accomodations spotlight

Unique AirBnb in Ponta Delgada with the Best View of São Miguel Island

Sometimes, I love a relaxing stay in a luxe hotel or meeting other travellers in buzzing hostels. Other times, it’s nice to unwind in a cozy, home away from home.

After scouring the internet for the perfect AirBnb on São Miguel Island, I found the Mirante Loft, the most unique AirBnb in Ponta Delgada.

Unique AirBnb in Ponta Delgada with the Best View of São Miguel Island | HallAroundtheWorld

Now I know Airbnb’s can get a bad rep sometimes, and, yes… there are a few shady properties and property owners out there. Sometimes, however, you hit the AirBnb jackpot - and that’s exactly what a stay at the Mirante Loft was for us.

After a long travel day (and by long I mean a bus from home to Malmo Central Station, a train from there to Copenhagen airport, then one flight to Lisbon and a second the Azores), we finallyyyy arrived in Ponta Delgada. A short taxi ride later, and we were checking in to the beautiful Mirante Loft.

With its nearly panoramic windows, this quiet oasis in the middle of the Atlantic offers guests beautiful views of the surrounding mountains, sea, and the pineapple farm next door. The landscape views are tastefully complemented by crisp and simplistic decorations in the interior.

Unique AirBnb in Ponta Delgada with the Best View of São Miguel Island | HallAroundtheWorld
Unique AirBnb in Ponta Delgada with the Best View of São Miguel Island | HallAroundtheWorld

The property boasts several other amenities like a sparkling white, fully equipped kitchen (a must for travellers who love cooking on the road), a washer (nice for people with laundry), a living room, dining area, TV (with netflix), a balcony, andddd (BIG plus) a shower with a view.

Thoughtful little in-house touches like a deck of cards and tea light candles put this loft at the top of my list of favorite AirBnb’s. The host Joana was also extremely kind and accommodating when we needed to check out a bit later on our final day.

Unique AirBnb in Ponta Delgada with the Best View of São Miguel Island | HallAroundtheWorld
Unique AirBnb in Ponta Delgada with the Best View of São Miguel Island | HallAroundtheWorld

As far as amenities go, we had everything we needed here and more… except for the best weather conditions, but, from what we’ve heard, this is pretty typical on the island.

We did have nice enough weather to walk to the beach, down to the marina, and around the city for a bit, but, other than that, we spent a lot of our time just enjoying this amazing property and the incredible view from our little glass loft.

We sat on the balcony drinking 3 Euro bottles of wine, listening to music, and watching the weather change from one minute to the next. I’ve never seen such insanely temperamental and unpredictable weather patterns.

One minute, the clouds rolled in and the rain was pouring, and the next we’d put on our shades and soak up the blazing sun. It was a great spot to write, actually… and once my pen hit the paper, I poured more words and thoughts from my soul to my journal than I have in ages.

Unique AirBnb in Ponta Delgada with the Best View of São Miguel Island | HallAroundtheWorld

ANYWAY, back to the property.

As much as I’ve been raving about the interior of this place… the exterior isn’t half bad either… and by that I mean it’s pretty freakin’ fantastic. The grounds are calm, quiet, and FILLED with greenery.

The loft itself is also covered in bright green, viney plants.

If you know me, you know I’m a hugeeeee plant lover - so, yes… these green walls mighttt have played a major role in my booking decision. (They did… they definitely played a major role).

Unique AirBnb in Ponta Delgada with the Best View of São Miguel Island | HallAroundtheWorld
Unique AirBnb in Ponta Delgada with the Best View of São Miguel Island | HallAroundtheWorld
Unique AirBnb in Ponta Delgada with the Best View of São Miguel Island | HallAroundtheWorld

Now though the Mirante Loft DID cost a bit more per night than I typically would spend, it was totally worth it. I’m happy to report that splurging on a stay here did not disappoint.

The restaurants in Ponta Delgada are a bit far away (unless you rent a car), so we stocked up on food and drinks at the local market, and cooked our own meals (something I’d highly recommend doing anytime you have access to a kitchen so as to maximize your travel funds).

We spent money on one meal out throughout our whole stay, and the rest of the time, we saved by preparing meals in this swoon worthy (future house GOALS) kitchen.

Unique AirBnb in Ponta Delgada with the Best View of São Miguel Island | HallAroundtheWorld
Unique AirBnb in Ponta Delgada with the Best View of São Miguel Island | HallAroundtheWorld

There is so much to see and explore on São Miguel Island, but a couple of nights in Ponta Delgada at the Mirante Loft was a great starting point for us. After such a long travel day, it was nice to have a short commute from the airport to our final destination. We were able to unwind and have some quiet time before diving in to all the island has to offer.

If you’re planning to spend some time in Ponta Delgada while visiting São Miguel, I can’t recommend this AirBnb enough. Joana is an amazing host and the beautiful Mirante loft was the perfect place to stay.


