Why A Hotel Staycation Is The Secret Tool To Relaxing, Rejuvenating and De-Stressing Your Life
There’s something about summer that causes a disappearance in me-time. We often run on empty, busy with work, everyday chores, social obligations, family and summer events, and although we may intend for Sunday to be a wind-down night it somehow never happens. As I was feeling burnt out while folding my laundry one Sunday night, I wondered to myself if it was possible to achieve that glow of “just went on vacation” by staying overnight at a hotel a mere ten minutes walk from my apartment. As part of this experiment, I decided to check into the park suite at The Pierre. Immediately, I was in vacation mode. I walked into the airy suite, flopped down on the stylish couch and breathed in the fresh roses positioned throughout the suite. My view overlooking all of Central Park was spectacular and my kitchenette with espresso and tea came in very handy (as did the strategically places bottles of champagne). I joked with the friendly elevator operator (there’s even a cute little seat in the elevator) and be-friended my attaché (aka butler – the Taj Royal Attaché program is a major perk of booking a grand suite). My Yorkie, Cody, joined me for the night, and the staff thoughtfully prepared homemade doggie treats and water on a silver platter for him. I felt like royalty in a land far away (not down the street from my apartment!). I dined on scrumptious seabass and mushroom ragu at Sirio, and drank champagne in my room as I enjoyed The Pierre’s ultra-luxurious “royal bath” where my attaché prepared a bath of rose petals, oils and hydrosoak powder. As it got late in the evening, I sank into a mountain of fluffy pillows on my bed and read my inspirational book, taking in the serene quiet. The next morning, I was treated to my favorite tea at my wake-up call time, and spent some time trying out all the body lotion products in the bathroom before reluctantly packing my suitcase. It was official, my staycation had left me energized, rejuvenated, de-stressed and feeling like I had actually just been on vacation.
Although I was lucky enough to be hosted at The Pierre, you can make your staycation worth every penny whether you want to splurge and have the full staycation hotel experience or whether you just want to re-create it in your home. The key is to really rejuvenate, get some mental clarify and feel refreshed with a renewed sense of energy.
The following four tips will ensure that you walk away from your staycation feeling like you just went on vacation (shhhh no one has to know your secret):
1- Make it all about you. Indulge yourself. Take a bubble bath (you can re-create the “royal bath” experience that I had by mixing water with scented oil and a hydrosoak powder and adding a few flower petals). Meditate (even if you don’t normally do so) for five minutes in your new quiet surroundings. Drink a glass of your favorite beverage. Note that, if you don’t normally take “me” time, this might require a bit of planning in advance for how you want to spend your time. It’s not a matter of keeping busy – just making sure that you are actually doing what is the most relaxing for you (which might just be staying in bed all day and watching television or reading a book without any distractions). The important thing is to do exactly what you want to do, when you want to do it. That’s what a staycation is for!
2- Turn off and tune out. Turn off your phone during your staycation. No access to internet and email and twitter and texts. There is nothing that feels more like vacation than being “cut off” from social media. Although it may be difficult at first (it certainly was for me), it’s hard to truly relax if you are checking work email, filling friends and family in on what you are doing, or making plans for the week ahead. Give family members your hotel number in case of emergency and then tune out everything except the present moment. Instead, read a book or watch a movie. I brought one inspirational book and one fun “beach” read, and read the light book during the day and the inspirational book right before bed.
3- Make your staycation a one-of-a-kind experience. One of the benefits of staying at a hotel versus home are the services and amenities. Take advantage of whatever services and amenities are offered at your hotel. Maybe get a massage, or order a bottle of wine and dessert to the room, or use the bath and body products supplied by the hotel. Work-out in the gym. Put on a big bathrobe and slippers and lounge on the couch. If your staycation is at home then buy a bottle of champagne, order your favorite food, work-out with a new exercise tape, put chocolates on your pillows, or do anything else that makes the day a little more special.
4- Get a good night’s sleep. A dark noise-free room is key and a comfy bed is necessary. If you are staying at a hotel, definitely read the reviews and find a place that has cozy beds and quiet rooms. Nothing says vacation more than curling up in bed surrounded by soft pillows. Ask for extra pillows if there aren’t enough in your room.
With a little creative work, most of these tips can be incorporated into a staycation at any hotel or in the comfort of your home. What are you doing this week to relax, de-stress and rejuvenate? Have you ever tried a staycation at a hotel or in your own home? I’d love to hear your experiences in the comment section below.