Photo courtesy of The Gwen, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Chicago
January is one of those hyper-seasonal months during which travel tends to ebb, as most of the country goes back to work and school. Ski resorts are in full swing and often sold out, beach resorts are in demand from sun-seeking snowbirds, and the city centers and northern tier resorts which are popular in the summer have to make offers that can’t be refused to entice guests in during the doldrums of mid-winter. This week I’ve got some packages both urban and coastal for anybody who needs a little bit of escape during the first month of 2017.
Become a Resident Artist in Chicago
There’s not a lot of demand for weekend getaways in Chicago during the depths of winter, but there are plenty of luxury hotels still open for business. At The Gwen, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Chicago, guests are invited to take up residence in the hotel for a weekend of art. Guests will receive two VIP entry tickets to the Art Institute of Chicago for inspiration, overnight accommodations (many of the hotel’s rooms have landmark views for further inspiration, an art-inspired turndown amenity, and an Artist-in-residence setup including a full-sized easel, canvas, paint, brushes, and pastels. At check-out, the concierge can assist with shipping arrangements for your masterpiece, and your memento of the weekend is a journal from The Gwen.
I found weekend package rates in January from around $209 plus tax.
Es“Cape” and Warm Up
Cape May, New Jersey is a close drive from many of the urban centers of the East, but it’s primarily known as a summer beach destination. In fact, several Presidents have vacationed here. However, for a cool weather getaway there are plenty of deals to be had for weekenders, particularly in the troughs of winter. The Winter Warm-Up package is available at three Cape Resorts properties: Congress Hall, Star Inn, and Sandpiper.
The package includes deluxe accommodations, $40 daily dining credit, 15 percent off one spa treatment and one retail item, hot chocolate for two, late check out, and kids eat free. There are a couple items in the fine print, which can be reviewed here.
Go Glamping in Boston
Glamor Camping, or Glamping, is all the rage, but it can be a bit cold in the winter, particularly for children or the otherwise less-than-hardy. The Four Seasons Boston has taken this into account with their Kids’ Adventure Package. The whole family can experience the “Great Indoors” with this package, which includes a welcome gift for the wee ones from the Four Seasons Toy Wagon, a camping-themed welcome amenity, a play tent setup in your guest room, sunglasses for added glamor, a “Gone Glamping” pillow to take home, a scavenger hunt, and a Saturday afternoon cookie-making class.
The package is available on weekends and during local school holiday weeks. I found package rates for January weekends starting at $595.