Wanderlust? Take a Tax-Cation!

As tax season is upon us, and citizens around the country are anxiously refreshing their TurboTax® payout calculations, we wanted to share several swoon-worthy “Tax-Cations,” sure to cure the wanderlust blues.

Expecting a hefty refund? We’ve got seven vacations worth the splurge, whether indulging in penthouse accommodations and rooftop yoga sessions at Pelican Grand Beach Resort, enjoying private wine tastings at Chateau Elan Winery & Resort, or basking in Saint Lucia’s glowing rays.

Uncle Sam giving you a small boost? Save big on travel with offerings inclusive of immersive Cuban cigar rolling and private sailing classes in Key West, to all-inclusive relaxation and unlimited spa treatments in Punta Cana.

Please find Splurge vs. Save travel recommendations below and start booking!


“Suite Serenity” at Pelican Grand Beach Resort — Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

Available March 1, 2018 — April 30, 2019 • Rates starting at $2,999/Night

After a stressful tax season, a substantial refund is the perfect excuse to enjoy a relaxing tax-cation at Pelican Grand Beach Resort. The “Suite Serenity” package offers Pure Suite accommodations, an 11th floor penthouse, complete with a balcony overlooking the sparkling blue Atlantic Ocean, and perfectly situated steps away from the Scandinavian-inspired PURE Spa — boasting floor-to-ceiling glass windows and a variety of rejuvenating massages, facials and skincare essentials, body treatments, etc. All in all, this over-the-top package includes:

  • Pure Suite accommodations
  • Well on Your Way welcome amenity, complete with fruit infused water, a plush robe and a Maria Akerberg gift basket
  • Reserved beach chairs and umbrella
  • Paddle board rental
  • Rooftop yoga session
  • PURE Spa treatment in an oceanfront suite
  • Dinner at the signature waterfront restaurant, OCEAN2000, featuring a healthy menu

Subject to availability. Must be booked by an on-site specialist. For more information on Pelican Grand Beach Resort, call 954.568.9431 or visit pelicanbeach.com.

“Brazilian Court Box” at The Brazilian Court Hotel — Palm Beach, Fla.

Available now — December. 31, 2018, starting at $1,150/three-night stay (April-Nov.) & $3,050/three-night stay (Dec.-March)

Getting something special in the mail is a little luxury that feels like a real treat and it’s easy to see how everything from makeup to pet-friendly subscription boxes have become enormously popular. That said, when it comes to preparing for travel the subscription box space has been lacking… until now!

The Brazilian Court Hotel is giving guests the option to receive a pre-stay curated travel box filled to the brim with hand-picked, luxe goodies such as Frederic Fekkai’s Soleil Beach Waves Spray (there is a Fekkai salon on property), yummy macarons from Cafe Boulud (also on property) and a Swell Bottle from the brand’s Palm Beach resort collection. Please see below for a full list of “Brazilian Court Box” inclusions:

Royalton Saint Lucia — Cap Estate, Saint Lucia

Available now through December 2018, Diamond Club™ Junior Luxury Swim-out Suites start at $648 a night, based on double occupancy

Nestled amongst lush landscape and set upon one of the most picturesque islands in the Caribbean, Royalton Saint Lucia welcomes each guest to an upscale all-inclusive vacation and offers guests the opportunity to splurge on an upgrade toDiamond Club™, a premium level of service with top of the line amenities. Diamond Club™ allows guests to check-in in their own lobby, complete with complimentary snacks and beverages, relax by a private pool or pristine beach area, and socialize at exclusive restaurants and bars.

Butlers and a full concierge service are also available to meet the needs of any guest. In addition to Diamond Club™, guests can spend their new influx of cash on treatments at the state-or-the-art Royal Spa, or at the C/X Culinary Experience, a seven course dining adventure where the executive chef thoughtfully prepares a meal while the on-property Sommelier pairs a wine with each dish.

