With the holidays in full swing, it’s easy to get caught up in the hustle, bustle and busyness of the season. If you’re looking to get away from it all for a little — or lengthy — break, here are a few ideas on where to travel this December.
Before the snow gets unbearable, book a stay at Sunset Key Cottages, A Luxury Collection Hotel, where the waters are blue and the only white you’ll see for miles is the sand on the beach. A secluded island oasis just a seven-minute boat ride from Key West, the homey cottages, which can accommodate two to eight people, come equipped with kitchens, living and dining areas, Wi-Fi (even on the porch) and other must-have amenities. Reserve the Paradise Spa Package this month for an exhilarating break filled with daily breakfast, two 50-minute spa treatments and nary a snow shovel in sight.
Celebrate the holidays at Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star Salamander Resort & Spa, in the heart of Virginia horse country. The luxurious estate offers an upscale 340-acre outdoorsman’s paradise with activities that celebrate the region’s wine country, natural surroundings and history. And while the property’s itinerary is full of Christmas cheer, you’ll also find a Healthy Holidays package through January 2 with a focus on relaxation and renewal. Work off seasonal stress (and calories) with a flow yoga class, a 50-minute spa treatment and two nights in equestrian elegance.
This month marks the beginning of a special year for Vatican City, Rome and the Catholic Church with the Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy. From December 8, 2015 to November 20, 2016, the holy year that celebrates God’s forgiveness and mercy will be acknowledged. Believers and visitors alike can enjoy dozens of special events taking place around the city, including the once-in-a-generation openings of the Holy Doors of Rome’s four major basilicas. After a long day hiking the cobblestone streets of the ancient city, Hotel Majestic Roma’s classic air and sweeping interiors are certain to welcome you. Elegant with modern amenities and an impressive outdoor terrace, Hotel Majestic Roma is a stone’s throw from the Trevi Fountain and under a 20-minute cab ride to the Vatican.
From swinging holiday classics (December 11 to 13) to a Scandinavian Christmas sing-along (December 19), take in the sounds of the season with the Minnesota Orchestra’s joyous calendar. Just minutes from the ensemble’s Orchestra Hall home sits Hotel Ivy, A Luxury Collection Hotel, a downtown Twin Cities property that’s connected to the city’s skywalk system — take that, 20-degree wind chill! The warm, boutique-style hotel provides plush room features (custom armoires, deep soaking tubs), not to mention an intimate spa, Ivy Spa Club, and rustic Italian restaurant, Monello.
Cary, North Carolina
Take part in the annual Caviar and Champagne dinner at The Umstead Hotel and Spa on December 17. The graceful gathering will begin with a tasting of caviar and champagne, followed by a three-course dinner — violet potato soup and North Carolina flounder highlight the menu — from executive chef Steven Greene that will be paired with sophisticated pours chosen by sommelier Hai Tran. The Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star hotel just outside of Raleigh-Durham is both contemporary and classic, so if you’re aiming to create memories after the meal, the Four-Star spa and a breathtaking three-acre lake can help make those happen.