April 19th, 2012
Springtime is officially in full-bloom in Toronto, Canada’s biggest city, and it’s time to get out and enjoy it! Just a quick flight a way, Toronto is the ideal weekend getaway. Perfectly situated in the heart of the fashionable Yorkville area and surrounded by high-end retail stores and five-star restaurants, a weekend at the Park Hyatt Toronto is just what the doctor ordered. Its close proximity to downtown’s most renowned sites makes it the perfect home base for your visit.
From a recent Huffington Post article, here are George Hobica’s 10 favorite things to do in Toronto this spring and summer. Here are some of our favorites from that list:
- Get high – EdgeWalk, the city’s newest attraction is not for the faint of heart. For $175, extremists can get the best view of the city…and then get pushed out of a 116-story tower.
- Get a little tipsy – While Ontario’s booming wine industry is still flying somewhat under the radar, it’s not due to quality. According to George, “it’s because Ontario’s oenophiles are too busy getting high on their own supply to figure out how to export the stuff.” The best vintages come from the vineyards that line the scenic back roads of the Niagara Peninsula, less than an hour from the city.
- Eat Dim Sum – with nearly 50% of Toronto’s population born outside the country, there is an immense array of restaurants, and many of them hail from Asia. While most tourists head for Chinatown, the best Dim Sum is found in the suburbs north of Highway 401.
- Get wet – no trip to Toronto is complete with making the pilgrimage to Niagara Falls. Whether you choose to hit the casinos or not, a cruise aboard the historic Maid of the Mist steamboat is definitely in order.
- Catch up with Brad & Angelina – In September, the annual Toronto International Film Festival brings A-listers from all over the world. Can’t make it in September? No worries, the festival’s TIFF Bell Lightbox theater complex has an impressive selection of films and events occurring throughout the year.
- Knock your socks off – Make sure to sneak in a visit to the Bata Shoe Museum, home to more than 12,500 shoes from all around the world.
- Get down – The real fun happens after dark. George’s one rule for Toronto’s funky nightlife: “West is best.” Start along Queen Street West and end in the Parkdale neighborhood’s Grand Electric, a bustling, mod-Mexican cantina.
October 4th, 2011
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and the perfect opportunity for getting away while supporting a great cause. Whether paying a visit to the spa or indulging in a weekend away from home, you’ll be making a contribution to the fight against breast cancer.
Where: The Peninsula Spa by ESPA, New York, NY
What: During the month of October, The Peninsula Spa by ESPA is offering pink-themed treatments to raise funds for the American Cancer Society as part of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The Pink Power Package combines a soothing massage with an optional personal training session for a day of pampering and fitness. For the ultimate indulgence, the spa is offering the Peninsula Pink Ceremony, a two-hour treatment that includes a rejuvenating body scrub, cleansing facial, and full-body massage. Support a great cause while indulging in a mini spa-cation!
Where: Advanced Beauty Care, Burlingame, California
What: Every October, Advanced Beauty Care hosts a fundraiser featuring Guinot products to benefit Mills Peninsula Hospital Foundation – Women’s Center Breast Health Services, a local organization focused on breast health. At the fundraiser, guests discover two essential Guinot skin care products: Guinot Longue Vie Cellulaire and the NEW Guinot Red Logic, both of which have helped clients preserve their skin while undergoing radiation therapy for breast cancer.
Nantucket Island Resorts
Where: Nantucket Island Resorts, Nantucket
What: For the month of October, all Nantucket Island Resorts properties are donating $1 from every room night bought to the Marla Ceely Lamb Fund, a local charity that helps Nantucket residents suffering from cancer defray the costs of transportation and lodging for patients who must travel off-island for cancer treatment. In addition, guests booking a stay during the weekend of October 14-16 will have the opportunity to participate on the Nantucket Island Resorts-sponsored team during Nantucket’s Making Strides against Breast Cancer Walk on Sunday, October 16, 2011. Nantucket Island Resorts has committed to a $1,000 donation for the Breast Cancer Walk. Those who join the team will receive a complimentary team tee-shirt. The White Elephant is also participating by offering a special pink White Elephant tee-shirt in their gift shop and a Think Pink cocktail at Brant Point Grill. At The Wauwinet, TOPPER’S restaurant is offering pink cocktails and cupcakes.
Where: Park Hyatt Toronto
What: During the month of October, spend the night in Park Hyatt Toronto’s Pink Room – a perfectly pink suite designed by Sarah Richardson – and the hotel will donate ten percent of the room rate to the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation. Toronto natives and other guests can also participate by giving their nails a pink treat at the Stillwater Spa. The spa will also donate ten percent of all pink-hued manicures and pedicures to the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation.
May 17th, 2011
Afraid the Easter Bunny won’t know where to find you if you’re away? We guarantee he’ll be drawn to these great Easter celebrations, so pack those bags and get ready to eat some jelly beans and chocolate eggs. Whether near (Nantucket, Washington D.C., Toronto) or far (Paris, Provence, Moscow), these spots are perfect to ring in the spring.
