Power Picks: Summer Vacation Spots

Even though we recently welcomed the spring season, it already feels like summertime is just around the corner! For this week’s blog, we gathered a list of our Power Player’s favorite vacation spots as well as dream destinations. From the beaches in Mexico to Anchorage, Alaska, we have getaway recommendations for every type of vacation-lover!

Amy – The most beautiful trip I have ever taken was to Alaska. I flew into Anchorage to meet college friends. We caught king salmon on the Kenai river, visited Denali, stayed overnight in Talkeetna and fell asleep in the B&B listening to the glacier ice crackle and groan. We also saw a lot of majestic bald eagles (almost to the point where I was thinking, “yawn, there is another one”) and moose. There are more pilots per capita in Alaska than in any state. I’ve traveled all over the world and this is the most beautiful place on the planet.

Kiara – I love a good beach trip as much as the next girl, but sometimes I like a bit more adventure. My favorite trip that I take yearly is to New Orleans. I love the rich history and unique culture – not to mention the delicious food. You have to take a haunted history tour, have a Hurricane at Pat O’brien’s and get your tarot cards read while you’re there. There’s also plenty of live music, shows and parades, and never any shortage of entertainment.

Shelby – My family vacation to Wyoming and Montana last summer was by far my favorite! I had previously seen many photos before we left, but nothing compares to standing amid such beauty. We first stayed in Jackson Hole, Wyoming to visit Yellowstone National Park, then traveled to Whitefish, Montana for the second half of our 10-day adventure to roam around Glacier National Park. The most spectacular part of the trip was running across nearly 100 bison on our way to Grand Teton National Park. I highly recommend these destinations if you are seeking something different from your typical summer vacation!

Julia – Like many others on the team, I love going to the beach during the summer! I’ve had the pleasure of going to quite a few in the U.S. as well as abroad, but one of my favorite areas is along the Florida/Georgia coast. Amelia Island is close to Jacksonville, Florida and is a wonderful getaway with beautiful sand, nice beachfront resorts and even better seafood. Last year I went to the Destin and Seaside, Florida area and this year I am going to Mexico near Cancun! You’ll find me sipping on a drink, reading a good book and soaking up the sun.

Kortni – Take me anywhere with a beach! Growing up, my family went to different cities in Mexico each summer. Playa del Carmen, Cancun and Cozumel were our favorites. I love the massive all-inclusive resorts. They are perfect for families or small groups looking to stay safe and have access to everything needed in one location. The swim-up bars and oceanside massage booths are where you’ll find me! This summer a group of my friends and I are planning another trip to Cancun. I’m excited to go back again!

Kelly – On my list of summer destinations is the Hamptons. A few of my friends live in New York and we’ve always talked about renting a house with a group for a long weekend out in that area. It seems like the perfect place to have a relaxing vacation in a seaside town. There are tons of great beaches, as well as cute shops and restaurants to explore.

Brooke – One of the best summer trips I have ever been on was a visit to my friend in Nantucket for the Fourth of July! She grew up living there in the summer with her family, so I loved getting a real local’s perspective. All of the beaches, food and shopping are incredible! One place I would really like to visit is Martha’s Vineyard. It is very similar to Nantucket but all of the architecture and sailboats look so beautiful.

Sommer – My favorite place in the entire world is my grandparents’ lake house in Charlevoix, Michigan. Look it up – it’s one of the most beautiful places in the country! If you haven’t been to northern Michigan, add it to your list! I lived in Michigan until I was 12 years old, and most of my family still lives there. Every summer since I was in diapers (except for last summer due to the pandemic) my family has spent time at the lakehouse, whether it’s for a few days or for a month. The most enjoyable part is that almost everyone from my mom’s side of the family comes to stay at my grandparents’ house or my great aunt’s house right next door. My favorite memories at the lake growing up include playing soccer, capture the flag, Ghost in the Graveyard, frisbee, fishing, swimming in the lake, jumping on the trampoline, walking through town, looking for rocks on the beach and making smores with my parents, brothers, cousins, aunts, uncles and grandparents. Although I’m a little too old for Ghost in the Graveyard now, there’s nothing like spending time with family while enjoying the beautiful northern Michigan scenery and lakes. Not to mention, Michigan fudge and ice cream trump all.

Jennifer – If I could plan a trip immediately, it would be to Charleston, South Carolina – specifically Folly Beach. I’ll really take any trip to any beach, but if i had to choose it would be Folly Beach. I went several years ago for a quick weekend trip and I fell in love with it. Folly Beach is a picturesque surfer town with several shops, local eateries and the best ocean views. Then if you want to head into Charleston to see all of the magic that this city has to offer, it’s just a quick 20-minute car ride. I love the unique architecture and the rich history of the city. If you are looking for a girls weekend (or week!) and the perfect Instagram-worthy city, then Charleston is definitely the spot!

Avery – It’s really difficult to choose between my Birthright trip to Israel the summer of 2018 and when I studied abroad in London over the summer of 2019. However, since I am a senior at SMU and will be graduating in about six weeks, I’ll choose my SMU-in-London trip to discuss. I absolutely fell in love with London! I spent five weeks in Europe and had classes only a few days a week. On the weekends, I traveled to Dublin and all around Ireland, Scotland, Stonehenge and Salisbury. I loved the people I met, historic places I traveled to, the museums and art galleries, the sights and the food. I also enjoyed the two courses I took while there – History and Philosophy of Free Speech and Mass Media in Great Britain. I am a big lover of school and traveling, so I was so lucky to have earned scholarships that allowed me to study abroad. It was a dream come true! I fell in love with London so much so that I plan to move there to work in the PR industry at some point while I am still young and have the energy for an international move.