Ringing in the New Year this holiday season will take some creativity. While traditional favorites like the Times Square ball drop are off the table, there are ways to celebrate in a more laid-back and socially distant fashion.
Here are some hotels on Long Island and within reasonable driving distance that could serve as great places to get away, dine somewhere new and explore a place you've never been this New Year's Eve.
Keep in mind: check to see what travel restrictions are in place before crossing state lines.
Before COVID turned the Hamptons into a year-round spot for non-locals, Sag Harbor Village was already a place to dine and shop, with most Main Street restaurants and boutiques staying open most months. Check out the hotel’s Village Garden rooms, which are dog-friendly (but must be booked in advance) for medium-sized animal no more than 50 pounds. The hotel’s restaurant is planning a three-day Chef's Table feast that includes a "Welcome Dinner," followed by breakfast, lunch and dinner on New Year’s Eve, each featuring a menu using chef-selected, locally sourced ingredients — which will be followed by a New Year’s Day brunch — all included in the room rates. Baron’s Cove COVID precautions include enhanced cleaning and sanitization protocols as public space HVAC systems updated with ionizers, air purifiers added to cleaning techniques and the use of UV-light technology and EPA-approved cleaning products in guest rooms.
RATES package rates start at $805 per night; nightly stays through December start at $129, January stays start at $99
INFO 31 W. Water St., Sag Harbor; 631-725-2101, caperesorts.com
Bridgehampton’s Main Street is another famously year-round place to eat and shop, but it’s also a short drive from Wölffer Estate vineyard (139 Sagg Rd., Sagaponack; 631-537-5106, wolffer.com) and the Poxabogue Golf Center (3556 Montauk Hwy., Sagaponack; 631-537-0025, poxgolf.com), a public nine-hole course that’s open daily, weather-permitting. The hotel is also offering a four-course menu in its restaurant for New Year’s Eve, as well as a full breakfast that is included in room rates. Dogs may stay for an added fee ($100 daily), and aside from the implementation of cleaning methods mandated by the state, guests will receive personal sanitizers as gifts.
RATES Rooms rates start at $250 weekdays, $300 weekends and holidays
INFO 2266 Montauk Hwy., Bridgehampton; 631-537-3660, loavesandfishes.us
The Hamptons may serve as a break from reality for many people, but this hotel is an oasis within an oasis — a space with acres of garden spaces and lawns, yet located within Southampton Village, a place synonymous with luxurious dining and shopping — and also home to Agawam Park (at Pond and Jobs lanes), a popular open space that features fountains and a veterans memorial. The Inn also has plenty to do on the grounds, including an all-weather tennis court and an all-ages game room, plus (weather-permitting) there are lawn games like croquet and horseshoes to play. Guests who choose to welcome 2021 here can also drop into the hotel’s restaurant where a New Year’s Day brunch will be served from noon-4 p.m. Pets are welcome (there’s a $49 per pet fee, with a two pets per room maximum), and Southampton Inn is also doing its part to protect its patrons from coronavirus — with mobile UVC sanitizing lights being used to sanitize both guest rooms and public areas, in addition to CDC-recommended sanitizing and disinfecting protocols.
RATES rates for a NYE stay start at $250; a Jan. 1-2 stay is available starting at $145 nightly
INFO 91 Hill St., Southampton; 631-283-6500, southamptoninn.com
Sound View Greenport
This hotel is directly along the Long Island Sound — which will give you a chance to see the last sunset of ’20 in remarkable fashion. It's also a short drive from Greenport Village, for guests who wish to explore the surrounding area. In addition, the hotel’s Halyard Restaurant is offering an NYE package (for guests doing a two-night stay) that includes a $100 dining credit and two bottles of sparkling wine (hotel's choice). Pet-friendly (a one-time $75 for one or two dogs), it’s rigidly following state health regulations, as well as employing hospital-grade disinfectants on all high-touch surfaces and providing sanitized guest room key cards if requested.
RATES Starting at $324
INFO 58775 CR-48., Greenport; 631-477-1910, soundviewgreenport.com
Hotel Indigo East End
Located in Riverhead at the end of the LIE, this hotel is near the Tanger Outlets (200 Tanger Mall Drive; 631-369-2732, tangeroutlet.com), tons of restaurants and the Long Island Aquarium (431 E. Main St.; 631-208-9200, longislandaquarium.com) for guests who wish to explore nearby. The area also leads into the North Fork, where several vineyards, distilleries and breweries await. The hotel has its own Bistro72 restaurant, which will be serving a five-course dinner to be accompanied by the earthy acoustic sounds of Alyson Faith and her accompaniment. The Indigo is pet-friendly (and proving it by waiving pet fees on New Year’s Eve). COVID precautions include air purification systems intended to reduce both airborne and surface exposure to viruses, microbials, mold and bacteria.
