As the weather gets cooler, hotels all over the world are finding inventive ways to deliver delicious food and drinks while allowing for social distancing. From properties in London to Los Cabos, we found heated igloos, secret room service menus and private culinary excursions that will keep you sated.
Peruse this list of classes, seasonal pop-ups, new eateries and food-centric events to help plan your next meal.
Fall for fondue
For the third year, Ocean House brings Swiss après-ski traditions to coastal Rhode Island with its Veuve Clicquot Fondue Village. It converted vintage gondolas into inviting dining dens with chandeliers and imported Swiss and Austrian glassware and china for a private four-course meal with plenty of champagne and melted cheese.
Indulge in French pastries
The Connaught recently debuted a rose-infused patisserie selling the London hotel’s famed pastries, including walnut financiers, Paris-Brest, St Honoré and yuzu éclairs. Keep an eye on the sculptural clock — it reveals which goodies you can expect and when, so you can be first in line for a fresh-from-the-oven pain au chocolat.
Find this hidden gem
Tucked on Conrad Washington, DC’s third floor is a leafy nook with garden-inspired fare. Hidden Terrace at the Conrad Gardens provides an à la carte menu, but head there Fridays and Saturdays for the three-course “story.” Chapter one arrives as a three-drawer jewelry box filled with crudités, cheese and charcuterie.
Warm up in an igloo
Cozy domes have taken over The Next Whisky Bar garden at The Watergate Hotel in D.C. You will want to linger in the armchairs in the six heated igloos while noshing on bacon-wrapped scallops, smoked Gouda arancini and charcuterie. For an instant warmer, order one of the excellent whisky flights.
Enjoy a garden party
Waldorf Astoria Atlanta Buckhead transformed its tranquil garden into an open-air restaurant and bar. Go to The Garden to dig into fresh, simple dishes like spinach ravioli and steak frites, and drink a Georgia Peach (jasmine-infused vodka, peach liqueur, lime and simple syrup) among the flowers, hedges and pool.
Dine in a mini greenhouse
Have a private dinner in a charming waterfront mini house at Inn at Perry Cabin in Maryland’s Eastern Shore. Watch the sun sink into the Chesapeake Bay while sampling the day’s catch — which could be rockfish, crab or oysters — and seasonal vegetables plucked from the inn’s garden or neighboring farms.
Come to a countryside celebrity-chef pop-up
Chef Daniel Boulud’s summer pop-up at Blantyre in the Berkshires was such a success that it was extended to February. Alfresco dining will continue thanks to heaters, so you can tuck into the grilled lobster tail or succulent duck breast amid the bucolic countryside. There are spaced-out indoor options, too.
Visit a new alfresco restaurant
The Peninsula Beverly Hills reinvented its terrace into Californian brasserie Le Petit Belvedere. The spot features Robert Indiana’s Love sculpture, new seating and dishes like saffron risotto croquettes and moules frites. Come for the complimentary 8 p.m. daily Laurent-Perrier toast or the weekend afternoon tea — it’s the only L.A. restaurant offering the tradition.
Sip rosé in an idyllic setting
Nestled among the trees at The Inn at Hastings Park in Lexington, Massachusetts, is the Whispering Angel Culinary Garden. Take a cooking lesson with inn owner Trisha Pérez Kennealy — a Le Cordon Bleu London chef — or sit down to an alfresco meal (like grilled baby lamb chops) with rosé under the twinkling lights.
Order from a secret menu
Bypass the usual room service staples at Kimpton’s La Peer Hotel in West Hollywood. When ordering select bottles of Veuve Clicquot, you unlock a secret menu with dishes like crab and sausage rice or sliders topped with fontina, pickles and secret sauce with a side of truffle fries.
Pick up exquisite pastries
The Langham, Chicago added a new service at its Travelle restaurant: a to-go bakery. Order ahead and pick up scrumptious pastries like almond croissants and pumpkin brown butter bread, or luscious cakes like the Memphis (banana sponge with Nutella frosting) or the Beatrix (carrot cake with cream cheese frosting).
Have dinner and a movie under the stars
Snuggle under a heated blanket at Weekapaug Inn’s Cinema Under the Stars (Saturdays, November 7 to December 19). Watch holiday favorites like Love, Actually and Elf and enjoy thermos cocktails and a three-course bento box (expect entrées like lobster mac and cheese). A roving candy cart will keep you plied with sweets throughout the movie.
Dive into poolside wine tastings
Let the wine tastings come to you at Solage, Auberge Resorts Collection. The Sip and Dip package gives you a private tasting from your own cabana-turned-dining-room overlooking the Napa hotel’s remarkable 130-foot pool. You’ll swirl, sniff and sip pours from nearby wineries like Pahlmeyer, Signorello Estate and Brian Arden Wines.
Take a culinary class
If quarantine revealed that you need to up your kitchen skills, visit Ojai Valley Inn’s The Farmhouse, a state-of-the-art indoor/outdoor culinary event space with a slate of programming featuring top chefs and sommeliers. Join socially distant classes to learn how to make breakfast classics, artisan pizza, macarons and much more.
Forage for seafood
At Esperanza, Auberge Resorts Collection’s Los Cabos beach, forage for sea urchin and crabs with the chef, who will use your haul to prepare chilpachole (Mexican seafood stew) for dinner. Or opt for an ATV ride through the desert followed by snorkeling to procure Baja’s chocolata clams for a beach picnic.
Go on a boating excursion
Even when temperatures dip, Four Seasons Hotel des Bergues Geneva offers boating excursions. Glide through the lake while indulging in fondue or raclette (a heavenly meal where you scrape melted cheese from a wheel onto everything from vegetables to meat) or bundle up and go fishing and then enjoy your catch back at the hotel restaurant.
Break for a waterfront brunch
Savor the season with an Autumn Brunch at Boston Harbor Hotel’s waterfront Rowes Wharf Sea Grille. Spiced monkey bread is slathered with maple cream cheese icing and pumpkin crème anglaise, while entrées like fall poutine (with a sunnyside-up egg, duck confit, sweet potato, Vermont cheddar curds and gravy) come with an apple cider mimosa.
Sail on a catamaran in Costa Rica
Take Casa Chameleon at Las Catalinas’ private catamaran coastal tour to explore the beaches of Portero, Prieta, Sugar Beach and Catalinas. Time it for sunset to soak up the brilliant colors during a casual dinner that includes wraps, fried beans, fresh fruit, tortilla chips with dipping sauces, and sweet and savory desserts.
Sip an over-the-top milkshake
The Venetian Resort Las Vegas’ Black Tap Vegas unveiled a newly renovated patio overlooking the canals. Sit among illuminated arches with hand-drawn graffiti inside while sipping an over-the-top milkshake, like the Cakeshake, a cake batter shake with a vanilla-frosted, rainbow-sprinkles-covered rim that’s topped with a funfetti cake slice.
Pedal to a gourmet picnic
At Montage Palmetto Bluff, set off on a bright-yellow Veuve Clicquot bike and follow the map of Lowcountry picnic spots. Once you park your blanket, nosh on fare like Benton’s ham and pimento cheese on a cathead biscuit and chocolate chip and red velvet cookies, all paired with champagne.
Try a fall-themed food truck
Nibble on black mission fig and ricotta toast with Marcona almonds, lardo and sumac from Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa’s CaliForno – Street Eats Food Truck airstream. Then order the “S’more-gasbord” kit with marshmallows, chocolate, Reese’s, graham crackers, candied bacon and fruit to make gooey treats in the nearby fire pit.