For those looking to to spend their money off-property, Nexus Tours helps guests of Royalton Saint Lucia explore the island during their stay. Tours range from snorkeling, visiting local cacao plantations, taking a dip in the active volcanic sulfur baths or cruising around the world famous Piton Mountains at sunset. For more information on Royalton Saint Lucia, visit www.royaltonresorts.com/royalton-saint-lucia. For Nexus Tours, visit www.nexustours.com.

“Alluring Suites” at UNICO 20˚87˚ Hotel Riviera Maya — Riviera Maya, Mexico

Available now till December 20, 2018, starting at $600 per night

Set on the stunning white beaches of Riviera Maya, Unico 20°87° immerses guests in the culture of the region, from the locally-inflected cocktails and cuisines to the art in the rooms. Three unique pools and holistic spa and wellness center drive home a sense of relaxed luxury, while exciting pop-up events insert a touch of spontaneity into the experience. Experience the ultimate in luxury and book a paradisiac stay in a lavish one-bedroom or two-bedroom Estancia Suite.

  • Book six nights or more in an Estancia Suite and receive up to 34% off
  • Book from now to May 31, 2018 for travel until December 20, 2018
  • Must book a minimum of three nights and use promo code ALLP

For more information, please visit www.unicohotelrivieramaya.com

“Enjoy MPB at a Third Night Free” at Montage Palmetto Bluff — Bluffton, S.C.

Reserve now through April 30, 2018 for travel from June 1 to August 31, rates starting at $725

Spend your tax money right and soak up savings at Montage Palmetto Bluff, the first East Coast location for Montage Hotels & Resorts. Leftover funds can be used towards indulgent onsite activities such as championship golf, rejuvenating spa treatments and decadent dining, not to mention the area is boasting with miles of trails for biking, running and walking, as well as pristine waterways for kayaking and canoeing through avian sanctuaries and amongst vast wildlife.

• Luxurious accommodations in a guest house suite or cottage
• Receive third night free after two nights consecutive stay
• Free night reflected as a 33% discount

For more information, please visit www.montagehotels.com/palmettobluff

The Only All-Inclusive Experience on Miami Beach Exclusively at Eden Roc Miami Beach

Available for booking now through April 30, 2018 for stays May 1 through September 30, 2018 — Starting at $450 per room, per night (based on double occupancy).

For those looking to experience a true spring break without the help of a passport, a getaway to sunny Miami Beach is the ideal destination. One of Miami Beach’s most luxurious properties is now offering a truly inclusive vacation experience, from staycations to romantic weekends, girls’ getaways and everything in between, travelers can enjoy complimentary drinks, epicurean delights and oceanfront amenities without spending a fortune.

Book the all-inclusive package at Eden Roc Miami Beach and receive the below as part of your stay:

  • Stay in Eden Roc room
  • American Buffet Breakfast, lunch, and dinner at select dining venues including Malibu Farm*, Gitano*, on-site coffee shop and in-room dining
  • Bar and full menu service by the pool
  • Spirits (select brands, by the glass) and non-alcoholic beverages
  • Select in-room minibar items — including some soft drinks, water, juices, beer, snacks and select mini-liquor bottle
  • Complimentary in-room coffee and tea set up
  • 2 Complimentary beach chairs per room
  • Fitness center and fitness classes
  • Complimentary Wifi
  • Room taxes included
  • Resort fee included
  • Domestic and toll-free calls

*Malibu Farm and Gitano-coming soon. Dining venues may change. Existing bookings within travel window have the ability to upgrade upon check-in. Offer does not include Lobby Bar, Nobu Restaurant, valet parking, beauty salon, gratuities.

For more information or to book your next immersive vacation experience, please visit edenrocmiamibeach.com or call 305–531–000.

“Much Needed Midweek Escape” at Salamander Resort & Spa — Middleburg, Va.

Available now, rates starting at $350/night

Escape from the office and daily life to the historic village of Middleburg, located just an hour outside of Washington, D.C. Splurge your extra tax dollars on a romantic adventure, culinary experience or family friendly equestrian activity. Your “Midweek Escape” will include:

• Luxurious accommodations

• 25% off room rate

• Available for guests who book to stay Sunday — Thursday

Please visit www.salamanderresort.com for more information.


