of the Texas Hill Country. When it was built, it was the home with the highest elevation in all of Austin and there is no doubt that this point of pride permeates the mansion and everyone who is lucky enough to stay in it.
When we arranged a friend reunion, we had no idea that such a perfect location was within our reach. Ryan, playing the role of owner-extraordinaire, was more than accommodating, communicative and genuinely welcoming to me and my friends.
Having friends in from all over the country with age ranges from 1-70 years, everyone felt at home. There was enough room for everyone to sit, eat, chat, play and relax. The kids had a blast playing in the overwhelmingly well stocked play room (puppet show, anyone?) The ping pong table was a big hit and the large natural gas grill kept our bellies full! The huge hot tub and plush patio furniture kept everyone relaxed while enjoying the indescribable Texas sunset.
Exploring and enjoying the innumerable amenities made for a treasure hunt of delight. There was something amazing to experience in every inch of this well cared for and surprisingly accessible home. Overnight accommodations were comfortably spaced for each family to relax and the living, dining and play areas made for great fellowship among the large group. This gorgeous and refined estate is without a doubt exactly where you want to stay with your family and friends on your next trip to Austin.
# 320191 Branson, Missouri, USA, 6 BR, 5 BA, COTTAGE
Everything you need for a big group AND a hot tub!
07/27/2014 - What an amazing, cozy, comfortable, and spacious home! My two tween-age friends brought me along to their family reunion! People came from Austin, Dallas and Iowa – so the Canyon Creek Cottage was the perfect meeting place. I was the only bear on the trip, but there were thirteen very nice, active, happy people who enjoyed the stay with us. The humans, ages 12 to 78 gathered together for a family reunion. The house was the perfect size for a big group with varying ages and interests (not to mention sleeping patterns!) The six beautiful, clean bedrooms, five bathrooms, HUGE kitchen, two FUN living areas, plus two outdoor spaces including hot tub and deck with grills, were ideal to keep us all entertained and spending quality time together.
My favorite spot was where my friends and I slept while we were there – on the top bunk of a queen-sized bunk bed! So fun to be on the top bunk – and the girls didn’t have to fight about who got the top bunk because it was big enough for all three of us! The owners thought of everything for my human friends. We spent time at nearby Table Rock Lake and swam at the neighborhood pool. I loved watching the family swim while I enjoyed the sun on the beach and deck. My other favorite thing was when the humans cooked, and we all ate meals together in the giant kitchen and dining area. LOTS of room for all of the clan to be together.
This cottage was perfect! We will definitely want to visit here again and stay in one of Debbie and Bruce’s beautiful homes in the “Cottages of Branson” neighborhood. We highly recommend it for you too – and don’t forget to bring along your teddy bear!
# 101536 South Zone, Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexican Riviera, Mexico, 3 BR, 3 BA, VILLA
Ahhh, the beauty of it all.
07/26/2014 - Casa Do Re Mi exceeded all expectations. From the moment we arrived until the moment we left all we could think was WOW! As soon as you enter Casa Do Re Mi you are faced with the most amazing view of the Bay of Banderas. The experience only gets better as a smiling Ivan promptly supplies the most delicious Margaritas. Ivan then invites you to sit down for a welcome dinner. The meal, prepared by Chayo, is, as every meal that followed, absolutely delicious.
On the following days Ivan helped arrange activities, supplied refreshments and kept the garden and pool tidy. Chayo prepared a succulent breakfast and dinner that we picked the day before. Sarah kept the house spotlessly clean. They made sure at every turn that this bear family had the best time possible.
Casa Do Re Mi is built in the style of a Mexican hacienda. The attention to detail in its decoration and upkeep is remarkable. The finely furnished indoors and outdoors provide everything you need to relax and enjoy the all-surrounding spectacular ocean views. Everything is beautifully maintained.
That attention to detail is also displayed by Barb the owner with her guests. We had a conversation prior to departure on the phone to go over Casa Do Re Mi. She asked us which beverages we’d like to be there for our arrival. She called us to check that everything was going well. In short, she cares about her guests having an unforgettable experience.
Across the street from the villa we relaxed and swam at the beach. The house has plentiful towels and beach toys that our bear family enjoyed. The hotel Lindo Mar across the street has an elevator for easy access to a beautiful beach with calm waters that our little bear particularly enjoyed.
