2 years ago
The definition of romance depends on the couple. For some, it’s about enjoying the great outdoors; for others, relaxing side-by-side, getting pampered in the lap of luxury. Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to escape on a romantic getaway, whether it’s a long weekend or a weeklong vacation.
From the Australian outback to the Caribbean and, yes, the City of Love, RealClearLife has curated seven places where you and your significant other can enjoy a romantic Valentine’s Day getaway.
Lisbon’s cobblestone streets, dotted with Moorish architecture, make for an ideal destination for couples looking for a dash of history and culture. Lisbon’s oldest district, Alfama (pictured above), offers plenty of charm for a romantic evening. Situated between the Tejo River and the São Jorge Castle, the Memmo Príncipe Real in Alfama is a modern boutique hotel with a cozy atmosphere and an amorous spot for couples to rest their heads—or simply grab a drink and take in the view. Those seeking authenticity should consider a day trip to Sintra, just 30 minutes outside of Lisbon. Known for its pastries (try the queijadas and travesseiros), Sintra offers delicious food and wine options, but the most intimate places are up the hill in Tacho Real. Couples can stroll through the expansive Monserrate Palace and its botanical gardens or take a horse-drawn carriage ride at Sunset through Pena Park for a stunning view of nearby Pena Palace. Book a room at Memmo Príncipe Real here.
Cabo San Lucas, Mexico
Couples trying to get away, without changing time zones, should consider a brand-new luxe resort in Cabo San Lucas. The Towers at Pacifica, nestled on a secluded 2.5-mile stretch of pristine beach, feature suites boasting private plunge pools, bars pre-stocked with personalized orders, and 24/7 butler service. Just in time for Valentine’s Day, the adults-only resort is offering an indulgent four-night stay that includes VIP couples massages; a private dinner on the beach overlooking the rocky formations at Land’s End; and a butler-guided excursion to a local glassblowing factory, where guests can make handblown keepsakes. A long weekend filled with romance and relaxation, the all-inclusive package costs $4,200. Bookings can be made here or by calling 1-800-990-8250.
Northern Territory, Australia
There’s perhaps no better way for couples to celebrate their commitment to one another than by traveling to the farthest reaches of the Earth together. The land down under is chock full of stunning natural wonders, but its “Red Center,” home to the famous Uluru rock formation, reigns supreme. Located in the Northern Territory, the heart of Australia possesses a rugged beauty attractive for adventurous couples trying to get off the beaten path. Longitude 131º is a string of 15 luxury tent pavilions offering an immersive experience in Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Couples staying there can wake up to the sight of the monolithic rocks from their bed; then take a relaxing stroll around the base of Uluru, soaking in the ancient rock art, before cooling off in a swimming pool surrounded by crimson sand dunes. By booking through National Geographic Lodges, guests receive an exclusive culinary experience with Longitude 131º’s executive chef, who will provide insight into the local cuisine’s philosophy and history while teaching the recipe for dukkah, quandong jam, or the lodge’s signature bread. More info here.
A romantic sojourn in Rome may sound clichéd, but one lavish hotel is hoping to change that. Couples looking for a classic European getaway with indulgent amenities might want to look at Rome Cavalieri, which is celebrating Valentine’s Day by hosting an eight-course meal. An example of what’s on the menu? “Duck foie gras powder and loin of lamb with wild fennel in cereal crust and goat cheese pearls.” The meal will be prepared by Heinz Beck at La Pergola, the hotel’s restaurant and the only Roman eatery with three Michelin stars. Couples staying in the Imperial Room or a suite with a view—who have a hankering for the cosmos—will be able to name a star after their significant other. Upon check-out, they’ll receive a star certificate, coordinates to where the star is in the sky, information on the constellation it belongs to, and a silver chain with two pendants on it: a star and a heart. By booking the spa package for two, couples can get a 50-minute massage, followed by a private lunch with Prosecco. After lunch, your significant other will be showered with gifts, such as chocolate, La Prarie beauty products, and further spa treatments. For more information, click here.
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
A bustling metropolis in the heart of the gulf, Dubai is an excellent destination for couples looking for an exotic getaway. Get a lay of the land by sailing on a private yacht, with unlimited beverages like champagne, and a three-course meal served by the onboard staff. And while there are plenty of culinary events throughout the city on Valentine’s Day, one stands out (literally). Suspended hundreds of feet in the air by a crane, Dinner in the Sky offers brunch, lunch, or dinner with unobstructed views over the marina. Afterwards, head to the nearby Jetty Lounge for a nightcap while relaxing on couches in the sand. A great place to pick out a special gift is Deira Gold Souq, a jewelry market overflowing with gold and pearl shops. As far as accommodations go, there’s plenty of luxe hotels in the city, but the Palm Dubai’s Underwater Suite gives guests the once-in-a-lifetime experience of waking up to thousands of fish, stingrays, and sharks. The resort also offers an assortment of couples activities like massages and underwater yoga. More info here.
While a ski chalet in the Swiss Alps may be the first thing that comes to mind when thinking of a winter couples retreat, Newfoundland’s Fogo Island Inn offers a serene retreat with stunning architecture. Designed as a modern take on the traditional Atlantic Canadian outpost, the inn could be used as a home base for exploration or simply a spot to cozy up with that special someone. Guests here can cruise out into “Iceberg Alley” to watch enormous icebergs from Greenland pass by; ride a snowmobile to Cape Cove, an abandoned community at the northernmost tip of the island; or go snowshoeing or cross-country skiing on the pristine snow. Those looking for less excitement can relax in the inn’s rooftop hot tubs; stargaze with an iceberg-chilled cocktail in hand; and then sweat out that booze inside the northern European–style sauna. The inn’s award-winning restaurant serves cuisine prepared with locally foraged ingredients—such as spruce buds, oyster leaf, and chanterelles—which got a mention on Condé Nast Traveler‘s Gold List 2016. Couples that book through National Geographic Lodges are treated to an exclusive guided architectural tour of Tilting, a tiny seaside village sprinkled with stylish modern buildings. Find out more about the Fogo Island Inn and its surrounding natural beauty here.
Heading to the so-called “City of Love” might seem like another cliché, but Paris is a classic romantic destination for a reason. An iconic Parisian palace, Le Royal Monceau, is offering one of the more elaborate date nights one could imagine. When couples arrive, most will be greeted with a pink rose, but one lucky pair will also receive an 18-karat Piaget gold rose bracelet set with diamonds and pink sapphires. In the hotel’s private theater, guests will be treated to an exclusive screening of Jackie, starring Natalie Portman, with complimentary champagne. To end the night, couples have their choice of three distinctly romantic culinary experiences: cocktails with appetizers at the hotel bar; a gourmet dinner at Matsuhisa Paris; or a lavish in-room meal served with rosé champagne. Book your stay here.