One Type of Lodging You Haven’t Thought of Yet

Here’s how to find the most distinctive and interesting places to stay.

My canal-facing apartment had free Wi-Fi, a kitchenette, and an expansive, comfortable white bed. The best part was the gorgeous view of Amsterdam’s shimmering, 400-year-old Lijnbaansgracht Canal. Or maybe the best part was the free breakfast in the funky communal kitchen and lounge. Or maybe it was the walkable location within the city’s canal ring.

There were a lot of best parts, I guess.

I found my lodging, Prinx Studio Apartments, via the Specialty Lodging listings on TripAdvisor, SmarterTravel’s parent company. These listings include properties that don’t fit fully into the B&B, hotel, or vacation-rental categories. From hostels to campsites to properties that seem a bit like B&Bs (but aren’t exactly), the Specialty Lodging category contains lots of interesting places to stay.

Related: 10 Hotel Fees You Should Never Pay

The Prinx accommodations aren’t the type of individually owned apartments up for rent on sites like Airbnb. Nor does Prinx qualify as a true B&B, as there is little innkeeper interaction in the self-catering facility. You’re basically left to your own devices, and you’re given a key to the front door of the building. These are short-term apartment rentals with fully stocked kitchenettes, some innkeeper guidance, and an included Continental breakfast. There are no housekeeping services.

TripAdvisor’s Specialty Lodging is where you can find accommodations that don’t fall neatly into one defined category of accommodations. It’s pretty cool.

Other accommodations listed under TripAdvisor’s Specialty Lodging tab include mountain cabins in Vermont, ranch bungalows on Hawaii’s Big Island, a floating yacht hotel in Paris, and a capsule hotel in Osaka.

(Photo: steampunkpirate via flickr/CC Attribution)

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By Caroline Costello

Caroline Costello's travel accomplishments include surviving a 2 a.m. whitewater rafting excursion in the Canadian wilderness, successfully biking from Dusseldorf to Cologne without a map, and gaining access to a covert pizza speakeasy in New Orleans.

Caroline is an active member of the Society of American Travel Writers (SATW). Her work has appeared on USA Today, the Boston Globe, AOL.com, MSNBC.com, ABC News, TODAY Travel, and CruiseCritic.com, among other publications.

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