“Pamper and Play” at Innisbrook Golf Resort & Spa — Tampa Bay, FL

Rates starting at $150* per person/per night

With Innisbrook’s Pamper and Play package, there’s no need to make such a difficult choice on what to splurge your tax return on, you can enjoy it all! Experience your choice of a Signature Salamander Spa service or a round of golf on one of our renowned courses as well as:

• Luxury accommodations of your choice

• Breakfast daily in any of our three authentic restaurants

• Your choice of either $150 credit for our Salamander Spa or 18 holes of championship golf on the North, South or Island

courses (per night of stay, per person)

• $25 gift certificate (per person) for use in our Innisbrook Golf and Tennis Pro Shops

• Complimentary access to our state of the art Fitness Center

Rates are per person, per night, subject to availability. Minimum two night stay is required Thursday-Sunday. Golf round available on the Copperhead course at an extra charge. Any unused package elements are non-refundable and non-transferable. Spa credit does not apply to already discounted services or spa packages.

For more information or to book a stay at Innisbrook, please visit www.innisbrookgolfresort.com.

“Third Night Free More Money for Me” at Hammock Beach Resort — Palm Coast, Fla.

Available now through May 24, 2018, rates start at $159

Spend your tax money right and soak up more savings at Hammock Beach Resort. Left over funds can be used towards indulgent onsite activities such as championship golf, rejuvenating spa treatments and decadent dining.

• Luxurious accommodations

• Third night free after two nights consecutive stay

• Free night is reflected as 33% discount on each night of stay

For more information, please visit www.hammockbeach.com

“More is Less” at Orlando World Center Marriott — Orlando, Fla.

Available now — June 15, 2018 • Rates staring at $159/Night

Tax refunds can often be underwhelming when compared to those of friends, neighbors and coworkers. But with the world’s largest Marriott’s “More is Less” package, anyone can enjoy a fun and relaxing tax-cation. Using promo code D3Q, the money-saving package offers 15% off a four-night stay or 20% off a five night stay, as well as access to several on-property amenities, including:

  • Nine taste-tempting dining outlets, including the newest Southern-inspired restaurant, Latitude & Longitude
  • Falls Pool Oasis — ranked one of the “world’s coolest hotel pools” by Forbes
  • Hawk’s Landing Golf Club, boasting a par-71 golf course winding around 200 acres of lush landscaping
  • Full-service boutique spa, offering rejuvenating massages, facials, manicures and pedicures, as well as other skin and body treatments
  • Light Up the Night — nightly laser light shows, complete with dazzling visual and audio effects

Offering a world of possibilities, Orlando World Center Marriott provides the perfect excuse to head to the Sunshine State for a weekend of sun and savings. For more information or to book a stay at Orlando World Center Marriott, call 800.380.7931 or visit worldcentermarriott.com

The Gates Hotel Key West & 24 North Hotel — Key West, Fla.

Available now through December 2018, starting at $189 for The Gates & $179 for 24 North

Most known for famous Duval Street and sunsets, the southernmost point attracts travelers ready to set their clocks to island time. Recently awarded Conde Nast Traveler’s Top Florida Hotels of 2017, The Gates offers authentic experiences through local rum and cigar partnerships and outdoor events at the new 12,105 sq. ft. multipurpose event lawn Sunset Green connecting to 24 North Hotel while also providing a complimentary shuttle to the main attractions.

  • Learn how to make your own hand-rolled, traditional Cuban cigar at the oldest operating manufacturer in Key West, Rodriguez Cigar Factory
  • Taste local rum distilled at prohibition-inspired Key West First Legal Rum Factory while taking a mojito making class
  • See Key West through the eyes of penned writer Ernest Hemingway at the Hemingway House & Museum
  • Venture off-course at Dry Tortugas National Park
  • Sail into the Key West sunset with with Fury Watersport’s Sunset Sail Cruise

For information on The Gates, visit www.gateshotelkeywest.com or call (305) 320–0930 & for 24 North, visit www.24northhotel.com or call (305) 320–0940.

