Play 'Office Hooky' This Summer at These Sumptuous Hotels
PHOTO: Faena Hotel Pool. (photo by Todd Eberle)
No matter how much we might love our careers, work-life balance is essential, and there are simply times when it’s difficult to stay at the office for a full day.
Long, sunny summer afternoons are just such times, when we might spend the afternoon daydreaming about how much better our time could be spent away from the office. Not that we’re advocating slacking, but sometimes you just have to put up our out-of-office e-mail response and take an afternoon for yourself. We’ve put together a short list of hotel activities that are good ways to unwind during an afternoon of “office hooky.”
For those weekend work warriors in New York City who are also history buffs, the iconic St. Regis New York is a beaux-arts landmark in the heart of Midtown. Take a Saturday or Sunday afternoon off and step back in time to the Gilded Age with the Afternoon Tea and Historical Tour, which honors more than a century of the hotel’s history.
The tours are led by one of the hotel’s historical experts who will take participants through the restored Gilded Age lobby, through one or two of its designer suites (Tiffany & Co, Dior, and Bentley Motors provide design inspiration), through the newly unveiled Historical Avenue to view archival images, hotel documents, and historical room decor, and end with Afternoon Tea in the Astor Library. At tea, participants will enjoy tea sandwiches and other tea goodies inspired by the hotel’s original patroness Caroline Astor.
The package is priced at $75 per person, or is available for $105 per person with champagne. Reservations can be made by calling Astor Court at (212) 753-4500. Weekday office skippers can self-tour the lobby and Historical Avenue and pop into the King Cole Bar for a Bloody Mary, which was invented there in 1934.
Elsewhere in Manhattan, the Gansevoort Meatpacking NYC and the Gansevoort Park Avenue are offering The “OOO Package” Monday-Wednesday through August 31. For a per-person rate of $250, guests will receive a reserved pool bed from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on the hotel’s rooftop pool deck, a $75 food and beverage credit, a 25 percent discount at Exhale Spa, and complimentary fresh towels and fruit. One might even take a laptop with them and work poolside, but why leave the office only to bring the office with you?
What better place to be on a summer afternoon than on the lake? Spa-lovers in the Emerald City of Seattle and its environs can leave the office early and make the quick journey to Kirkland on the East side of Lake Washington for the Woodmark Hotel's Wine Wednesdays, which run from 3-6 p.m. each Wednesday afternoon at Still Spa.
Guests who book 60 to 90 minute treatments such as the Mt. Rainier Stone Revival (the hot stones are used to vaporize essential oils of rosemary, ginger, cypress and geranium) will receive a complimentary glass of wine. Lake views are complimentary too.
In Miami Beach, office-skippers can go to the hot-and-buzzy new Faena Hotel Miami Beach for the Sun Warrior and Goddess offer, which entails access to the Wet Spa, a 50-minute spa treatment, and day access to the Faena Beach with lounge chair and impossibly chic red-and-white fringed umbrella. The package is $185 per person plus gratuity and is available Monday through Thursday through July 31.
For those dreaming of summer camp days and looking to play more than hooky for the afternoon, leave on a Thursday evening for the cool respite of a New England summer and sign up for the last summer session of Kimpton’s Camp Taconic at the Kimpton Taconic Hotel in Manchester, Vermont, which runs from Aug. 25-28.
The adults-only, three-night summer camp includes hotel accommodations, meals, activities and a camp T-shirt. There are bugle wake-up calls, “lights out” warnings, campfire sing-alongs (with s’mores and scotch), river tubing, glassblowing, kite-making, and zip lining. The cost is $1,400 for one or $2,100 for a couple sharing the same room.
For some weekday rejuvenation in the Mile High City, the Ritz-Carlton Denver presents the extra-fruity Summer Bliss Experience, which includes a 50-minute Swedish Clementine Oil massage, an organic facial with lemon, strawberry, and aloe and a Watermelon Vodkatini Pedicure.
There’s vodka in both the pedicure and the Watermelon Mint Martini crafted by the hotel’s branch of Elway’s, the legendary Denver steakhouse and bar. The package is $320, excluding gratuity and is available through Aug. 31.
More by Scott Laird
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