With spring right around the corner, it’s time to put away the winter gloves and coats and dust off the sun tan lotion and binoculars. To be sure, there’s nothing like being able to soak up rays and refresh in the swimming pool following one of the most intense winter seasons on record – more than 60% of the U.S. was reportedly blanketed in snow earlier this year. That being said, it’s no surprise travelers are more than ready to hit up picturesque beaches, fine restaurants and lively nightclubs in Miami, Los Angeles, Las Vegas and other spring break hot spots as the weather heats up. Read on for a taste of what awaits you at these meccas for fun, sun and much more.
Party in Miami
Known for its pearly white sand beaches and booming nightlife scene, everything about South Beach oozes fun and vibrancy. Fashion shoots and star-studded events are standard here, thus earning Miami a reputation as an oasis for the fashion forward. Shopping options are endless, from the popular Dolphin Mall in Doral to fine boutiques on Ocean Drive to a wide collection of stylish designer stores in the heart of the Collins Avenue Fashion District. Then there’s scores of chic, Art Deco hotels nestled on South Beach, each within minutes of the city’s hippest attractions. Among them are the trendy Whitelaw Hotel; Hotel Chelsea, an Art Deco fixture since 1936; the Beach Paradise Hotel, whose design was inspired by Spanish mansions of old; and the Deauville Beach Resort, which over the years has attracted the likes of celebrities like Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin.
Let Loose in Los Angeles
I’d be remiss to discuss Los Angeles shopping and nightlife without highlighting Beverly Hills and West Hollywood. The former includes world-famous Rodeo Drive, a shopping district famous for its upscale boutiques and shops. Passing through West Hollywood is the Sunset Strip, an area where colorful and expansive billboards are easy to find, as are various restaurants, nightclubs, and – if you’re lucky enough – a celebrity or two. Like Miami, Los Angeles is a playground for beachgoers as thousands flock to Venice Beach, among the city’s other sizzling beaches, to catch some rays or hang ten. Hotel Angeleno – a Joie de Vivre Hotel – and Hotel Beverly Terrace, two boutique properties in close proximity to Beverly Hills and Hollywood, make great places to unwind after a day of non-stop action in SoCal.
Live it up in Las Vegas
Dazzling lights and an ever-festive ambiance make Las Vegas a popular vacation hot spot year year-round, and spring break is certainly no exception. With scores of famous casinos, towering hotels, fine shops and renowned restaurants, it’s no surprise the city has been dubbed “The Entertainment Capital of the World.” Most of the world-famous Strip’s best shows and attractions are found on the resort properties that line it. Take Stratosphere Casino, Hotel and Tower. Aside from boasting the largest observation tower in the United States, it proves that Florida and California are far from the only places for theme park thrills. Guests can enjoy heart-pounding rides including X-Scream and Insanity, both of which propel you anywhere from 27 to 64 feet over the edge of the Tower. Racing aficionados will love Speed – The Ride, a state-of-the-art rollercoaster at Sahara Hotel and Casino’s Nascar Cafe Entertainment Center. If your idea of fun involves getting wet, guests should not miss Golden Nugget Hotel & Casino, winner of the AAA Four-Diamond Award each year since 1977. The Tank is a $30 million complex featuring a shark tank, private cabanas and an exhilarating 3-story waterslide.
Tour NYC’s Stellar Attractions
Though New York City likely won’t sit atop your list of top beach destinations anytime soon, it nonetheless has enough attractions to keep travelers, no matter their age, well-entertained over the course of spring break. Catch a New York Knicks game at Madison Square Garden, photograph the Statue of Liberty, watch a show on Broadway, tour the Museum of Modern Art, spend an afternoon unwinding at Central Park, or delight your palate at one of Chinatown’s many fine restaurants. Your options for things to do and places to see are endless. Within walking distance of these attractions is the Belvedere Hotel, an Art Deco style hotel that features a state-of-the-art fitness center and popular Rodizio-style steakhouse, Churrascaria Plataforma. Other notable properties include Affinia Shelburne at Lexington Avenue and the Eastgate Tower Hotel in Murray Hill.
If you’re looking to break out of your usual routine and travel abroad for spring break this year, you’ll find a wealth of fun things to do and landmark attractions to gawk at in Europe. Among travelers’ favorites: the Louvre and always-striking Eiffel Tower in Paris, the historic Coliseum in Rome, and Museumplein, a spacious square along which four museums are set in art-rich Amsterdam. If you’d rather be doing something a bit more lively, each city hosts tons of exciting events year-round and features plenty of nightclubs, shops, restaurants and sporting venues to suit different tastes. Properties to check out include Villa Eugenie and Tonic Hotel Du Louvre, two of Paris’ finest; Hotel Savoy and the Ripa Hotel, two four-star gems in Rome; and Grand Hotel Amrath, a 5-star masterpiece nestled in the historic heart of Amsterdam.