With fall foliage in full swing and holiday preparations just around the corner, it’s time to start planning a Thanksgiving vacation. Marriott International hotels across the United States invite travelers to let the chefs do the cooking and enjoy a selection of celebratory activities and indulgent amenities.
Unexpected Thanksgiving Celebrations
These five locations across the U.S. are home to some of the most highly-anticipated Thanksgiving activities from festive parades to pre-feast turkey trots. Spend quality time with loved ones and indulge in a classic selection of Thanksgiving food and drink.
- Chicago, IL
- Rancho Mirage, CA
- Waikiki, HI
- Washington, D.C.
- Tampa, FL
The McDonald’s Thanksgiving Parade in Chicago. Credit: Ganeshkumar Durai/Shutterstock
Chicago – A Midwestern Thanksgiving
In a city known for its stunning architecture and Midwest charm, it’s no wonder that Chicago’s Thanksgiving celebrations bring together locals and tourists alike to celebrate in the streets. Kicking off at 8:00 am CST, The McDonald’s Thanksgiving Parade begins at Congress and moves northbound to Randolph. This year’s parade will feature marching bands, equestrian units and honored guests including Ronald McDonald, Teddy Turkey, the Harlem Globetrotters and Miss Illinois 2017.
Thanksgiving time also marks the opening of Chicago’s famed Christkindlmarket. The free admission, German-inspired holiday market, which opens on November 17, will offer a unique shopping experience, complete with traditional German food and drinks and festive holiday entertainment.
For a Latin twist on Thanksgiving, visit Staytion Market & Bar at Renaissance Chicago Downtown Hotel. The restaurant is inspired by Pilsen, one of the Chicago neighborhoods known for its Mexican cuisine and culture. They will be featuring locally made tortillas and a Thanksgiving taco made with turkey and cranberry sauce available on Tuesday November 21 from 4-10 p.m. Pair it with a specialty Pilsen Mescal cocktail.
Rancho Mirage, CA – For a West Coast Thanksgiving
From hiking and golf to yoga retreats, Palm Springs has long been a dream destination for active travelers. This Thanksgiving, make room for stuffing, gravy and that extra slice of pie with a pre-feast run through Palm Springs’ beautiful downtown during Running Wild’s Wild Turkey Trot 5K.
At The Ritz-Carlton, Rancho Mirage, the resort is offering a full Thanksgiving holiday dining experience in their Ballroom, complete with live entertainment, two glasses of sparkling wine per adult and complimentary valet parking. Located on a desert ridge above Coachella Valley in Palm Springs, the extensive menu offers a dining experience for everyone including traditional Thanksgiving items and over 25 desserts. Guests can play a round at one of more than 100 world-class golf courses in the area after dinner.
Waikiki – Thanksgiving at the Beach
While Thanksgiving may not be synonymous with sandy beaches and floral lei, it is certainly all about ‘ohana’ or family. For those looking to create new family traditions, there’s no place like Oahu, where the average daily temperature is more than 80 degrees in November.
With its bountiful spread of locally sourced dishes, award-winning Kai Market at the Sheraton Waikiki is the perfect place for families to celebrate Thanksgiving this year. Chef Darren Demaya goes beyond with his special, island-inspired Thanksgiving Dinner on Thursday, November 23 between 4:00 and 9:00 p.m. The Chef’s Action Station sets the tone for the evening with alae salt-crusted slow-roast prime rib with natural jus, horseradish and sour cream; Farmer John bone-in ham with Dole Plantation pineapple and rum raisin glaze; steamed whole onaga made Chinese style with ginger, onion and cilantro; and slow-roasted Butterball turkey with Kahuku corn stuffing, turkey giblet gravy and cranberry sauce.
Washington D.C. – Celebrate in our nation’s capital
Kicking off on November 24, the day after Thanksgiving, the Smithsonian National Zoo presents the annual holiday tradition, “Zoo Lights”, a free event featuring live music, tasty treats and holiday shopping. Visitors can expect to enjoy over 500,000 LED lights transforming the Zoo into a winter wonderland.
Marriott Wardman Park in Washington D.C. is serving up a chef-curated menu featuring fresh takes on traditional Turkey Day favorites. Enjoy a special signature Pumpkin Pie Martini with dinner. The cocktail is made from vanilla vodka, pumpkin liqueur, spiced rum and garnished with whipped cream, orange, nutmeg and cinnamon.
Visitors to Tampa can spend time discovering the lifestyle of days past during a Florida History Tour at Cracker Country, Tampa’s only living history museum. Knowledgeable, friendly guides dressed in historic clothing will take your group on a stroll through buildings and grounds that represent a rural Florida community in the late 19th century.
For a foodie feast, the Epicurean Hotel, Autograph Collection in Tampa has a special Thanksgiving menu in Élevage created by Executive Chef, Chad Johnson. One of his signature dishes will be the Curry Pumpkin Soup made from crispy chickpea, black sesame, rock shrimp and vindaloo oil.
About Marriott International
Marriott International, Inc. (NASDAQ: MAR) is based in Bethesda, Maryland, USA, and encompasses a portfolio of more than 6,200 properties in 30 leading hotel brands spanning 125 countries and territories. Marriott operates and franchises hotels and licenses vacation ownership resorts all around the world. The company also operates award-winning loyalty programs: Marriott Rewards®, which includes The Ritz-Carlton Rewards®, and Starwood Preferred Guest®. For more information, please visit our website at www.marriott.com, and for the latest company news, visit www.marriottnewscenter.com. In addition, connect with us on Facebook and @MarriottIntl on Twitter and Instagram.
Director of Public Relations, Marriott International