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Best Beach Retreats

by Amy Azzarito

I spent this weekend with a Colombian-born friend, who used to moonlight as a D.J. and introduced me to Vamos a la playa. (Warning: This 1980s hit will get stuck in your head). This song was certainly running through mine while I was looking through all of our beach house sneak peeks. Looking through these homes I realized that you don’t need to live near the ocean to have a beach vibe at home. All you need are a few key details:

Five Steps to a Beach House Feel
1. Use a lot of white paint on the floors, walls. When it doubt, paint it white.
2. Nothing should be too precious. Most beach house owners live with an understanding that sand will find its way inside. Floors should be able to be swept and rugs, easily shaken out.
3. If the sand is coming in, you might as well bring the sea. Seashells, rope, driftwood – no porcelain knick knacks here!
4. Wicker and light wood tones maintain that casual beach house feel.
5. Take advantage of the view – position your furniture next to the window and consider leaving the windows uncovered so not to lose a single slice of that view.

OK! Now, Vamos a la playa! And if you have tips for bringing a little of the sea inside, share yours with us below! –Amy

Click through for the full post after the jump!

Image above: A Mediterranean beach house in the heart of a Cabo de Gata-Níjar Natural Park in the southeastern corner of Spain. (Just 10 minutes from the beach where Indiana Jones and the last Crusade was filmed). See all the beach house photos here.

Image above: White plays a staring role at this beach cottage just north of Sydney in an area knows as Beaches – it’s a peninsula surrounded on three sides by water. See all the photos here.

Image above: The 1950s beach cottage of Real Living editor Deborah Bibby on Sydney’s Northern Beaches. See all the photos of this Australian beach house here.

Image above: Just an hour drive from Sydney, this beach house has been in Phoebe Gazal’s family for over twenty years and has been the site numerous holidays, parties and celebrations. See all the photos here.

Image above: This mid-century beach house in Corsica is filled with nautical touches. See all the photos here.

Image above: This is the best spot in this Cinque Terre, Italy home to sit and admire the vista. See all the photos of this Italian vacation home here.

Image above: There are no curtains or blinds on the windows in this Australian beach house so that nothing can inhibit that view. See all the photos of this beautiful home here.

Image above: The breathtaking before and after of a converted railroad car in England. Don’t miss the before photos here.

Image above: The transformation of this oceanfront home in Oregon was done with a lot of sweat equity. See all the photos here.

Image above: The perfect artist beach retreat in Australia. See all the photos here.

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