There’s something magical about New York City during the holidays. There are epic Christmas trees, dazzling light displays and some of the best window shopping in the world.
Whether you’re coming for a weekend getaway or for a longer stay, these seven hotels offer plenty of seasonal spirit.
Enjoy a home-for-the holidays feeling with an extra dose of elegance when you check into this Five-Star Central Park-view stay. Holiday shoppers will adore the glamorous location just steps from Fifth Avenue (don’t miss the window displays at Saks Fifth Avenue and Bergdorf Goodman).
Theater lovers can get a helping of seasonal magic, too. Take advantage of the hotel’s Nutcracker Holiday Offer to receive exclusive access to prime seats for New York City Ballet’s annual performance of the Christmas favorite (tickets not included), plus perks like a show-themed ornament and souvenir program, pre-theater drinks at Two E Lounge (take a photo of the sugar plum fairy costumes on display at the bar) and up to 15 percent off your plush room.
For ballet-lovers looking for something a little less traditional, consider purchasing tickets to the always-popular Nutcracker Rouge (through January 26). Company XIV puts a risqué spin on Tchaikovsky’s holiday spectacle, complete with circus and burlesque performers. The Immersive Nutcracker Cocktail Fete offers another grown-up version of the seasonal story that is part improv theater, cabaret and cocktail appreciation.
This Forbes Travel Guide Recommended classic delivers luxurious accommodations and a prime location just a short walk from Rockefeller Plaza, where you’ll find the city’s most famous tree. Skirt around the figure-skating and selfie-taking crowds and head to Top of the Rock Observation Deck for amazing photo opportunities guaranteed to make your friends swoon.
After that epic sightseeing, warm up by the fire inside the hotel’s glass-enclosed rooftop lounge Upstairs at the Kimberly. This iconic bar is one of the hottest spots in town for holiday revelry, especially on December 31. Ring in the New Year in style on the rooftop with an open bar, gourmet hors d’oeuvres, decadent desserts, a champagne toast at midnight and DJ-spun tunes until 4 a.m.
Following what is sure to be an incredible night, enjoy the Holiday Hangover Brunch (available January through March), where a two-hour unlimited Bloody Mary or mimosa special keeps the vibe merry.
For a stylish stay tucked away from the seasonal revelry, check in to this Four-Star retreat where you’ll find contemporary digs, an acclaimed restaurant, a serene spa and sweeping views of Madison Square Park.
Get yourself in the holiday spirit by heading to some of the city’s most incredible light displays. Take a stroll to Hudson Yards to see Shine On, a program of seasonal spectacles centered around a larger-than-life installation illuminated every evening at 5 through a stellar show of synchronized light and sound.
To ensure you have time to take it all in, book the hotel’s Go Ahead, Stay Awhile package and receive 15 percent off your room when you book four nights or more.
This Five-Star Midtown beauty decks its halls with plenty of holiday sparkle and signature red décor, making it the perfect place to celebrate this time of year. To enhance your escape, get the Five-Star Celebration package, which includes complimentary champagne, a $500 credit to Spa de La Mer and a crystal Baccarat Zinzin Star keepsake.
Add a touch of whimsy when you snag a spot at Festive Afternoon Tea. From the classic (A Christmas Carol-themed service) to the childish (the Le Petit Prince menu with treats like coconut cake pops) to the downright opulent (champagne- and caviar-accompanied Tsar Nicholas II offering), these tea sets serve up a little extra holiday cheer.
If you’re looking for something else fun for the whole family, kids will love gliding across Central Park’s Wollman Rink, a holiday treat less than a mile from the hotel.
Boasting classic-meets-contemporary style, a rare-for-New-York indoor pool with skyline views and soaking tubs in every room, this Five-Star address makes for an ultra-luxe hideaway in Midtown.
Indulge in some Christmastime pampering with a peppermint aromatherapy massage at Four-Star Spa Nalai or opt for hands-on fun with a Gingerbread Workshop on December 19 — complete with hot cocoa and cookies, of course.
On December 24, indulge in a three-course feast in The Living Room before heading across the street to renowned Carnegie Hall for the New York String Orchestra’s annual Christmas Eve concert.
Embrace the historic charm of old New York at this Forbes Travel Guide Recommended Financial District hotel. Clink glasses in The Bar Room beneath the nine-story atrium on Christmas Eve before sitting down to a flavorful three-course dinner (potato gnocchi with chestnuts and black truffle; duck a l’orange; and a gingerbread Yule log) at acclaimed chef Tom Colicchio’s Temple Court.
This Four-Star Upper East Side staple has a see-and-be-seen kind of swagger, especially during the holidays. Snap a few family photos in front of the hotel’s elegant silver-and-white décor (the lobby’s trimmed tree is especially stunning) before sitting down for Christmas Eve dinner at Café Carlyle accompanied by live tunes from jazz singer Steve Tyrell.
On Christmas Day, Santa will be coming to The Carlyle Restaurant. While you nosh on four courses of festive cuisine, little ones can greet Old Saint Nick and even ask him for an extra night or two at the posh property.