There’s no place like home for the holidays—unless you can treat yourself to a hotel instead. The most festive hotels deck not only the halls, but just about anything else that gets in their way, with showstopping decorations, towering Christmas trees, and need-your-shades light spectacles sure to make your spirits bright.
Indeed, it can be a wonderful time to travel, whether you want to experience how another part of the country celebrates Christmas or just steer clear of the demands of decorating and cooking back home.
At Florida’s Boca Raton Resort, you can enjoy a beach bonfire with s’mores after ice-skating at the resort’s new rink, browsing a pop-up holiday market, and admiring its 40-foot tree flanked by palms.
Coeur d’Alene Resort in Idaho, meanwhile, turns into a watery wonderland, with a 1.5-million light show and cruise boats that transport you across the lake to Santa’s workshop. And snowfall turns up in the most unexpected of places, like the Sonoran desert, thanks to hotels that go above and beyond to wow guests each Christmas.
It’s enough to tickle that jolly red-suited fellow pink—and sure beats slurping eggnog at home on the couch.
Liberty Hotel, Boston
Six decked-out Christmas trees hang upside-down from the ceiling of the Liberty’s 90-foot rotunda. The attention-grabbing installation required workers to dangle from safety harnesses as they affixed the trees to the ceiling’s lofty rafters. It’s an inspired new spin on holiday décor—and appropriate for a building that did a 180 of its own by transforming from a jail into a luxury hotel.
Las Vegas knows how to put on a show, and no hotel does Christmas better than the Bellagio. Its famous fountains dance to special holiday tunes, and festive decorations take over the Bellagio's Conservatory & Botanical Gardens. Just consider these by-the-numbers highlights: Vegas’s largest indoor tree (a 42-footer); an 8-foot-tall reindeer coated in chocolate; a life-size candy house and snow globe; 34,000 fresh poinsettias; and a family of topiary polar bears made from 24,000 white carnations.
Coeur d’Alene Resort, ID
For more than a quarter of a century, this lakefront resort has transformed into a watery winter wonderland. This year, holiday guests can expect a 1.5-million-light show—the largest in the country—accompanied by a 160-foot-tall living Christmas tree, a 3,000-pound wreath, and more than 400 animated holiday figures. Be sure to board a cruise boat for the ride to the “North Pole,” where Santa’s workshop awaits.
Soaring heat will cause Saturday to feel more like the heart of summer than the end of April in and around Beijing, China.
A few days of summerlike warmth, including temperatures in the 80s F, will grip much of the eastern United States into next week.
Warm and dry weather will greet over 200,000 football fans heading to Philadelphia for the 2017 NFL Draft.
Milder air will erase the recent chill and snow across Germany by May Day, though rain threatens to spoil the holiday for western and southern areas.
Severe weather can strike day or night, so knowing these safety tips for overnight severe weather could be the difference between life and death.
Severe storms swept across the central and southern U.S. on Wednesday into early Thursday morning, washing out roadways and pelting the area with hail of varying sizes.
The recent chill will leave the United Kingdom in time for the Bank Holiday weekend, but rain could dampen plans in some locations.
Storms moving into the eastern United States on Thursday will stretch from the Gulf Coast to the Great Lakes, with severe storms near lakes Erie and Ontario.