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Each week, KCUR's Creative Adventure newsletter brings you a new way to explore the Kansas City region.

The best Kansas City hotels for dining out, getting a drink and staying the night this winter

Loews Kansas City Hotel
Loews Kansas City Hotel
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The Stilwell at Loews Kansas City Hotel is a dazzling setting for dinner and drinks, with a big interior space and a wraparound balcony offering views of Downtown Kansas City.

Take a break from the planning, cooking and cleaning required for holiday entertaining with an evening of food and relaxation.

This story was first published in KCUR's Creative Adventure newsletter. You can sign up to receive stories like this in your inbox every Tuesday.

Anticipating family and friends returning home to Kansas City for the holidays and New Year's? Consider hosting dinner at a hotel to entertain guests instead of assembling a huge spread of food at home.

Think of it as a personal vacation from the planning, cooking and cleaning typical of holiday entertaining.

Kansas City is home to an array of hotels with superb options for dining that ranges from comfort food to classics to sensory delights that merit the urge to splurge. Hosts and guests can be merry, enjoy fine food and drink and even get a good night’s rest at these destinations.

Hotel Kansas City

The Town Company at Hotel Kansas City
Michael Robinson | RW2 Productions
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Hotel Kansas City's The Town Company was recently recognized as Restaurant of the Year by Kansas City magazine.

Hotel Kansas City offers two memorable experiences under one roof. The Town Company showcases the culinary talent of executive chef Johnny Leach and executive pastry chef Helen Jo Leach. This husband-and-wife team sources ingredients from small local farms to create dishes that reflect Midwestern roots with a modern twist. Kansas City magazine recently recognized The Town Company as Restaurant of The Year.

Nighthawk, a new bar and lounge in the hotel’s lower level, is like the hip basement bar of your dreams. After dinner, gather friends and family and ease into Nighthawk’s laidback vibes, dynamic music and low-key, no-fuss bar food from chef Johnny Leach. Check out the whiskey highball machine, frozen cocktails and Kansas City music memorabilia.

Loews Kansas City Hotel

The Stilwell at Loews Kansas City
Loews Kansas City Hotel
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The interior space at Loews Kansas City Hotel is big, bold and practically buzzing with big-city energy. Inside you'll find The Stilwell, where chef de cuisine Patrick LeBeau offers classic American dining with Midwest staples.

At Loews Kansas City Hotel, you won’t encounter the staid ballrooms and dull restaurants that epitomized prior decades of hotel lodging. Loews’ interior space is big, bold and practically buzzing with big-city energy.

Inside this dazzling setting, chef de cuisine Patrick LeBeau at The Stilwell offers classic American dining with Midwest staples — fried chicken, pork shoulder, strip loin — and more adventurous fare, such as gnocchi with duck sausage and kale and mushroom lasagna.

The restaurant takes its name from Arthur Stilwell, an eccentric visionary and railroad pioneer who invented the Stilwell Oyster car that enabled the shipment of fresh oysters from the East Coast and Gulf Coast throughout the Midwest. Stilwell, Kansas, Stilwell, Oklahoma, and Port Arthur, Texas, are all named after ol’ Art.

Gaze at striking views of downtown Kansas City from the bar and lounge while sipping on a mocktail, cocktail, wine or beer and feeling like a million bucks.

The Raphael Hotel

Chaz on the Plaza at Christmas
Chaz on the Plaza
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From small family gatherings to larger groups, Chaz on the Plaza at the Raphael Hotel can host guests in an elegant setting just steps from the Country Club Plaza.

The Raphael Hotel, home to Chaz on the Plaza, offers a charming dining experience led by executive chef Shawn Hartwig. From small family gatherings to larger groups, Chaz on the Plaza can host guests in an elegant setting located just off the main entrance to the hotel and the Country Club Plaza.

Indulge in familiar dishes with a twist such as macaroni and cheese loaded with smoked, braised prime hanger steak. Soothe the soul with lobster bisque and savor entrees that would make chef Gordon Ramsey’s heart flutter.

Don’t overlook the live jazz musicians and vocalists performing throughout the month, including Tim Reid, Jr., the Bryan Hicks Duo, Emily Dix and the sizzling swing sounds of the Baby J Duo. These artists uphold a Kansas City music tradition that adds class and a bit of fun to your holiday festivities.

The Savoy at 21c

The Savoy at 21c
The Savoy
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Steep yourself in Kansas City history and lush furnishings accented with stained glass windows at The Savoy at 21c.

The Savoy at 21c honors the restaurant’s rich history now ensconced in a fully-restored modern boutique hotel experience in the heart of downtown Kansas City.

Step inside and settle into the lounge for a cocktail or glass of wine. Steep yourself in Kansas City history and lush furnishings accented with stained glass windows, cozy booths, and a bar that invites you to leave your troubles behind.

After a drink, the stylish dining room offers guests a refined experience. The room and surrounding hallways feature modern art, adding a hint of culture and ambiance to the evening.

Chef Brandon Brumback and his team prepare seasonal dishes with ample options to please palates. Menus for brunch, cocktail hour and dinner include dishes such as salmon, local Campo Lindo chicken, a humble smash burger, Maine scallops and tempting desserts.

Hotel Phillips

Hotel Phillips
Adri Guyer
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Hotel Phillips
The historic Hotel Phillips first opened in 1931, and is a must-see for its lavish decor that includes an 11-foot sculpture of the Goddess of Dawn in the lobby.

A historic hotel that first opened in 1931, Hotel Phillips is a must-see setting for its lavish decor that includes an 11-foot sculpture of the Goddess of Dawn in the lobby.

The hotel's Tavernonna Italian Kitchen celebrates Italian food, wine and cocktails. Dishes include warm tomato focaccia, Nonna’s meatballs, seafood risotto, pappardelle carbonara with house-cured pancetta and egg yolk cream, as well as hearty entrees including pork Osso Bucco and fried chicken parmigiana. Wind down the evening with cocktails in the hotel's lavish lower-level P.S. Speakeasy.

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Pete Dulin is a Kansas City-based writer and author of four books, including Expedition of Thirst and Kansas City Beer: A History of Brewing in the Heartland.
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