Rehoboth Beach, Delaware
Gray shingles, a large front porch–At Melissa's looks like a classic beach cottage. Inside, innkeeper Melissa Clink has updated every bit of this charming, six-room bed-and-breakfast, which sits 1H blocks from the surf and in the heart of town.
Hardwood floors, contemporary art, colorful comforters, and a teddy bear on every bed create a cheery, informal ambience–just what you want in a beach house. All rooms come with a private bath.
An antique cradle in the parlor is filled with fresh beach towels. Guests can borrow sand chairs, umbrellas, and coolers with ice. Complimentary water, soda, and beer wait in the fridge.
Relax on the porch's wicker chairs; enjoy the "expanded" continental breakfast (fruit, muffins, boiled eggs, do-it-yourself waffles) in the secluded backyard.
Bottom line: If you don't own a beach house, At Melissa's is the next best thing.
At Melissa's, 800-396-8090; atmelissas.com. Room for two with breakfast and off-street parking, $195 to $285 a night in peak or shoulder season, less in off-season.