Monday, 5 June 2017

6 Romantic Beach Getaways

6 Romantic Getaways to Island Resorts

Thailand: Six Senses Yao Noi

Why I Love It This rustic-luxe island hideaway, located 45 minutes by speedboat from Phuket, is my dreamy, exotic escape of choice. The 54 thatch-roof villas cascade down a pandanus-swathed hill to a white-sand beach, and sybaritic room amenities include private infinity-edge pools, spa-treatment salas, outdoor showers and gracious service courtesy of personal butlers. Best Room Villas have more swing than Tarzan with their folding glass walls and eco-chic design (think dark woods and white gauze, with pops of yellow and orange throughout). There's nothing like waking up in an Ocean Pool Villa to the sight of iconic limestone formations rising dramatically from the sparkling Andaman Sea. Romantic Perk Charter one of the resort's private yachts at sunset, and set a course for a deserted island nearby, where you'll enjoy sundown cocktails in utter privacy. You'll be the only two around, guaranteed. - Elizabeth Woodson

California: Montage Laguna Beach

Why I Love It It's nothing short of a real-life coastal fairytale. Set atop a bluff within walking distance of the artsy downtown area, the idyllic 248-room resort features a to-die-for spa with a swimming pool that overlooks the Pacific Ocean. Its domestic location makes it easily accessible, yet it puts even the most far-flung locales around the globe to shame. Best Room There's no shabby view from anywhere on the premises, but the crème de la creme is the Catalina Suite, with a king-size feather-top bed, soaking tub, fireplace and a balcony with jaw-dropping views of the surrounding Goff Beach and the Pacific. Out of your budget? Request a room in the 380's (on the south side of the property), which have a little extra privacy. Romantic Perk Don't miss dinner in the Sunset Room, an intimate 10-table dining area at five-star restaurant Studio. Another must: book a "Togetherness" experience at Spa Montage with side-by-side massages. - Jennie Nunn

Riviera Maya, Mexico: Maroma Resort and Spa

Why I Love It Deeply rooted in Maya culture, this hotel presides over its own exquisite beach and feels like a hidden grotto amid the larger resorts along the Riviera Maya. Designed as if it were a grand home, the resort comprises 65 rooms featuring local artwork, plush king-size beds and bamboo-shuttered doors that lead to private terraces. A world-class spa (don't miss the temazcal, a Maya-style sweat-lodge experience done beachside), three swimming pools (two of them reserved for adults) and various bars mean you never need to leave the premises. Best Room I love the Oceanfront One Bedroom Suites; each comes with a patio plunge pool, a dining palapa and massage area, an outdoor shower and sea views. Romantic Perk Book an Evening with the Moon and Stars, a treat that includes an oceanside massage for two, serenaded by the sea. While you relax, staff members outfit your suite with flowers, chocolate-covered strawberries and a bottle of chilled sparkling wine. - Becca Hensley
Florida Keys: Little Palm Island Resort & Spa

Why I Love It Think of it as a "drive-to" private island - a 5 1/2-acre, beach-fringed oasis of castaway style, accessible via a quick speedboat transfer from Little Torch Key. The luxury here isn't pretentious: You can go barefoot all day, doing little more than sunning and spooning in an oversize hammock, dining feet-in-the-sand on lobster and then retiring to overnight in a dreamy king-size canopy bed. Best Room You can't go wrong here: All 30 suites are located in oceanfront thatch-roof bungalows with outdoor showers and privacy screens of lush palms and greenery. If you want to kick it up a notch, each secluded and aptly named Island Romance Suite offers a private deck with a Jacuzzi, daybed and fire pit. Romantic Perk Enhance your shared relaxation as you surrender to the aromatic oils and rhythmic strokes of a Balinese couples massage at tranquil SpaTerre. Book a private sunset sail on the resort's 38-foot yacht, and you'll have the captain all to yourself, as well as wine and cheese to nosh. - Donna Heiderstadt

Costalegre, Mexico: Las Alamandas

Why I Love It It's hard to believe that a quiet paradise like this can still exist in well-traveled Mexico. Situated on a 15,000-acre nature reserve, this 16-villa hideaway made my hubby and I feel like the ritzy owners of our own fabulous Costa­legre estate from the moment we arrived. Everywhere we went, it was easy to pretend we were the last two souls on earth: floating in the shallow waters just off the coast of one of the resort's four private beaches, wandering along lush jungle paths, or simply sitting back with margaritas in hand. Best Room Each colorful Spanish-style villa comes with perks like a private Jacuzzi and secluded patio, but couples who splurge for the Casa del Sol suite might never leave their room, thanks to a sparkling infinity-edge pool, a full bar and an expansive outdoor terrace overlooking the ocean. Romantic Perk Ask the resort's attentive staff to arrange a private candlelit dinner for two atop Lookout Point, a soaring cliff with panoramic vistas of the Pacific. What could be more romantic than watching the sun dip into the ocean while sipping sparkling wine with the person of your dreams? - Jackie Caradonio

South Carolina: The Sanctuary at Kiawah Island Golf Resort

Why I Love It If you've ever dreamed of having the run of a seaside mansion, you'll adore this luxury hotel, part of private resort community Kiawah Island Golf Resort. From the cushy rooms and restaurants to the near-prescient service, everything is welcoming and unfussy - just what you need for a romantic postwedding wind-down. Award-winning golf (at five championship courses) and tennis await, and don't miss kayaking on the Kiawah River - there's a better-than-average chance dolphins will join you. Best Room I always ask for room 478, an oceanfront corner suite on the quieter north side of the hotel, away from the pool. The balconies - three in all - have sweeping views of the sea, woods and golf course, so there's no noise but the waves. Romantic Perk Honeymoons get off to a sweet start with chocolate-covered strawberries, sparkling wine and a rose-petal turndown. - Katie McElveen
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