Holiday Face Off: Metro City Lights vs. Beach Getaway

If you're looking to get away during the holidays, do you like window displays and cold weather or golf courses and the beach?

This article published with permission from

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Oyster Blog

’Tis (almost) the season! Are you the type to head to New York City for the Rockefeller Center tree and lavish window displays? Or are you Caribbean-bound this time of year for some R&R? Either way, Oyster.com has found a destination and a hotel to suit your needs. So whether you’re planning on packing a parka or a bikini, check out our list below of the best places to stay this holiday season.

From

to the tree at Rockefeller Center, New York City knows how to celebrate the holidays and so do New York City hotels, with over-the-top decorations like the tree at

.

Macy’s Thanksgiving Day ParadeThe New York Palace

Rooms at the Trump International Hotel and Tower offer great views of the parade on Thanksgiving, while The Pierre is not only decorated for the holidays but is just blocks from the famous window displays at Barney’s. And it wouldn’t be Christmastime in New York if you didn’t ice-skate at Rockefeller Center next to the massive Christmas tree — some years, it is 100 feet tall! The Loews Regency is one block away from the rink.

In December, the temperature in Costa Rica hovers around the mid-70s: reason enough to make a trip down south. With long, sandy beaches, natural hot springs, misty rainforests, and some secluded, untouched retreats, Costa Rica is the ultimate spot for a romantic trip away from all of the hustle and bustle that the holiday season brings. Two-and-a-half hours from the airport,

has unparalleled views, a stunning infinity pool and a ruggedly beautiful beach.

Hotel Punta Islita

Costa Rica also has beautiful sunsets almost every night, like the one on the beach at

. So sit back, relax, and enjoy the view!

The Four Seasons Costa Rica

Although on the opposite coast, San Francisco is much like New York City in the way it celebrates the holidays; there’s an annual turkey trot, a lighting of the tree at Pier 39, and several parades and fairs. The world-renowned San Francisco Ballet also celebrates by performing

. Guests staying at

New York CityCosta RicaSan FranciscoThe NutcrackerHotel Whitcomb will be just blocks from the show.

Not only a great jumping off point for your holiday shopping (the plaza is bordered by Macy’s and Saks Fifth Avenue), Union Square is home to an ice-skating rink and a Christmas tree during the holiday season. Kids can even visit Santa Claus at Macy’s and visitors who stay at The Westin St. Francis can watch the ice-skaters from their window!

Want to avoid crazed shopping but still get in a heart-pumping workout? Aside from offering fewer crowds, warmer temperatures, and a beautiful landscape, Maui is a great place to escape the winter cold and pursue outdoor endeavors. One of Maui’s most popular pastimes is surfing and there are beaches for all levels of surfer. Hamoa Beach, about 10 minutes from the

, is for more experienced surfers who are used to rough waves, while the waters at the

are perfect for beginners.

Travaasa HanaFour Seasons Maui

When in Maui, one should snorkel — Maui’s waters are home to dolphins, colorful fish, and sea turtles, like the one at Black Rock at the

, where cliff-diving is also a popular activity. Good snorkeling beaches can be found at

and the

as well.

Sheraton Maui ResortMakena Beach and Golf ResortGrand Wailea Resort Hotel and Spa

Everything seems more important with “national” in front of it, and the National Christmas tree is a popular site during the winter in the Capitol. The tree lighting, broadcast live, will take place of Dec. 1 but the tree can be enjoyed through the new year. The

,

, and the

are all just a short walk from the tree and the National Mall.

W Washington DCThe Willard Washington D.C.JW Marriott Hotel Washington, DC

is a lights show put on by the National Zoo every year. Not only does it feature sparkling lights, but also ice sculpture demonstrations, carolers, crafts, and storytellers, and parts of the zoo remains open at night. Families hoping to check it out may want to stay at the

, only a four-minute drive from the zoo.

ZooLightsOmni Shoreham Hotel

The Dominican Republic is not only a popular beach destination, but a golf destination as well. Numerous resorts are home to top-notch courses, like Teeth of the Dog at

in La Romano. The top-ranked golf course in the Caribbean, Teeth of the Dog boasts pristine links at a par 72 and the resort has two other golf courses, all designed by World Golf Hall of Famer Pete Dye.

Casa De Campo

For those who prefer to spend their holiday lying on the white sand beaches of Punta Cana, there are still plenty of spots to perfect their swing in the area like

,

, and

.

Tortuga BayPunta Cana HotelCatalonia Bavaro Beach

MauiWashington, D.C.Dominican Republic

After hitting the links, visitors to Dominican Republic can do what they came for — relax and unwind as a holiday treat. Many hotels in the area feature spas with indoor and outdoor facilities. Enjoy an open-air couple’s massage at the

(and be glad the temperatures are in the 80s) or check out the luxurious spas at

and

.

Punta Cana PrincessDreams La RomanaParadisus Palma Real