Ten Ways to Manifest Happier Holidays
Lasting memories matter more than the latest gadget or this year’s trendy ensemble.
An increasing amount of research tells us that families are eager for more shared experiences and deeper connections. They are ready to trade the pile of presents for resort, plane, and train reservations that translate into laugher, adventure and stories to last a lifetime. In short, happier holidays.
Here are ten ideas we hope will make it onto your holiday wish list.
Kingsmill Traditions. Williamsburg, VA
Celebrate the holiday season with a memory making stay at the Kingsmill Resort in Williamsburg, VA. a destination where beauty, tradition and Southern hospitality serve as your backdrop.
From a Thanksgiving package rich with all the delectable trimmings to a Christmas Traditions stay during which your family will delight in your own stockings, a decorated tree with lights, plus cookies and milk for Santa, expect festive activities designed to deeply engage your clan. Resort guests who opt for the Christmas Town package have easy access to the popular Busch Gardens holiday pageantry. (The package includes complimentary shuttle service.)
if you love the holiday lights then the Grand Illumination package might be for you. You’ll be there to see Colonial Williamsburg aglow in the seasonal spirit and have access to musical performances and an impressive fireworks display. While immersing yourselves in the holiday fun, be sure to make time to explore all that this family-friendly resort has to offer including an expansive fitness center, spa and indoor pool.
Make a plan: 800-832-5665: www.Kingsmill.com.
Holiday Happenings at the Princess. Scottsdale, AZ
Consider this Scottsdale, AZ resort your family’s holiday headquarters if you enjoy sunshine, golf, spa services, tennis and so much more. With a full range of active pursuits from which to choose, you and the clan can look forward to mixing in the magic of the season to each day at play.
From November 20, 2014 to January 4, 2015, the “Christmas at the Princess” festival glistens with holiday splendor featuring a four-story musical tree, the desert ice skating rink made with real ice, a magical snowfall, luxury rink-side fire pits, Kringle’s Korner, carolers, a Nativity Garden set to music and a new carousel. The magic continues with a ride on the Princess Express Train to see two million Lagoon Lights featuring beautiful swans floating on the water, 14-foot poinsettias, a pirate ship, rocking horse, a menorah, dreidels, toy soldiers, Santa fishing and 150 sparkling trees making up the candy cane forest.
Do you live in or near Scottsdale?
“Christmas at the Princess” is open to the public and special overnight holiday vacation packages are available. The Magical Memories package includes overnight accommodations, a skating session for two adults and two children, express VIP access to the Princess Express Train and a $10 donation to Cox Charities.
Make a plan: (866) 540-4495; www.scottsdaleprincess.com.
Healthy Holidays at The Resort at Longboat Key Club. Sarasota, FL.
Have you every thought about passing on the decorated cookies and cakes and making health and wellness your holiday focus? It can happen at this sprawling 410-acre beachfront playground where new programs are designed to help the entire family focus on an active and fit lifestyle.
With two championship golf courses, 20 award-winning tennis courts, a Mind & Motion studio (think yoga, Pilates, spinning), pools, hot tubs and a newly renovated spa combine to create a memorable family holiday destination.
Younger kids, ages five to twelve, can tap into the fun offered by the Loggerhead Kids Club. Adults can opt for one of several Wellness packages that include fitness classes, nutritional counseling, personal training, spa services and a sampling of golf, tennis, kayaking and beachfront yoga.
Farm-to-table dining and special attention for those with specific dietary requirements, combine to insure your healthy approach to the holidays will include fresh and appealing selections.
With so much to do, don’t forget to make time to relax on the beach!
Make a plan: LongBoatKeyClub.com
Holidays on the C Lazy U Ranch. Granby, CO
Destress by the fire or strap on the skis and set off for the hills. Create fresh tracks via horseback in the new fallen snow or practice your horsemanship in the heated indoor arena. Head to a nearby resort for a day of downhill fun or play hockey on the ranch pond. The options are yours. And there are plenty of them.
Thanksgiving at the ranch honors the tradition of family gathering and the sharing of stories. You’ll dine on plenty of turkey and delectable trimmings and enjoy evening entertainment.
During Christmas week, you’ll have your own sweet smelling tree to enjoy as well as the opportunity to join in the decorating fun as guests gather in the lodge to adorn the lodge tree with festive trimmings. With the cracking fire as a backdrop, gather round the piano for Christmas carols. Keep one eye out the window as Santa is known to arrive via horse drawn sleigh to share a little holiday cheer.
