Are you filled with starry-eyed sentiment and looking for the perfect destination for an amorous adventure? Join us as we explore Europe’s most sumptuous suites and luxurious lodgings to provide the ideal backdrop for your dream romance. Here’s a shortlist of my top 10 romantic hotels to be found in Europe.
Nothing says ‘romance’ like a Santorini sunset, and you won’t get a better viewpoint than the honeymoon suites at Sun Rocks Hotel. Carved into the volcanic cliff-side, this couples-only hideaway overlooks the Caldera basin, boasting unrivalled views of the glimmering Aegean Sea. With its vaulted ceilings and polished floors, this hotel provides a magical setting for any love story, with picture perfect sunsets guaranteed! Double rooms start from Ä380 per night.
The Marriott St Pancras Renaissance, despite being located next to the bustling hub of Kings Cross St Pancras, is a deluxe retreat built around the former Midland Railway station by Sir George Gilbert Scott. An underground relaxation pool with low lighting, every kind of breakfast your heart desires and elegant gothic furnishings (including a certain staircase that found fame in the Spice Girls’ Wannabe video) mixed with contemporary decor are just some of the things which make this plush hotel one of the most romantic in London. Friendly staff will even escort Eurostar passengers to and from their carriage. Who knows, you might have a Brief Encounter of your own.
The Spanish capital is a core contender for any romantic rendezvous, ideal for lazy siestas on balmy afternoons with plenty of rich wines and tasty tapas to while away the hours. Opulent and lavish, the baroque Hotel Ritz Madrid is the last word in luxury, with hand-made carpets and embroidered linen adorning their Deluxe Rooms. For those with bottomless wallets, why not book the breathtaking Royal Suite, bedecked with crystal chandeliers, antiques and a genuine Ming Dynasty vase!
With meandering cobbled streets and a winding labyrinth of canals, Venice is an excellent location for lovers. And the 14th Century Hotel Danieli lies right at the heart of the city, just steps from St Mark’s Square and steeped in its own rich history and heritage. With 221 guest rooms, sumptuously furnished, and a rooftop restaurant for al fresco fine dining, it’s a foolproof choice for smitten twosomes. The Royal Suites are the ultimate in classic luxury, but elegantly furnished Deluxe Doubles are also available.
Passionate Paris is the perfect setting for your affaire de coeur. Brimming with Gallic charm, culture and plenty of l’amour, the City of Lights is made for romance, with its leafy boulevards, cosy candlelit bistros and gorgeous gardens. For an added touch of enchantment, why not stay just steps from the iconic Eiffel Tower on the banks of the Seine? With elegant decor and spectacular views of France’s famous landmark, Duqusene Eiffel Hotel offers Superior Rooms. Be sure to book your room at this popular romantic retreat in advance.
With its Magic Fountains of Montjuic, the Park Guell filled with Gaudi’s exuberant artistic touches, plus Mediterranean beaches and chic designer boutiques, Barcelona is the ideal location for a little Latin loving. In the midst of Gaudi’s flamboyant architecture, the Majestic Hotel and Spa offers five-star hospitality in a gorgeous Neo-Classical setting. Rooms are light, airy and unique with painstaking attention to detail. Plus, don’t miss the open-air roof pool for a sunny afternoon swim!
Located around the corner from Buckingham Palace and Big Ben, the Crowne Plaza London St. James is bursting with luxury. Big spenders can splash out on a deluxe Jaguar suite, the hotel room equivalent to this plush car. All rooms are lavishly furnished, the menu is mouth-watering and there’s an extravagant courtyard complete with BBQ facilities and a fountain to make you feel like you’re a world away. Unwind at the on-site spa SPA at 51, enjoy a quiet drink at the bar and look out for famous guests – Hollywood studios have been known to put up their stars here.
Overlooking the swans that drift along the Groenerei Canal, visiting Hotel Die Swaene is like taking a step back in time. Enjoy a drink in the 18th Century salon, relax in the traditional sauna or sample the vibrant cuisine at the water-level Wine & Dine Pergola Kaffee terrace. This family-owned waterfront gem offers plush decor and a welcoming vibe amid Bruges’ fairy-tale setting. Don’t miss the city’s Diamond Museum for a bit of sparkler-spotting, or opt for a canal cruise to soak up the Gothic atmosphere.
What better city for romance than Rome itself, the place from which the word derives? A wander through the ancient ruins of the Imperial Roman Forums or the Baths of Caracalla will melt even the hardest of hearts. Close to the Colosseum, in the centre of the Eternal City, Hotel Romance lives up to its name with a beautiful baroque interior and warm, welcoming atmosphere. The hotel offers romantic touches such as a red rose, chocolates and sparkling Spumante for a few euros extra.
Treat your king or queen to a royal rendezvous at this 13th Century fortress tucked within wooded parkland on the banks of the river Esk. Steeped in history, this luxury citadel offers a relaxing spa, falconry and well-stocked library in addition to a warm Scottish welcome. Have a drink beside the roaring fire in the ‘secret bar’, or sample Scotland’s finest cuisine in the barrel-vaulted dungeon restaurant. Bedrooms are lavishly swathed in tweed and tartan, and furnished with original period pieces. Choose a themed room to relive a little bit of history ó the Dalwolsie Room has a French medieval tower alcove and romantic window seat.
Simon Hagger is CEO at†Show and Stay.