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New York City is arguably the most iconic destination during the holiday season. There's the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree and the Saks Fifth Avenue light show across the street. Department stores go all out on their decorations, as do all the nicest hotels. Not to mention the culture, from Alvin Ailey to the Rockettes. There's a reason so many of the best holiday classics—Elf, Miracle on 34th Street, Home Alone 2, Die Hard—were filmed in this city.
But this has hardly been a normal year. Covid-19 will force the temporary suspensions of many of these crowd-luring traditions. No Alvin Ailey or Rockettes shows this year. But not to worry. Th
Now, the Mark Hotel is giving visitors (and locals) one more reason to love Christmastime in New York—you'll just need about a quarter million dollars. The hotel's palatial 12,000-square-foot, five-bedroom, $75,000-a-night penthouse, which famously hosted Meghan Markle's star-studded baby shower last year, is already one of the largest and most expensive suites in the world. This season, its guests now have an option to partake in the hotel's new Penthouse Holiday Spectacular experience for a cool $175,000. It's a small price to pay for what could turn out to be the most extravagant way to enjoy the holidays in New York.
So what's included on the itinerary? First, your private 2,400-square-foot terrace, which overlooks Central Park and the Midtown skyline, will have been transformed into a personal ice skating rink so you don't have to fight for space with the plebs at 30 Rock. Nor will you have to deal with them at Lincoln Center should you want to watch the Nutcracker. The performers will come dance for you in the penthouse's great room. If you're feeling social, though, a VIP box at David Koch Theater is all yours.
Watching all the pirouettes and arabesques will surely work up your appetite. Cue the four-course holiday feast, personally prepared by Michelin-starred chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten and served in your own dining room. But before you dig in, cleanse your palate with a glass of Cristal and some golden Osetra caviar.
Do you suddenly have a post-dinner urge to sing carols? Good thing the suite has a grand piano. A Juilliard-trained pianist will do the hard work for you. He serenades, too. Then maybe it's time for a cozy movie by the fire before bedtime. Take your pick of any holiday classic, or really whatever you want to watch, even if it's not in theaters yet (Little Women, anyone?). Popcorn, candy, and s'mores courtesy of Jean-Georges.
The next morning, if you're feeling a little guilty for having had one too many s'mores the night before, call the hotel's personal trainer. He'll come up for a quick sweat session. While you're at it, ask for the massage therapist, too. You don't want to deal with sore muscles—there's still much too much to do!
Once you've fought the bloat, head down to the Frederic Fekkai salon for hair, makeup, and nails. Why? Well first of all, you've paid for it, and second, you're going to get your portrait taken by world-renowned photographer—and T&C contributor—Alexei Hay. He's shot everyone from Prince Harry to Uma Thurman, so you're in exceptionally good hands.
What's a trip to New York without some shopping? But anyone who has been here in December knows it's utter madness. Not for you. You'll get Bergdorf Goodman all to yourself after hours. Got kids? The Penthouse already has a dedicated play room full of FAO Schwarz toys they can take home, but if the selection in there is not to your liking, let the kids roam free during a private spree at the FAO Schwarz store. The Mark's designated nanny will chaperone so you don't have to. (By the way your dedicated staff also includes a butler, driver, and a Santa on request.)
Now that $250,000 seems like quite a steal, doesn't it?
To book, visit themarkhotel.com. The Holiday Spectacular experience is available until January 15, 2020. Three-night minimum stay.
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