Make a plan: CLazyU.com
Celebrate Winter Holidays in Grand County Colorado.
Just 67 miles from Denver, this historic region offers plenty of adventure for families seeking a snowy, scenic and active holiday.
Grand County is home to some of the country’s most family-friendly ski resorts. Example: Winter Park Resort has been offering family-style skiing since 1940, and now offers nearly 3,000 acres of winter fun and Ski Granby Ranch specializes in the intimate family experience.
Does your family love snowmobiling? The community of Grand Lake is known as Colorado’s snowmobile capital, for the wealth of trails available in the area, Kremmling, on the east side of Rabbit Ears Pass, is known for their vast accumulation of the white stuff and is also popular with snowmobilers.
And while in the region, you’ll want to help Rocky Mountain National Park celebrate their 100th year of providing a meaningful blend of conservation and access to one of the country’s most pristine landscapes.
Make a plan: VisitGrandCounty.com
Boston Harbor Hotel – Boston, Ma.
Pack your bags with warm scarves, hats and gloves and head to the Boston Harbor Hotel for an engaging,
wintry experience. This architectural treasure celebrates the season by opening the city’s most picturesque ice-skating rink right under the iconic archway along the Boston Harbor waterfront. Local Bostonians and hotel guests alike can take in the views while gliding across the rink before heading inside to warm up with hot cocoa and s’mores. In between practicing skills on the ice, families can shop the city’s holiday markets, stroll through Stone Zoo’s annual light show, and partake in countless other New England winter traditions. The Ice skating rink is open November 22, 2014 through mid-March 2015.
Make a plan: www.preferredfamily.com.
Beaches Resort. Turks and Caicos.
Let someone else do the work while everyone enjoys an all-inclusive, seaside holiday getaway. A great destination for multigenerational families, there is a something for every one to do in a relaxed yet active island setting surrounded turquoise blue water.
Busy parents will be happy to know that the youngest travelers are cared for by certified nannies, caregivers with more than 2000 hours of experience and trained in child safety and nutrition. Toddlers enjoy beach and pool activities, puppet shows, face painting, treasure hunts and visits with Sesame Street characters. Parents of newborns to two year old can enjoy uninterrupted beach time, sailing, snorkeling or a quiet dinner knowing their little ones are cared for in a fully equipped nursery where child development specialists will look after their every need. Trained nannies are also available to care for children with special needs. Just in case, a nurse is available 24 hours a day.
Make a plan: 1-888-BEACHES; www.Beaches.com.
Santa Fe, NM.
Members of every generation appreciate the sense of tradition and the reverent quality of the festivities that envelope this centuries old city at holiday time. You’ll enjoy visiting the historic Plaza where small white lights create an engaging glow, listening to music that often fills the night air and strolling down Canyon Road where farolitos or luminarias line the narrow streets. Shop for last minute gifts of local art and native crafts. Nearby, the snow-draped Sangre de Cristos provide the opportunity for the family to pop on their skis and enjoy a day on the slopes.
Make a plan: (505) 955-6200; www.santafe.org.
Hershey Park Christmas. Hershey, PA.
The sweet magic of the holidays will envelop your family as you enjoy a sea of twinkling lights, listen to holiday concerts, visit with Hershey characters (they’ll be all dolled up for the holidays) and hop aboard the Twilight Express. Don’t miss a visit with Santa’s reindeer or a chance to share breakfast or lunch with Santa. Be sure to take part in Hershey Sweet Lights, the Holiday Drive-Thru Spectacular. You’ll cruise through two miles of wooded wonderland, aglow with dozens of colorful and animated seasonal displays.
Make a plan: 1-800-HERSHEY; www.christmasinhershey.com.
Plan volunteer travel.
During the season of giving, consider including volunteerism in your existing plans or commit to incorporating the strategy into future itineraries. The non-profit organization, Together For Good, helps families give back to underprivileged children and teens in challenged areas of the world in several ways. They’ll provide detailed information and connections to enable your clan to incorporate social responsibility into a cruise shore excursion or resort stay. Assistance in organizing a trip focused solely on helping those less fortunate is also possible.
Make a plan: TogetherForGood.org