Last Updated November 6, 2021 11/6/2021

14 Luxurious Winter Vacations to Start Planning Now

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While summer might be the most popular time to take a vacation, when winter rolls around most of us are ready for a break. This year, why not go all out with a luxurious escape? Whether it’s the sun and sand, a glamorous ski resort, or a unique bucket-list experience, there’s sure to be a getaway calling your name.

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Badrutt's Palace Hotel - St. Moritz, Switzerland
Badrutt’s Palace

Badrutt's Palace Hotel - St. Moritz, Switzerland

Nestled in the Swiss Alps, Badrutt’s Palace Hotel is a luxury historic property that overlooks a pristine lake and extraordinary mountain views from an elevation of 6,000 feet. It’s been offering indulgent experiences in glitzy St. Moritz since 1896. Special packages are offered that include pickup in a Rolls Royce, access to Palace Wellness with indoor and outdoor pools with mountain views, 24/7 butler service, a complimentary ski pass alongside use of mountain railways, and a three- or five-night stay, among other perks. New for the 2021 season is the El Paradiso Mountain Restaurant and Club which can only be accessed only by ski or chairlift.

Garza Blanca - Cancun, Mexico
Junior Swim Up Suite at Garza Blanca Resorts & Spas Cancun

Garza Blanca - Cancun, Mexico

This luxury Cancun resort (as well as its sister property in Los Cabos) provides guests with dedicated Experience Host who will be happy to assist in curating personal itineraries for you and your group. That includes snorkeling at Punta Nizue, famous for its underwater sculptures and myriad of colorful marine life, and a day trip to the Mayan ruins at Chichén Itza which date back to 400 AD. The resort offers a renowned Gourmet Culinary All-Inclusive Plan, which also includes international and domestic premium beverages for the in-suite bar, along with accommodation in premier multi-bedroom oceanfront suites and penthouse residences. For a truly luxurious stay, opt for one of the swim up suites.

Occidental Grand Papagayo - Guanacaste, Costa Rica
Occidental Grand Papagayo Resort

Occidental Grand Papagayo - Guanacaste, Costa Rica

With the dry season falling between mid November and May, a luxury winter vacation in Costa Rica is ideal for enjoying gorgeous days at the beach surrounded by breathtaking scenery that includes lush rainforest and a volcano-dotted landscape. The Occidental Grand Papagayo offers an all-inclusive adults-only beachfront stay in the Gulf of Papagayo with everything from kayaking and diving to eco-adventure tours and an entertaining schedule of activities after dark. Or just lounge alongside the free-form freshwater pool with concierge drink service, soak in the Jacuzzi and indulge in a massage. Unlimited premium brand beverages can be enjoyed at four bars, along with unlimited meals and snacks.

Grand Wailea - Maui, Hawaii
Grand Wailea, A Waldorf Astoria Resort

Grand Wailea - Maui, Hawaii

Winter is whale watching season in Maui and the island offers all of its usual delights from the incredible drive on the Road to Hana to snorkeling. The Grand Wailea is truly grand as it’s the most amenity-packed resort here and includes a massive pool complex that’s more like a water amusement park with its water slides, lazy river, caves, rope swings, and a water elevator inside of a man-made volcano. Families will especially appreciate the 20,000-square-foot kids’ camp which includes a video arcade, PlayStation room, and small movie theater. The property hosts a huge spa and multiple restaurants too.

Teton Mountain Lodge & Spa - Jackson, Wyoming
Teton Mountain Lodge & Spa

Teton Mountain Lodge & Spa - Jackson, Wyoming

A stay at Teton Mountain Lodge & Spa will put you surrounded by the majestic Grand Teton Mountains with the opportunity for all sorts of snow activities like skiing and abundant wildlife watching opportunities. The property mixes a laid-back vibe with alpine luxury and a touch of western flair, with every suite including a kitchenette, stone gas fireplace, and whirlpool tub. The two and three-bedroom suites come with terraces with views of the slopes. After a day of play, cozy up to the lobby fire with mountain views, soothe sore muscles in the spa or relax in the rooftop hot tub.

Resort at Paws Up - Greenough, Montana
Winter at The Resort at Paws UP, Montana

Resort at Paws Up - Greenough, Montana

There may be few better places for winter luxuries, particularly for the more adventurous types, than the Resort at Paws Up. A 37,000-acre authentic working cattle ranch in Montana, it offers it all among a majestic snowy wonderland. Look forward to old-fashioned fun like horse-drawn sleigh and wagon rides through forests blanketed in white as well as horseback riding, cross-country skiing, ice skating, snowmobiling, and tubing. Of course, there’s a spa where you can warm up and enjoy decadent treatments afterward. Or just relax in your upscale vacation home nestled among tall timbers boasting panoramic mountainscapes.

The Cloister at Sea Island - Georgia
Credit: Sea Island
The Cloister at Sea Island

The Cloister at Sea Island - Georgia

Tucked along Georgia’s scenic coast just steps from the sparkling blue Atlantic, The Cloister at Sea Island is a beachfront property with a heavy dose of Southern hospitality. Enjoy exceptional service and peaceful relaxation in a place where you can be sure you’re well taken care of. Plus, in the wintertime, there are discounted room rates and it’s easier to get into the most desirable restaurants like the Georgian Room. Yet the weather is usually plenty warm enough for golfing and the resort offers special packages for golf enthusiasts, golf lessons with a renowned pro, clay pigeon shooting, and other activities. There’s a spa with indoor waterfalls, a BMW for taking afternoon excursions, and even a nightly bagpiper.

