Whether you call it love, bonding or bro-mance, February is the month for it. Pick your configuration — plus-one, with friends or the entire wedding party — and book your stay with one of these newsmakers, covering the gamut of affections.
Pop down to Puerto Rico with your best buds for a laid-back stay at the new Condado Vanderbilt Hotel. Originally opened in 1919, the Spanish Colonial landmark was given a $200 million rebirth and appended to a pair of new towers housing 319 oceanfront rooms (three-bedroom penthouse suites include butler service). It now boasts the city’s first hamam, two pool areas and two restaurants, including the splurge-warranting 1919. Its location on bustling Ashford Avenue offers easy access to popular bars and restaurants nearby, while the concierge will arrange jungle hikes and golf outings. Rooms from $350; 787-721-5500, www.condadovanderbilt.com.
Make it to Miami Beach, a red-hot destination for the world’s coolest travelers this year, with a gal pal or six and stay at the new beachfront Hotel Croydon. The 104-room hotel is small enough to make you feel at home, but big enough to offer amenities like rooftop yoga, massages, free airport shuttles and a gastropub serving free happy-hour cocktails. Its Wanderlista fashion and accessories store offers private shopping sessions, and the gym features boxing workouts designed by the 5th Street Gym, renowned for training local models. Bachelorette party packages include a bottle of vodka or champagne per room and beach chairs. Rates from $250; 305-938-1145, www.hotelcroydonmiami.com.
Destination Royal Wedding
Make like the Clooneys and wed in Italy where, for the first time, the historic Castello di Bagnara, the private Umbria residence of the Counts of Giunta Tremi, is available for weddings. Owned by descendants of Napoleon Bonaparte, the castle is part of the 1,500-acre Le Torri di Bagnara estate, featuring an 18th-century chapel, Italianate garden, pool and a farm raising olives, Chianina cattle and honey. Among five castles on the property, the seven-bedroom Pieve di Quirico sleeps 15, and the adjacent crenellated Tower sleeps another 15. Weekly rates at the Pieve castle from $10,200; www.letorridibagnara.it.
This is what getting away from it all looks like: a secluded love nest on the broad Zambezi River complete with a canopy bed and fireplace indoors, a private garden and infinity plunge pool outdoors. The new designed-for-couples Nut House at the luxurious Tongabezi Lodge near Zambia’s Victoria Falls features artisan-made furnishings with globetrotter flare: pierced Moroccan lanterns, South African art, Zambian leather cushions and an antique studded door from Zanzibar. Come during the full moon to witness the rare “lunar rainbows” produced when moonlight hits the falls. Rates from $873, all inclusive; 011-260-213-327450, www.tongabezi.com.
Sure, you could just run off to Vegas next weekend. Or, you could go the tasteful route by booking the Langham Place, New York’s new “Elopement to Remember” package. Designed for those seeking the romance of eloping without giving up all bridal traditions, the deal includes two nights in a two-bedroom suite, wedding programs, a sit-down dinner for eight complete with a champagne toast and wedding cake, a photographer for two hours and transportation to and from city hall via Maserati. Recover with a post-nuptial couples massage, also included. Package from $7,500; 212-695-4005, www.langhamhotels.com.
If you missed out on a destination wedding, consider a destination anniversary party at the Chateau Bel Esprit in the south of France. Luxury travel firm Red Savannah newly handles the 300-acre estate and its centerpiece 11-bedroom, Italian-style chateau, near Aix-en-Provence. The property features cypress-lined roads that lead to its own vineyards, a French garden inset with fountains and a swimming pool, and a terrace with a Jacuzzi and panoramic valley views. Private quarters model a range of styles from the 18th through the 20th centuries. Rates from $2,610 per person per week; 855-468-5555, www.redsavannah.com.