Spend Christmas in Nature this Season

Spend Christmas in Nature this Season

Feel the holiday spirit through the lens of crashing ocean waves, gorgeous Red Rocks, warm temperatures and more, at shining outdoor-centric resorts and destinations. Brimmed with festive Christmas offerings and nature's favorite activities for all to enjoy, from beachfront dinners to a glistening Champagne Chalet, we've collected spectacular places to make the holiday season merry and naturally lit.

Destination: Arizona

L’Auberge de Sedona, Sedona, AZ

Set to the backdrop of Sedona’s stunning Red Rocks, L’Auberge de Sedona offers a secluded creekside setting for a Christmas decked out in nature. This charming haven offers cottagecore accommodations in the quaint, yet luxurious creekside and vista cottages and a variety of outdoor experiences. Enjoy Stargazing where Astronomer Dennis Young will lead guests on a tour of the night skies, Sound Healing to recharge energy through interactive practices of toning, mantra and chakra balancing, and Forest Bathing set amidst towering woods and the flowing creek. Embark on adventure by way of a Broken Arrow by Pink Jeep Tour and hikes through Sedona’s most notable rock formations.

At fine dining restaurant nestled into the wooden bank of the beautiful creek, Cress on Oak Creek, delight in a traditional dinner menu on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day with culinary influences of Southern Europe, helmed by Executive Chef Franck Desplechin. Selections include roasted chestnut veloute, garlic oil poached Pacific cod with brown butter lobster tortellinis braised leeks, and prime beef tenderloin Rossini. (The full menu can be found here and is priced at $145 per person and $195 with paired wines). Also on Christmas Day, indulge in a special breakfast / brunch from 7 a.m. - 12 p.m. or an all-day menu from 12-9:30 p.m., featuring red velvet Belgian waffle, honey roasted ham eggs Benedict, basil porchetta and a selection of Pastry Chef Morgan Gurney’s cookies and warm vanilla bean milk.

Mountain Shadows Resort Scottsdale & Hotel Valley Ho | Scottsdale, AZ

Revel in a Christmas desert escape at Mountain Shadows Resort Scottsdale, a modernism match made in the 1950s beaming with a backdrop of Camelback Mountain at every angle; and Hotel Valley Ho, a vibrant retro hotel filled with enhancements including OH Pool and seasonal American fare at Zuzu.

  • Guided Photography Hike at Mountain Shadows: Take in nature's beauty with a Guided Photography Hike along a 2.2-mile Sonoran Desert trail with a fitness expert and photographer. During the hike, explore the scenic Quartz Ridge Trail and enjoy a mini photography lesson and get tips on how to capture the beautiful landscape as well as portraits. (Images: here)
  • Private Prana at Hotel Valley Ho: Take in the winter Scottsdale scenery with a private led yoga session that will restore body and mind by focusing on movement, mindfulness and prana. With various scenic and calming areas at Hotel Valley Ho, choose from a sunrise session on the Sky Line Rooftop to dusk downward dogs on the lush Palm Court, or an indoor session for the perfect personalized practice ($75 for one-hour session, + $20 per additional person).
  • Christmas Dinner at Hearth ’61: From 5-9:30 p.m., enjoy Christmas dinner selections including lobster bisque, wood-oven roasted Niman Ranch Prime Rib and chocolate peppermint Praline bûche de noël.
  • Christmas Dinner at ZuZu: From 11 a.m. - 9 p.m., delight in special holiday options, including truffle stuffed Petaluma chicken, slow braised pork osso bucco and English toffee cheesecake.

ADERO Scottsdale, an Autograph Collection hotel | Scottsdale, AZ

Tis the season at ADERO Scottsdale, an Autograph Collection hotel, and all month long, there will be various holiday offerings to spark joy to guests and locals alike.