Icehotel - Jukkasjarvi, Sweden
Icehotel Sweden

Icehotel - Jukkasjarvi, Sweden

There are now a number of ice hotels across the globe, but Sweden’s Icehotel is one of the most famous, providing the ultimate vacation in the Arctic. You’ll reach this real-life frozen castle by snowmobile or dog sled, with its “cool rooms” typically hovering around 23 degrees Fahrenheit. Guests are supplied with expedition sleeping bags, rated to 13 degrees below Fahrenheit for warmth. For those who aren’t up to that much of a chilly adventure, more traditional rooms are available too. The property also happens to enjoy one of the best vantage points for checking off the bucket list experience of viewing the aurora borealis – you can even search for them on horseback.

Fairmont Banff Springs - Banff, Alberta, Canada
Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel

Fairmont Banff Springs - Banff, Alberta, Canada

There are few hotels in the world that can rival the opulence of Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel. The “Castle in the Rockies” sits in the heart of Banff National Park and was styled after a Scottish Baronial Castle. Rising up from the forested Banff Valley for over 130 years, it sets the standard when it comes to luxury vacations. Here you can enjoy sleigh rides, ice skating, canyon ice walks, gondola rides and helicopter tours that reveal just how jaw-dropping this landscape truly is. Afterwards, the Willow Stream Spa is the place to be for revitalization with hot springs and lavish treatments, while nearly a dozen restaurants and lounges provide tasty food and drink.

Hyatt Ziva Riviera Cancun - Puerto Morelos, Mexico
room at Hyatt Ziva Riviera Cancun

Hyatt Ziva Riviera Cancun - Puerto Morelos, Mexico

The Hyatt Ziva Riviera Cancun is a brand-new all-inclusive resort located between Playa del Carmen and the Hotel Zone of Cancun on the Yucatan Peninsula at the edge of the turquoise Caribbean. A family-friendly property, it includes nine sparkling pools and an all-ages oceanfront water park. It includes the Zen Spa which has a focus on pre-Hispanic Mayan culture with exotic treatments enjoyed indoors or out in cabins designed to harmonize with the natural landscape. There are top-notch restaurants serving local culinary delights, and a gym with state-of-the-art gym.  The 400+ luxury suites are fabulous, with private balconies boasting stunning sea views, spa-like bathrooms with rainfall showers and Jacuzzis, and complimentary minibars.

Park Hyatt Beaver Creek Resort and Spa - Beaver Creek, Colorado
Credit: hyatt.com
Park Hyatt Beaver Creek

Park Hyatt Beaver Creek Resort and Spa - Beaver Creek, Colorado

Park Hyatt Beaver Creek Resort and Spa overlooks Beaver Creek Mountain, providing a luxurious base for skiing and other snow sports. Enjoy ski-in/ski-out access with freshly baked cookies and s’mores waiting upon your return. There’s a heated outdoor pool, multiple hot tubs, and, the highlight: Aqua Sanitas Water Sanctuary. Inspired by ancient Roman bathhouses, it offers a five-step hydrotherapy treatment, plus you can choose from a variety of offerings based on healing properties found in the local area. The lodge-style rooms are high-end, featuring balconies that showcase mountain views. Suites come with fireplaces, kitchenettes, or both. Ideal for both couples and families alike, guests here will also find an ice-skating rink and a game room for the kids.

Jade Mountain Resort - Soufrière, Saint Lucia
Jade Mountain

Jade Mountain Resort - Soufrière, Saint Lucia

The adults-only Jade Mountain Resort is often ranked among the world’s most romantic and luxurious, drawing many honeymooners and others seeking romance. But anyone who wants to escape winter’s cold and enjoy plenty of pampering will appreciate its massive suites that overlook the endless blue of the Caribbean and the island’s famous Pitons. They boast private infinity pools, raised whirlpool tubs, and canopy beds, along with dedicated butlers. The award-winning cuisine is organically sourced from a nearby plantation and included in the property’s all-inclusive package. Indulge in rejuvenating spa treatments, relax with refreshing cocktails, enjoy live music and head to the sky deck for unforgettable stargazing.

Fairmont Le Château Frontenac - Quebec City, Canada
Fairmont Le Château Frontenac

Fairmont Le Château Frontenac - Quebec City, Canada

Fairmont Le Château Frontenac oozes with glamour all year long, but in the winter you’ll be surrounded by a glorious snowy wonderland. An iconic luxury hotel, it was built over 125 years ago by the general manager of the Canadian Pacific Railway as a stopover for railroad passengers. Today it offers the perfect escape to complement the European feel of Quebec City, complete with architectural styles from the Middle Ages and Renaissance eras, not to mention the jaw-dropping views overlooking the St. Lawrence River. If you visit over the holidays expect lots of light displays and special events too.

Alyeska Resort - Girdwood, Alaska
Alyeska Resort

Alyeska Resort - Girdwood, Alaska

For luxuries and the chance to gaze up at the Northern Lights, Alyeska Resort is considered one of the best, just 40 miles from Anchorage. A luxury chateau-style hotel, it’s nestled in the forest, surrounded by the towering peaks of the Chugach Mountains just below a popular ski mountain. Staff will arrange wake-up calls when the lights appear upon request, no matter what the hour. In the morning, re-energize with a dip in the saltwater pool and then take part in activities like snowshoeing, snowmobile tours, skijoring, or cross-country skiing. A hot stone massage is the perfect way to cap it all off.

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