“Grand Bahama Getaway” at Lighthouse Pointe at Grand Lucayan — Grand Bahama Island, Bahamas

Available for booking now through September 30, 2018

  • Save up to 35% on an all-inclusive vacation that includes meals, premium drinks, entertainment and activities
  • Stays Jan. 2 — Jan. 31, 2018 & May 1 — Sept. 1, 2018 — rates start at $172 per person/night
  • Stays Feb. 1 — April 30, 2018 — rates start at $187 per person/night
  • Kids 4 and younger stay for free, ages 5–12 receive 50% off starting rate

*Price is per person, per night and based on double occupancy, island view room

Situated on the sparkling coastline of Grand Bahama Island, Grand Lucayan overlooks a 7.5-acre white-sand beach and sprawling acres of pristine property, mere feet from the calming waters of the Atlantic. Lighthouse Pointe at Grand Lucayan is where the island authenticity of the Bahamas meets the ease and affordability of an all-inclusive resort. For more information please visit www.grandlucayan.com

Tricentennial “Thrice is Nice” Package at NOPSI Hotel, New Orleans

Available now through 2018, rates starting at $225.

As the city of New Orleans commemorates its Tricentennial, the newly opened NOPSI Hotel — historically known as the headquarters of the city’s utility company and transit operator — invites guests to spend-and-save during this tax season by engaging in the hotel’s once in a lifetime “Thrice is Nice” package, offering:

• Luxurious accomodations

• 30% savings off best available rates (3 night minimum stay)

• $300 credit towards on-site dining outlets

For more information, please visit www.nopsihotel.com

The Crystal Coast, North Carolina’s Gem

Eighty-five miles of gleaming Atlantic beaches only begin to tell the story of North Carolina’s Crystal Coast; unlike its overdeveloped and sometimes pretentious neighbors, the natural beauty of the Southern Outer Banks lends itself to awe-inspiring coastal escapes.

From waters of crystalline purity bordering sandy, sparkling beaches, swashbuckling history (as Pirate Blackbeard’s flagship rests in it’s watery grave just off the shores), and a herd of wild Mustang horses, to the №1 National Park Beach, Cape Lookout National Seashore — the Crystal Coast is an exceptional destination for an authentic reprieve from it all.

Additionally, with a variety of accommodations to suit every lifestyle and tax-refund budget, visitors have the liberty to choose from quaint seaside cottages, and “no frills” beach bungalows, to massive beachfront mansions, known locally as “sandcastles.” For more information, please visit crystalcoastnc.org

“America’s Favorite Mountain Town” — Park City, Utah

There are three big reasons to head to Park City, Utah post-tax season, and with plenty of time to still hit the slopes before the season ends! With a combination of sunshine and blue skies, skiing in t-shirts and lounging on Deer Valley’s ski beaches are normalities for Park City vacationers during the spring season.

For travelers who want the snow without the ski, Deer Valley’s snowmobile experience, the town’s dog sledding and fly fishing excursions, and the Spring Grüv music festival are popular options. Additionally, spring is all about savings. Park City hotels now have lower rates than at any other point during the winter ski season. Canyons Village hotels provide great spring deals, as well as convenient access to the slopes.

Lastly, the proximity to Salt Lake City International Airport means getting in and out of Park City in a breeze. With a consistent flight schedule, spring skiers can come and enjoy the slopes over a regular weekend in spring without the hassle of finding a flight that fits a busy agenda — perfectly suited for every lifestyle and tax-fund budget visitors. For more information, please visit www.visitparkcity.com



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Tony Bowles, Contributing Columnist

Tony Bowles is one of the youngest sought journalists in the media world. He focuses on lifestyle, travel, entertainment, food, and more! Based in New York City