Growing up in Marietta, Georgia, I had only one option for ice-skating: a spiritless indoor rink, where everyone in the entire state seems to come at the same time. It was practically an ice box packed with jostling skaters, some visibly sick from too much ice cream cake (the only snack offered other than pizza), and the music director assumed we would truly enjoy top 40 jams like MC Hammer's Pray in constant rotation.
Fortunately families now have alternate options.
Recently the St. Regis Atlanta (opened April 2009) started a new tradition—transforming its outdoor Grand Terrace into a festive ice skating rink.
Astor Holiday Rink, the first and only hotel ice skating destination in Atlanta, is a tribute to the flagship St. Regis New York, where the Astor family hosted friends in their ballroom ice skating rink in the 1920s.
Hotel guests and visitors alike will skate to holiday melodies under an ethereal tent in a 32x52 rink while enjoying hot cocoa, a holiday cocktail menu, and S'mores by the outdoor fire.
Reservations are encouraged, and skating sessions start every hour on the hour. $30/adults, $15/children under 16. Skates provided. The Astor Holiday Rink is open daily 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. through January 5, 2010.
For more information: stregis.com/atlanta
Guest blogger Jimmy Im is a contributor to Travelandleisure.com.