We spent a lot of time swimming and laughing at the pool. Our time there was made better by Ivan’s constant supply of refreshing beverages. After fantastic dinners and deserts we were treated to mesmerizing sunsets. Our bear family has been to many places around the world but Casa Do Re Mi will forever be one of our favorites!
# 4031 South Zone, Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexican Riviera, Mexico, 6 BR, 7 BA, VILLA
A playground in paradise - all play and no stress!
07/19/2014 - In all of our family adventures, we have never had a more relaxing reunion – and it was all because of this incredible home and staff. We are a family of 11 (3 generations with 6 adults and 5 children aged 2 to 10) – and the home provided the perfect retreat for each of us. The property has something for everyone and provides space, privacy and comfort across the board. We particularly appreciated the family friendliness. We felt secure with a gated property that kept the children from wandering onto the beach or off the property. Additionally, the staff cooked child friendly meals and high chairs and pack & plays for cribs were provided. The home has several bedrooms to escape the heat with incredibly strong AC, as well as shaded areas with satellite television for the kids to take a sun break. More importantly, the natural beauty and nearby outdoor activities (steps from the back porch) kept us busy and having fun. The staff arranged for a boat to pick our entire family up on the beach in front of the home, and we went fishing (caught more than 10 bonitos in a couple of hours) and then went snorkeling near Los Arcos (a great trip for children).
The views from the master bedroom, living room and patio are unrivaled. You can see clear waters, white beaches and phenomenal sunsets. The layout of the house is great for multiple families. There is a grand common area with huge patio and views, and comfortable lounge furniture to relax and enjoy the sun or shade on the bottom floor. This area also has 2 king bedroom suites with private bathrooms, and a shared half bath. The beds were all very comfortable. The second floor has 4 bedrooms, including the master suite.
The kitchen, formal dining and living room are on the top floor – which we rarely used given how much we enjoyed the bottom floor patio (and that the upstairs does not have AC, so could get hot during the day).
Finally, the homeowner went above and beyond to be sure we had a great time. The private chef prepared every meal during our stay and the food was delightful. The house manager made drinks through the day and catered to any needs, while the maid kept the entire property spotless for the duration of our stay.
# 449900 Downtown, Austin, Hill Country, Texas, USA, 2 BR, 2 BA, HOUSE
Enjoying the sun on the patio!
07/08/2014 - I had such a nice time staying in Bob and Lisa’s comfortable and charming vacation rental that I would recommend it to any friend or person looking for a good place to stay when visiting Austin. The location is perfect: within walking distance of restaurants, stores such as Whole Foods supermarket and the lake trail as well. It is close to downtown and at the same time located in a very quiet and nice neighborhood. Coming from the Austin airport, it was easy to find even for someone who has never been in Austin and without a GPS!
Entering the home is very convenient and easy because there is a door lock with key code: no need to schedule an appointment to get the keys and no need carry extra keys. The AC was already turned on when I arrived and the temperature was cool and welcoming. The place was clean and ready for guests, very welcoming! As nice and professional as a hotel and even better because there is a kitchen, a beautiful dining area and a huge living room.
The bedrooms are spacious with very comfortable beds and enough room to store clothes and other items. The bathrooms are also quite large and beautiful.
Last but not least , there is a cute patio right beside the kitchen to have a drink or even dinner outside and 2 bikes in the garage to use on the lake trail or just wander around Austin. I also had the chance to take some yoga classes very close by as there are tons of yoga studios everywhere
# 430075 Sant Marti, Barcelona, Barcelona Province, Catalunya, Spain, Europe, 2 BR, 1 BA, APARTMENT
All the comforts of home!!!
06/28/2014 - Wow! What a great vacation in Barcelona, España! This apartment was muy perfecto for my daughter and me. We stayed one week in Barcelona for some beach time and sightseeing. This apartment provided everything we could ask for with all the necessary amenities and its wonderful location. It was located only 3 blocks to the closest subway metro station and one block to the beach. We were able to walk to the beach on many wonderful sunny days!
The owner was wonderful and prompt at answering all of our questions and truly helpful and attentive to meeting every one of our needs. He has done a great job at keeping the vacation property up to date and very cozy. The living room provided adequate space and seating for us to plan out our daily adventures and excursions around Barcelona!
