Here’s how to have the ultimate ‘facation’ instead…

BUT, just because you can’t have a summer vacation, doesn’t mean you can’t have a FACATION. Am I right?

OK so…I’m just going to say it, and once I’ve said it, don’t be mad at me, because DEEP DOWN, you know it’s true….alright??

Summer 2020 is cancelled.

I know, I know, it sucks. I also know “air bridges” are being discussed, airlines are trying to get back on their wings and the 14 day quarantine rule *may* not last all summer, but the fact we may have to face is that the glorious holidays we had planned are almost certainly sacrificed to Covid-19.

Here’s our ultimate guide to re-imagining that summer getaway, from the comfort of your own home. So keep that annual leave and check in to Hotel Imagination.

You were meant to have… AN IBIZA RAGER

Dinner at Destino, sundowners at Experimental Beach…raving at DC10. Ahhhh, Ibiza. How we’ll miss you. But you too can recreate the magic of The White Isle at home. Just close your eyes and you can *almost” hear the bass beats and the waves on the sand…. Almost.

You will need…

To walk around in your bikini and jean shorts all day. Sorry tracksuit, you’re getting the week off. Oh, and add some glow sticks for after hours.

To go to a Zoom Rave…. Pacha Ibiza has moved online, try Queer House Party for some UK based raving or, if you are fancy enough to have VR, check out Second Life and their collection of virtual reality raves.

Get in the mood with…

Spotify has the best playlists to recreate that Ibiza feeling. Try this for daytime (faux) pool hangs (that’s you, your bikini and some rose on the balcony) and this for after dark raving, which you can blast on your best speakers.

Watch White Island, It’s All Gone Pete Tong and Kevin and Perry Go large on Amazon Prime and Ibiza and new series White Lines on Netflix to immerse yourself. You can even watch with friends with the Google Chrome extension ‘Netflix Party’

You were going to live… LA DOLCE VITA IN ITALY

Did you dream of an Italian escape this summer? Maybe it was Spaghetti vongole in Piazza Navona in Rome, reading on a sunlounger in a Bougainvillea-covered Puglian Masseria, swimming in the sea in Capri or drinking wine in Tuscany. While we reschedule the real thing for 2021, you can create a little Dolce Vita at home now…

You will need…

A great summer dress. Pointless (but pretty) wicker basket bag optional.

Some brilliant food to make you (almost) forget you’re in Britain. Check out Pasta Evangelists or try your hand at making your own with Mindful Chef. You might even want to have a go at making your own pizza, in your own pizza oven!

If you have some outside space, try some great outdoor furniture to recreate that trattoria vibe while you eat spaghetti and guzzle Aperol Spritzes outside.

Some background music. Try this Apple Music playlist for some ambiance, or this Spotify playlist which is ridiculously cheerful.

Get in the mood with…

Watch The Talented Mr Ripley, Call Me By Your Nameand A Bigger Splash on Amazon Prime or the new TV show Summertime (2020) on Netflix – all sundrenched Italian wonders.

Read Elena Ferrante’s My Brilliant Friendquartet set in and around Naples, E.M Forster’s classic A Room With A View set in Florence and Hemingway’s A Farewell to Arms for pure Italian escapism.

You were off for… A CHIC WEEKEND IN PARIS

The most romantic city on earth was maybe on your May bank holiday weekend wishlist. Sorry about that. But all those art galleries, great food, wine and fabulous shopping will still be there when we can next hop on the Eurostar. So until then, here’s how to recreate some Parisian chic at home…

You will need…

Something stripy, like a classic Breton tee. If in doubt, just wear black and ensure you constantly look thoroughly unimpressed by everything.

To have an at-home, over-zoom wine tasting. Many wine producers and bars have taken their expertise online.

To bring art home. Some of the best galleries in Paris have produced some amazing digital tours, including the Musee D’Orsay and home to the Mona Lisa; The Louvre.

Get in the mood with…

Swot up with the book How to be a Parisian by Caroline de Maigret, Anne Berest, Sophie Mas and Audrey Diwan, for all the insider know how and the ultimate guide to attaining that quintessential Gallic chic.

Watch the romantic films Before Sunset, Paris Je T’aime and the classic musical An American in Paris on Amazon Prime and the hilarious French Netflix show Call my Agent for those amazing Paris feels.

You were about to go… GREEK ISLAND HOPPING

Did you have a Big Fat Greek Summer planned? From partying in Mykonos to cruising around Crete and chilling by the pool in Santorini…Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered for a homemade Grecian retreat….

You will need…

A delicious, homemade Greek salad. Choose from one of these fantastic Hello Fresh recipes and you’ll be fooled into thinking you’re by the beach in Corfu, especially if you eat it al fresco with some delightful picnic supplies.

Make yourself a cocktail – order one in- get plenty of ice and…

…if you have a garden, why not invest in a free standing pool, or even a paddling pool for some DIY poolside bliss? Not blessed with outside space? Improvise- even if it means sticking your feet in a wash bowl of cold water, closing your eyes and drinking that cocktail. You’ll swear you were in Mykonos, not in your flat. Promise.

Get in the mood with…

Watch Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants and The Two Faces of January on Amazon Prime and, of course, Mamma Mia and Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again on NowTV. Duh.

Transport yourself to Greek island life with The Magusby John Fowles and The Destroyers by Christopher Bollen or flick through the stunning images of Assouline’s seminal Mykonos book.

Sipping cocktails on a Manhattan roof bar, cycling over the Brooklyn Bridge, shopping, more shopping and then partying at the High Line? Well the city that sleeps may be taking a tourist nap right now, but until we can live it up in the big apple again, get your NYC fix at home.

You will need…

City shorts and impossible heels a la Carrie Bradshaw even if you are, like her, just at home on your laptop.

To take an online tour of the city.

To create that NYC vibe with this classic Spotify playlist.
All while drinking a Manhattan. Which, naturally, you can have delivered, or make your own with these snazzy supplies.

Get in the mood with…

Do we even need to tell you to binge all of Sex and the City on NowTV? No. We do not. You may also want to watch classic New York set masterpieces like When Harry Met Sally and You’ve Got Mail for Manhattan feelgood vibes. Both on Netflix.

Read the heartbreaking New York set book A Little Life by Hanya Yanagiharaand Goodbye To All That, edited by Sari Botton, a beautiful collection of essays by writers who have lived in, and loved, New York.

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