BOOKING

Click here to check current rates or to book the Mirante Loft on AirBnb.

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Unique AirBnb in Ponta Delgada with the Best View of São Miguel Island | HallAroundtheWorld
Unique AirBnb in Ponta Delgada with the Best View of São Miguel Island | HallAroundtheWorld
Unique AirBnb in Ponta Delgada with the Best View of São Miguel Island | HallAroundtheWorld

Weekend Staycation at Clarion Hotel Malmö Live

At the start of March, Andrew and I both had an actual day off work. This, in itself, is a pretty rare occurrence… but what’s even more rare is that we were both off on the same day. I can literally count on one hand the number of times it has happened so far this year.

In celebration, we went full R&R mode and had a little two day Malmö staycation at Clarion Hotel Malmö Live.

Watch (for all of you visual people): Video Recap

Typically, when I have time off work (especially consecutive days), I’m the first one to hop on a bus, a train, or a plane and head off to another city. On this particular day, we had considered going across the bridge to Copenhagen for the day, but, in hindsight, it felt super nice to stay put here in Malmö.

We didn’t have the hassle of travel or the stress of packing that typically accompanies a holiday. Plus, we got to spend some quality time together out and about in Malmö - something we haven’t done nearly enough since I moved here.

Now, if you’ve never treated to yourself to a staycation (or if it’s been awhile), stop what you’re doing right now - Yes, you! Pick up your calendar and find an open date! Can’t find one?? Clear one!! Now… find yourself a nice, cozy room at one of your city’s best hotels and BOOK IT.

Done??? Perfect! - Now, here’s a little more about our staycation, and why, whether you’re a local or just visiting, I would 100% recommend checking in at the Clarion Hotel Malmö Live for yourself.

Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld

Clarion Hotel Malmö Live

Our staycation, (which started out as one day… and turned in to two), was the best start to our month. We got some much needed R&R, and, as you can see in the video, had a pretty great time. We could “go out” and “stay in” all at the same place, which was a pretty big win for us homebodies.

Even if you don’t stay the night at the hotel, you should absolutely still go by for a drink or a meal or a show… or just to lounge around in the Living Room… yes! Living Room! This place has a lot going for it, and there is always - and I mean ALWAYS - something going on.


Sleek decor + Epic Views

A couple of the many things this place has got going on are it's minimalistic, modern design and incredible city views. Basically the entire building consists of floor to ceiling windows, (which makes for some epic sunrises and even better sunsets over the Öresund Bridge).

You can’t really go wrong with any of the rooms here, but the corner rooms are phenomenal. We were in room 2000 and, aside from the couple of necessary walls, had a nearly panoramic view around the side of the building facing Central Station and the Turning Torso.

Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld

In House Dining + Bars

I was dying to go to the in-house Mexican restaurant, Eatery Social Taqueria, before staying here had even crossed my mind. I finally did… and now we can’t stay away. But that’s just one of the dining options you’ll find here.

For a more upscale dining experience, head up to the 25th floor to Kitchen and Table + SkyBar.

Both restaurants offer weekend brunches as well!

Read more: Eatery Social Taqueria

Read more: Kitchen and Table + SkyBar

Eatery Social Taqueria - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Kitchen and Table + SkyBar - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Eatery Social Taqueria - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Kitchen and Table + SkyBar - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Eatery Social Taqueria - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Kitchen and Table + SkyBar - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld

And last, but certainly not least, the Living Room Bar… my personal favorite.

For casual drinks, check out this cozy bar, located just past the lobby. The comfy couches and decor will literally make you feel right at home.

These shots were taken in the morning, so it’s empty… but I promise that’s not what it usually looks like. After work and on the weekends, you’ll likely have a hard time finding a free seat!

Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld

Concerts + Exhibitions + Special Events

When we stayed here, we lucked out by being here on the same night as the premiere of Cirque Du Aw - Malmö Live’s free afterwork event.

This event is a great place to let off some after work, ready for the weekend steam. There were DJs and confetti and sparklers, and it was all very 0-60, out of the office and straight to the club vibes… so prepare yourself accordingly.

Cirque du Aw is set to take place monthly, but the hotel doesn’t just host party events. They frequently have ballets, orchestras, and other performances here as well. As we waited in line for Cirque Du Aw, a very… let us say… more mature crowd, was heading to a performance upstairs. See! - Something for everyone!

Cirque Du Aw - Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Cirque Du Aw - Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Cirque Du Aw - Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld

Convenience

Not only do all of the in house dining options, events, and property perks make this a super convenient place to say… the property itself is also really well located.

It’s about a 5 minute walk from Central Station, a 30 minute commute to Copenhagen airport, and is near many of Malmö’s most beautiful scenes and attractions.

Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld

Affordablity + Amenities

Though a stay here may not fall within a backpacking budget, in my opinion, all things considered, it is well worth the money… especially if you’re planning to visit Denmark too.

