Happy August! Now that summer is winding down, we’re thinking about back-to-school—and specifically, to college. This month, we’re talking about a new trend we’ve been seeing lately: Families taking special trips with their college-bound kids. And speaking of bonding travel, we’re also highlighting our recent retreat in Puerto Rico—including our top hosting tips. And finally, rounding out this edition is a great Q&A with Qatar Airways, which was recently honored with the distinction of “World’s Best Airline.” We hope the rest of your summer is fun and relaxing!
Erika Reategui and Fernando Gonzalez
This is the season for all things warm and relaxing. Whether you’re catching up with old friends over a drink at a lounge close to home, or enjoying a romantic dinner with your partner while visiting a new city, why not do so in front of a toasty fireplace? If you’re looking for a great place to go this holiday, we’ve rounded up a few of our favorite hotel lounges, spas and restaurants around the world where you can hang out fireside.
In New York:
The Lambs Club at The Chatwal Hotel
Whether you’re having dinner before a Broadway show (the restaurant offers an early three-course menu specifically for this crowd), or you’re just popping in for brunch on the weekend, aim to get a seat by the fireplace. Gifted by famed architect Stanford White—whose firm designed New York landmarks like the Washington Square Arch—when the space was still a thespian club, the fireplace is made of limestone from the 1700s. The wine list is award-winning and you’ll find everything from lunch to dinner and dessert.
In Gstaad, Switzerland:
Palace Spa at the Gstaad Palace
If you prefer massage and meditation to cocktails and heels, then head to the Palace Spa at Switzerland’s Gstaad Palace in the Alps, where wellness warriors will find a gorgeous round fireplace—perfect for relaxing in front of while you bask in that post-treatment serenity. Treatments themselves include everything from body scrubs to hot stone massage and facials, plus there’s a pool, private spa and more. Not staying at the hotel? The spa is open to the public at a day rate.
Bristol Restaurant and Bar at the Four Seasons Hotel Boston
Head to this restaurant and bar in the Four Seasons Hotel in Boston’s Back Bay, which features a fireplace—and the opportunity to warm up with a “farm fresh” cocktail like the Bugs Bunny (it includes gin, fresh carrot juice and more) or a classic favorite like a martini. Plus, there’s plenty of eats to choose from, whether you’re looking for dishes to share at the bar or a sit-down dinner or lunch in the restaurant, which offers panoramas of the city’s Public Garden.
Castanyoles at the Four Seasons Hotel Casa Medina Bogota
Who says a fireplace has to be indoors? At the Castanyoles restaurant at the Four Seasons Hotel Casa Medina Bogota in the financial district of the city, the large stone fireplace is in the outside area, with tables right in front. The restaurant, headed by chef Carmine Esposito, offers Mediterranean dishes like stuffed agnolotti, homemade lasagna and baked stone bass, with desserts like homemade ice cream and drinks that include an array of gin and tonic variations.
Scarfes Bar at the Rosewood London
Named for artist and caricaturist Gerald Scarfe, this bar at the Rosewood London hotel offers seating right in front of its fireplace. The cocktail menu includes a variety of drinks— one, Off the Market, is inspired by Prince Harry’s recent nuptials—plus, there’s lots of artwork and more than 1,000 (!) antique books on display.
Some great cocktails to consider: Try a hot toddy or mulled wine—or even a whiskey mac, especially if you’re in London. Still not sure? You can’t go wrong asking the bartender for the best drink to warm up your spirits.