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12 of the most unusual Christmas family holiday destinations

From white-sand beaches to monochrome hotels and the real deal in Finland, these amazing holidays all evoke a snowy spirit

Posted: 21 November 2013
by Catherine O'Dolan

 8 of 12 

Chicago, Four Seasons

Come Christmas time and the ”windy city” transforms into the “wonder city”. The holidays kick off on November 20 with the Magnificent Mile Lights Festival, as twinkling lights decorate the strip from Michigan Avenue to the Chicago River. There’s a flamboyant procession with free activities that set the festive mood for the coming weeks, including a ice-skating rink at a festivally decorated Millennium Park with the impressive Chicago skyline and Lake Michigan as a backdrop

There’s more sparkle at the historic Navy Pier with 750,000 lights, 25,000 ornaments, and hundreds of decorated trees, while the Christkindlmarket Festival is the largest Christmas market in the US, showcasing German foods and trinkets. For kitsch family entertainment, see the ultimate feel-good musical – Irving Berlin’s White Christmas at Bank of America Theatre from December 15 to January 2. 

Stay at the Four Seasons, where children can snuggle up in pint-size robes and enjoy colouring books, DVDs and toys. A Bedtime Stories Butler visits your room with a selection of festive storybooks presented on a silver tray and reads to your children, and The Ice Cream Man brings his soda fountain to your room for ice-cream sundaes (£4 per person). You can also use the hotel’s Radio Flyer wagons – perfect for being pulled through Millennium Park.

From £393 per night for a family of four in an Executive Suite, Visit

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