  • The Village at ADERO: Dine alfresco in your own holiday igloo bubble. Four dining globes will be staged under the stars, with the interior of each globe curated by Designer Robyn Halperin. Two globes will be curated as "Cozy Lounges Under the Stars" with the other two globes designed for "Cozy Dining". For added festivities, guests will be serenaded by carolers and enjoy festive craft cocktails. Igloo dining will feature a special small bites menu from Dec. 16 - Jan 10. Availability: Monday-Thursday from 5 - 11 p.m. (90 minute seating limit on a first come, first serve basis); Friday-Sunday from 5 - 11 p.m. (90 minute seating limit and reservations are required with a $200 F&B minimum).
  • Carolers: The Goode Time Carolers are the number 1 company of Los Angeles, Dallas, Phoenix, New York and Nashville, and they’ll be singing loud for all to hear on Dec. 18, 19, 24 and 25 from 5-8 p.m.
  • Stargazing Winter Solstice Viewing Party: On Dec. 21 from 6-9 p.m., guests can enjoy a hot chocolate bar with assorted condiments including homestyle marshmallows, candy canes, salted caramel pretzel stirrers, chipotle chili sprinkles, peppermint bark with sea salt, fresh flavored whipped creams (i.e. peppermint, mocha, and vanilla), and gingerbread cookies. Adults 21+ only and $15/person.

Destination: Hawaii

Four Seasons Resort Lanai | Lanai City, HI

The secluded 90,000 acre-island paradise of Lanai offers an ideal destination for a secluded, outdoor holiday getaway with an array of activities and accommodations. With one-of-a-kind experiences across the diverse topography of the island, Four Seasons Resort Lanai is the ideal destination for a holiday escape, offering land, ocean and air activities for small groups and private parties as well as award-winning luxurious accommodations to call home during the season. Enjoy this festive season with cherished loved ones with an array of seasonal spa and golf events, special holiday menus at NOBU LANAI, ONE FORTY and Malibu Farm, festive décor, live music nightly, kids programming and a New Year’s Eve midnight fireworks show.

Sensei Lanai, A Four Seasons Resort | Lanai City, HI

For a serene oasis to welcome in a New Year, Sensei Lanai, A Four Seasons Resort, nestled on 24 acres encompassing rolling hills, tropical greenery and natural beauty, offers an ideal adults-only setting to commit to personal wellness and help guests learn daily practices to live longer, healthier lives. Dine at Sensei by Nobu, enjoy a variety of complimentary fitness and wellness classes, luxuriate in private spa hales with a range of therapeutic treatments or delve deeper into paths that align with intentions in one-on-one sessions with a trained team of Sensei Guides and practitioners who hold degrees in their respective fields. Guests can celebrate the holiday season with a special Christmas Sensei by Nobu menu, festive décor, live music nightly, a New Year’s Eve midnight fireworks show and more.

Destination: California

Monarch Beach Resort | Dana Point, CA

Enjoy a beachfront Christmas as Monarch Beach Resort brings the magic of the holiday season with enchanting holiday decor and offerings, all while taking in breathtaking ocean views! The resort introduces guests to a reimagined destination experience steeped in the relaxed sun-splashed sophistication of coastal Orange County for a SoCal holiday. Escape to the luxury beach house and partake in spirited activities, exquisite dining experiences at three of the resort's restaurants, and warm moments and traditions that will stay with guests for years to come. To add to the festivities, create a Gingerbread House to take home with Gingerbread Academy, providing a fun holiday setting for all with private tables complete with pre-set decorating supplies.

Edgewood Tahoe | Lake Tahoe, CA

Set along the beautiful shoreline of South Lake Tahoe, Edgewood Tahoe is a luxe winter haven filled to the brim with scenic Sierra Range and cobalt blue water views and iconic signature programming that will enable guests to take advantage of the pristine corduroy trails and fresh powder surrounding the property. Boasting easy access to world-class ski destinations such as Heavenly Mountain, numerous trails perfect for hiking, outdoor “snowga” to encourage mindful movement and on-lake activities, the lodge is truly an idyllic winter destination where guests can become immersed in the local landscape. Launching just in time for the holidays, Edgewood is inviting guests to Clicquot in the Snow through a partnership with the finest brand of bubbles, Veuve Clicquot, to offer an endless array of winter activities paired with Champagne. Guests can Snowshoe to the Champagne Chalet, a snowshoe experience across Edgewood golf course to the Champagne Chalet, a charming Veuve hut and bar with indoor and outdoor seating by the fire and glide along the on-site ice skating rink, complete with a Veuve mobile bar to cheers to the beautiful backdrop of Lake Tahoe and a holiday season spent well with loved ones.

