If you’re a regular reader, you know that for several years I’ve spent Thanksgiving weekend at the Highlands Inn, a Hyatt property in Carmel. It has become a cherished family tradition. This year, however, we may just stay home. My 2020 Thanksgiving travel plans are up in the air…
2020 Thanksgiving Travel Plans
Carmel, California is one of my favorite places in the world. The beauty of nature, the wonderful weather, and the proximity to Big Sur and Monterey make it a perennial favorite of my entire family.
And we love the Highlands Inn because our “townhouse suite” has a patio overlooking the ocean, fireplace, and a full kitchen for us to cook dinner in (going out with two kids for dinner?…yeah, no thanks).
I’m not so worried about the pandemic because we’d be in our little house and most time would be spent outdoors.
But a couple things changed this year. First, there is no food service offered at the hotel. Not even takeout…
My wife and I (and our son too) love the breakfast at this hotel: it is genuinely a highlight of our day.
Second, the hotel is experiencing pandemic pricing. We’ve obtained very attractive paid rates in past years. This year:
Now in fairness, the price this week is down to about $600/night…it’s no surprise they could not sell rooms at $2,000/night. But even $600 pushes the boundaries for this property and I used points instead. But 30,000 points a night for what amounts to a no-service property (the gym, jacuzzis, and fire pits are also closed) just does not sit well. Nor does cooking every meal on vacation. We really don’t need to drive five hours simply for a change of venue.
So despite our love for Carmel, we may just skip it this year and hope to go for longer period once restaurants re-open.
That leaves the question of what to do this weekend up in the air.
We are told to “be responsible” and stay home, but my elected leaders just got back from a “conference” in Hawaii. I’m not looking to go shopping or interact with others, but a change of pace would be nice and unfortunately I don’t have vacation homes I can retreat to. The issue is not traveling, but traveling safely.
So maybe Santa Barbara. Maybe San Diego. Or maybe we will drive over the border into Arizona. Heidi has never seen the Grand Canyon and would like to visit. I just don’t want to deal with crowds of any sort…
And maybe we will just stay home, weed out our garden, and clean all the windows and drain pipes. At least we’ll be together. And who knows, maybe four-year-old Augustine will turn out to be a master window cleaner.
What are you doing this Thanksgiving?