Our second feature today focuses on hotels that are destinations in and of themselves, simply for their impeccable design. My jaw hit the floor when I saw some of these gorgeous places, so get ready. Here’s what Katie’s found for us…
There are a lot of amazing hotels out there these days, but every so often, a resort comes along with such impeccable design, they can’t help but stand. The next hotels are three of my favorites that are invariably head and shoulders above the rest.
Amanyara, Turks & Caicos
This resort has a lot of glass and wood, giving it a very open and bright feeling. There are a lot of great activities including amazing reefs right offshore for snorkeling or scuba diving. There is an infinity pool and private beach, all of which adds up to complete privacy, luxury and relaxation.
My favorite room is the Pavillion Room, which has 3 outdoor terraces, including a sundeck with daybeds.
Carrie (from Citineraries) suggests these dinning options:
Epicurean elegance is indigenous to the islands of Turks & Caicos where most of the dining delights are found at the surrounding hotels. Options range from barefoot grilling to haute cuisine. Visiting lovebirds should indulge in: the nightly changing Asian & Mediterranean influenced menus of Amanyara, the island outpost of New York’s famed Bagatelle Bistro in the Gansevoort (enjoy the meal on your own private floating island in their signature pool!) or European-Caribbean gastronomy at adults-only Grace Bay Club.
Grace Bay Club
Our next great hotel, designer edition, is La Minervetta, Sorrento, Italy
When planning honeymoons, I often run into a very common man versus woman predicament: he considers a vacation to be filled with sightseeing, history and culture, and she just wants to relax on a gorgeous beach. I’m always on the hunt for locations that offer both options for these types of couples. At the top of my list is Sorrento, Italy–a location that offers it all. Located in the Amalfi Coast, Sorrento is a great town, with a gorgeous beach and perfect base to explore the rest of the region.
While visiting Sorrento, stay at the gorgeous La Minervetta Hotel. There is a pool and terrace built into the Cliffside which is the perfect place to enjoy breakfast or a glass of wine after taking a ferry out to Capri for the day. The hotel has just 12 rooms, all gorgeously designed and all with great views of the town.
For culinary diversions, Carrie suggests:
The scrumptiousness of Sorrento speaks for itself – the peninsula is as famous for pizza as Naples – and be sure to take time to savor the birthplace of Limoncello. The luscious liqueur is absolutely best here when it is made from the famously huge Amalfi Coast lemons. When exploring the coast’s palazzos and piazzas you will see lemon syrups, lemon iced delights, lemon curd, lemon pie, lemon pudding, lemon biscotti, lemon cake…
Of course what would a trip to Italy be without vino. Two highly recommended wineries nearby in Campania:
Feudi di San Gregori: Wonderful whites and a famous red named Serpico
Mastroberardino: Traditional whites and a fantastic red named Taurasi
Aleenta Resort and Spa, Pranburi, Thailand
For something a little different and off the beaten path, check out the Aleenta Resort located three hours south of Bangkok in Thailand. Between the hammocks, outdoor showers, thatched roofs, private plunge pools, and balconies overlooking the water, it is perfectly romantic.
My favorite room? The Palm Pool Suite which sits directly on the beach, has a private plunge pool, and of course incredible ocean views:
For dining, Carrie suggests the following:
At this small award-winning boutique property be prepared for larger than life dining experiences on the shimmering gold sands and under the twinkling stars.
Onsite modern Thai and International cuisine is created from the freshest ingredients of land & sea. Savory options include:
Simply Thai – A four-course set menu where you sample all the basic ingredients and stand-out dishes of a traditional Thai kitchen: chicken served in a banana leaf, Tom Yam Goong spicy seafood soup and Thai sticky rice served with mango and topped with coconut milk.
Sand Haven – A seafood BBQ feast of fish, squid, mussels and tiger prawns, a selection of grilled vegetables, Thai coconut fragrant rice and a sweet ending of exotic fruit skewers.
Thai Confusion – An elegant Thai affair featuring chicken satay with peanut sauce, Thai style beef salad, Thai green mango salad, tiger prawns with Thai herbs, Thai green chicken curry, and topped off with pumpkin in warm coconut milk.
If you love all of the above you can take it to go — cooking classes are a featured resort offering! Chef Rose will teach you the skills you need to cook some of Asia’s most fascinating dishes so you can show off your newfound Thai talents upon returning home.