Rancho Valencia Resort & Sp | Rancho Santa Fe, CA

Spanning 45 lush acres of gardens, nature trails, meticulous olive groves, and casitas, Rancho Valencia Resort & Spa is the ideal retreat for discerning travelers looking for a relaxing and hidden gem destination to get away from it all during the holidays. The Five-Star, Five-Diamond resort and Southern California’s only Relais & Châteaux property offers 49 luxuriously appointed guest casitas, a three-bedroom Hacienda with a private pool and backyard, and 12 newly renovated Villas. This year,, take the hassle out of the holidays and celebrate with loved ones with Rancho Valencia’s delicious and decadent “Holidays To Go” feast. Simply order by 5 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 18 and pick up on Christmas Eve, between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. Menu highlights include, prime beef tenderloin, nueske roast and glazed ham, lobster bisque, truffle mac and cheese, apple cranberry frangipane tart and more, along with a selection of wine pairings. Gusts can order online here.

Destination: Mexico

Hilton Los Cabos | Cabo San Lucas, MX

Situated along the golden beaches of one of Los Cabos’ only swimmer-friendly beaches, Hilton Los Cabos is the perfect warm getaway to celebrate Christmas, complete with unrivaled beachfront surroundings and holiday experiences for all to enjoy! Guests can bask in the radiant sunshine and high 70’s temperatures while taking advantage of the property’s recent multi-million dollar renovation including Enclave Beach Club, which is equipped with cliffside cabanas and a full bar, 14 private plunge pool suites, an adults-only infinity pool, refined culinary concepts and more. In addition to traditional holiday offerings such as gingerbread house decorating, Christmas dinner at El Meson overlooking the ocean, and family-friendly bonfires and s’mores at Enclave Beach Club, the resort will offer some exciting signature events, including Soaring Santa’s Helicopter Landing on Christmas Eve! San will soar into town with this memorable arrival and hang out on the beach for a socially-distant Christmas celebration. More events details can be found here.

Waldorf Astoria Los Cabos Pedregal | Cabo San Lucas, MX

The majestic Waldorf Astoria Los Cabos Pedregal, which lies on Cabo San Lucas’ most coveted parcel of land – an extraordinary, 24-acre site at the southernmost tip of Mexico’s Baja California Peninsula – is the perfect beachfront destination to celebrate the holidays soaking in the fun and fresh ocean air. Holiday festivities include everything from a Christmas Eve Posada Cocktail Party, special Christmas Eve kids and dessert menus, Santa Claus arriving in a horse-drawn carriage giving presents to children amid a live mariachi band and traditional Mexican Escaramuza dancers, movies on the beach, Latin Flavors Night and more.

Full Festive Program here.

Destination: Colorado

HALCYON, a hotel in Cherry Creek | Denver, CO

HALCYON is making it easy to celebrate Christmas safely with loved ones and embrace the enchanting spirit of Colorado overlooking the snow-capped Rocky Mountains with the debut of their new winterized cabanas. This rooftop dining experience features private luxury cabanas uniquely designed to bring the winter wonderland essence of Aspen and Vail to the rooftop of HALCYON – each equipped with a fireplace, cozy seating and plush blankets. Hotel guests and locals alike can reserve a cabana and enjoy a three-course Fondue dining experience from signature restaurant Local Jones in addition to a special holiday cocktail menu (think: Mexican Hot Chocolate and Mulled Wine). The menu boasts options from a bubbling pot of fondue, including Southwestern-style cheese fondue served with buttered sourdough, smoked ham, fingerling potato, pretzels and vegetables, and Dulcey chocolate fondue with apples, banana, strawberries, marshmallows, blondies and pretzels for sweet fondue fun.

