The arrival of August indicates that the summer season is beginning its wind down. The thought of autumn’s fast approach shouldn’t have to slow down your fun, though. Before hanging up your swimsuits and sending the kids back to school, schedule one of these vacations and end the sweltering season on a high note.
Located just north of Atlanta, Château Élan is hosting its annual Vineyard Fest on August 24. A popular event for wine aficionados for the past 10 years, Vineyard Fest 2014 will feature more than 75 domestic, international and regional labels. An all-inclusive ticket provides you with the opportunity to tour the vineyard, taste the selections, stomp on some grapes and groove to a live performance from R&B band, League of Decency. Gourmands will also be happy to know that a food tent will showcase regional dishes such as pickled wild Georgia shrimp with okra and chilled celery cream with Georgia Coast caviar. Keeping with the celebratory theme, the resort is also offering overnight packages that include accommodations, a multi-course dinner for two, a special bottle of Château Élan wine, breakfast at Versailles and two tickets to the event.
Everybody loves receiving celebrity treatment. And what better place is there to vacation like a star than South Florida? Overlooking the picturesque Atlantic beaches, Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star The Ritz-Carlton, Fort Lauderdale is tempting vacationers with the aptly named Vacation Like a VIP package through the end of September. The glamorous deal features an overnight stay with a complimentary upgrade, a $100 resort credit, a $25 American Express gift card, a glass of Prosecco for two at Villagio Ristorante and more. With this gift-filled promotion, there won’t be a shortage of people getting pampered like an A-lister.
Hebru Brantley’s vibrant art is renowned by many around the globe, from pop stars (Beyoncé) and politicians (Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel). The Chicago Cultural Center is showcasing the Windy City artist’s latest exhibition, “Parade Day Rain,” through September. In the showing, Brantley employs a variety of mediums and styles, ranging from graffiti art to watercolors, for a narrative that speaks to life’s endless stream of emotions through the metaphor of rain at a parade. Familiar characters from Brantley’s previous works such as the flyboys and girls are revisited while other new characters are introduced. Make this trip a true masterpiece by staying at the Four-Star Waldorf Astoria Chicago, an Art Deco gem sitting just over a mile from the Brantley exhibit.
While staying at Five-Star The Cloister any time of year can help you achieve inner peace, the resort is taking its quest for Zen to the next level with its Be a Better You Weekend with acclaimed yogi and author Mahankirn Kaur. From August 22-25, Kaur, will lead a stress-free few days filled with private sessions, workshops and lectures. You will learn to cope with daily life challenges by using the Kundalini Yoga methods of movement, breath and mantra. Sessions are designed for all ages, abilities and fitness levels to ensure that everyone is provided with the instructions needed to maximize inner fortitude. Of course, whatever stresses Kaur’s classes can’t alleviate, the seaside retreat will almost certainly find a cure somewhere on its overflowing shelf of high-end amenities.
China’s Mid-Autumn Festival commemorates the end of the autumn harvest, and is traditionally observed by gazing at the Moon and nibbling on mooncakes. While the actual event doesn’t occur until September 8, Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong is taking part in the celestial celebration long before the big day. The Five-Star property’s Mandarin Cake Shop is currently offering a wide selection of delicacies, including mooncakes (a cookie-like treat stuffed with various sweets) and gift hampers (goodie-filled baskets). One of the most tempting items is the 1963 Mandarin mooncake hamper that comes with a bottle of limited edition Taylor’s 1963 Single Harvest Tawny Port, an assortment of mooncakes, a tin of Taste of the Legend tea and large jars of homemade XO sauce and rose petal jam.