RATES NYE rates start at $169
INFO 1830 W. Main St., Riverhead; 631-369-2200, ihg.com
This venue may have classic roots that date to the 1950s, but despite its retro design it’s a modern boutique hotel with a beachy style. Located at the west end of bustling Greenport Village, it’s also only a block from the North Ferry (631-749-0139, northferry.com) to Shelter Island, which docks at the end of Rt. 114 and can take pedestrians, cyclists and motorists directly to the quaint downtown found in Shelter Island Heights — and from there the rest of Shelter Island’s beaches, parks and restaurants await. Guests who make the Greenporter their NYE destination can take part in a two-night minimum package that includes a New Year's Day Champagne brunch, a special breakfast buffet (plated by staffers to minimize contact with food) that also includes either a glass of Champagne or a mimosa. The hotel is running numerous COVID safety protocols, including enhanced cleaning and inspections, and there are air purifiers in guest rooms and indoor public spaces.
RATES the two-night minimum package (Dec. 31-Jan. 1) starts at $308, a three-day (Dec. 31-Jan. 2) stay starts at $399
INFO 326 Front St., Greenport; 631-477-0066, greenporterhotel.com
Garden City Hotel
One of Long Island’s most iconic luxury respites, it’s been hosting celebrities and dignitaries for decades, yet a New Year’s Eve 2020 stay is not the bank breaker one might expect. Guests can easily entertain themselves by wandering down Seventh Street, then continuing onto Franklin Avenue to find access to several restaurants and shopping opportunities — but should that not be enough, Roosevelt Field (630 Old Country Rd., Garden City; 516-742-8000, simon.com) — the largest shopping mall on Long Island — is only about three miles away. For the evening of Dec. 31, the hotel will be serving a dinner in its King Bar and Red Salt Room curated by famed chef David Burke; reservations are a must and seatings are limited. An a la carte New Year’s Day Brunch is also slated, as are a la carte brunches on Jan. 2-3. Pets are welcome ($75 nightly) and will be welcomed with such comforts as a plush dog bed, water bowl and pet treats, as well as pet sitting and pet walking options by request. The Garden City Hotel is following recommendations and requirements made by both the CDC and American Hotel Lodging Association, which include room sanitization with a ULV atomization fogging machine, followed by an inspection by management and a virus-eliminating UV light disinfection application, among other measures.
RATES prices for NYE start at $299
INFO 45 Seventh St., Garden City; 877-549-0400, gardencityhotel.com
The Inn at Fox Hollow
A long-standing favorite among Long Island luxury hotels, it's located in Woodbury, a hamlet that sports several eateries and shopping centers in either direction down Jericho Turnpike. However, Woodbury is also on the cusp of Suffolk County, so there’s no reason guests staying here shouldn’t explore the Main Streets found in Cold Spring Harbor or Huntington Village to discover even more shopping and dining spots — and if that’s still not enough, the upscale Walt Whitman Shops (160 Walt Whitman Rd., Huntington Station; 631-271-1741, simon.com) mall is less than five miles east of the Fox Hollow. Anyone staying for New Year’s Eve can also just as easily stay put, with a package being offered that includes a 5 p.m. sit-down dinner for two in its Volpe Restaurant, followed by an overnight stay in a suite that also includes breakfast and a 1 p.m. checkout. One dog (under 30 pounds) is welcome for a $150 fee plus a $15 per additional nights; animals are not permitted in any of the hotel’s common areas or in the Royal Suites, but there is a designated dog walk area. The Inn at Fox Hollow is also obeying CDC guidelines, which include use of hospital-grade disinfectant and enhanced cleaning protocols of all public areas, and guest rooms are being left vacant for three days following checkouts while being cleaned and sanitized.
