No matter what your dream spring-break vacation looks like—be it for romance or family or adventure—The Washingtonian has negotiated special reader rates on getaways that will warm the soul.
The Waldorf Astoria Orlando (407-597-5500), the closest luxury resort to the gates of Disney’s theme parks, is in a 482-acre nature preserve. Many guest rooms and suites feature sweeping vistas of the parks.
The hotel is offering a Washingtonian Orlando Break-Away package: Rooms start at $324 a night—a 20-percent savings off regular rates—and guests also receive breakfast for two daily, 20 percent off treatments at the Waldorf Astoria Spa by Guerlain, and 20 percent off rates at the Waldorf Astoria Golf Club. The package is available in April, May, and June. When reserving, use the code MWA04.
The Nayara Hotel, Spa & Gardens (866-311-1197), in the shadow of Costa Rica’s Arenal Volcano, is considered one of Central America’s best resorts. Forty-four bungalows—ranging from 855 to 1,905 square feet—are luxurious and private. Each casita includes a secluded garden with an outdoor shower and a terrace with a Jacuzzi for two.
Readers who book the Romantic Rainforest Retreat for $350 a night receive accommodations, a private dinner for two with a personal chef (excluding alcohol), a 60-minute couples massage, a tour of Arenal Volcano with a nighttime lava viewing, breakfast daily, and a welcome cocktail. The rate represents a 28-percent savings and requires a three-night minimum. Valid April 1 through May 31. When booking online, use the code Washingtonian.
At Ka’ana Boutique Luxury Resort (877-522-6221) in Belize , you can tap into the local culture and history without sacrificing comfort. The country’s first resort to earn membership in Small Luxury Hotels of the World, it offers 15 cottages with furniture and artwork created by local artisans. Ka’ana has a swimming pool, a gourmet restaurant, a spa, and tropical gardens.
Readers can book four nights in a luxury casita or a Balam Room and get continental breakfast daily for two, one consultation per guest with the last Mayan shaman in the region, and a private guided tour for two to the ancient city of Xunantunich. The rate for the package is $970 in a Balam Room or $1,270 in a casita; both prices reflect a 29-percent discount. Available through June 30; online, use the code WAKAA.
Located 165 miles off the coast of Florida, the Bahamas can’t be beat for ease of travel. The Abaco Beach Resort (800-468-4799) at Boat Harbour, a small property with 72 rooms, is prized for its laid-back vibe. The rooms feature wicker furnishings and bursts of tropical colors. The resort is a family favorite—besides kayaking, snorkeling, and boating, there’s a Kids Club that offers unusual activities such as learning Bahamian crafting or how to crack a conch.
Readers can book a four-night, five-day package that includes oceanfront accommodations, daily breakfast, and three round-trip ferry excursions to island entertainment hubs such as Elbow Cay, Hope Town, Great Guana Cay, and Lubber’s Quarters Cay. Rates for the package start at $729 a person based on double occupancy—a 25-percent savings—and are valid through May 31. If reserving online, use the code Washingtonian Spring Break.
Cool Culture and Art
A $31-million facelift has rejuvenated the Miami Marriott Biscayne Bay (305-374-3900), located at the center of Miami’s design and performing-arts districts. The hotel features bold colors, modern furnishings, and a heated pool.
The hotel is offering Washingtonian readers a special package that starts at $638 for two nights and includes breakfast for two daily; a dinner for two at Catch Grill & Bar, the hotel’s bayfront restaurant; and two tickets to a show at the Adrienne Arsht Center, Florida’s largest performing-arts center. In April and May, diverse offerings include the opera Don Giovanni and a family music festival. The package reflects a 20-percent discount on room rates and is valid through May 31. Online, use the code ARN.
Elite Island Resorts (800-858-4618) is a collection of properties throughout the Caribbean, ranging from a small resort on a private island in St. Vincent and the Grenadines to a relaxed hillside hotel built around an 18th-century sugar mill on Tortola in the British Virgin Islands.
Readers who book by July 1 and travel between April 26 and October 31 receive 30 percent off regular rates, which range from $125 a person a night to $440 (double occupancy); those who travel between April 16 and April 25 get 20 percent off. Readers also get a $50-per-person resort credit.
Elite resorts include LaSource in Grenada; Long Bay Beach Resort & Villas in Tortola; Palm Island Resort in St. Vincent and the Grenadines; and, in Antigua, Galley Bay Resort & Spa, St. James’s Club & Villas, and Verandah Resort & Spa. The online-booking code is Washingtonian.
Breezy Island Escape
Ocean Club and Ocean Club West (800-457-8787) are a pair of condominium resorts a mile apart on the sands of Grace Bay Beach in Turks and Caicos. The roomy suites have kitchens or kitchenettes, living rooms, and screened balconies. Guests prize the low-key amenities such as poolside barbecue grills and hammocks hung in shaded spots. Both resorts have relaxed open-air restaurants, and Ocean Club is home to Opus, one of the area’s best fine-dining restaurants.
Readers who book six nights or more receive 20 percent off regular rates, which begin at $229 for one-bedroom units. This offer is valid April 25 through December 18; just mention The Washingtonian.
Bubbles in Bed
Coconut Bay Beach Resort & Spa (877-352-8898) is on St. Lucia’s southern coast. Washingtonian readers who book seven nights in a deluxe ocean-view room for $1,243 a person (double occupancy required) at this all-inclusive resort receive all meals, a fruit basket and Champagne on arrival or at turndown one night of their stay, a couples-only beachfront dinner one night, one lunchtime beach picnic, a kitesurfing lesson, a private chauffeured island tour, a half-hour photo shoot with the resort photographer plus a keepsake photo, and a $250 resort credit that can be used on spa treatments or gift-shop purchases.
The package represents a 45-percent savings over booking à la carte. The package must be booked by May 15 and is good on travel from April 26 through June 15. Online, use the code WASH SP11.
Calm Costa Rica
The Costa Rica Marriott Hotel San Jose (888-236-2427), a resort with two outdoor pools, a driving range, nature trails, and three tennis courts, is on a former coffee plantation. Readers who book two nights get a free 60-minute signature massage for two (worth $220) at Kuo Spa—which taps local coffee beans, volcanic ash, and other natural ingredients for treatments—as well as breakfast for two daily. This deal is valid weekends only from April 1 through October 31. Rates begin at $229. Online, use the code PR5.
Flanked by an 1,100-acre rainforest on one side and the Pacific Ocean on the other, Costa Rica’s Los Suenos Marriott Ocean & Golf Resort (888-236-2427) is a luxurious adventure vacation. The hotel has been named one of the world’s best resorts by Travel & Leisure. In addition to golf, pools, and a spa, it offers adventures such as zip-lining through the rainforest canopy, horseback riding, sea kayaking, river rafting, and crocodile viewing. Readers who book at least three nights in a garden-view room (rates start at $199 a night) receive a free 60-minute massage for two (a savings of $220) as well as daily breakfast (a savings of $186). This deal is valid April 1 through October 31; use the code PR5 when booking online.
This article first appeared in the April 2011 issue of The Washingtonian.