How to honeymoon like a celebrity
You've seen them in the pages of glossy magazines courtesy of Olivia Palermo, Kate Moss and Gwyneth Paltrow.
Now you can be part of the jetset in-crowd by booking a honeymoon at one of the ultra-glam a-list escapes.
One&Only Hayman Island, Australia
Occupying an island all to itself, just off the
coast of Queensland, Hayman Island is the
newest and hottest property to emerge from
One&Only’s impressive stable. It’s far-flung,
fabulous and flies under the radar – making it a
big hit with Hollywood starlets. You can be sure
that anyone filming ‘Down Under’ is certain to
make the short hop across the Coral Sea to make
the most of this heavenly hideaway. Our spies in
the southern hemisphere tell us it’s every inch as
luxurious as One&Only Reethi Rah in the
Maldives, but with an earthier, wilder feel. Think
rainforest hikes, snorkelling on the Great Barrier
Reef and seriously beautified bush-tucker for
supper. It’s a real humdinger!
Insider tip: On the top floor of the Hayman Wing, there’s a penthouse designed by the world-acclaimed fashion designer, Diane von Furstenberg.
Local tip: Blue Pearl Bay is a short hike away from the hotel & is one of the most beautiful spots on the island – perfect for a few newlywed photos!
Bellagio, Las Vegas, USA
Even though new ritzy hotels pop up faster
than you can slip a dime in a coin machine,
this elegant Italianate hotel remains one of the
city’s all-time best. Famous for its fountain
show out front and its classy casino, really it’s
all about the rooms, which are some of the
prettiest and most romantic in the city. Devoid
of drunken stag party antics (Prince Harry,
we’re not looking at you), the swimming pool
area is a serene oasis lined with mosaic tiles
and ancient cedar trees – it’s inspired by Lake
Como don’t you know. Of course, you can
parrrdy all you like at the Bellagio’s trendy
Bank nightclub (it’s actually one of the hippest
joints in town) but for the ultimate romantic
high, why not book a helicopter trip over the
Insider tip: Too lazy/jet-lagged to paint the town red? Not to worry, acrobats from Cirque de Soleil’s ‘O’ perform on the premises twice nightly.
Atlantis The Palm, Dubai, UAE
Gargantuan in size, Atlantis gives hotels in
Las Vegas a run for their money. But despite its
vast proportions, this Disney-esque fun palace is a
celebrity favourite – they even filmed X Factor
(judges houses) here one year. With world-class
restaurants (ten of them!), an epic waterpark
(squeal!) and glamour aplenty, the overriding
theme is one of all-out extravagance. There’s even
a giant aquarium buried within the walls of the
hotel where you can spot more than 65,000 of
Nemo’s relatives. Best of all, the hotel sits astride a
stretch of pristine beach that offers unrivalled
sunbathing and sublime views of Dubai’s
glittering skyline. With so much variety and good
times on offer, it’s easy to see why Atlantis has
been dubbed a ‘Magic Kingdom for grown-ups’. It
gets a thumbs up from us.
Insider tip: Kylie Minogue, Usher and Justin Timberlake are just a few of the stars who rave about Atlantis.
Kuoni travel secret: At Ossiano within Atlantis the Palm, one wall of the restaurant borders the aquarium so you can eat your meal in the company of Eagle Rays, Banjo Sharks and the occasional stunning Emperor Angel.
Sugar Beach, A Viceroy Resort, Saint Lucia
You might have read about this sexy newcomer when
Matt Damon renewed his vows on the hotel’s white-sand beach.
Gwyneth Paltrow was quick to follow in his tracks with a family
holiday there, and ever since, it’s become a celebrity magnet.
Formerly the Jalousie Plantation, Sugar Beach recently underwent
a three-year multi-million-dollar facelift to bring it up to date, and
its contemporary whitewashed villas overlooking Saint Lucia’s
Pitons are now the hottest rooms in the Caribbean. While the
hotel’s colonial style restaurants and topsy-turvy treehouse spa are
definitely something to write home about, it’s the trendy
communal areas of Sugar Beach that really sing, thanks to the
magnificent modern art on display – much of which is borrowed
from owner Roger Myers’ private collection. So hip it hurts.
Insider tip: Martha’s Tables, a simple roadside restaurant serving excellent jerk chicken, is walking distance from the gates of the hotel.
Sandy Lane, Barbados
This Caribbean institution is the stuff of legend. Built in
1961, everyone who’s anyone has waltzed through its lobby. With
a gorgeous pink-parasol-lined sandy beach and a paradise-like
backdrop, this is the Barbados we all know and love. Inside, the
décor is grand yet unpretentious, adored by guests young and old
- many of which return each year. These include royalty, heads of
state, the New York rich set and, famously, the talent-mogul
Simon Cowell. Expect fabulousness and flair alongside a deep–
running desire for guests to feel completely at ease for the
duration of their stay. Want a honeymoon bursting with history
and glamour? This is one Caribbean dame you can count on.
Insider tip: There’s a top-notch John Frieda salon within the spa so you can get rid of your beach hair before heading to supper. After all, you never know who might be there…
Four Seasons Resort, Bora Bora
Otherworldly and ultra-exclusive, this
honeymoon hideaway is enough to make you
want to get married several times over!
Overwater thatched bungalows are similar to
what you’d expect in the Maldives, but the
difference is, here in French Polynesia, there’s
scenery – and epic scenery at that. Think
primeval mountains, glittering lagoons and
volcanic underworlds. Of course, at the Four
Seasons, all this comes with a hefty dose of 21stcentury
splendour. Activities-wise, the pace is
slow. You can while away the hours trotting
along strings of walkways in the canopies of the
trees or take the plunge in crystal-clear lagoons.
Or if that’s too much effort, the sleek teak
interior of the spa awaits. With options like
these, living like a South Seas islander has never
been so good.
Insider tip: Rumour has it beach babe Jennifer Aniston has her heart set on the Four Seasons Bora Bora for her upcoming nuptials. Shhh.
Local tip: If you visit in July, you might catch Heiva, French Polynesia’s biggest & most colourful festival, held in Papeete.