Despite all the eggnog-flavored cheer in the air, the holiday season can be stressful. We hope that the following ideas will make the merry season a little merrier—and mellow—for you. We made the list, we're checking it twice…!
Here's your Holiday Check List:
Plan New Year's Eve
We've rounded up the best restaurants around the world to ring in the New Year, from glamorous places in Atlanta, GA to romantic spots in Westchester, NY. We've also profiled ten fabulous finds for fêting a glamorous farewell to 2009, from Las Vegas to Cape Town, South Africa.
Shop for Gifts Easily
Thinking of good gifts for everyone can be a pain. Our list of Top 10 Holiday Gift Ideas covers fashionistas, chocoholics, autophiles, gourmets, tireless trekkers and other tricky types. And feel free to buy one for yourself, depending on whether you've been naughty or nice.
Escape it All
Yes, we understand. You may want to get away from it all. With this in mind, we've compiled the Top 10 Ski Resorts Worldwide, from art-filled mansions in Argentina to old world glamour in Switzerland and heli-skiing in New Zealand. Not far enough for you? Then consult our list of Top 10 Remote Hotels in the World, featuring properties in the highest mountains in Norway and the deepest recesses of the Caribbean.
The holidays can be taxing, but even with less money to throw around this year, you can still get a pampered, luxurious spa experience. You just have to board a plane to Budapest where thermal springs in decadently palatial environs beckon—and all at utterly thrifty rates.
Make Time for a Movie
You'll likely have some downtime this holiday season, too. Curl up on the couch with your family (or cat) and some popcorn to check out one of the Top 10 Holiday Movies of all Time, such as A Charlie Brown Christmas or Elf.
Cook Some Comfort Food
Several chefs have just published amazing books featuring their unique spin on American comfort food, including: Thomas Keller with Ad Hoc at Home; Marcus Samuelsson with New American Table; and Emeril Lagasse with Emeril 20-40-60. Want to enjoy good food but don't feel like cooking? Save money dining out! Take 60% off at Restaurant.com! Use code GAYOT60 12/1/09 through 12/15/09.
Get a Car (or Sleigh)
If you're looking to buy a new car, the 2010 Suzuki Kizashi is a value-minded little sedan with big ambitions. If you have a bigger budget, or just dreams of one, enjoy our list of Top 10 Exotics.
Don't wait for the New Year's resolutions. Get healthy now. Yams and sweet potatoes are super complex carbs loaded with vitamin B (a natural stress killer) and flavor. Or, sip an ungraded tea high in anti-oxidants, such as the Kenya Black Dryer Mouth, a perfect cold-day companion.
Toast! (The Liquid Kind)
Every holiday feast needs a good bottle or two, or three.... Our selection of Top 10 Holiday Wines offers vintages in all price ranges. So raise your glass and enjoy the season's cheer!
And last but not least:
You'll find more good stuff online, including our blog, restaurant reviews, culinary events calendar, hotel write-ups and much more. Or be a critic yourself and review a restaurant or hotel on our site for our millions of visitors to read.
* Banner Images: Holiday Dining at The Peninsula Beverly Hills; the spa at Danubius Gellért Bath; Christian Louboutin's Le Rituel Crystal Shoe Flute