If the Polar Vortex was any indication, we’re in for a frigid and rough winter. Below are some places from North to South of America, offering ways to warm-up this winter: from cozy fireplaces to chocolate baths and hot boozy beverages.
Finger Lakes, New York
Travelers enjoying the picturesque scenery in the Finger Lakes region of central New York have accommodation options to keep extra warm this winter. Every room in The Inns of Aurora, located on the shore of Cayuga Lake features a beautiful fireplace set into the spacious and well-appointed rooms (ten in the Inns of Aurora and seven in the E.B. Morgan House) and in the Inn’s main common areas. Perfect for the cooler nights in the region, the fireplaces bring a cozy and luxurious charm to the historic inns.
Hope Lake Lodge at Greek Peak Mountain Resort has a fantastic, towering stone fireplace in the center of the lobby reaching forty feet to the timbered ceiling. Guests remark that it is a perfect respite after a day out on the mountain! In addition, each of the nine full suites offered in the lodge are complete with both a fireplace and full kitchen with grocery services provided, ideal for preparing a warm meal or even just a cup of hot chocolate to help warm-up from the wintery weather.
New York City
With the winter sting distressing both body and spirit this season, the Guerlain Spa in the Towers of the Waldorf Astoria offers luxurious warmth and well-deserved pampering with the nourishing Winter Warm-Up treatment. Featuring a hot towel massage with moisturizing essential oils, this 50-minute service softens tense tissue, heals wind-stripped skin and promotes long-lasting relaxation during the wait for spring’s return.
Additional winter-focused treatments recommended to rehydrate skin and soothe worn muscles include the Guerlain Spa’s cleansing and moisturizing Complete Facial, stress-relieving Hot Stone Massage, and its full-body Hydrotherapy Signature Soak (an ideal add-on to any treatment). To prepare guests for the next venture in the bitter-cold, Guerlain Spa treatments always conclude with The Final Touch service inclusive of complimentary shoe shine, garment steaming and/or make-up refresh. For more information or to make a reservation, guests can visit www.guerlainspas.com.
The Grill Room at the Windsor Court Hotel in New Orleans offers two traditional, after dinner boozy beverages served tableside (Warm Brandy Milk Punch and Café Brulot), while the hotel’s lobby Cocktail Bar serves a Hot Buttered Shochu.
While the Warm Brandy Milk Punch and Café Brulot are very popular New Orleans’ after dinner drinks, its preparation varies from restaurant to restaurant, and The Grill Room has added a twist by preparing the drink via siphon. Warm Brandy Milk Punch is prepared with brandy and infused with vanilla beans, cinnamon sticks, Marigold flowers, pralines and more. Developed by Jules Alciatore in the 1890s at Antoine’s in New Orleans, the Café Brulot became popular during the Prohibition as a way to hide alcohol sales and consumption. It is also made with brandy, and infused with Cointreau and spices like cinnamon, cloves, star anise, cardamom, and orange peels.
Meanwhile at Cocktail Bar, its signature Hot Buttered Shochu is a reimagined Hot Buttered Rum, substituting a Barley-based Japanese White Whiskey, and topping it off with rich butter, cinnamon and warm vanilla – sure to warm up any imbiber.
Courtyard New Orleans Downtown/Iberville, located in the French Quarter, is helping travelers escape the brutal winter season by offering complimentary hot cocoa in the lobby whenever northern states hit frigid temperatures. During the weekdays in February, rates start as low as $139 per night. For reservations, call 1-877-703-7072.
With the rest of the nation gearing up for more bone-chilling temperatures, the idea of pitching a tent and sleeping outside doesn’t appeal to many vacationers. With year-round tepid weather in the 70’s, The Westin Hilton Head Island Resort & Spa, located in Lowcountry coast of South Carolina, has found a way to cater to those on the hunt for an adventurous, warm getaway. Offering a beachside camping experience, guests can book the Under the Lowcountry Sky adventure, in which they will be treated to a glamping experience inside the resort’s oversized luxe cabanas, while making s’mores in individual fire pits. With many comforts of a home (such as TVs and mini-fridges filled with warm beverages), guests can bring in the chilly weather with views of the Atlantic Ocean and warms treats in hand. The resort also offers an array of Lowcountry adventure excursions from standup paddle boarding yoga (SUP Yoga) in the ocean and kayaking in the island’s marshes to zip lining in massive live oaks – all while getting some rays of sunshine. Available until March 31, the package is available for $179 per night with an ocean view room with one king/two queen beds. Booking code: GLAMP
With the warmest temperatures in the country, chilly travelers can count on the Sunshine State for quick, close-to-home warm-up. To ensure guests stay toasty, these Starwood Florida resorts are coming to the rescue with hot amenities:
· The new Halotherapy room at The Westin Diplomat Resort & Spa combines hot steam with salt to mimic the environment found it a natural toasty salt cave, helping to reduce symptoms of respiratory ailments caused by winter colds or allergies. www.diplomatresort.com
· At the only Dos Caminos in Florida, guests of the Sheraton Fort Lauderdale Beach Hotel can put their palates to the test with fiery cocktails and guacamole dishes. Try the Mexican cantina’s firecracker cocktail, Del Diable, which is infused with five chiles, pineapple and passion fruit or the mango papaya habanero guacamole ($14) and bacon, chicharron and pickled jalapeños-infused guac ($14). http://www.sheratonftlauderdalebeach.com
· Hot chocolate gets a whole new twist at W Fort Lauderdale. The beachside hotspot serves up the comforting treat in the bathtub! To top off this decadent experience, the warm indulgent bath can be combined with an in-room hot chocolate pedicure from the property’s own bliss spa. http://www.wfortlauderdalehotel.com
· Along with multiple pan-seared and blackened menu items like jumbo lump crab cakes and a blackened daily market fish, The Westin Beach Resort & Spa, Fort Lauderdale’s very own Shula’s on the Beach offers the peated and smoky Islay single malt scotch from Scotland to heat things up. http://www.westinftlauderdalebeach.com
· The Westin Cape Coral Resort at Marina Village boasts multiple wood-fired menu items at its premier waterfront restaurant. Wood fired eggplant and mozzarella dip, followed by smoky wood grilled tenderloin will leave guests feeling full and toasty! http://westincapecoral.com