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Great Escapes: Harry Potter, Dublin's Dean Hotel, and the return of New York shopping trips...

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Frozen Central Park in New York - trips to the city are back.

Frozen Central Park in New York - trips to the city are back.

Istanbul

Istanbul

Harry Potter bedroom in the Georgian House Hotel, London

Harry Potter bedroom in the Georgian House Hotel, London

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Frozen Central Park in New York - trips to the city are back.

Stay tuned in travel with Pól Ó Conghaile's weekly column.

Departures

After seven books, eight movies and three theme parks, you might think Harry Potter had maxed out his magic. Think again.

This spell just keeps on giving, with a new wave of Potter mania including Wizard's Chamber rooms at London's Georgian House Hotel. Priced from €266, the new rooms can be packaged with a Muggle Walking Tour; georgianhousehotel.co.uk

Harry Potter theme parks have already opened at Universal Studios in Japan and Orlando this year, with another to follow in Hollywood in 2016.

Meanwhile, the Warner Brothers Studio Tour in Watford has unveiled a Hogwarts In The Snow attraction for winter which will see the Great Hall filled with decorations and festive props; wbstudiotour.co.uk

Room with a View

Details of Dublin's forthcoming Dean Hotel continue to trickle out. The new hotel, set to open on Harcourt Street this December, will feature bedrooms styled as "modern pods", "punk bunks" and "SupeRooms" with rainforest showers, as well as a loft space with fully-fitted kitchen, bar, poker-table and limited edition Martin guitars.

Other features include custom- designed hotel bikes and a "hot desk" at the Dean Bar where you can breakfast with a selection of Clement & Pekoe brews and plenty of power sockets to charge your gadgets; thedean.ie

For more travel tips, deals and inspiration, visit independent.ie/travel

Deals and steals

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Istanbul

Istanbul

Istanbul


BARGAIN:
Fancy some exotic Christmas shopping? Topflight has four-night trips to Istanbul  from €469pp, including two half-day tours. Departing  27 November and 4 December. topflight.ie

SPLASH: Forget Phileas Fogg, Captain's Choice is offering customers the chance to travel around the world in 22 days - on a private jet. The trip costs €44,850pp. captainschoice.co.uk

STAYCATION: Winter months offer peak whale-watching opportunities in Ireland. Ardmore's five-star Cliff House Hotel in Co. Waterford has a package bundling two nights' B&B with one dinner and a two-hour whale-watch walk from €510 midweek. cliffhousehotel.com

SMART TRAVEL: Pre-Christmas shopping trips to New York (pictured top of page) and the US are back with a bang this year, but there's far better value if you wait till January, when cheaper hotels and post-holiday sales see companies like clickandgo.com offering packages from just €599pp.

Weekend Magazine