Venice’s leafy side streets are lined with the kind of charming little bungalows that make an out-of-towner sigh, wishing they’d beaten the zeitgeist and bought one back before this quirky little beach town was trendy. A temporary cure? Perhaps a stay at the Venice Beach Eco Cottages, where three such bungalows sit, each a cozy one-room home with a white picket fence, claw-foot tub, and its own distinct, vintage style. Thoughtfully redesigned and outfitted with flea market finds by the husband-and-wife owners, the solar-powered cottages feel like miniature movie sets, with every last detail covered, including era-appropriate dishware and artwork, modern and eco-friendly appliances, and a full home theater system.
But the feeling of being a local doesn’t stop there; the cottages are just a few blocks from Abbot Kinney Boulevard, the heart of Venice’s relaxed, beachy culture, and only slightly farther from the beach itself. By the time guests check out, the local barista should know their name.
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Hidden away on a tree-lined residential street between Abbot Kinney and the beach, the Venice Beach Eco Cottages are in the perfect location for anyone who wants to experience Venice like a local. Explore the neighborhood on foot (or rental bicycle) to admire local street art, take a self-guided architectural tour of the canals, and get to know the trendy shops and restaurants along Abbot Kinney, such as Intelligentsia Coffee, Gjelina, and General Store. The legendary beach and boardwalk are still popular with surfers and skateboarders, and they're home to a colorful parade of people and sights.
Need to Know
Rooms: Three cottages. From $180. Check-in: 4 p.m.; check-out: 11 a.m. Dining options: There isn’t a restaurant, but each cottage has a fully equipped, vintage-inspired kitchen for cooking meals and staying in. The many hip restaurants, bars, and cafés on Abbot Kinney are also just a few leafy blocks away. Spa and gym details: The cottages have neither a spa nor a gym, but the beach—where shops rent bikes, surfboards, and other beachy sports equipment—is just a few blocks away, and the neighborhood is full of yoga and Pilates studios.
Who's it best for: Independent travelers who want to experience Venice like a local for at least a week. Our favorite rooms: Each of the three rooms is outfitted with the same high-end, eco-friendly amenities, but uniquely decorated according to a 1960s Paris, 1940s lake house, or Hemingway theme. The “Le Bébé” cottage (lakeside theme) has a private patio furnished with a bistro table and chairs. Good to know: There’s a reason they’re called "eco cottages." Each is entirely powered by solar energy, outfitted with nontoxic and sustainable building materials, cleaned with natural supplies, filled with organic linens and mattresses, and equipped with a whole-house water filtration system.