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Best Places to Spend Christmas

Best Places to Spend Christmas: Durango

Aurora Photos / Alamy

Durango, CO

Why Go: This mountain town serves up an old-fashioned holiday without all that Aspen attitude. Explore Pueblo dwellings, take a brisk ski run down the slopes, or just curl up with a rum toddy in a true Western saloon.

Where to Stay: The Rochester Hotel pays homage to Durango's cinematic past: each of the 15 rooms recalls a locally produced movie, from the Mexican-themed Viva Zapata suite to a Euro-style room called Around the World in Eighty Days. The grandly restored Strater Hotel houses the Diamond Belle Saloon, Louis L'Amour's preferred watering hole.

Holiday Dinner: Plan a Christmas Eve feast at Ken and Sue's, an easygoing bistro. Try the pork loin medallions wrapped in applewood-smoked bacon with hot cider glazed–cabbage in a sweet molasses sauce.

—Andrew Collins

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