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Christmas Escape in the US

Virginia Beach...
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Christmas Escape in the US

After my grandfather's passing, it's too hard for me to spend holidays back in my hometown. I'm trying to decide where to go this year and would love suggestions.

Last Christmas I went on an amazing adventure to Yellowknife, Canada. I stayed at Blachford Lake Lodge, flew in on a ski plane, went ice fishing, xc skiing on a frozen lake, saw the Northern Lights, went dog sledding... All the meals were served family-style with other guests and everything you could want was at the lodge. It was perfect. I'm looking for something similar this year. Not necessarily the weather and specific activities (although I'm not opposed to more winter wonderland), but the idea of a resort with everything included, or at least on the property.

I want to stay in the US and would love using my American/USAIR miles to get there (but that's not a dealbreaker). The budget isn't a HUGE concern as I can shorten/extend my trip, but let's say under $2500.

I love the idea of a beach getaway - beach time, kayaking, paddleboarding, huge bonus if I could arrange private scuba tours. I'm open to yoga/spa retreats, xc ski resorts, hiking and camping... really most anything.

Suggestions? Please and thank you in advance!

Houston, Texas
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1. Re: Christmas Escape in the US

Have you checked into Hawaii or Puerto Rico or USVI - or are you limiting to mainland US?

Virginia Beach...
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2. Re: Christmas Escape in the US

I'm not limiting it to the mainland, but I'm not sure the Caribbean will have what I'm looking for. I was thinking of something a little more outside of the box I guess. I've done too many cruises and a couple all-inclusives that it's sort of lost the draw for me.

Hawaii is definitely an option, just not Oahu (I was just there in May).

Houston, Texas
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3. Re: Christmas Escape in the US

I'd also definitely take a look at Puerto Rico. I think the island offers a lot more than what most people think. Except the family-style group dinners, perhaps. But, this is the Solo Travel forum.

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g147319-i71-k64739…

tripadvisor.com/ShowForum-g147319-i71-Puerto…

Virginia Beach...
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4. Re: Christmas Escape in the US

Thanks, I'll look into it.

For this trip specifically, I'm more interested in the lodge or resort than the location. I'm normally all for getting out and exploring a new city, but I'd rather have everything in one place for this trip.

I only mentioned the family-style dinners because I am not interested in cooking or finding local restaurants on and around the Christmas holidays. The lodge where I stayed had a set time when all of the guests ate at the same time.

Ottawa, Canada
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5. Re: Christmas Escape in the US

Clearly we are not a group for resorts :-) and I can't tell you first hand, but what about a place like the Biltmore in Ashland NC, or Mohonk, in New Platz NY? I was realizing you were looking for specific accommodation recommendations, but couldn't offer anything specific....but if it was me, and after that lovely sounding Christmas of last year, maybe something majestic? Historical hotels, 'castle' hotels, all should have amazing ambience. There used to be a historical lodge in Yellowstone that might also interest. There is a thread here from this week that might offer some other ideas for consideration - but they are more geographical suggestions.

tripadvisor.ca/ShowTopic-g1-i12357-k8782129-…

To me some great structure with history and substance and a log fire would be amazing.

Are you sure you wouldn't like to come to Canada? We have these old railroad hotels 'Chateaus' that are great destination hotels. One near us that might be the ticket is Montebello. It is the largest log cabin in the world. Snow shoes, dog sleds, an amazing log fireplace. This place I have been to (as well as a number of others) and they would be great for Christmas

http://www.fairmont.com/montebello/

Others are: Chateau Frontenac Quebec City, Chateau Lake Louise in Lake Louise,Alberta, The Empress in Victoria, British Columbia...anyway, you get the idea and there are bound to be more of this ilk in the US. Just google 'Castle hotels in US'.

I wander the world
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6. Re: Christmas Escape in the US

Perhaps searching Google with the tag "All Inclusive" would be of help. The dining arrangement you mention is typical of AI. I would farther encourage you to consider what activities you would like to have available to you.

And example would be "all inclusive, rafting".

I reread your post, perhaps searching "top rated AI USA" would get you results to consider.

Edited: 21 August 2015, 01:44
Virginia Beach...
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7. Re: Christmas Escape in the US

My issue is not so much that I can't find anything... but more that I am finding too many places! I looked into the Yellowstone options and they're sold out, but that is definitely something I would have considered. Montebello seems amazing... I'm just trying to stay in the States this year since I went to Canada last year.

I loved the feel of the lodge last year --It was all run by volunteers and the daily activities weren't so much scheduled as catered to whatever the guests felt like doing and whenever we wanted.

I appreciate all the help already, but I'm looking for more specific recommendations on places to stay as opposed to locations.

I wander the world
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8. Re: Christmas Escape in the US

Hmmm this is interesting... I am truly sorry we can not be of more help, perhaps we are the wrong crowd.

Were I to have a grand time a a specific place and want to do something similar in a new location I would attempt to find tag words that fit the place I loved so much.. I would then plug those tag words into google to see what I come up with... perhaps you can find reviews on similar lodges.

I wonder if maybe the lodge you stayed in you loved so much would know of others like it.

I worked for guest ranches for six summer when I was younger, we all knew of many others.

I do hope you find what you seek.

9. Re: Christmas Escape in the US

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