5 Romantic Rooms
June 18, 2014
Looking to turn up the heat on your next trip? From secret city cottages, a wellness retreat and a secluded, exclusive seascape, to a yacht or even island of your own, these are the region's most seductive suites. Plus expert ideas on how to make the next idyll extra-aphrodisiacal.
Published on Jun 18, 2014
1. Infatuation Island
Nothing says DO NOT DISTURB like secreting away to a hidden island. From Beach House Iruveli (+96 332 1943)—where the stilted Water Villas are decadently private —you'll set sail for Govvafushi, a tiny private isle, and be left there to spend the night with your main squeeze in utter seclusion. Want to run laps around the 1-square-hectare beach in the buff? Go for it! Slightly more intimate endeavors in mind? Well, don't worry about waking the neighbors—there aren't any. The nearest human is a boat ride away from your personal playground, made all the more frolicsome by the pods of dolphins that regularly visit. Spy on them from any of the island's stretches of beach; each is decked out with sunbeds, umbrellas and hammocks all inviting you to pick your favorite magical spot to sun, or follow the best patch of shade. After a bespoke dinner in the fading light of the famous Maldivian sunset, you'll go almost au naturel under the gentle light of battery-powered lamps and in the cool ocean winds (read: there is no electricity or airconditioning). Sprawl across your 2-meter circular bed in an open-air gazebo, with a view of the stars, the sea and the inky night sky stretching infinitely before you. If this island's rocking, don't come a-knocking.— M E R R I T T G U R L E Y
The private views of a Water Villa.
2. Living and Loving Well
The golden-lace patterns the setting sun creates in the jade canopy of the jungle, with the soundtrack of the gentle rustling of leaves and harmony of birds, is best taken in with your chin nestled in your crossed forearms at the edge of your heated, hydro-jet 24-square-meter pool. Here on the San Benito ridge, there are no distractions, nothing superfluous, just nature, you and your partner. And a new Narra Pool villa at The Farm in San Benito (+63 2 884 8073) combines with the resort's philosophy to reprogram your chi. The Farm is famed for its many cleansing programs; worldclass spa that uses only natural, handmade products; yoga and meditation classes; and signature vegan gourmet cuisine. (Tip: If you can't fathom pasta without Parmesan, ask the waiter to sprinkle yours with the GM's special shaved coconut.) Toast to your collective vim and vigor with biodynamic wine or organic craft beers on the veranda of your tropical-Asian villa. Surrounded by lush vegetation, each has an inviting king bed dressed in Quivera cotton sateen linens and a bathroom complete with a large tub and two private toilets—you know, so you can keep the mystery alive.—S T E P H A N I E Z U B I R I
The jungle shades a Narra Pool villa.
3. Seductive Seclusion
VINH HY BAY, VIETNAM
Snuggled into a paradisiacal promontory jutting out into the South China Sea, the newly opened Amanoi (+84 68 377 0777) is, at a distance, indistinguishable from its jungly surrounds in Nui Chua National Park. From the gorgeous approach along a twisty cliff face, you have to peer closely, looking past the colossal boulders that seem propped on precipices as if placed there by giants, for a roof peak here or a pool edge there, to realize just how close you are to Eden. That sense of subtlety carries onto the grounds of the sprawling property, where secrets lie around every corner, where each of the 36 guest pavilions is different and cloistered from one another behind foliage and down hidden walkways. There are two resort-wide pools, one high on the hill summit and the other fronting the beach, but you might prefer swimming laps, or holding hands, in your own 16-meter pool at Pavilion 17. This most private of rooms straddles the northwestern tip of the bluff, boasting views of a fishing village cove from the edge of your infinity pool and the basin of your big bathtub, and of islands and ocean from your front deck—and from your rainshower, which opens to the elements. Nudge each other awake in time for sunrise yoga in the sala floating in the lagoon, followed by a private Pilates class in the custom-built studio. After an evening of couple's treatments in one of the outsize spa villas—complete with soaks in side-by-side stone tubs—the lantern-lit paths that wind through the resort make even the stroll home romantic.—J E N I N N E L E E - S T. J O H N
Pavilion 17's pool rivals the resort's cliff pool for its length and view.
4. A Boatload of Romance
Breezy, open waters and an air of adventure; brilliant orange-red sunsets over the South China Sea… this is the stuff of liveaboard bonding. Charter a private yacht with Aqua Voyage (+65 6505 9373) and set sail from Singapore to the sparkling white, über-luxe Montigo Resort (+62 77 8776 8888), where you can spend the day on the beach or in the thatched spa compound. In the evening, retreat to your yacht for a night being lulled by the waves. The sleek Sunseeker is especially popular because it comes with a kitchen for your personal chef—who can whip up local delicacies like gado gado (traditional Indonesian salad) or ayam panggang berempah (roasted chicken marinated in local herbs)—and a full entertainment system. It also has a super fly flybridge for sunbathing and stargazing, as well as plenty of heartfelt deep-and-meaningfuls as you explore the islets of the surrounding Riau Archipelago. Dive in and snorkel hand-in-hand in the sparkling waters. You'd be forgiven for not wanting the adventure to end, so after a night (or two) at sea, go ahead and recall your inner landlubber and check in to one of Montigo's plush, spacious pool villas with uninterrupted panoramic oceanic views. In this romantic haven that echoes your regal cruise, private chefs will sizzle up a barbecue on your villa's sky terrace—definitely a one-up from the typical candlelit meal.—M E L A N I E L E E
Dive into the Sunseeker's cushy bed.
5. Urban Affairs
So you two need to head home via Bangkok, but aren't quite ready to come down from the lovers' high of the luxe time you just had on one of Thailand's beautiful beaches? The Grand Hyatt Erawan's i.sawan spa cottages (+66 2 254 1234) will more than cushion the blow. Hidden in the corners of the hotel's pool garden, these six villas comprise a true urban oasis you'd never guess is sitting right at the apex of one of the city's busiest intersections. Who wants a skyline view when the emphasis here is on drowning out all that bustle? The efforts begin with the daily spa treatments for two included in the rate, and in the room: massage and scrub tables and a steam room are built-in. After the best kind of couple's therapy, your caregivers will discreetly draw you a rose-petal bath, light candles and skedaddle. Towel off and head out robed to your tree-lined patio; it's a serene setting for a butler-served dinner or your complimentary cocktails or breakfast. Tell the overindulgent staff it's a special occasion and prepare for sweet surprises, like a chocolate fountain with fresh strawberries or a freezer of homemade sorbets. Spoonfeed each other the icy mango by the hotel pool, to which you'll enjoy front-door access. We can't think of a better place to extend your vacation—or conjure a seductive staycation.—J E N I N N E L E E - S T. J O H N
Busy Bangkok lies just beyond the i.sawan spa cottages.