7 Romantic Hotels to Get You Far Away from Here
Written by: Kelly Martin
Published on: February 9, 2023
There’s something about far-flung escapes that conjures up heart-fluttering romance. Perhaps it’s because when you put in some time and effort in pursuit of seclusion, you’re rewarded with: you, me, and here.
Some of these hotels are simply out of the way; others take significant effort to reach, and that’s part of what makes them so good.
Six Senses Bhutan consists of five properties sprinkled throughout the Himalayas: Thimphu, just outside Bhutan’s capital city; Punakha, in Bhutan’s warm, sunny farming region; Paro, a stony fortress surrounded by mountain peaks; Bumthang, in prime forest-bathing territory; and Gangtey, in a glacial valley that’s home to black-necked cranes. You can visit a single lodge, if you’d like. Or book a bespoke journey through the country, hitting up Bhutan’s markets, museums, and monasteries as you make your way to each of the lodges.
Photo courtesy of Six Senses Bhutan
Your home at One&Only Mandarina, a romantic rain forest resort on the Nayarit coast, is a tree house perched in the cliffs. Expect dense rain forest, sweeping views, and a renewed connection with nature. In addition to your usual spa services (they use Tata Harper skin care here), enroll for breathwork, meditation, and a traditional Mayan sweat lodge ceremony called a temazcal.
In the Northern Highlands, this 19th-century stone manor is a cozy slice of Scottish paradise. Cuddle into your charming bedroom, gather for drinks in front of the fire, and get out for a hike (or a few). The food here is something else: You’ll sit for three-course dinners with biodynamic wines and ingredients grown on-site, foraged, or sourced locally.
What lies ahead for your stay in the North Atlantic depends on when you arrive. Here, natives count at least seven seasons—the four you know, plus some you don’t. In summer, for example, you can explore wildflower-dotted fields and pluck cloudberries straight from the patch. If you’re here for pack ice season, when dramatic fields of ice sheets drift into Shoal Bay, you can go snowshoeing and pond skating, watch winter wildlife, and feast on mussels. Year-round, you can count on Fogo Island Inn’s exquisite food, excellent service, and expertly guided excursions around the island.
Photo courtesy of Alex Fradkin
In the Franschhoek wine valley outside Cape Town, Babylonstoren is a bucket list country estate built into a working farm. It’s perfect for couples who are as into food as they are into each other. Make a reservation at the restaurant, Babel, for gorgeous, inventive, super seasonal plates with wine pairings from Babylonstoren’s own vineyards. Drop into the Greenhouse after a walk through the gardens for scones and tea, served picnic-style. And while you’re there, tour the wine cellar and get your hands dirty in the garden: You can join workshops on soapmaking, beekeeping basics, or the Babylonstoren approach to planting a vegetable patch.
Photo courtesy of Babylonstoren
Tokoriki is designed for two: It’s a collection of Fijian villas and beachfront bures outfitted with outdoor showers, lush gardens, hammocks, and plunge pools. If you’d like to lounge and lounge only, have at it. Otherwise, the island’s your oyster: Take out a kayak, sit in a kava ceremony, join a traditional Fijian basket-weaving class, and scuba through colorful coral gardens. (If it’s your first time, there’s a PADI dive center on-site where you can get certified, if you’d like.)
Photo courtesy of Tokoriki Island Resort
If you’re LA-based, Alila Marea is a seaside getaway within a couple hours’ drive. The stone-and-wood structure is set into the cliffs above Ponto Beach. The rooms, in all their earth-tone, floor-to-ceiling-window glory, are made for sleeping through the morning and room-service dinners. But there are plenty of reasons to throw back the sheets: an incredibly accommodating spa, an impressive restaurant, and an open-air pool with cabanas, cocktails, the works.