Summer is on the way out, autumn is rolling in, and the Christmas season is right around the corner. Even though we appreciate the coziness and colors of autumn, it’s never too early to book your Christmas getaway before everything sells out!

The travel industry is starting to tip in favor of a more open world than we’ve seen in a while, giving us the opportunity to start crossing borders again. As always, we recommend keeping yourself up to date on Covid requirements and regulations, but it isn’t too early to start making international plans again.

If you’re ready to head out on a Christmastime adventure, we’ve picked three international destinations that would make for an unforgettable one. If you’re more comfortable staying stateside, we’ve picked three domestic locations that are just as wonderful! Wherever you spend your holiday season, we’re here to help you figure out how to redeem your stash of points and miles on a vacation that is both merry and bright.

Staying Stateside

Not ready to head out of the US just yet? No worries! There are plenty of lovely places to spend Christmas within the US. Here are a few that we recommend.


There’s just something about Christmas in Hollywood. Whether it’s the combination of Christmas lights and palm trees or just the general star-struck feeling, Christmas is just a little bit more magical in Tinseltown.

Kimpton Everly Hotel

Kimpton Everly Hotel

Kimpton Everly Hotel (Photo Courtesy of IHG)

If you’re looking for some prime real estate near Hollywood Boulevard, book in with the Kimpton Everly Hotel. This gorgeous property is located just north of both Hollywood Blvd. and Sunset Blvd., and just south of Griffith Park and the Hollywood Sign.

Enjoy an afternoon strolling the Hollywood Walk of Fame, be a part of the studio audience at Dolby Theatre, or pop down to Beverly Hills for some Christmas shopping on Rodeo Drive. Back at the hotel, enjoy plenty of natural light and fresh air with open-concept rooms and a gorgeous rooftop pool. If you’ve never experienced Christmas in Hollywood before, a stay at the Kimpton Everly is a great way to redeem your stash of IHG points.

A night at this property is available from 41,000 IHG Rewards points.


When it comes to appeasing many types of people at once, Denver is a perfect happy medium. The city is just bustling enough to satisfy those who prefer a concrete jungle, but it’s also close enough to the front range of the Rockies for those who enjoy escaping into the mountains.

The ART Hotel Denver, Curio Collection

The ART Hotel Denver, Curio Collection

The ART Hotel Denver, Curio Collection (Photo Courtesy of Hilton)

For travelers who appreciate design, pops of color, and architecture that turns heads, look no further than The ART Hotel Denver. This modern property is located within easy walking distance of the Colorado State Capitol and several different museums, promising fun and educational opportunities for the whole family to enjoy.

The hotel’s glass facade and collection of modern art make it look like a museum itself! While Denver isn’t itself a ski town, you’ll be an easy drive away from some of Colorado’s favorite slopes if you’re planning on a day or two of winter activities. For a pleasant mix of indoor and outdoor fun, redeem your Hilton HHonors points at The ART Hotel.

A night at this property is available from 51,000 Hilton HHonors points.


No matter the season, it’s always a wild time in Nashville! The Tennessee capital attracts all kinds of folks, from hot-chicken enthusiasts to die-hard fans of country music. If you’re looking for a lively Christmas vacation, you’re sure to find that energy in Nashville.

The Union Station Nashville Yards, Autograph Collection


The Union Station Nashville Yards, Autograph Collection

The Union Station Nashville Yards, Autograph Collection (Photo Courtesy of Marriott)

We always appreciate a hotel with a history, and The Union Station Nashville Yards does not disappoint. As the name suggests, this property was once a buzzing train station that operated from 1900 until 1979, then later opened as a boutique hotel. Today, the hotel still boasts original architectural details and art that serve as an homage to its early days, but each room includes modern touches and conveniences that nod toward its future.

Located in the heart of downtown, its 10th-and-Broadway address gives visitors access to all that Nashville has to offer — especially during the holidays. If you’re ready for an escape to a storied, cozy piece of history, redeem your Marriott Rewards points on a stay at The Union Station.

A night at this Category 7 property is available from 50,000 Marriott Rewards points.

Crossing Borders

Are you itching to go jet-setting again? We totally understand! If all you want for Christmas is a stamp in your passport, here are a few properties that we recommend.

Mexico City

There’s no way to explore all of Mexico City in just one trip, but this booming metropolis is home to fantastic food, culture, nature, and architecture — all with deep historical roots. If you’re looking to spend Christmas down Mexico way, Mexico City is sure to impress.

Hacienda Peña Pobre

Hacienda Peña Pobre

Hacienda Peña Pobre (Photo Courtesy of Hyatt)

For a vacation steeped in both nature and history, book in with the Hacienda Peña Pobre. A proud member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World, this property is a legendary result of Spanish colonialism and Mexico City’s industrial past. Although the Hacienda is located outside the proper heart of Mexico City, it lies on the border between the capital area and stunning National Parks.

December is the beginning of the dry season, making Christmas an ideal time to visit if you’d like to spend a significant amount of time outdoors. Enjoy exploring the many spectacular ecological and archaeological sites nearby, then tuck into your cozy room at the Hacienda.

A night at this Member-Only property is available from 15,000 World of Hyatt points.


Located just outside of Reykjavík, Hveragerði is a small Icelandic village with one very special secret: it’s located on the banks of a geothermal river! Hot spring bathing is one of the many ways Icelanders survive the long, dark winters. If you’d like to get in on that, Hveragerði is a lovely place to visit.

Frost and Fire Boutique Hotel

Frost and Fire Boutique Hotel

Frost and Fire Boutique Hotel

December can be rough in Iceland; if it isn’t the weather, it’s the darkness that can get to you. But as long as you’re near a geothermal pool, you’ll survive just as well as the locals! For a chance to experience life in Iceland’s hot river town, book in with the Frost and Fire Boutique Hotel.

This property is located near the natural hot river Varmá, but if the weather prevents you from getting to a good bathing spot, you’ll have no shortage of hot tubs and hot pools to choose from in town. Enjoy a thorough soak and then sink into your cozy covers with your newfound knowledge of how Icelanders keep warm in the winter.

A night at this lovely property is available from roughly 15,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points.


Speaking of hot spring bathing, the German town of Baden-Baden is another wonderful geothermal hotspot, famous for its Roman-style spas. In Baden-Baden, you’ll find more dedicated spas rather than outdoor springs, plus a lovely Christmas market to ring in the holiday.

Roomers Baden-Baden, Autograph Collection

Roomers Baden-Baden, Autograph Collection

Roomers Baden-Baden, Autograph Collection (Photo courtesy of Marriott)

If your vibe is less down-home-Nordic and more akin to a western European spa town, redeem your Marriott Rewards points with the Roomers Baden-Baden.

Designed by Piero Lissoni, this sophisticated property offers all the facilities one might need for a private family getaway or a large holiday event. Additionally, this hotel has its own spa and wellness center, plus a rooftop bar with wonderful views of the Black Forest.

If you’d like to explore some of Baden-Baden’s dedicated spas, guests are just a 15-minute walk to both Friedrichsbad and Caracalla Therme. For a refined spa getaway, Roomers Baden-Baden is a great choice.

A night at this Category 5 property is available from 30,000 Marriott Rewards points.

The Bottom Line

This Christmas might end up being another strange one, but it’s encouraging to notice the travel industry waking up again. With plenty of points properties in the US and around the world, a points redemption could buy an unforgettable Christmas journey for yourself, a loved one, or your family. No matter where you celebrate the holiday season, we wish you happy travels and warmth all around.