By Alyssa Mammano
As the ever-evolving seasons close in on winter, now is the time to plan the locale of your cold-weather retreat. The idyllic seasonal home may be a winter wonderland for some, or perhaps a tropical getaway for others. Whatever your pleasure may be, explore the globe and expand your horizons with a sampling of wonderful options on offer.
The Adirondacks, New York
Dating back to the Gilded Age, the Adirondacks of Upstate New York have long been a vacation retreat for the upper echelon. The foremost families of the era including the Vanderbilts, Astors, Guggenheims and Rockefellers built enviable log mansions along the lakeshores of the mountain range. The “Great Camp” as it came to be called has since transformed into an elevated rustic resort offering a comfortable cabin retreat. Vacations here are spent skiing, snow shoeing or ice skating on the frozen lake. Indoors, crackling fires and hot toddies provide warmth after a day spent among historic buildings and wooded forests quilted in sparkling snow.
If a unique vacation that few have ever had the opportunity to take pleasure in piques your interest, the remote Andaman Islands between India and Thailand will suit your fancy. Until earlier this year, the islands have been off-limits to travelers to protect the far less developed indigenous people. The untouched tropical paradise recently opened its first five-star resort on Havelock Island at Radhanagar Beach. Here, just 75 luxurious villas modeled after the huts of the local tribe cater to the world’s most elite adventurers. Nearby dining offers local and global cuisines, and the Jiva Spa provides refuge.
Commemorating 30 years since the demise of the Berlin Wall, the city is kicking off its brimming cultural calendar with a magnified opening festival in January. The event will include celebrations of architecture and culture through performances of theater, dance, lectures and concerts. Festivities will continue into nightfall with a pop-up nightclub featuring worldly DJ sets. Diversity will go on to be revered during the culinary festival in February, where renowned chefs are slated to prepare delicacies proclaiming Berlin an inclusive culinary mecca. New Ethnological and Asian Art museums will add to the draw for seasonal travelers.
An uptick in luxury travelers has persuaded Egyptian vacation accommodations to expand their offerings. A new high-end hotel tower overlooking Old Cairo and the Nile opened earlier this year to pamper affluent guests with round-the-clock butler service and a luxe itinerary. Tours of the sights are catering to bespoke with intimate private tours, a river cruise, camel rides and up-close experiences. With all the antiquity Egypt has to offer, travelers can choose from more than 7,000 years of history, whether it be the ancient Egyptian era, the rise and fall of the Roman Empire, Islamic dynasties or modern metropolises.
Jackson Hole, Wyoming
As home to residents who are among the top earners in the United States, this rural region has both established and up-and-coming luxury accommodations. Snow-covered peaks draw enthusiastic winter fanatics to the area each year. The ski resorts and small-town vibe offer a winter wonderland vacation reminiscent of a snow globe. The area is accessible enough for walking, yet still remote enough to see wildlife such as wolves and grizzlies. A guided tour with a National Geographic photographer will take you up-close and personal with wild elk, and an Olympic gold-winning ski lesson will take you down the expert ski run, Corbet’s Couloir.