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Splurge vs. steal: Popular fall getaways

/ Source: TODAY

Looking to get away this autumn? “Travel + Leisure” magazine lists posh and affordable travel options for four different destinations: a city getaway (Montreal), a beach getaway (Hawaii), a scenic domestic road trip (Utah) and a European countryside trip. Though they’re very different types of vacations, they all offer great hotels and activities perfect for this time of the year:


Splurge: Hotel St. James, Montreal

  • Located in historic Old Montreal in the former Merchants Bank.
  • Hotel located within walking distance of Montreal's downtown.
  • Spa was once the bank's vault. Still standing is the stone wall that was the original fortification of Montreal and has been preserved. 
  • XO restaurant, in the Grand Salon, formerly known as Banker's Hall, has crystal chandeliers and ornate woodwork.
  • Deluxe rooms are appointed with antiques and works of art.

Rates start $400 for standard room.  Go up to $5,000 for suites;

Steal: Hotel Gault, Montreal

  • Located in the heart of old Montreal — in the booming West End.
  • Very Danish mid-century modern, filled with light.
  • Boutique hotel with contemporary modern design.
  • Delicious breakfast.
  • Around the corner from one of the coolest nightspots/restaurants in the city, Garde Manger: one part restaurant, one part underground nightclub.

Rates start at $209. Special: Prepay reservation and save up to 30%;

Princeville Resort, Kauai, Hawaii

  • On a lush green bluff on Kauai's North Shore.
  • The resort's 252 guest rooms offer dazzling views of the turquoise waters of Hanalei Bay.
  • Tranquil beach.
  • Two world-class championship golf courses.
  • Princeville Spa treatments unique to the Hawaiian Islands and around the world.
  • Five-course romantic dinners — guests can experience exceptionally romantic dinners in one of Hawaii's most beautiful settings.  Private waitstaff escorts guests to dining area. Guests can choose the location — beachside, garden or ocean-front terrace.
  • 5000 square-foot-pool with 3 Jacuzzis and separate children's wading pool.
  • Children's' program for kids ages 5-12.

Ocean-view rooms start at $540;

Steal: Four Seasons Resort Lanai, The Lodge at Keole, Hawaii

  • Located in the Central Highlands of the private island of Lanai.
  • Two world-ranked golf courses.
  • Spa offers many treatments including the Lomi Lomi massage — a uniquely Hawaiian massage. Can be done in the spa or in-room.
  • Seven restaurants on the property and four lounges.
  • Special amenities for children — before you arrive, give the hotel the names and ages of the kids — hotel will be ready with special welcome gift, child-size bathrobes, complimentary baby and children's toiletries, children's menus in restaurants. Hotel will even provide items to baby-proof the guest rooms.

Get 4th or 5th night free, rooms start at $221;

Utah canyons Red Mountain Spa, St. George, Utah

  • Surrounded by the Red Rock mountains in St. George, Utah. Adventure lover's paradise — hotel has an Adventure Concierge to assist guests. Numerous hikes on more than 30 trails led by staff of over 40 specialized guides.
    Daily guided morning hikes, moonlight walk (watch the moon rising over towering cliffs), awareness walks (gentle walk and spiritual journey into magical red rocks). Fitness services — group classes, personal training, self-discovery programs, detoxification programs, weight-loss programs.
  • All 82 Deluxe guest rooms were renovated January 2006.

Doubles from $538;

  • Only "in-park" lodging. Rustic 1920's elegance, original detail down to the original hickory furniture.
  • On National Historic Register.
  • Park Service offers special programs:  Just For Kids (join ranger for games and activities on ecology), Moonlight Hike, Night Skies @ Bryce, Star Party.
  • Park Rangers guided hikes and nature walks. Geology talks and evening programs available.
  • Canyon Trail Rides — 2-hour and half-day horse and mule rides into Bryce Amphitheater.
  • Western cabins feature gas fireplaces — no televisions.
  • Nature preserves and trails onsite. Fishing 30 minutes away.

Doubles from $140;

Italy Castello Di Vicarello, Tuscany

  • Located on a hard-to-find hilltop with views over olive groves and vineyards and rolling hills.
  • Dates back to the 12th-century ... once owned by Aurora and Carlo Baccheschi Berti, who worked in fashion and advertising in Milan.
  • The castle has two outdoor pools and a handful of suites decorated with Indonesian antiques, Balinese furniture and contemporary art.
  • The 60-acre grounds contain a vineyard, 1,200 olive trees, and a flock of chickens. Get up early enough and you can hunt for eggs with Carlo. Or help him pick from among the 1,500 plants; the artichokes are served raw, stuffed, or fried, along with homemade pasta and bread during the spring.

Doubles from $509;

Splurge: Villa il Poggiale, Tuscany

  • Located 20 minutes outside of Florence, in the heart of the Chianti wine-growing area, this Renaissance villa has been entirely restored and offers the hospitality and atmosphere of a patrician family country house.
  • Every bedroom has a private bathroom, minibar, satellite TV, direct dial telephone and modem, safe, as well as air conditioning.
  • Outdoor swimming pool that is open from June until the end of September.
  • Well-stocked wine cellar is a veritable treasure trove all the year round.
  • A conference room is available should guests wish to organize small business meetings
  • Upon request and depending on the season, hotel can organize trips to Siena during the famous Palio horse race, to San Miniato to hunt for truffles, to nearby farms to enjoy the newly pressed olive oil and local cheese, to the most prestigious wineries for a memorable wine tasting.

Doubles from $179;

For further information please visit the “Travel + Leisure” Web site: