Romance isn’t just for Valentine’s Day. Book yourself an overseas love nest for a spring getaway
Cornwall in England’s southwest is beautiful even in the squally depths of winter, with its uniquely quaint stone cottages and windswept coastline. But its mild microclimate really comes into its own in spring, when nature re-emerges in full colour (visit the 200-acre Lost Gardens of Heligan as well as the Eden Project).
The scenic county isn’t short of romantic boltholes, but Sundance, between Mawgan Porth and Watergate Bay, is right up there: a former old wagon transformed, and extended, into a super-stylish one-bed wooden cottage with a light-flooded glass veranda looking out on to a natural pool and wildflower garden.
From £895 per week, £695 per short break, and the bucolic property is just a ten-minute drive from Newquay Airport. Contact Unique Homestays on +44 1637 881 183 or visit uniquehomestays.com.
Paris in spring is quite the cliché but the City of Lights is never more beautiful than when garnished by cherry blossom.The best places to enjoy the blooms are around the Tuileries Garden, Jardin des Plantes, and the Champs de Mars around the Eiffel Tower. And arguably one of the best places to stay is at Saint James, a 19th century mansion in the elegant 16th district.
It’s Paris’s only chateau hotel and has quite the history: it was once the landing site for hot air balloons before becoming, variously, the residence of a French president, university accommodation for some very lucky students, and a private members’ club. These days it’s a 50-room boutique hotel, its grand interiors redesigned in 2021 by Laura Gonzalez: think clashing colours and textures, chinoiserie, and quirky objet d’art, the sum of its parts at once opulent and utterly homely, in echo of its pitch-perfect staff.
Bliss out in the Guerlain spa or over fine cuisine prepared by chef Julien Dumas who makes liberal use of the hotel’s kitchen garden, and ingredients cherry-picked from regional suppliers.
B&B from €490. saint-james-paris.com
For a coastal Eden fit for a honeymoon, look no further than the crystal-clear waters of the Maldives and its bounty of luxurious overwater bungalows and discreet service. One such swish resort is Kuramathi, whose guests arrive by seaplane from the airport.
Sunway has a seven-night full board package from €2,575pp, including flights, checked bags and a speedboat transfer. sunway.ie
As Valentine’s Day falls on a Tuesday, it’s the perfect opportunity to sneak off and avail of a cheeky midweek romantic break with your other half. If leaving behind the kids or taking time off work during the week isn’t doable, we have you covered in our guide to romantic places to stay on February 14 or on the days surrounding it.