Newlyweds naturally search for the Noah’s Arks of the travel world: destinations where guests glide in two-by-two on a cloud of freshly-married bliss. But if you’re seeking the same sunsets as every other couple, you’re also faced with hotels and resorts where more time is spent trying to nab a half-moon daybed than actually snuggling on one. That’s where our honeymoon hotels in Europe come in: deluxe digs, discreet service and all the oohs and ahhs, without the honeymoon hordes.
1. Kyrimai: Greece
Intimate and sexy, this is one of the lesser-known honeymoon hotels in Europe – and you’ll want to keep it a secret. Few tourists venture beyond Mani’s tourist attractions, but ‘mooners who move further south are rewarded with Kyrimai – an old warehouse converted into a beachy boutique hideaway, without losing its period architecture and charming character. Newlyweds can dine on multi-award-winning cuisine by moonlit waters – heaven for the truly loved-up.
2. Twr y Felin Hotel: Wales
This slice of arty romance in St. David’s shows historic honeymoon hotels in Europe can do modern luxury – even better so than the faceless chains. Twr y Felin was a working windmill in 1806 and has retained its links to the past in the lovingly restored ensuite bedrooms and suites. Over 100 works adorn the walls of Wales’ first contemporary art hotel, which is a stone’s throw away from the beach at Caerfai Bay (perfect for starry-eyed strolls). Foodies rejoice – Restaurant Blas delivers a two-Rosette-winning menu, serving seasonal cuisine with fresh local ingredients.
3. Schloss Wartegg, Switzerland
Where honeymoon hotels in Europe are concerned, this 16th-century haven ticks heart-eyed couples’ boxes. Schloss Wartegg has with two international awards won in this year alone: it landed among the top 25 small hotels in Switzerland in the TripAdvisor Traveller’s Choice Award 2019 and was also high in this list of Swiss hotels to get married in. The turquoise-speckled spa, individually designed rooms, unbeatable natural surroundings and organic, Michelin-recommended menus all contribute to this he fairytale castle’s magnetism for awards.
4. Schlosshotel Groß Plasten: Germany
The attitude may be laid-back and light-hearted, but Schlosshotel Groß Plasten is serious about its treating honeymooners to a blissful break. The setting for your first getaway as bride and groom is the heavenly Mecklenburg Lake District, inside a handsome castle with rooms that will make you feel like lord and lady of the house. Spend the day melting away stresses with soothing massages, relaxing in the sauna or lazing in the gorgeous climate of the tepidarium, before a candlelit dinner in an achingly romantic setting.
5. Villa Le Barone, Italy
Elegance, charm, refinement: Villa le Barone is one of those heartstopping honeymoon hotels in Europe that truly lives up to its superlatives. The historic country manor is in effortlessly romantic grounds, close to Italian treasures Chianti, Florence, Siena and San Gimignano. Fresh flowers and a bottle of Prosecco await you in your exquisite bedroom – and you’ll spend the next few days soaking with your loved one in the heated salted infinity pool, savouring candlelit Tuscan dinners alfresco, swooning over sunsets on the heart terrace, wine tasting in a Chianti winery and touring Tuscany on a Vespa.
6. Barberstown Castle, Ireland
It’s an exceptional way to start married life – your own 13th-century castle and country house in the heart of peaceful Kildare. Barberstown Castle has won more than one wedding venue award, thanks to its unique and elegant atmosphere, fine French and Irish cuisine in Victorian and Elizabethan dining rooms, exceptional service and joyous bedrooms. These features and more make it one of the dreamiest honeymoon hotels in Europe.
7. Allegory Hotel: Greece
Elegantly Greek, this old-world hotel for honeymooners manages to avoid stuffy and stale, despite authentic architecture and artwork throughout. Allegory Hotel draws a perfect line between historic and hip, blending boutique beauty and modern design into six ancient suites in the even more ancient town of Rhodes. If you can peel yourself from your enticing bed, laze the days away strolling hand-in-hand in cobblestone streets or smooching on the beach. After all that wedding frenzy, you’ve earned it.