Top 10 All American Resorts
Want to stick closer to home for your summer vacation? When you don't have enough time to jet off to an Indian Ocean hideaway, why not look to your own backyard for an escape to remember. The good ole U.S. of A. has plenty of luxury destinations that rank among the world's best. From Alaska to the Florida Keys, the map is dotted with great resorts and getaways that allow the discerning traveler a place to relax and all without a currency exchange. What follows is our list of the best resorts that America has to offer.
Top Ten All-American Resorts after the jump.
10 - Four Seasons, Jackson Hole
The glories of the Rockies surround the Four Seasons Jackson Hole. Located at the southern end of Grand Teton National Park, the hotel is a prime location from which to venture into the wild. In the winter, this hotel is a busy slopeside hotel catering to the ski crowd. The summer brings warmer weather and far fewer guests so be prepared for some actual peace and quiet. The hotel blends well with its surroundings and provides a rustic yet throughly modern atmosphere in which to enjoy the scenery.
9 - The Cloister, Sea Island
Located on the Georgia coast, Sea Island has been an exclusive community that has managed to stay low on the radar while providing an indulgent environment in which knowledgeable travelers can relax and enjoy a slower pace of life. At the heart of this island is The Cloister, a delightful resort designed by Addison Mizner in 1928. The decades passed and The Cloister grew and expanded all around a building that soon limited the resort from providing the ultimate service. But, in March of this year, The Cloister opened its doors again to a $350 million rebuild of the main building. Parts of the original building were included into a new hotel that serves as the hub of island life. Guests can chose to stay in the new Cloister that fronts the Black River or the Ocean Houses that are on the beach.
8 - Wheatleigh, Lenox
Those in need of a country house experience, look no further. Wheatleigh is a dramatic Italianate mansion in Lenox, Massachusetts that borders on the other worldly. The house is ornate and everything a gilded age home should be. Except, instead of being stuffed with a gaudy Victorian decor, a soothing modern decor surrounds guests in delicate fabrics and soft colors. The Berkshires may beckon you outside, but be sure to be back for dinner at the AAA Five Diamond Dining Room.
7 - Whiteface Lodge, Lake Placid
While Lake Placid is a hub of east coast winter sporting, the summertime provides plenty of activity as well and less crowds to worry about. The new Whiteface Lodge is the perfect Adirondack retreat for relaxation and exploration of this exciting area. The hotel is luxurious and rustic, a combination that is sometimes difficult to achieve. The lodge's private Canoe Club gives you access to Lake Placid for all manner of boating, fishing, and swimming. The resort is very family friendly and has a movie theater, games center, and plenty of pools to entertain.
6 - The Greenbrier, White Sulfur Springs
Few resorts in America enjoy a reputation as grand as The Greenbrier. Nestled in the Appalachian Mountains, the Greenbrier provides a getaway that allows today's busy travelers a chance to relive the golden days of resort life. The mountains provide a backdrop to numerous activities such as golf, tennis, and cycling. If total relaxation is your thing, the spa is the place to go. People have been coming to the springs here since 1778 for their healing waters. The hotel has restored the fabulous Dorothy Draper interiors from yesteryear and soon will reopen the U.S. Government Relocation Bunker for tours. Make the Greenbrier your fallout shelter this summer!
5 -The Breakers, Palm Beach
No place on earth probably equals the extravagance and wealth that is Palm Beach. And no place in Palm Beach provides the experience and culmination of excess than The Breakers. Built by the great Henry Flagler himself, the Breakers is the catalyst of Palm Beach society. Although the masses of New York Society have returned North for the summer, Palm Beach remains a destination of luxury with Worth Avenue shops beckoning and the golf courses waiting. The legendary Breakers has been updated and rooms are luxurious and service prompt. Fabulous details abound in the decadent resort modeled after a Italian Palace. This year, the hotel is opening 2 new pools and cabanas to cater to the entire family. One will be a quiet pool (i.e. No Kiddies,) while the other will be a family pool for everyone to enjoy.
4 - Montage, Laguna Beach
For those in search of the California beachside bungalow, I found your place. Although the Montage Resort has been open for several years, we still love its relaxed atmosphere and fantastic location on the Pacific. In the heart of Laguna Beach, Montage allows people to escape the business of the L.A. basin and chill-out by the shore. The resort boasts an excellent restaurant, Studio, with a panoramic view of the sea and divine dishes. The Craftsman design of the resort extends to the calming guest rooms whose ocean views and comfy beds will ensure a pleasant nights sleep.
3 - Wynn Las Vegas, Las Vegas
Wanna be a high roller in Vegas? Well, even if you don't drop several million in the casino, Wynn Las Vegas will make sure you leave feeling like a whale. The resort has just celebrated its one year anniversary and is still making waves in the Vegas market. The resaturates are filled with top name chefs like Daniel Boulud and Alex la Strata and the shops are couture central with Manolo Blahnik and Graff Jewelers. The rooms feature high thread count sheets and neato things like flat screen TV's and automatic drapes. The golf course is the only one on the strip and the Ferrari dealership entices you to spend your winnings on something fast.
2 - Post Ranch Inn, Big Sur
If you require a resort in touch with its surroundings, the Post Ranch Inn should do nicely. Overlooking the Pacific south of San Fransisco, the Post Ranch Inn offers guests the chance to get away in a netherworld of beauty and a place far removed from the mundane. The resort isn't only about getting away, it's about getting right, with spa sessions that go beyond massage. A Shaman can consult with you about your life and get you in tune to the ancient ways. And when your not having a yoga session or exploring the old-growth redwoods, the Sierra Mar restaurant will feed your body and soul with an out-of-this world view and fantastic cuisine.
1 - The Ritz-Carlton, Orlando
Yes, because the greatest vacation in all of America has to be a trip to Walt Disney World. Now, I haven't found any of the onsite hotels to be up to par, but the area is home to a wonderful place from Ritz-Carlton. This family friendly resort gives discriminating travelers the chance to bring the kids along for the magic of Disney and gives mommy and daddy a grown-up level of service they deserve. After a day of long lines and miles of walking it's nice to know that the superlative Ritz service is waiting for you. Transportation to all the area parks is arranged through the concierge and even if you've done Disney, there is Sea World and Universal Studios to explore. Even if you don't have kids or it's been ages since your last Orlando vacation, the Ritz-Carlton will make certain that your stay is a memorable one.