All around the world, the last night of the year is always one of the most fun-filled: from performances headlined by big-name artists and the Times Square ball drop to spectacular fireworks above some famous landmarks, December 31 promises a rockin’ good time. And for some with deep pockets, ringing in the New Year also means spending hundreds or even thousands on extravagant celebrations. Here are six over-the-top New Year’s Eve experiences that are the epitome of “go big or go home.”
Thompson Playa del Carmen (Playa del Carmen, Mexico)
Dig out your dancing shoes. This Thompson outpost is turning things up a notch with two days of festivities, starting with a December 30 performance from DJ Steve Aoki that costs 2,000 MXN ($117) for general admission or $193 for a package that includes a three-course dinner. On New Year’s Eve, rapper Nas will take to the stage; tickets are $146 and $263 with dinner. The property is also offering three packages that include tickets to the events and accommodations for a four-night minimum stay, with prices from $1,079.
The Stafford London (London, England)
One of London’s most luxe properties is hosting New Year’s Eve dinner at its Lyttelton restaurant for £150 ($223) per person. Revelers can graze on canapes before sitting down to beef wellington, smoked halibut, and chocolate delice with gold leaf. Dinner reservations also include champagne and a viewing spot along the banks of the River Thames to watch London’s fireworks display.
Bateaux New York and Spirit of New York (New York City)
While some Big Apple locals and visitors will be lining up to watch the ball drop in Times Square, there’s a more comfortable way to usher in 2016: from New York Harbor on a New Year’s Eve Fireworks Dinner Cruise aboard Bateaux New York or Spirit of New York. The four-hour voyage with Bateaux New York is $549.90 for the gold package and includes dinner, fireworks, entertainment, a champagne toast, open bar, and a private table for your own party -- add $150 for the platinum package to get a keepsake flute for each person and a bottle of champagne, a dozen roses, and photo package per couple. Want the ultimate experience? For $849.90, the diamond package includes everything in the gold and platinum packages but with a guaranteed window table.
Spirit of New York’s own four-hour trip is slightly less pricey at $319.90 for the introductory package, which comes with dinner, view of the fireworks, entertainment, and an open bar. To get a table for your own party, book the gold package for $409.90. The platinum package, at $459.90, guarantees you’ll be seated at a window table.
The Knickerbocker Hotel (New York City)
For those who want to watch the ball drop in person, without standing in the street like packed sardines, there’s a ritzy package from The Knickerbocker that comes with a viewing spot just across the street from the Waterford crystal ball. Priced from $2,890 for two, the New Year’s Eve Gala package includes accommodations, dinner at the hotel’s Charlie Palmer restaurant, a reception at St. Cloud to watch the big event, and brunch on New Year’s Day. Have $70,000-$100,000 to spare? There’s the opportunity to stay in a suite December 29 to January 1 or December 30 to January 2 and attend all the festivities, plus book one of three rooftop Skypods for 12 to 20 guests. For even more exclusivity -- to the tune of $100,000 – the Waterford Crystal Lounge can be booked alongside three nights in a suite and the New Year’s Eve soirees.
W South Beach (Miami Beach, FL)
Why spend just one night celebrating 2016 when you can do it for six? The W South Beach is offering a package priced from $25,000 for up to four guests that includes six nights in an Oasis suite, transportation to and from the airport, prix fixe dinner at The Dutch on New Year’s Eve, a VIP table at the pool deck, and a table at WALL Night Club, where DJs will be providing the soundtrack to the night. In the suite, find nine-foot-tall ceilings, a private glass balcony, full kitchen with washer and dryer, a bedroom with ocean views, and a living room area with a pull-out sofa.
Quantum Rental Home (Vail, CO)
There’s no place like home -- especially if you’re cozying up in Quantum -- a ski-in/ski-out home in Vail Valley. For $20,000 per night over New Year’s Eve (with a seven-night minimum stay), it can be yours. So what exactly does that amount get you? Besides bragging rights, you and nine others can welcome 2016 in this 9,500-square-foot stunner that features six bedrooms, seven full bathrooms and two half bathrooms, oversized glass doors that open up to a heated patio with a fire pit and hot tub, several fireplaces, an elevator, large open kitchen with breakfast bar and stainless steel appliances, dining room, media room, gym, and a massage room.