RATES Overnight NYE stays without package start at $289; with dinner package, rates start at $419
INFO 7755 Jericho Tpke., Woodbury; 516-224-8100, thefoxhollow.com
Ring in the new year at the Allegria Hotel and get a full view of the Atlantic Ocean, as it’s located right along the Long Beach boardwalk. Whether you plan on an overnight stay or possibly longer, a visit to this Nassau County city puts you within walking distance of several restaurants and boutiques; wander West Beech Street between California Street and Buffalo Avenue or Park Avenue between Magnolia and Pacific boulevards to find a majority of these options. The hotel’s Atlantica boardwalk restaurant is also offering a $99 three-course prix fixe dinner for two for $99, during which New Year’s Eve party favors will be waiting at each table; a maximum of 10 guests per table can be arranged, dependent on any changes in current COVID government guidelines and restrictions. Only service animals are welcome, and the hotel is utilizing a multi-point program of hygiene and disinfection that meshes with what health organizations and hospitality companies such as the CDC, OHLA and Ecolab are recommending; this includes an increased focus on disinfecting guest rooms, common spaces and high touch areas.
RATES Overnight stays start at $181.30; discounts are available for longer stays
INFO 80 West Broadway., Long Beach; 516-889-1300, allegriahotelny.com
Nestled along the harbor in Port Jefferson Village, any guests here in need of some food or shopping time can simply walk out the front door of the hotel and either walk down East Main or Main streets, which lead into a continuous loop of boutiques and eateries. Danfords is also down the block from Harborfront Park (100-104 E. Broadway), a small green space that adds on an open-air ice skating rink, open this season until March 14 (therinx.com) — but luckily for hotel guests, the glorious sunsets that glow over Port Jefferson Harbor are just as visible from the venue. Guests can also lounge in one of the igloos found on the hotel’s back deck; reservations for these clear shelters ($150 for two hours, plus a $100 minimum food and beverage purchase) include two bottles of Champagne and a special "igloo-inspired" menu will also be served (the igloos will be sanitized for 30-minute periods between reserved times). Any seeking some on-site pampering can find such services in the inn’s Butterfly Spa and Salon, which offers a number of beauty and massage choices. Danfords is following national guidelines relating to sanitation, is employing Eco-lab laundry supplies and using the company’s commercial cleaning products in both guest rooms and public spaces.
RATES rooms for an overnight stay on Dec. 31 start at $219
INFO 25 E. Broadway., Port Jefferson; 631-928-5200, danfords.com
1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge
If looking for something to do not too far from home, book a stay at the 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge. The Osprey restaurant, located in the hotel, is serving a New Year’s Eve prix fixe menu with a 6 p.m.-7:30 p.m. seating ($120 per person) and an 8:30 p.m.-10 p.m. seating ($180 per person), which can both be upgraded with a wine pairing or open bar (for an additional $75 per person). Dogs are welcome and the hotel is taking several COVID precautions to keep guests safe — such as the sanitizing of all spaces with hospital-grade EPA-approved agents and virus-eliminating UV technology, and a Thermal Temperature Scan installed at the entrance — but the hotel has hired a director of environmental health and safety to oversee the execution of all health procedures.
RATES Rates for an overnight New Year's Eve/Day stay start at $827.
INFO 60 Furman St., Brooklyn; 347-696-2500, 1hotels.com
New York State
Mohonk Mountain House
Surrounded by thousands of acres of forest, this Ulster County respite dates to the 19th century and is a place of Zen that offers mindfulness programs that include meditation and a spa that features both an outdoor heated mineral pool and an indoor pool, as well as a solarium and more than a dozen treatment rooms. Also sporting 85 miles’ worth of trails, great for hiking, snowshoeing and cross-country skiing. Guests can enjoy a special New Year’s Eve dinner menu and a special "midnight snack" that can be delivered to your room; an evening of live music by fire pits and a midnight fireworks display are also slated to welcome 2021. All state COVID policies are being observed, enhanced sanitization procedures are being employed and guests will have their temperatures checked at the gatehouse upon arrival; anyone with a temperature higher than 100.0 will not be permitted on the property.
RATES A minimum four-night stay (including meals) starts at $915
INFO 1000 Mountain Rest Rd., New Paltz; 845-765-3286, mohonk.com
Rocking Horse Ranch Resort
Also located in Ulster County, the Rocking Horse Ranch Resort is includes all sorts of things to do this New Year’s Eve — such as skiing, ice skating and snow tubing (equipment also included), unlimited horseback riding, its "Big Splash" indoor pools and its indoor/outdoor 98-degree Eldorado Hot Springs aquatic experience. Main meals are included in the daily stay, but you’ll need to leave pets at home (service dogs are OK). The restaurant is expanding its dinner offerings and featuring a late-night Chef’s Table on NYE, and includes a complimentary Champagne toast. The Ranch has also developed expansive COVID protocols that also include a temperature check upon arrival, optional housekeeping services and a stop to self-serve buffets, plus telemedicine guidance provided by Montefiore Health Systems, the resort’s official health partner.
