Believe us when we say that we've had our fair share of romantic escapades that have gone straight into our never-again memory bin. For one, Cupid isn't always the smartest little fellow. Don't count on the chubby cherub for a 100% hit-rate when he whips out his bow and arrow. As Valentine's Day draws near, we thought we'll leave you a handy little guide to see you through the season of romance. Don't book that getaway with your new beau until you've combed this checklist.
1. Leave the month-old Tinder date behind
The chemistry's great and you've already co-curated your own mix on Soundcloud. But if you've only swiped right on each other recently, hold off on the romantic escapade. In 36 hours, pet peeves (or worse still, Patrick Bateman tendencies) will be uncovered. Marooned on a super secluded luxury resort? There's no way to escape each other's company.
2. Make some effort to jazz things up
This one's really more for the couple that has been together since their teenage days. Don't pack the sweatpants. Bring the candles (Cire Trudon never disappoints). Put the smartphones on airplane mode. Be present. Stay curious. In short, make it a point to make your partner feel extra special. A little effort truly goes a long way.
3. Location and ambience matters
When it comes to romance, nothing sets the heart aflutter like a room primed for two. Jump on a budget flight if you have to, but leave enough dough to splurge on the room. Treat yourselves. After all, you'll be spending most of your time in it. Here are three rooms to consider, as recommended by the cupids from boutique hotel accomodation and booking service Mr & Mrs Smith:
Six Senses Ninh Van Bay, Nha Trang, Vietnam
Reachable only by boat, this spectacularly secluded collection of beautiful teakwood villas (each with a private pool) is dotted among the craggy boulders that make up this crescent-shaped bay at the jungle’s edge. Views from all are magnificent, but opt for one nearest the water and you can go from bed to sea in minutes. Although you’ll be completely stranded while you’re here, your butler will ensure that you won't go wanting for much.
Smith extra if you're booking through Mr & Mrs Smith: A 30-minute foot massage or body scrub for two people.
Alila Villas Soori, Bali, Indonesia
On the unspoilt shores of south-west Bali, Alila Villas Soori delivers architecturally accomplished minimalist villas and unbeatable views over the cerulean Indian Ocean. Nestled between verdant rice paddies and a shimmering black-sand beach, this is a pampering paradise – and every room comes with its own private pool, should the skinny-dipping mood take you.
Smith extra if you're booking through Mr & Mrs Smith: Early check-in and 3pm late check-out (subject to availability), plus a 90-minute Balinese massage for each guest.
Cocoa Island by Como, Maldives
Be lulled into a state of complete relaxation in one of these quietly elegant overwater villas (with all the comforts customary of a five-star property). The traditional-boathouse-style lodges sport soothing, all-white interiors and teak floors, from where you can while away your days scuba-diving or sinking into the laid-back luxury of the Como Shambhala spa.
Smith extra if you're booking through Mr & Mrs Smith: A Como Shambhala aromatherapy gift and daily fruit basket. Stay five nights or more and you’ll get a bottle of champagne on arrival, too; stay seven nights or more and sunset fishing will be included.
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