I can honestly say I would recommend this property to any of my friends and family and know without a doubt they would have a great experience. The property owner is a very generous and hospitable person to work with.
# 300247 Montego Bay, Jamaica, Caribbean, 1 BR, 1 BA, APARTMENT
Living the good life!
06/27/2014 - This bear and her husband had the pleasure of staying on the beautiful northern shores of Jamaica, in the Rose Hall area. This private one-bedroom, one-bathroom condo at Palmyra offered incredible views of the ocean and tranquil surroundings throughout our stay. The condo was nicely appointed with upgraded Bosch appliances and furnishings. Being on the fifth floor, we had a lovely balcony that allowed views of the ocean, as well as the mountains. We were happy to see a washer/dryer which came in handy for wet towels and clothing. Wifi and cable television worked well, as did the dual air conditioners in the bedroom and living room. We loved the shower; great water pressure and a fabulous shower head that I am ready to install at home!
We had no trouble getting onto “island time”, waking up in the comfy king size bed, sipping Blue Mountain coffee on the balcony each morning, and lazing around the incredible pool area or swimming in the blue waters on the private beach. We had our choice of places to relax, whether it was under a palm tree on the secluded beach, one of the many pool deck chairs, or even the comfy couches under the cabana next to the pool.
To say the staff was friendly is an understatement. From the concierge to the maintenance man, Victor, all became our friends quickly during our stay. One of the gentlemen scaled a ladder to the top of a palm tree to bring us fresh coconuts. He craftily used his machete to open it up so that we could enjoy the coconut water that spilled from inside.
The location of the condo was excellent. While we had complete serenity at the resort, we had a world of fun adventures nearby. A scenic drive to Ocho Rios, or a short drive to Montego Bay’s famous Hip Strip and Doctor’s Cave Beach were all possible. Golf courses abound in this area, and they were simply exquisite and very challenging.
There were several dining options nearby, whether it was to eat authentic Jamaican food in nearby food shacks such as Scotchies or Far Out Fish, or fine dining at the Half Moon Bay Resort, just a half mile up the road, we found the possibilities were plenty. We ate ocean front on most evenings, even being so close to the water that we could put our feet in at the Chill Out Hut. We even found a delightful English pub called Robbie’s Kitchen with a wonderful staff and excellent food at the small shopping center up the road. Our most exciting find was the Café Blue, a lovely coffee shop in the Rose Hall Shoppes that served excellent coffee, sandwiches, and gelato.
Our stay in Jamaica was such a pleasant one that it was difficult to return home.
# 259384 Dundee, Willamette Valley, Oregon, USA, 3 BR, 2 BA, HOUSE
A private oasis for any bear!
06/27/2014 - Wow, what an incredibly beautiful and welcoming vacation rental. The Bear and his wife spent 4.5 days in this gorgeous home, tucked away in Portland’s wine country. From the minute we pulled into the private driveway, we were welcomed by one of the most gorgeous landscapes this bear has had the pleasure of seeing. The owners put a lot of work into their garden that surrounds the home, and the results are breathtaking.
Debbie and John do a wonderful job of making you feel like the home is your own private oasis. The house was spotless and had all of the amenities you’d hope for during a vacation: washer and dryer, a full-service kitchen, large bedrooms and bathrooms and even extra cots/mattresses for those with a large group. There’s a gym with a full basketball court and scoreboard, which is perfect for families looking to escape any rain that might roll in.
The location is perfect for those of you looking to get a little bit of everything during your stay. It’s about 40 minutes south of the city located in the small town of Dundee. We didn’t end up cooking as much as we thought because there were so many great restaurants nearby that were too good to pass up. Beautiful vineyards are all around which obviously makes it the ideal location for going to any one of the dozens of wineries within a 5 minute drive. You’re also just about an hour away from the coast! We took some time to head out to the beach to watch the waves roll in, and stopped along the way in a few of the small towns for some shopping and great food. You should also make sure you take time to travel down the historic Columbia River to catch a glimpse at some of Oregon’s famous waterfalls, which is just about an hour away.
One of the Bear’s favorite things about staying in a vacation rental home is to return to a peaceful and relaxing home at the end of a long day. This lovely home provided us with more than we could have hoped. We enjoyed sitting around the fire pit toasting marshmallows, enjoying a glass of wine while looking out over the many hills filled with grapes, harvesting some of Debbie’s delicious fruits and vegetables in her beautiful garden, and last but certainly not least, relaxing in the hot tub while taking in the views.
