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
New York City hotels are pros at capturing the holiday spirit with spectacular decorations, festive experiences and a backdrop that is second to none. Here’s a roundup of eight of our favorite places to feel jolly all month long.
The Peninsula New York
The Peninsula goes all out for all ages during the countdown to Christmas. With “The Nights Before Christmas” package, kids get their very own in-room gingerbread playhouse. There’s also a candy cane scavenger hunt, gingerbread cookie decorating kit, Christmas movie library, and exclusive access to the hotel’s Sweet Shoppe. Merry-making for adults includes a window display walking tour, VIP admission to Top of the Rock, pre-opening access to Saks Fifth Avenue, and a trip to Brooklyn’s famous Dyker Heights holiday lights display.
Viceroy Central Park
Locals know that ice skating in New York is part of the holiday magic. Starting this week, Viceroy Central Park guests can take advantage of the “Holidays on Ice: Skate & Stay” package, which pairs cozy accommodations with exclusive access to NYC’s ultimate winter wonderland at the Rink at Rockefeller Center.
The Plaza Hotel
Here’s your chance to live like Kevin McCallister with the adorable “Home Alone 2” package inspired by the film. You’ll get to recreate the holiday sleepover Kevin had at The Plaza complete with an in-room, over-the-top ice cream sundae cart. To pair with the pig out, you’ll get other fun treats including a branded backpack full of the “Home Alone” DVD collection.
Lotte New York Palace
It’s time to get on the Nice — not Naughty — List. The Palace is inviting children to write letters to Santa Claus and drop them off in their North Pole mailbox up until December 25th! An early Christmas surprise follows, delivered from Santa himself.
The Standard East Village
The Alps come to the city. This hip East Village hotel has set up five yurts in the garden for some cozy fondue gatherings for 8-10 friends. These Swiss-style tents are perfect for turning your winter nights into a festive celebration through the New Year.
Crosby Street Hotel
What better way to see your favorite holiday classics than on the big screen? Enjoy cocktails and dinner while you watch “It’s a Wonderful Life,” “Elf,” and “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation” in the hotel’s plush screening room.
The Carlyle Hotel
An annual mother daughter traditions returns to this classic Art Deco hotel off Central Park just in time for the holidays. On Saturdays and Sundays through December 23, relive a childhood classic with a special “Madeline’s Tea,” named in honor of the Madeline children’s book series. The hotel’s Bemelmans Bar was named after the books’ author and the room is adorned with murals of his famous heroine Madeline. Enjoy delicious tea and treats while listening to songs from the Madeline Song Book and Tina de Varon.
Get your holiday shopping done at the Refinery hotel. All month long the hotel’s Hatbox gallery is transformed into a “La Femme” pop up shop by Young & Able. Choose from gift items by 30 women owned businesses. As a glam bonus, NOMI Beauty will be providing complimentary makeup for all hotel guests on December 7, 12 and 14.