There’s nothing like snow-capped pine trees dressed in blinking lights to set the mood for the holidays. Whether you spend the day pounding powder or you’re more of a see-and-be-seen snow bunny, downtown Salt Lake City is one spot you don’t want to miss. At the heart of it all is Kimpton’s Hotel Monaco, just steps away from the city’s top restaurants and bars, and a quick shuttle bus ride from Salt Lake City’s famous ski slopes. From holiday markets and art festivals, to the lighting of the Christmas Tree in Temple Square, it’s a great home base for all your local holiday adventures.
A Park With Spirit
‘This is the Place’ park certainly lives up to its name — especially during the holiday season. Head over during the daytime and take a ride on the trains or shop in the village. In December, there’s a “Christkindlmarkt,” a shopping experience similar to Germany’s famous Christmas markets. Taking place Dec. 3-5, the Christkindlmarkt is packed with holiday shopping, food and entertainment. Get here early on Dec. 3 so you can experience the stunning Christmas Tree Lighting.
A Square With Rhythm
The holidays come to life at Temple Square, the central location of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. The Square starts its holiday transformation the day after Thanksgiving, when the Christmas lights are lit and members of the church start decorating the square with lights and various nativities. Free concerts from local schools and choirs happen daily, but the Mormon Tabernacle Christmas Concert is the most coveted Christmas event in the Square.
A Pioneer Village With Nostalgia
Take a stroll back in time to Lagoon Park, where wooden sidewalks line you way and the Old West comes to life in Pioneer Village. Have your photo taken in western garb, then grab a hot chocolate at the local ice cream parlor, while you admire the festive surroundings of the park.
A Ski Experience With Speed
There’s no place quite like Olympic Park, which was used during the 2002 winter Olympic games. A perfect day trip for the sports lover on your list, you can visit the world’s highest-altitude ski jumps, or just relax on the chair lift as you make your way to the top of the ski run. If adrenaline runs through you, make your way to the Comet Bobsled ride for an 80-mile-per-hour ride down the trail. If you’re here Dec. 11-12, make sure to get a seat for the 2015 Luge World Cup. Utah’s Olympic Park will be the third stop on the tour, hosting women’s, men’s and doubles events.
A Museum With Style
Utah Museum of Fine Arts has more than what adorns its walls. Take in the art collections then shop at the museum’s boutiques, which feature jewelry, pottery and art crafted by local artists. Every third Saturday of the month is “Family Day,” and free to all families. On Saturday, Dec. 5, the MFA hosts its annual Holiday Market. Don’t miss a chance to find one-of-a-kind gifts for everyone on your list.
Hope to see you in Salt Lake City! Book at stay at Hotel Monaco Salt Lake City online at monaco-saltlakecity.com.
Now tell us: What is YOUR favorite thing to do in Salt Lake City?
— Melanie Nayer