Nantucket Island Resorts
Nantucket Island Resorts, including Jared Coffin House (starting at $125), White Elephant (starting at $195), The Cottages & Lofts (starting at $200), and White Elephant Hotel Residences (starting at $350 for guestroom or $500 for residence)
Easter Happenings: Amazing rates at each of the properties over Easter Weekend – and a delicious brunch at the Brant Point Grill featuring Easter Basket Workshops and Egg Hunts!
The Offer: Spend a great family weekend on Nantucket with plenty of amusement for the little ones. The following will be happening at the White Elephant. For event and brunch reservations, please call 508.228.1320.
- Saturday, April 23 – Easter Basket Workshop at 1 pm and 3 pm. Reservations required; $5 per child; open to the public
- Sunday, April 24 – Easter Brunch with Raw Bar at Brant Point Grill – $42 adults; $21 children
- Sunday, April 24 – Easter Egg Hunts – 11 am and 2 pm with a special guest on the White Elephant Harborside Lawn
Subject to availability. Excludes room tax.
Park Hyatt Washington D.C.
A tony Washington DC design and foodie favorite in the fashionable West End Georgetown neighborhood.
Easter Happenings: A three-course, buffet-style brunch from 10:30 am to 3:30 pm. Highlights include sunnyside eggs with cod cakes and spicy buttermilk sauce; roasted leg of lamb with rosemary jus and shallots; local rockfish with pea sauce and morels; and Belgian Liege waffle with Mountain Huckleberry Marmalade.
The Offer: $90 per person and $45 for children between six and 12; children under six years of age are welcome on a complimentary basis.
Park Hyatt Toronto
Set in fashionable Yorkville just across the street from the Royal Ontario Museum and five minutes from the theater and financial districts, Park Hyatt Toronto offers a contemporary city getaway, with 336 guestrooms and the award-winning Stillwater Spa.
Easter Happenings: Relax in comfort with Park Hyatt Toronto’s Awaken at The Park package: overnight accommodations and full breakfast for two in the acclaimed Annona Restaurant. Annona is also offering an Easter Brunch Prix Fixe and an Easter Dinner Prix Fixe.
The Offer: The Awaken package is available from Friday, April 22 until Monday, April 25 starting at $208. Three course brunch menu at Annona is $71 per person, while the three course dinner is $52 per person.
Pavillon de la Reine
This impossibly chic and charming hotel is located on the historic Place des Vosges in the Marais. Blooming with life in the spring season, the ivy-clad 54 bedroom Pavillon de la Reine was originally built in the 1600s as part of the Place Royale by King Henri IV.
Easter Happenings: Guests are welcomed with a chocolate egg and bottle of champagne upon arrival. Following an egg painting session, kids will enjoy running throughout the private courtyard on the quest for chocolate eggs. The Easter weekend package also includes brunch for two.
The Offer: Superior rooms start at 390 euros per night, Junior or Duplex Suite start at €550 ($792 USD) per night.
Le Pavillon des Lettres
The new literature-inspired hotel offers 26 rooms – each devoted to a letter of the alphabet and an international author corresponding to that letter (think S for Shakespeare, V for Voltaire…)
Easter Happenings: A chocolate egg, bottle of French white wine, and a book of the best places to eat chocolate will be waiting in your room upon arrival. Enjoy brunch for two on Easter morning in the Salon amongst the hotel’s literary greats!
The Offer: Deluxe rooms start at €360 ($518 USD) per night.
Hotel Crillon le Brave
The refined rustic Hotel Crillon le Brave is one of France’s most notable boutique hotels. Just 90 minutes North of Marseille, its consists of seven beautifully restored stone houses dating from the 16th and 17th centuries, which are linked by bridges, cobblestone walkways, and hidden courtyards.
Easter Happenings: While the kids participate in entertaining French lessons, learn to make French desserts, and visit a local boulangerie and olive oil mill, parents can enjoy wine tastings and spa treatments.
The Offer: The Provençal Family adventure package is offered April 17-22 and April 25-29 and costs €2,290 ($3,297 USD) for a family of four.
Ararat Park Hyatt Moscow
While “egg hunt in Russia” might inspire thoughts of “finally, a chance to find those missing eight Fabergé eggs,” Ararat Park Hyatt Moscow is offering an even sweeter deal. Built on the former site of Hotel Armenia, this hotel combines classic Armenian and Russian design elements, and is located within immediate vicinity of Moscow’s most famous landmarks, including the Bolshoi Theatre, the Kremlin, Red Square, and Saint Basil’s Cathedral.
Easter Happenings: Free chocolate eggs will be given to take home at Easter Sunday Brunch on April 24th. Executive chef Guillaume Joly will be whipping up traditional Easter dishes like kulich, paskha, roasted leg of lamb, and much more at The Park Restaurant. For children, an egg hunt (yes, of the chocolate kind) will take place, with “sweet” prizes to be won.
The Offer: RUB 3,900 per person ($138 USD), including VAT and service charges.