Float in style: 10 awesome houseboats for rent

Picture this: You and 12 friends are laughing in a hot tub. The champagne is ice-cold, the sun is sinking down over a gorgeous lake, and the music is pumping from your iPod on a state-of-the-art stereo. 

Oh, and don't forget that private chef who's making you dinner while you party.

No, you're not in a dream (or in a rap video). You're just ending a perfect day aboard your rented houseboat. Instead of flying to France and renting a yacht for the week, you can rent one of these 10 amazing houseboat rentals around the world for much less than a luxury hotel would run you per night.

1. Carpe Diem

 (Harborside Rentals)

Location: Lake Travis, Austin, Texas

Cost: Starting at $6,000 for two nights, three days

The second story boasts a party pad, with a hot tub, kegerator, and full bar, while the third deck is decked out with lounge chairs for sun exposure. The captain's fees will run you $40 per hour extra. However, if you find 50 friends for the afternoon and ask them to chip in, that add-on is hardly breaking the bank.

2. Out of the Blue


Location: Lake Pleasant, Arizona

Cost: $595 per day

"We do a lot of weddings on this boat," says owner Susie Tyler, who bought and fully restored the vessel several years ago. "I rebuilt the top deck with a bar and added seven navy-and-white couches and a bar. It's now a huge lounge, essentially."

The great thing about renting Out of the Blue, besides being able to accommodate three families via six bedrooms and two full baths, is that Tyler is happy to work with any budget. "You can go to Costco and stock the boat yourself, or we will do it for you for $25 per hour. Or, we will cater the entire trip and add service staff," she says. You can stay stationary if you like or add on a captain for the four-hour trip through the narrow canyon. The journey ends in a deep-water spot for private cliff diving, near a bald eagle nesting area.

3. The Floating Villa


Location: New Orleans, Louisiana

Cost: Starting at $214 nightly

Forget going into debt to rent a dingy, cramped room with a balcony facing Bourbon Street. You can save money and live like a true bon vivant at theFloating Villa, parked on Lake Pontchartrain. The boat features a spacious rooftop party deck, flat-screen televisions, a full-size dishwasher, a washer/dryer, and a sleeping loft. It has two bedrooms and two bathrooms and can accommodate eight people. Your chariot awaits should you want to go into the French Quarter (shuttles run frequently), but you might want to take advantage of the dockside perks at Pontchartrain Landing, too. These include access to fishing and water sports, a swimming pool, a hot tub, Wi-Fi, cable, and a restaurant and bar with live entertainment.


4. The Risico


Location: Paris, France

Cost: Prices start at $3,800 weekly

You could forget you're floating on the Seine while relaxing on this boat. A main living area is designed with gleaming wood floors and white-painted walls. The air-conditioned main cabin is larger than most hotel rooms at 340 square feet, and it's comfortably furnished with two sofas, armchairs, a coffee table, bookshelves, high-speed Internet, and a sound system. You also get a full kitchen, dishwasher, two refrigerators, a washer/dryer, three full bedrooms, and two bathrooms.  The 82-foot-long houseboat is docked within walking distance of the Jardin des Tuileries, the Louvre, the Place de la Concorde, and the Champs-Élysées, so you won't need a cab or train.

5. The Pisces

 (Sleep Afloat)

Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Cost:Prices start at $175 per night for two guests  

Old City is one of Philly's most prized neighborhoods. Deemed America's most historic mile, there's plenty of reason to visit — from restaurants to architecture to shopping. Hotels will cost you a bit more here, but nearby in Penn's Landing, there's a clean and airy option that sleeps up to six guests on the water. This houseboat has a queen mattress in the master and a sleeping loft containing two twin beds. The sofa also pulls out to add another queen. The floating A-frame has a lot of light, and cooking aboard is easy in the modern, fully outfitted kitchen. The spacious main salon has a flat-screen, cable television, and you can enjoy your morning coffee at the breakfast bar or lounge with your laptop on one of two outdoor decks.

6. MV Coconuts

 (Sleep Afloat)

Location: Key West, Florida

Cost: Starting at $325 a night

Living aboard this trawler-turned-houseboat is an incredible vacation, even if you didn't have the visual beauty of South Florida's waters at your fingertips. The merry chaos of downtown's Duval Street is five miles away, giving you easy access but also removed tranquility aboard this 50-foot vessel. The marina has an infinity pool, a private beach, a restaurant, a tiki bar, a fitness center, a ship's store, and kayak rentals. MV Coconutscomes with sleeping space for eight, via three full bedrooms and a den sleeper sofa. The boat also offers 1,100 square feet of indoor living space and another 500 square feet of balcony and sun deck. Renting this boat equals discounts on the marina's daily charters, snorkeling trips, diving, fishing excursions, and paddleboarding.


7. The Excursion


Location: Lake Powell — departing from either the Bullfrog Marina in Utah or the Wahweap Marina in Page, Arizona.

Cost: A seven-day trip starts at $10,125

Due to National Park rules, only 12 people can be onboard while theExcursion is in motion, but 14 people can sleep and stay comfortably in the five staterooms, all with queen beds. The boat even comes with three queen-size foam pads for those who want the experience of sleeping under the stars on the deck. 

Seventy-five feet of luxury, this boat includes a fireplace and vaulted ceilings, a wine cooler, and a remote fuel tank for your daily water toys like Jet Skis. Pluck a nice bottle from that wine cooler and relax during sunset in the hot tub or at the onboard, outdoor wet bar.

8. The Titan


Location: Lake Shasta in Redding, California

Cost: Seven-day trip starts at $10,455

You'll board the Titan — a 65-foot, three-deck, state-of-the-art home on the water — at the Jones Valley Resort in Redding. The hot tub fits eight, the boat comfortably sleeps 22, and if you've got kids with you (or adults who love reliving childhood), then the spiral waterslide is bound to see a lot of action. After full days of enjoying the natural beauty of Lake Shasta and its surroundings, you can cook dinner in your modern kitchen and eat on the third level in the crow's-nest dining area.

9. The Christina


Location: Amsterdam

Cost:Prices start at $161 nightly

When visiting a city so tied to its tides, it's almost a no-brainer to dwell on a boat for a few nights. Dock lines and deck chairs face the busy IJ — the major waterway of the city — and the traditional houseboat sleeps four comfortably in a cozy, minimalist design with two bedrooms. A sunny kitchen and breakfast area give way to a den with two couches and a computer. Best of all is the boat's location—just a short walk from downtown. You have prime access to the city's vibrant restaurants, cafés, museums, and cinemas, as well as Haarlemmerstraat — arguably the best shopping street in the Netherlands.

10. Living the Dream

 (Rock On Rentals)

Location: Ft. Lauderdale, Florida

Cost: $6,500 per month

This houseboat is brand-new, and yours for as long as a month if you'd like. It has two levels, with hardwood floors in the main salon, barstools at the sunny kitchen island, and a breakfast-dining area. The three bedrooms and two bathrooms can accommodate a party of up to eight, and topside you can relax in either the sun or shade — obviously, with a cold drink in hand, courtesy of the wet bar. Ft. Lauderdale's main shopping and dining street, Las Olas Boulevard, is only three blocks from the boat dock, and the town's best beaches are a mere mile down the road.

More from Yahoo! Travel

Let's Go Camping — in a Teeny-Weeny Trailer

A $60 Hotel in Crete and 6 Other Hotels So Remote You Can Only Get There By Boat

Captain Your Own Boat Around the Island of Capri