Interested in some post-dinner stargazing? Gaze at the stars and clear Colorado dark skies with complimentary use of one of the property's Celestron Telescopes, outfitted in the luxury cabanas or available from HALCYON’s Gear Garage. The hotel’s favorite stargazing app will guide guests to discover new constellations.

  • Reservations are available weekly Thursday-Saturday from 3-8 PM; Reservations can be made via Resy here
  • Pricing: $75/person (four people per cabana, all from same household) – pricing includes cabana, fondue / hot pot dining experience, and choice of beer, wine or cocktail

Destination: North Carolina

  • Accommodations: Nestled in the picturesque mountain town of Highlands, NC, Half-Mile Farm transforms into a winter wonderland during the holiday season. Surrounded by 14 acres of fields, forests, streams and lakes gracing the Blue Ridge Mountains, the property is ringing in Christmas with live music by local talent on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, as well as a festive cocktail menu and three-course dinner at its sister property, Old Edwards Inn and Spa’s restaurant, Madison’s.
  • Excursion: This Christmas, get outside and get in the holiday spirit at Chimney Rock State Park, a nature lover's paradise with a collaboration of spectacular views and incredible hiking trails. Picturesque winding roads through dense mountains, small local farms and towns, and along beautiful Hickory Creek and Broad River just 40 minutes from Asheville and a little less than 2 hours away from Charlotte would lead you to this one of a kind State Park in North Carolina – Chimney Rock State Park. Since 1997, Santa has visited Chimney Rock to train for his big night of deliveries. There’s no way Santa could make it down so many chimneys without practice. What better place to prepare and stay in shape than practice on one of the world’s largest chimneys at Chimney Rock State Park? Come see Santa and watch him scale the 315-foot monolith and enjoy other holiday festivities such as listening to holiday tunes, hot cocoa, cookies and meet live Park animal ambassadors. Kids can have their wishlist typed up on a vintage typewriter by local poet Eddie Cabbage to mail to Santa. All of the trails and the top of the Chimney will be open, including the new Skyline Trail. Santa on the Chimney will take place December 5 & 12 from 11 AM - 2 PM. Admission cost: Regular park admission does apply but there is no additional cost to attend Santa on the Chimney.

Destination: Caribbean 

Sugar Beach, a Viceroy Resort | St. Lucia 

Swap fir trees for palm trees and spend the holidays on island time this festive season. Travelers heading to St. Lucia can expect average temperatures in the low 80's, traditional holiday decor with a tropical twist, and holiday spirit in Caribbean style. On Christmas Day (December 25), Santa is coming to Sugar Beach for photo ops and Santa swag for the little ones, of course. Celebrate Christmas in St. Lucia with Santa's arrival, traditional holiday meal choices, and more including: Bayside Christmas lunch, traditional family dinner in the Great Room, and a beach BBQ at Bayside Restaurant. Enjoy the outdoors with complimentary water sports, the annual Festival of Lights (December 27), a visual sensation where during the day, kids can decorate (biodegradable) lanterns for families to add their well wishes for the new year. As the sun goes down, the lanterns will be set afloat in a ceremonial style as guests enjoy canapes and Rum Punch on the beach (Fruit Punch for the kids).

The Shore Club + The Palms | Turks & Caicos

Boasting warm temperatures all winter, adventurous experiences for the outdoor enthusiasts, and spas with only-found-here treatments -- send “Season’s Greetings" from the sunny, white sanded shores of paradise this Christmas. Deck the halls this Christmas at The Dune Spa, located at The Shore Club on Long Bay Beach, offering DIY holiday-inspired treatments curated to get you in the festive spirit. Think: peppermint pedicures, a hot chocolate stone massage or a vanilla chai-spice scrub -- all inspired by classic holiday treats and offer plenty of skin-nourishing benefits. Across the island, experience a holiday-inspired Moonbathing spa treatment at The Spa at The Palms, taking place right on the award-winning Grace Bay beach. During this outdoor nighttime experience, guests receive mini spa treatments and after-dinner seasonal cocktails and snacks like Cranberry Spritz, on lounge chairs right on the beach under the bright Turks and Caicos stars.

