A quick getaway over Martin Luther King, Jr., weekend (January 17–20, 2014) proposes the perfect remedy for staving off winter boredom. Granted, cramming a far-flung European vacay into just three or four days might prove challenging, but, happily, there are plenty of easily doable North American jaunts to choose from, with hotels enticing travelers with special holiday weekend deals. Whether it's the beach, a big-city adventure, or ski slopes that you're after, here are some of the weekend's very best hotel deals.
1. CasaMagna Marriott Puerto Vallarta
Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
Perfect for families traveling together, kids eat free at CasaMagna Marriott Puerto Vallarta, with nightly rates starting at $279. With access to four restaurants, a health club, the 22,000-square-foot Ohtli Spa, an infinity-edge oceanfront pool, and impressive all-ages educational programming, there is plenty on offer for each member of the family.
Book It: Visit puertovallartamarriott.com.
2. EPIC Hotel
Skip South Beach this time around and opt instead to sneak a peek at emerging hot spot, downtown Miami. Bunk down at Kimpton's EPIC Hotel, a skyscraper property set on the downtown waterfront, with fantastic views over Biscayne Bay, and restaurants and boutiques just steps away. Book two nights and get the third night free when staying between January 17 and January 21, 2014. Rates start at $349/night, including a daily wine reception.
Book It: Call 1-800-KIMPTON.
3. Conrad Chicago
Brave the winter chill and set up camp at Conrad Chicago's plum spot on the Magnificent Mile, which is also connected to The Shops at North Bridge (touting 50 shops, plus Nordstrom). The "Just Chillin'" package (starting at $155/night) includes two cocktails, breakfast for two, a 25-percent discount on room service, 25-percent off The Terrace Restaurant & Bar, in-room DVDs, unlimited coffee or hot chocolate, and free access to the fitness center.
Book It: Visit Chillcation.com.
4. The Mayflower Renaissance
What better place than the nation's capital to celebrate the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr.? The Mayflower Renaissance's "Stay for Breakfast" package is stocked with perks like complimentary breakfast buffet for up to two adults and two children at Edgar Bar & Kitchen. While in D.C., enjoy free admission to the Martin Luther King Jr. National Memorial and convenient access to the parade. Rates start at $159/night.
Book It: Book through marriott.com or call 800/228-9290, and use promotional code S4B.
5. The Meadowmere Resort
Maine's The Meadowmere Resort proposes a quick holiday-weekend escape from many East Coast cities. The "Martin Luther King Weekend" package (starting at $180/night) includes brunch at Jonathan's, wine paired with Cabot Creamery Cooperative cheese upon arrival, free movies in an on-site theater, and late checkout at 1pm. There are many kid-friendly activities to round out the fun, too.
Book It: Visit meadowmere.com.
6. Hotel Monaco
Salt Lake City, Utah
For urban-minded folks who still want easy access to ski slopes (10 major ski areas are set within a 40-minute drive of Salt Lake City), Kimpton's Hotel Monaco is offering a "Ski Utah" package (starting at $194/night) that includes accommodations, daily lift tickets, ski storage, and a unique "altitude-adjustment" welcome amenity. Also included is a daily wine hour, complete with seated massages—perfect for soothing sore ski muscles.
Book It: Visit monaco-saltlakecity.com or call 800/805-1801 and mention rate code PSKI.
Kristine Hansen is a freelance writer based in Milwaukee where she reports on food, wine, and travel topics around the globe for Fodors.com, along with new hotel openings. She also writes for Wine Enthusiast, TIME, Whole Living, and American Way. In 2006, she co-authored The Complete Idiot's Guide to Coffee and Tea (Alpha Books/Penguin). You can follow her on Twitter @kristineahansen or through her web site.
Photo credits: Courtesy of CasaMagna Marriott Puerto Vallarta; Conrad Chicago; Mayflower Renaissance; Hotel Monaco: Courtesy of Utah Office of Tourism