We hope you enjoy your stay as much as we did. We can’t wait to come back!
# 388481 Angel Fire, New Mexico, USA, 3 BR, 2 BA, CHALET
Ahhhh! The great outdoors!
06/16/2014 - Wow! What a relaxing vacation! This mountain cabin with terrific views and wildlife walking through the backyard took our breath away. The wood beams and ceiling make this open cabin feel rustic and woodsy. The open feel and tons of room helped us to settle right in. While being situated right by the golf course and a wonderful playground area, this cabin still felt like we were up in the trees. We had deer walking through the back yard and elk down the street. The wildlife in the area was just a piece of the treasure of Angel Fire.
This cabin is so close to so many wonderful things to do. Local activities like mountain biking, skiing, snowboarding, fishing and hiking. Unique experiences like feeding the Alpacas are also close by. Taos is a great day trip and offers spectacular mountain scenery along the way. For a more relaxing time, just sitting on the wrap around deck and listening to the wind in the trees made the outside world melt away.
This home made everything so easy for us. From doing laundry to extra blankets during the cold mountain nights, the experience was wonderful. This cabin offered everything we could have asked for and our vacation was truly relaxing. Thank you for letting us share your home away from home!
# 32153 Sunset Lakes, Kissimmee Central West, Kissimmee, Central-Disney-Orlando Area, Florida, USA, 4 BR, 3 BA, VILLA
Relax and relish the scenic views!
06/12/2014 - I have rave reviews for this home, the property management company, and the owner. Our flight into Orlando landed in the late evening. The detailed instructions on how to get to and into the home made it easy to get situated and unload. We woke up the next day to find ourselves in a gorgeous home with scenic views of the lake right behind us. I picked up breakfast items from the local grocery store (Publix; within 5-7 minutes away). By the time I got back, my family was already swimming around in the enclosed pool (great for summer time to keep the bugs away). The water was a bit chilly, being mid-June, even though we were in Florida. I realized I should have asked for the pool to be warmed up when Brian, the owner, asked me about it during the boarding checklist. After realizing my mistake, I gave the property management company a quick call and within a few short hours the pool heater had been turned on. WOW, what excellent service! I had to call the property management company a couple of times again with minor questions (e.g. wifi network access, the alarm battery died.) Wendy, the property manager, was pleasant, easy-going, and extremely responsive both times.
The house gave us an opportunity to unwind and relax. Whether it was the swimming, the napping in the super comfortable beds, the roomy home, or the quiet cul-de-sac that it sat on, we took full advantage of the amenities and ability to dis-engage from the real world. The home is super close to various activities like Old Town (kid’s amusement park 15 minutes away), various restaurants (5-10 minutes), and Disney Downtown (20-30 minute drive).
The home was roomy, clean, easily accessible, and just fantastic! Next time I’m in Kissimmee, I’m definitely coming back! Thank you so much for a great time.
# 442317 Paris Arrondissement 4, Paris, Ile-de-France (Paris Area), France, Europe, 0 BR, 1 BA, APARTMENT
Bonjour! Enjoying this charming apartment in a lovely Paris neighborhood!
06/09/2014 - Location! Location! Location! The Bear and his wife spent six nights at this charming studio apartment on Ile St. Louis. The apartment is located near the Seine River in the center of Paris, just a 5-minute walk from the Notre Dame Cathedral. The St Michel subway stop is a close walk away. The apartment is located on a street which is lined with bustling sidewalk cafes, delicious creperies, the famous Berthillion Ice Cream parlor, and local bread and cheese shops. There was also a convenient grocery on the street. We enjoyed strolling along the narrow street and window shopping at the cute gift shops. Each morning around 9 a.m. the cathedral across the street from the apartment rings its bells, which only adds to the charming ambience of the neighborhood. We could not have picked a better neighborhood to stay in for our first visit to Paris.
The apartment came with everything we needed and we were very comfortable during our stay. The pull-out bed was comfortable and we slept well every night. The building is very quiet and we weren’t bothered by any noise on the street below. We loved having a kitchen that allowed us to make dinner at home, complete with stove, refrigerator and microwave. The kitchen was stocked with a coffee maker, coffee filters, dishes and silverware. The bathroom was also nice with a good shower, clean towels, small washing machine and extra shelves for toiletries. The apartment features large windows that allow a great view of the street below and also curtains for privacy.
