Pierchic, part of Dubai's spectacular Madinat Jumeirah hotel, delivers on the fantasy element promised by the hottest playground in the world. Visually arresting, accessible only by a long pier suspended over ice-blue water, with glass light fixtures that resemble beautiful, undulating jellyfish inside, diners will appreciate such choice picks as the smooth, creamy shellfish bisque and wild sea bass with braised baby calamari on violet potatoes with as much delight as the warm—and chic—ambiance (madinatjumeirah.com; 971 4 3668888).
Even in a recession, we deserve a little pampering. And at one of these ultra luxurious spas, there's a relaxing service with your name written all over it. So what if you'll have to eat tuna for the next month? That body wrap, oozing with milk and honey, will be so worth it!
1. The Spa at Icon Brickell
Every girl needs a little fantasy, and The Spa at Icon Brickell brings fairytale experiences to downtown Miami. The ambiance is enchanting, from the grand chandelier in the 5,000-square-foot relaxation lounge to the plush oversized couches in the Theater Room. Try customizable services like the Canvas massage—the best fix for sore muscles. As you inhale rejuvenating lavender, the Swedish-inspired techniques go deep into your tightest areas for supreme relaxation (485 Brickell Avenue, Miami; 866-781-9923)
From presidents to scandalous politicians (exhibit A: disgraced New York Governor Eliot Spitzer), the capital city’s “second-best address” has hosted the nation’s most powerful dealmakers and dealbreakers for more than seven decades. The elegant historic site, located near the White House, is as well known for its inaugural balls—first held in 1925—gilded halls and rich décor as it is for the name recognition factor of guests partaking in intricate afternoon teas. Through February, indulge in the Mayflower’s 85th anniversary package ($185 per night), which includes breakfast and a customized bottle of the hotel’s signature sparkling wine (1127 Connecticut Ave. N.W., Washington, D.C.; 202-347-3000).