Skip to content, or skip to search.

Skip to content, or skip to search.

The Long Weekend


Diving off the pristine coral reef of Roatán, Honduras.  

Roatán Island, Honduras
Reef-dive with whale sharks.


Hours From New York: 5
DAYTIME TEMP: 82 °
TYPE OF VACATION: Romance
MODE:

Thirty-five miles off the coast of Honduras, Roatán Island is a throwback to the easygoing Caribbean-backwater vibe of the fifties and sixties. The lush island’s beaches are gleaming white, with none of the overcrowding of Mexico and Belize (only the West End and popular West Bay Beach are fully developed). Most of the tourists who do end up here are divers coming to explore the coral reef (the world’s second largest) and the Odyssey and the Prince Albert, two sunken ships off the coast (at $200 to $300 for a three- or four-day open-water dive course, Roatán is a damn cheap place to get certified). The best spots: Barbareta Island, a pristine reef off the East End where the rare whale shark can be sighted in January and February; Mary’s Place, a spectacular site with a 100-foot vertical drop and dramatic cracks in the reef; and Spooky Channel, home to giant groupers, parrotfish, eagle rays, and sea turtles. Stay on the north shore, at the Palmetto Bay Plantation (from $105 per night in season; palmettobayplantation.com), which is blessed with a mile of private beach and surrounded by lush jungle. The resort has an excellent dive staff on site, a pool with ocean views, and huge, modern villas with great sundecks.

Reykjavik, Iceland
Do shots with Björk.


Hours From New York: 5
DAYTIME TEMP: 35 °
TYPE OF VACATION: Female Bonding
MODE:

Fourteen years post-breakup, the Sugar Cubes (a.k.a. Björk’s first job) are getting back together for one concert on November 17. Icelandair will get you to Reykjavik in five hours. Before you head to the Laugardalshöll Arena (laugardalsholl.is), have a snack and a hearty Viking Tab on tap at the very hip Vegamöt Biströ & Bar. Afterward, go to Duus Hús, the local favorite bar (where the Cubes have been known to hang), and try a shot of brennivín—a kind of Icelandic schnapps brewed from potato pulp and affectionately known as Black Death. Stay at Room With a View, a colorful block of home-style apartments (from $130 per night per person; 354-896-2559; roomwithaview.com). Recover the next day steaming in the famous Blue Lagoon, 40 minutes south.

Beaver Creek, Colorado
Have a ski mountain to yourself.


Hours From New York: 5
DAYTIME TEMP: 25 °
TYPE OF VACATION: Male Bonding
MODE:

Book Trappers Cabin, a cushy, four-bedroom log home at 9,500 feet on top of Colorado’s Beaver Creek ski resort, and you’ll literally have a mountain to yourself—one with its own microclimate, to boot, which is why the snow here tends to be better and more abundant (it averages 25 feet per year) than other nearby resorts. Trappers is the only overnight mountaintop lodging in the area, and one of the few private cabins atop ski resorts in the U.S. (others include Game Creek at Vail and Tempter House in Telluride). You can ski in from Bachelor’s Gulch, or take a chauffeured Sno-Cat from the village. The lodge is outfitted with a pool table, fireplace, and an outdoor hot tub for post-ski relaxation, plus snowshoes and gear for tramping around the empty trails after nightfall. Meals are prearranged with your private chef, who specializes in gourmet southwestern dishes like grilled buffalo rib eye. He’ll return in the morning to make your breakfast—after which you get exclusive first tracks on nearby slopes, before the lifts open. Carve pristine powder, or tackle Beaver Creek’s Stone Creek Chutes, 180 expert acres of steeps and glades, with chutes 600 feet long and pitches of up to 45 degrees, all new for this winter. And with Trappers location near the summit, you get almost the entire mountain’s vertical for your solo run (from $2,415 per night for four, $3,911 for eight; 888-485-4317 or trapperscabincolorado.com).

Orange Beach, Alabama
Dig into the white sand of the Redneck Riviera.


Hours From New York: 5
DAYTIME TEMP: 61 °
TYPE OF VACATION: Family Friendly
MODE:

Having the word redneck assigned to a region might be a bit off-putting, but the nickname is more affectionate than disparaging, and it’s worked well to keep snobby New Yorkers from discovering the white beaches, clear, calm water, and mellow vibe of Alabama’s Gulf Coast. From September to May, when hotel and condo rates drop in conjunction with the water temperature, you’ll pretty much have this place to yourself. The area took a serious hit during Hurricane Ivan in 2004, but it’s rebuilding and then some. Rent a condo on Perdido Beach Boulevard (for listings, see gulfshores.com) or stay at the swank, Mediterranean-style Perdido Beach Resort (from $112; 800-634-8001; perdidobeachresort.com). Off the beach, go to Café Beignets in the Winn-Dixie shopping center on Perdido Beach Boulevard for blissful squares of fried dough smothered in confectioner’s sugar. Hit Doc’s Seafood Shack for oysters—raw, fried, or in po’boys. There’s not much nightlife temptation, but don’t miss the Flora-Bama, a raucous five-bar roadhouse that sits directly on the Florida-Alabama border. It’s famous for its sweet but deadly Bushwacker cocktail and its annual mullet toss (the fish, not the haircut), which takes place in April when hundreds gather to throw the finny bodies across the state line.

Anguilla
Try for par on the newest Norman course.


Hours From New York: 5
DAYTIME TEMP: 80 °
TYPE OF VACATION: Male Bonding
MODE:

Until now, there’s been little quality golf in the Caribbean, and on the tony West Indian islands of St. Barts and Anguilla, there is none. But the November opening of the new Temenos Golf Club on Anguilla—five hours from New York via either San Juan or St. Martin—will change all that. The new establishment, which will have a 28,000-square-foot club house, is part of Anguilla’s much grander St. Regis Resort project—which will ultimately include nearly 100 oceanfront homes, villas, and estates when finished in 2008. Designed by Greg Norman, the course is not only Anguilla’s first, but one of the sole pro ranges in the entire Leeward Islands chain. The course is accessible but challenging, with a pair of holes directly on the sea, including killer No. 10, which has a stream on one side, a lagoon on the other, and sand dunes all around. Follow your game with dinner at the venerable Malliouhana resort, whose French restaurant—overseen by the Michelin-heavy Michel Rostang—and 25,000-bottle wine cellar are the best in Anguilla (264-497-6111). Or try Tasty’s (South Hill; 264-497-2737), a simple aqua-colored joint run by former Malliouhana chef Dale Carty, who serves the local favorites of his youth: goat curry, conch salad, and chicken stew. Stay at one of Temenos’ ultramodern villas (for tens of thousands a week), or the more wallet-friendly Kú (from $160; 800-869-5827 or ku-anguilla.com), the year-old, 27-suite resort from the owners of ultraluxe Cap Juluca.


Advertising
Current Issue
Subscribe to New York
Subscribe

Give a Gift

Advertising