Sarah, our check-in person, met us at the apartment and was very friendly and took the time to show us all the apartment’s features, and showed us how to work the washing machine. We would highly recommend this charming studio apartment for anyone traveling to Paris.
# 398501 Wears Valley, East, Tennessee, USA, 3 BR, 3 BA, CABIN
I love the balcony! What an amazing view!
06/01/2014 - This was our first visit to the Smokey Mountain area and my first impression was a great one at Park View. The wonderful three-story cabin was fully-furnished and well-equipped to handle people of all ages. The mountain view from all four balconies was absolutely awesome. The cabin is positioned just right, close enough to the main town and yet just far enough away to feel like you have the entire mountain to yourself.
The interior of the cabin had a nice layout, looked professionally decorated and had plenty of extras. We spent a lot of time enjoying the hot tub, pool table, arcade and movie theater on the lower floor. Most days during our stay we found it difficult to leave because we enjoyed the cabin so much. The three bedrooms in the cabin were furnished with comfortable, large beds, TVs and easily accessible bathrooms. The kitchen was great for making meals and had all of the appliances necessary to do the job. The main living area was spacious and inviting and had a fantastic view of the Smokies through the large windows that span the back wall. The main balcony near the entrance to the cabin had a great view, seating around the perimeter and a fire pit. It was a great area to enjoy the view and relax each night.
The area around the cabin was very nice as well. Park View sits atop a mountain, and getting to and from the cabin was super-simple once we had our bearings of the area. The main town is filled with great restaurants and tons of attractions for all ages. The welcome information at the cabin provided recommendations and information about the area that we found most helpful.
Don, the owner of the cabin, was very helpful and proactive in making sure that we were informed about our trip, the area and the cabin itself. We truly felt that he cared and wanted our stay to be great.
From the linens to the kitchenware to the barbecue grills outside, the Park View cabin provides all of the necessities one needs to simply pack their bags for vacation and enjoy a stay in the cabin just as if it were their own home. This experience at Park View was by far one of the best vacation experiences we’ve had in a long time. We’d like to thank Don and his family for hosting the VRBO Bear and providing a ton of great memories that we’ll share for a long time.
# 447336 The Crane, St. Philip, Barbados, Caribbean, 4 BR, 5 BA, VILLA
Ahhhh! Relaxing by the pool.
05/31/2014 - When we arrived at the airport in Barbados we were greeted by the smiling face of Willie (of Emmanuel Tours cab service) holding up my name on a card. Willie was extremely hospitable and happy to assist us with all of our transportation needs throughout our vacation. He was always there whether we needed a ride into town or just to pick up groceries.
Upon arriving to the vacation home we were absolutely floored by how beautiful and picturesque the scenery was. The front door opened into a large furnished living area with couch, surround stereo system, and full kitchen. The double doors in back opened onto a large patio with an infinity pool and an unobstructed view to the ocean. We could hear the waves breaking throughout our stay which created a very peaceful and serene ambiance throughout the home. When we wanted to turn up the music and have a good time, there was an iPad connected to the stereo system within the house that allowed us to play provided music or connect our own.
All of the rooms were very spacious and most opened up to the outdoors with fantastic views of the ocean. The master had a large balcony that overlooked the ocean. In the back patio area there was a large gazebo where our entire party of 8 could sit and relax. There we found stairs leading down toward the ocean to a small terrace with a bed that sat directly over a small cliff overlooking the ocean (spectacular!). Another set of steps would take you all the way down to the ocean where, when the tide was out, you could walk on the small sandy beach and into the rock face where there were cave-like openings where we could see crabs and other small sea creatures.
There were many fun places to experience within walking distance. Cutters Deli was just down the street; Roger was a fantastic host and saw to his customers personally, even delivering items to the vacation home himself. The Rum Punch was the best I’ve ever had! The food there was AMAZING, the flying fish sandwich has to be the best lunch I’ve ever had in my life! We also had access to the Crane Hotel which had a variety of restaurants and shopping sites as well as access to one of the most beautiful beaches in the world.
This was truly one of the most memorable trips we have had and we want to thank the extremely hospitable people of Barbados and our hosts for an amazing experience.