Bethesda Magazine | November-December 2017

Get Away: Holidays at The Greenbrier, a boutique hotel in D.C and a New York City splurge

Plan a trip to one of these noteworthy places

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All Is Bright

Photo courtesy of The Greenbrier

Celebrate the holidays with a jaunt to The Greenbrier resort in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia, for the annual “60 Spectacular Days of Holiday Cheer.” From Nov. 3 to Jan. 3, the property is festooned with more than 100 Christmas trees, massive chocolate creations and gobs of twinkling lights. Christmas tree lightings—complete with carolers, homemade cocoa and cookies, and Santa on a sleigh—begin at 6 p.m. every Saturday between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Check gifts off your list at more than 30 on-site stores that sell everything from handblown glass to custom-designed furniture. 

Events include a Thanksgiving weekend Gobbler Gala Dinner Party (family dinner and dancing), a Christmas Eve Gingerbread Ball (kids dance with Santa), live ballet performances of The Nutcracker, and the New Year’s Eve Soirée ’18 (adult dinner and dancing with live music, plus a party just for teens). Tickets to the New Year’s parties are only sold to overnight guests, but the other festivities are open to all. Registered guests can also partake in cookie decorating, ice skating, horse-drawn sleigh rides, nightly holiday movies and more. Room rates begin at $385 (three-night minimum on select weekends).

The Greenbrier, 300 W. Main St., White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia; 800-624-6070,

Full Of Extras

Photo courtesy of The Darcy

The Darcy, a Curio Collection by Hilton boutique hotel, opened in April near D.C.’s Scott Circle with a slate of creative perks and programming. There’s a men’s haberdashery—a partnership with designer Read Wall—for borrowing or purchasing ties, cuff links and pocket squares. There’s also a butler who will craft your favorite cocktail in your room; or you can unwind at the daily 5:30 p.m. tasting with cocktails served gratis, such as the Darcy Double, a gin and ginger beer libation.
To explore town, borrow a high-end stroller, a bike or a cute red push car for kids. The hotel lends tykes themed backpacks, including the Hip Historian, Darcy Detective and the popular Shoot for the Stars, which is stuffed with glow-in-the-dark Play-Doh, a book on the solar system, freeze-dried astronaut ice cream and more. 

The Darcy’s 226 rooms and suites feature midcentury modern décor, including chairs with a colorful pentagon pattern, and bronze and smoked-glass desks. An ice cream truck play tent is set up for families in suites. The hotel’s Lil’B Coffee Bar and Eatery has a New Orleans funk vibe and serves Southern-inspired baked goods. Rates begin at $350 per night. 

The Darcy, 1515 Rhode Island Ave. NW, Washington, D.C.; 202-232-7000,

Escape to New York City

The recently renovated InterContinental New York Barclay includes the 2,700-square-foot Harold S. Vanderbilt Sky Suite. Photo courtesy of InterContinental New York Barclay

InterContinental New York Barclay has been a home away from home for movie stars, dignitaries and writers since opening in 1926. A $180 million renovation that included a new Carrara marble grand staircase, antique maps and mementos was completed last year, refashioning the Manhattan hotel to reflect its original 1920s elegance. Ernest Hemingway was a temporary resident at the hotel while making final revisions to For Whom the Bell Tolls, a copy of which is on display in the lobby along with a 2016 New Yorker cartoon featuring the Barclay.

The Barclay’s 702 rooms and suites were redesigned to reflect classic Park Avenue homes, and range from 250-square-foot guest rooms that feature murals inspired by the Hudson Valley to the 2,700-square-foot Harold S. Vanderbilt Sky Suite with a floor-to-ceiling view of Manhattan and an enormous outdoor terrace. The lobby’s convivial new Gin Parlour serves small plates and offers a two-page menu of gin cocktails. Located on the east side of midtown Manhattan, the hotel isn’t far from theaters, the Museum of Modern Art, Central Park and Madison Avenue shopping. Rates begin at $450 per night.

InterContinental New York Barclay, 111 E. 48th St., New York, New York; 212-755-5900,