The sea is swell, but fresh water lakes are all the splash without the salty aftertaste. To ease into summer, pick a great lake and make your escape. Herein, 10 spots that offer big views of smaller blue bodies.
Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge, Alberta
An ellipsis on Alberta's aquamarine Lac Beauvert since 1915, this property in Jasper National Park grew from a few luxury tents to 446 suites, and a Stanley Thompson-designed golf course. For the most luxurious lake view, book one of their two-bedroom Whistler cabins.
Hotel Palafitte, Switzerland
Overwater bungalows aren't just a tropical ocean thing; this Swiss hotel has suites on stilts above Lake Neuchâtel. They're kitted out with all the tech luxuries, but watching the sun sparkle on the lake's surface from the private terrace is entertainment enough.
Hotel Schloss-Fuschl, Austria
Built in 1450, archbishops used to retreat here, but now anybody can lap up the charms of Salzburg's Lake Fuschl. Their jetty facilitates a number of lake-centric experiences, including swimming, sunbathing, dining and even spa treatments.
Althoff Seehotel Überfahrt, Germany
On the edge of Tegernsee Lake, this hotel mixes traditional and modern--Dirndl dresses and modern art happily coexist. Request a sailing adventure, or simply watch the action from their Il Barcaiolo terrace with a glass of Gewürztraminer in hand.
Grand Hotel Tremezzo, Italy
No Lake Como invite from George Clooney, no problem. Perched on the same body of water, this palatial hotel too provides celeb-approved accommodations, the pinnacle of which is a pool that floats atop the lake, plus two others elsewhere.
Sharrow Bay Country House, England
Lake Ullswater and its surrounds inspired more than one Wordsworth poem back in the day, and she's as lovely as ever. There are 12 acres of woodland and half a mile of lakefront to feed creativity, and a Michelin star restaurant to feed the belly.
Jicaro Island Ecolodge, Nicaragua
Arrival at this island ecolodge on Lake Nicaragua involves a private boat, naturally, and the on-water trend continues with artisanal fishing from a wooden boat and sunset kayaking. Every one of its nine, lake view Casitas keeps the lake in view though.
A private road leads to this remote retreat of just 18 suites on Lake Titicaca. All-inclusive, the food doesn't travel far with trout straight from the lake and produce from nearby farms. There's an experience concierge to facilitate adventures such as treks and temple visits.
Taj Lake Palace, India
Featured in the 1983 Bond film Octopussy, this 83-room property provides 360° lake living, as it seemingly floats in the middle of man-made Lake Pichola. Built in the 16th century for Indian aristocracy, it's as opulent as it ever was with gilt mouldings and gold chandeliers.
Azur, New Zealand
The name is fitting for a lodge overlooking the vivid blue waters of Lake Wakatipu. Five minutes from Queenstown, it feels farther away. The best place to soak up the view is from the bathtub with big bay windows that open up to the outside.