Eden Roc Cap Cana | Cap Cana, Domincan Republic

An ecological marvel, Eden Roc Cap Cana is a Relais & Châteaux jewel located in the exclusive community of Cap Cana, Dominican Republic. The property is known for creating out of the ordinary experiences and providing travelers with an ultra-luxe boutique island experience. With a big emphasis on the outdoors this Christmas season, guests can enjoy a variety of outdoor experiences including festive sunset yoga, childrens ornament making and santa visits as well as an oceanside Christmas dinner where guests can enjoy open air dining with a beach view.

The Mitre | Hampton Court, London

From across the pond in the UK, The Mitre Hampton Court is a 36-bedroom, Grade II-listed boutique hotel set on the banks of the River Thames by Hampton Court Palace. This winter, the riverside terrace has been transformed into a cosy riverside retreat, with a beautiful stretch tent, complete with heat lamps, cosy blankets, beanies and fire pits. Alongside this, The Mitre will be collaborating with The Berry Brothers to create a ‘Winter Warming Bar’ for a cosy Christmas cocktail, guests can gather round the fire pit, sip on a beverage and toast marshmallows over the fire. This Christmas, in true royal-style, guests can experience The Mitre’s "Stay, Dine & Skate” festive package which includes overnight accommodation (minimum 3 nights), dinner, and entry to Hampton Court Palace’s stunning ice rink  (from £455 per night)

The Ocean Club, A Four Seasons Resort, Bahamas | Paradise Island

Escape to paradise this festive season (literally - the resort is located on Paradise Island!) and give the gift of sunny skies and 5-miles of white sand to your family who knows, Santa Claus himself may make a beachside appearance. The Ocean Club is an idyllic tropical oasis providing an ultra-luxe holiday where rich Bahamian culture meets festive themed events. Kicking off Dec. 18 through Jan. 2, The Ocean Club will offer a festive-themed activity calendar sure to check off everyone’s list. Experience a beachside festive celebration with events scheduled around the clock from children Clubhouse activities to fitness/wellness classes and festive dining. Festive pop-ups on the estate include: “Straw Market” on the Martini Bar Lawn featuring local artisans and cigar rolling - and “Junkanoo,” a vibrant display of costumed dancers and musicians, the epitome of a Bahamian celebration. For those seeking a fully privatized holiday, take the activities in-suite or in-villa including in-room Christmas Tree decorating, painting classes, and festive meals are offered straight from your Villa Residence or Suite.

Destination: Utah

Washington School House | Park City, Utah

This intimate, twelve-room hotel is an ideal place to spend the holidays, in a setting that feels like a beautiful home, but providing all the amenities of an opulent hotel stay. Nestled among one of the world’s most stunning and luxurious mountain locations, tailored outdoor activities include fly-fishing, skiing, hiking, snowshoeing, dogsledding and more. Planned by the 24 hour concierge service, guests can create the outdoor holiday vacation of their dreams, before returning to meals cooked by the private chef.

The hotel's holiday decor is tastefully curated to make guests feel they are truly somewhere special during this season. Washington School House is located just 25 minutes from Salt Lake International airport and private airport transfers are available for guests in the hotel's personal fleet.

Destination: Georgia

The Ritz-Carlton Reynolds, Lake Oconee | Greensboro, GA

Set along 30 acres of shoreline and cradled by the Georgia pines just 90 minutes from Atlanta, is a peaceful lakeside resort where family and nature are sure to create holiday traditions. The lakeside resort is the perfect destination to celebrate the holidays in a beautiful setting, from Christmas lights reflecting on the waterfront to cozying around the fire pit making s’mores each evening Guests will celebrate together with a variety of experiences such as a giant gingerbread house, a special mailbox to send letters to the North Pole, caroling on the Linger Longer Express and reindeer games to create memories that last a lifetime. With chef-curated dining specials and themed spa treatments, there is truly something to cross off everyone in the family’s list this year. Surprises are in store for both children and adults as the resort decks the halls, ensuring each moment is merry and bright. For families or groups looking for a private holiday experience, book one of the newly renovated Cottages or The Lake House where curated holiday dining and festive activities can be enjoyed in a private space.