The Fourth of July offers a chance to celebrate our nation’s history, diversity and spirit. Forbes Travel Guide found 10 worthy U.S. destinations, distinct fabrics that help make up the tapestry of our 50 states. This year, usher in Independence Day atop a gorgeously restored art-deco building watching fireworks fill the sky over Lake Michigan, from the privacy of your cabin in the woods or in a living museum. But no matter where you find yourself, prepare for a memorable piece of Americana.
Celebrate the Fourth of July from the stunning rooftop of one of American history’s monumental sites: The Watergate Hotel. Watch as fireworks light up the skyline of the nation’s capital with panoramic vistas of landmarks like the Washington Monument, the Potomac River, Key and Arlington bridges and the Kennedy Center. Admission to the party includes front seats to the fireworks spectacle and an open bar, and VIP packages include food, a champagne toast and reserved seating.
The Five-Star hotel pairs Wyoming’s majestic landscapes with an equally awe-inspiring soundscape courtesy of the eight-week run of the Grand Teton Music Festival from June 30 to August 9. With talents like violinist James Ehnes, pianists Yefim Bronfman and Marc-André Hamelin, cellist Alisa Weilerstein, mezzo-soprano Kelley O’Connor, soprano Julia Bullock and mandolinist Chris Thile, the ongoing festival will surely dazzle. The Four Seasons makes attendance easy with an adjusted schedule at Westbank Grill, complimentary valet parking and post-concert cocktails at the Ascent Lounge.
The Charlotte Inn, Martha’s Vineyard
The charming antiques-filled inn radiates New England charm on the island of Martha’s Vineyard. You’ll find plentiful activities to fill your days — biking through winding trails to secret beaches, meandering through streets filled with art galleries and antique shops, whirling on the world’s oldest merry-go-round — and have the comfort of The Charlotte Inn’s living rooms, garden, library and fine dining restaurant, The Terrace, awaiting your return.
Pendry’s conversion of the 1929 landmark Carbide and Carbon Building — a shining example of art deco design — is a testament to the American spirit. The history of the building was honored by its transformation into something new, updated with current-day luxuries. The hotel’s rooftop bar and lounge Château Carbide will be ideal for watching Chicago’s fireworks show over Lake Michigan.
The Green O, Greenough, Montana
Spend Independence Day in tranquil seclusion in The Green O’s 12 modern adults-only standalone cabins tucked within the 37,000-acre Paws Up Ranch, the shared property of The Resort at Paws Up. When you want to get out for an adventure, peruse the sister resort’s activities — horseback riding, ATV ranch tours, hot-air balloon rides and more.
Although the California sun always shines on the Newport Coast, summer brings a roster of alfresco activities at The Resort at Pelican Hill. The Five-Star resort has a distinctive Italian influence, felt in design elements like the stunning circular pool, the verdant gardens and the signature restaurant, however, the spectacular view of the Pacific Ocean from the 36-hole Pelican Hill course and the pool serves as a reminder that you’ve found yourself at the edge of America the Beautiful’s shining sea.
The Four-Star hotel has played a rich role in the history of Dallas since the King family first built the estate in 1925, with no expense or opulence spared. It spent the next few decades as Dallas society’s premier address, hosting American icons such as President Franklin D. Roosevelt and playwright Tennessee Williams. In 1979, the newly formed Rosewood company purchased the Mansion, transforming it into the brand’s first hotel and one of the city’s most iconic properties, a status it still claims today.
No city better showcases America’s dynamic energy, diversity, culture and rich history than Manhattan, making it a fitting destination to usher in the Fourth. The Dominick provides an impeccable spot to celebrate with 46 floors of dazzling views of Manhattan’s skyline, an ideal downtown location for exploring — and even better shopping — and for relaxing at Terrace on 7’s outdoor pool, plush lounge chairs, private cabanas and poolside bar and restaurant.
The Four-Star hotel, designed by the Hershey family in 1933 and situated upon 300 acres of impeccably manicured gardens, serves as a living museum for the legendary American Hershey brand and family. While a stay includes free admission to the Hershey Story Museum and the Hershey Gardens, you’ll find all kinds of festivities on July Fourth weekend at Hershey Park: roller coasters, fireworks and Southern rock music courtesy of the Zac Brown Band at Hershey Park stadium guarantee fun for the whole family.
The Cherry Hill Arts & Music Waterfront Festival, Baltimore’s annual Fourth of July celebration, may lure you into the city. But the Four-Star hotel’s newly launched Live Wild with Hilton Carter Suite Experience will make you stay longer. A collaboration with esteemed interior and botanical stylist Hilton Carter — a Baltimore native — has transformed the hotel’s Harbor Suite into a verdant greenhouse with harbor and skyline views. The botanical-inspired welcome cocktail, the lavender bath soak that coordinates with the in-room plants and the signed copy of Carter’s gorgeous book ensure your experience is as alive as the greenery filling your suite.