With the Year of the Dragon fast approaching, Chinese communities across the U.S. (and everyone who likes a good party) are gearing up for the host of events that will take place starting on January 23 as part of the New Years’ celebration.
San Francisco, New York and LA all have a long list of parades, traditional performances and balls — but it’s where you’re kicking up your heels at night that matters.
Several of our favourite hotels have created special packages for you to enjoy — and partake in — the Chinese New Year celebration.
Boasting the largest Chinatown in the country, it's no wonder San Francisco has some of the best festivities. You might have missed the Flower Market Fair, but you can still get tickets here for the traditional concert given by the San Francisco Symphony Chinese New Year Community on February 11; take part in the 34th annual Chinese New Year Run rolling through Chinatown on February 19; enjoy the parade on February 11, and head to the zoo on January 29 to catch some acrobatic performances, tricks and more specialised family fun.
Where to Stay: Omni San Francisco Hotel
The 362-room Omni has spacious, quiet rooms and terrific service that's on par with some of San Francisco's best (and most expensive) hotels. Décor is tasteful and classic, the on-site steakhouse is outstanding, and the property is just steps from Chinatown and public transportation.
Chinese New Year Package: Accommodation in a Deluxe Room, two tickets for bleacher seating on the parade route, fortune cookie amenity and free valet parking for one vehicle, for $385 per night.
It's still a few days until the famed Lion and Dragon Parade, but you can already hear the bands rehearsing in Chinatown for the big performance. A firecracker ceremony marks the beginning of the Year of the Dragon on January 23, but there are many other events planned, including the traditional parade on January 29 and the the Lunar New Year Parade in Flushing, Queens -- just a 10-minute quick subway ride from Manhattan's Grand Central Station.
Where to Stay: Mondrian Soho
Opened in February 2011, this stylish 270-room hotel is located right on the southern border of chic SoHo, a couple of blocks from the heart of Chinatown. It has small, beautiful rooms with white-and-blue decor, high-tech amenities -- like large flat-screen TVs and iPads -- and floor-to-ceiling windows, many with jaw-dropping views. The trendy Imperial No. 9 restaurant, by Chef Sam Talbot, serves sustainable seafood, and has a lovely garden room with cool glass decor and a greenhouse-inspired feel. The fitness centre, though small and in the basement, has state-of-the-art machines with personal screens and headphones.
Chinese New Year Package: The hotel is offering 15% off weekend rates, including a one-level upgrade, free Wi-Fi and two welcome cocktails.
Washington D.C. is the place to go if you're planning a trip with the kids. To get a good sense of what the Chinese New Year is all about, don't miss the New Year Parade and Festival on January 29, which will feature the traditional dragon dance and live music, plus dozens of activities for children, from Chinese calligraphy lessons to face painting and raffles.
Where to Stay:
Hotel Monaco Washington D.C. With many bold decorative touches, most notably a dramatic setting in a landmarked Penn Quarter building, this is certainly a flashy Kimpton Hotels property, with a great location and a well-regarded restaurant. There's also a nightly free wine hour (we're going to get you wasted here, like it or not), free morning coffee, and even a fish to keep you company in your room (upon request).
Chinese New Year Package: The 'Cocktails for $1 More' promotion includes accommodation in a Deluxe Room and two free cocktails of your choice per night. The package rate is just $1 more that the best available rate.
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