Hotels in Malmö tend to be significantly cheaper than they are across the bridge in Copenhagen, and the Clarion Malmö Live is no exception. When you stay here, you can explore two cities and two countries in one go, (and save yourself a bit of money).

If all that isn’t enough to convince you to book a stay, here are a few more of my favorite photos from around the property. Peep that fitness center (and SAUNA)… and the lobby ping pong table… and the all you can eat buffet breakfast. Need I say more?

Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld

Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld

This little coastal city I’ve been calling home is so unique, and, in my opinion, a pretty underrated destination among travellers. So many people visit Copenhagen each year, but few cross the bridge over into Malmö.

Read more: Life Update + 8 Things I Love About Life in Malmö

I’m really glad I had the opportunity to relax and unwind for a bit, and found that it was nice to get out and about and be a bit of a tourist in my own town.

I’ve stayed in a lot of hotels in the past few years, but can honestly say that few compare to the Clarion Malmö Live. From the cozy lobby Living Room Bar to the roof top SkyBar and restaurant, the entire property is always buzzing… and not just with tourists.

With their special events and affordable restaurants, the Clarion Malmö Live is so much more than just a hotel. They cater to guests and locals of all ages, and have an authenticity that is undeniable.

Don’t believe me?

Come see for yourself.


Booking

To check current rates, or to book your room at Clarion Malmö Live, use the search bar below or head to their website.

Booking.com

Planning a visit to Malmö?

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Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld
Malmö Staycation - Clarion Malmö Live + HallAroundtheWorld

Checking in to the DoubleTree by Hilton Kuala Lumpur

Looking for a place to stay in Kuala Lumpur?

Look no further than the DoubleTree by Hilton Kuala Lumpur.

It is conveniently located just five minutes away from the nearest metro station, and a 10 minute walk away from the city’s famous Petronas Towers.

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The DoubleTree by Hilton KL offers its guests countless amenities and perks, but my personal favorite is the warm cookie they greet you with upon check-in… and this dessert tray wasn’t half bad either.

There are several room options ranging from basic twin bed guest rooms to king bed terrace suites, but honestly, you can’t go wrong with any of them! I stayed in a twin bed deluxe room, and had everything I needed.

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In addition to its many other features and services, the DoubleTree by Hilton KL also offers its guests a delicious complimentary breakfast and boasts five in-house bars and restaurants.

Read more about my experience at the DoubleTree by Hilton Kuala Lumpur, and view the full photo gallery here.


OTHER FEATURED ACCOMMODATIONS

Where to Stay in Hong Kong - L'étoile de Mer in Causeway Bay

If you're traveling to Hong Kong on a budget, but are willing to splurge a bit on accommodations, the futuristic L'étoile de Mer pod hotel in Causeway Bay may be the perfect place for you.

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Though you do share a room with other travellers, the personal, futuristic style pods at L'étoile de Mer are a fun alternative that give you more privacy than bunking up in a hostel dorm.

At L'étoile de Mer you can choose between two rooms - a mixed room or females only room. I opted for females only, because it was only a few extra dollars per night. In the ladies only room there are eight pods, and a spacious, shared, private bathroom with a spotless overhead shower and all of the necessary hotel amenities.

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Each pod has a door that slides open and closed and can be locked. Inside, there is a well lit mirror, retractable lap table, light and air conditioning controls, and multiple universal charging ports - (This was my favorite feature... because most budget accommodations provide you one outlet and, if you're lucky, one USB port per bunk. Staying fully charged is important)! 

Either I was exhausted from getting a few hours sleep the previous night and travelling all day, or these pods are SUPER comfortable - Though it was a little bit warm, I slept like a baby.

The location was a bit tricky to find at first, as this is a very small place and there are no signs for it on the street level. The entrance is located just beside Royal's Pub on Canon Street near the intersection with Gloucester Road. Enter code 4B to open the door and then take the elevator to the fourth floor. Once there, you'll see signs for L'étoile de Mer.

(Be prepared to check in with some form of ID on the kiosk outside the door - a license or ID card processes more quickly than a passport. The machine will then provide you with a QR code used to open the door and a key to get in to your pod).

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Despite being hard to find, L'étoile de Mer's location right in the heart of Causeway Bay is prime.

It's just a short walk away from Victoria Park, the nearby MRT station, and has a great view of the harbour! Though this is definitely no five star hotel, at less than $50 per night (depending on when you're travelling) the futuristic pods definitely make the L'étoile de Mer a quirky and fun place to stay.

If you're travelling to Hong Kong and want to stay somewhere nicer than a hostel, but less pricey than a hotel, I highly recommend L'étoile de Mer in Causeway Bay.

Click the link or the photo below to book your stay at a discounted rate!!

Where are your favorite pod hotels?

Let me know in the comments below!