RATES Based on groups of four per room, average $979 nightly for Dec. 30-31, $859 Jan. 1
INFO 600 Route 44/55, Highland; 800-647-2624, rockinghorseranch.com
Crystal Springs Resort
A luxury spot in the Garden State, this all-season opportunity is found in rural Sussex County but is closer than the Poconos. It’s also a golfer’s dream, with six courses from which to choose, but guests who’d rather relax can also enjoy winter-focused spa specials. Crystal Springs also offers goat yoga, an outdoor ice rink, heated dining igloos, an outdoor heated snow pool and live entertainment — but if skiing is in order, the Mountain Creek ski resort (200 Route 94, Vernon; 973-827-2000, mountaincreek.com) is nearby, while the Warwick Valley Winery and Distillery (114 Little York Rd., Warwick; 845-258-4858, wvwinery.com) is a popular stop for cider, wine and other adult beverages on the other side of the state line. Guests can participate in programs including a complimentary self-guided wine cellar tour and a "Sommelier’s Selection" that allows guests a chance to purchase rare and boutique wines. The resort is in full compliance with Executive Orders from the Governor’s Office and local Boards of Health, which includes the use of hospital-grade disinfectants and the reduction of standard housekeeping to daily trash pickup and the replacement of toiletries and cleaning supplies upon request.
RATES based on a 2-3 night stay, rates start at $539
INFO 1 Wild Turkey Way, Hamburg; 973-862-4351, crystalgolfresort.com
Woodloch Pines Resort
Pennsylvania may sound somewhat distant, but the Poconos are (without traffic) about a two-hour drive from the Island. Woodloch Pines Resort is roughly 150 miles from Rt. 110, and is in a quiet area surrounded by more than a 1,000 acres of nature and is close to Lake Teedyuskung, a popular spot for ice-skating come the winter — but once on the grounds, there are activities like go-cart racing, swimming (there are pools both indoor and out) and rock climbing to try. Aside from the peaceful surroundings, this is a place for personal relaxation, with spa treatments such as facial, body works, massages and float therapy available. To bring your animal friends, you’ll have to stay in a pet-friendly vacation rental house. A four-night party package is also being put together that is to include a NYE five-course meal and open bar plus live entertainment and in-house games broadcast on the Woodloch TV channel, which all gets capped with a midnight countdown; these rentals are family-friendly but can be rented for parties. COVID standard regulations are also being observed, so expect safety precautions such as a contactless, temporal temperature check upon arrival, the hourly disinfection of its shuttles, no luggage handling services or babysitting services, as well as several other measures.
RATES Start at $6,741.35, or $1,685.34 nightly. Room rates for the package start at $3,862.42 ($965.61 nightly)
INFO 731 Welcome Lake Rd., Hawley; 1-800-966-3562, woodloch.com
Set in the state with whom Long Island shares the Sound, this Litchfield County getaway lies approximately 120 from Rt. 110, or about 80-90 miles from where the Cross Sound Ferry lands in New London, Connecticut. Rustic yet luxurious, the scene is centered on an 18th-century manor surrounded by resort cottages and natural spaces that can be biked or wandered, as can the Winvian gardens; the resort’s spa features treatment rooms (including two with wood-burning fireplaces) and offers both body and facial treatments. Private wine tastings are available on-site, but nearby Bantam Lake has two beaches, and the nearby area sports restaurants, distilleries and vineyards. A "New Year's Spectacular" package is available and includes a two-night stay in a cottage that opens with a welcome bottle of prosecco and cookie platter, then a New Year’s Eve Champagne event with passed canapés, five-course dinner and wine pairing for two, plus live music and socially distanced dancing, as well as a full breakfast included each morning in the restaurant. Five of the cottages are dog-friendly, and Winvian is employing rigorous safety and cleaning protocols in accordance with guidance from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and the Connecticut Department of Public Health — so both guest laundry and valet services have been suspended, and high-touch surfaces are cleaned continually throughout each day.
RATES Package rates start at $3,044
INFO 155 Alain White Rd., Morris, 860-567-9600, winvian.com.