With the British summer doing its best to dampen spirits, it is high time we arranged a rendezvous with romance to reinvigorate our passion for the lighter months and heady summer days. Here is a collection of our most loved European escapes for romantic moments to treasure.
The ‘City of Lights’ could, of course, be renamed the ‘City of Love’, given that Paris has long been associated with romance and provided the charismatic backdrop for many legendary romantic films. It is hard not to swoon at the sight of the Eiffel Tower all a-glow at night, whilst the intoxicating aroma of wine, pastries and breads is the perfect invitation for a picnic by The Seine. For a sophisticated evening with style why not enjoy some Opera at the ornate Opera National de Paris or take a train ride to visit the Palace of Versailles and walk through the lavish gardens or admire the Hall of Mirrors. Our featured luxury hotel, Le Bristol Paris, is rich in romance, boasting palatial rooms, elegant design and beautiful furnishings. Take time out from sightseeing to indulge at the stunning signature spa and enjoy cocktails on the terrace.
When it comes to romance, those passionate Italians know a thing or two. From the resplendent architecture, to the iconic canals, the pace of life in Venice is set by the gentle gondolas and the finer things in life. Food, wine, music and art are available in abundance, but the real beauty of Venice belongs to the sunrises over the Grand Canal, the lively buzz of St Mark’s Square and the allure of San Giorgio island. Throughout the ages, lovers have roamed the streets of Venice, hand in hand, admiring the city’s many delights. Arrive in style at Aman Canal Grande Venice by boat, before disembarking at the 15th century palazzo. Enjoy aperitifs on the stunning rooftop terrace and, with king-size beds in every guest room, Aman Canal Grande Venice is the ideal setting for rest and relaxation.
The birthplace of the Renaissance, and the capital city of Tuscany, Florence is steeped in beauty and vibrancy, the kind of ambience that naturally inspires a romance-filled luxury holiday. Dine on delectable Italian cuisine and tour the many museums and galleries, filled with depictions of love and devotion. Just outside of the city’s central piazzas, the manicured Boboli Gardens is an exquisite setting in which to indulge in a more subdued and seductive pace of life. Villa Cora was built in the 1870s by Baron Oppenheim for his beloved wife, Princess Eugenia, and with luxury and opulence woven into the very fabric of this magnificent building, you’re sure to feel like Lord and Lady of the manor during your stay. Enjoy a romantic private dinner or wine-tasting for an unforgettable romantic experience, that’s amore!
Having formally played host to Beethoven, Mozart, Gustav Klimt and Marie Antoinette, you’d expect Vienna to showcase a level of sophistication and grandeur in-keeping with Europe’s aristocratic and artistic heritage – and you won’t be disappointed. Beautiful buildings, rambling streets and a vibrant cultural heartbeat; Vienna is a city made for exploring and adoring. The birthplace of the Viennese Waltz, it is no surprise to discover the many romantic aspects of this captivating city. Our featured luxury hotel, The Ritz-Carlton Vienna, is one of the city’s finest. Step back in time with a visit to the crystal-encrusted ballroom or indulge in some rich relaxation at the signature spa.
For romance, Mandarin Oriental Hotel Ritz takes some beating. Perfectly appointed within Madrid’s Golden Triangle, this exceptional luxury hotel boasts a Krugg Champagne Bar and regularly plays host to Spanish royalty, celebrities and stars of high society. Madrid is made for sun-drenched city adventures, and with so much to uncover, you never know where the day will take you. Dine on tasty tapas, enjoy a fine wine with lunch or even hire rollerblades to explore the city like a sporty local! The inviting array of designer shops and eclectic boutiques are ideal for couples wishing to find a meaningful memento, whilst our featured hotel’s stylish suites are the ideal setting to enjoy an afternoon siesta – with a view!
Take inspiration from the cinematic classic, Roman Holiday, by escaping to the city that gave romance its name. Rome is a dream destination for lovers, with incredible architecture, breathtaking views and romance well and truly in the air! Rome is practically overflowing with passion – for food, for love, for life – and you cannot fail to swoon at the sight of the city’s rose garden, the inspiring Roman architecture, not to mention all those depictions of Cupid and Venus around every corner! Share a gelato by the river, meander through the markets or enjoy a heart-shaped pizza at one of Rome’s many eateries, just waiting to treat you and your loved one to a real Italian feast! Our featured luxury hotel, Hotel de Russie, is situated between the Spanish Steps and Piazza del Popolo, for an unrivalled location, and even boasts a Secret Garden, made for a romantic afternoon for two.
The diverse culture and architecture on display in Barcelona makes it one of Europe’s most popular cities and there is a definitive sense that travellers can discover something new with every visit. Enjoy world-class cuisine, including the trademark tapas, Iberian meats and fresh seafood, whilst the city’s many attractions and art is a feast for the senses. Wine, dine, shop and explore against a backdrop of Gaudi’s vibrant colour palette, contemporary chic cityscapes and truly romantic scenes, such as the iconic harbour at sunset and picturesque public parks. Our featured hotel, Hotel Arts Barcelona, boasts an exceptional, convenient location at the heart of the city’s modern Olympic village and combines traditional luxury with modern design. Cool off with a dip in the hotel’s rooftop pool, overlooked by Frank Gehry's famous golden fish sculpture, whilst the panoramic sea and city views are truly breathtaking.
Few places in the world are as famous for privilege and prestige as Monaco and Monte-Carlo is the epitome of opulence and luxury, making it the ideal setting for a few days of refined romance. Stroll through the breathtaking gardens or try your luck at one of the glitzy casinos, but just about every activity in Monte-Carlo oozes glamour and the good life. At Hotel Metropole Monte-Carlo there are no end to the opportunities to spoil your loved one in this dazzlingly decadent city; the ‘Just for You’ concierge service can tailor itineraries, excursions and services to ensure your stay is as unique and special as your certain someone.
When it comes to classic romance, there are a few essential elements that guarantee that all-important spark. Fine wine, oysters, candlelight and sunsets go a long way towards achieving an ambience of allure, and thankfully you don’t have to travel too far to seek the setting your heart desires. Dubrovnik is awash with ancient mystique and a seductively sleepy pace of life. Seek out some of the world’s best seafood, stunning vistas and exceptional service with a stay at Villa Dubrovnik; Croatia’s most revered boutique luxury hotel. The signature beach club is a private paradise, whilst the dedicated concierge team can take care of your every whim, leaving you to discover Dubrovnik’s many delights at leisure.
Closer to home, but a world away from the typical stress of daily life, Dublin has inspired poets, musicians and romantics for centuries. No one is immune to the illustrious Irish charm and a leisurely stroll across the Liffey, or Ha’penny, Bridge feels like a scene from a romance novel, whilst the definitive Dublin revelry is sure to inspire a light-hearted, fun-filled weekend in a city that encourages a real love for life. Be sure to wander down the aptly named Love Lane in Temple Bar, where handwritten love notes and hearts of many colours adorn the walls. Stay at The Merrion to enjoy Ireland’s only two Michelin-starred restaurant, spacious suites and a truly stunning spa to uncover the Emerald Isle’s most elegant, and alluring, setting.
To create your own European love story, please contact our dedicated Europe Travel Consultants on 01244 897 771 for further information, inspiration and a tailor-made quote.