Seville, Spain is the epicenter of Andalusian history. Located near the banks of the Guadalquivir River, stands Hotel Alfonso XIII—built in the early 1900s to house heads of state coming to the 1929 Iberian- American Exhibition. The hotel has all of the modern luxuries desired by today’s honeymoon clientele, while preserving the European design aesthetic with a Moorish influence. The suites boast high ceilings and silk-covered walls that exude style, an element not so prevalent in today’s hotels. Stroll outside and you are in the heart of Seville’s historical district. Visit El Arenal for an authentic look at flamenco dancing—a must—or drive to Jerez de la Frontera, known for its production of Sherry, and have lunch in one of the many wine cellars.
Hotel Marqués de Riscal, a boutique-style hotel located in Elciego—or city of wine—in the Rioja region of Spain, was designed by renowned architect Frank O. Gehry who also designed the Guggenheim in Balboa. Complete with 43 guest rooms and surrounded by vineyards, this idyllic setting offers a beautiful contrast between its modern, architectural lines and the surrounding, unfolding landscape. The interior décor follows suit with Ghery’s dramatic style creating a warm and inviting ambiance. Dine in one the hotel’s five restaurants or lounges or simply luxuriate in the Caudalie Vinotherapie Spa where all of the products are made with grape extract and mineral water.
Near the French border and high in the Pyrenees is La Pleta Hotel and Spa. This newly-built, chalet-style property has expansive views that can be seen from the warm and inviting rooms, each equipped with radiant-heat flooring for those cool evenings. Have a romantic dinner at Del Gel al Foc, meaning from ice to fire in Catalan, for a sampling of local Catalan cuisine. Check out one of the many boutique-style sport shops or local museums. Feeling adventurous? Take a helicopter ride or go rafting and then relax at the spa with a couples massage.
Spain is famous for its beaches. Sitting on a beautiful beach in Platja de Fenals lies the Alva Park Resort and Spa, just up the coast from Barcelona. The all-suite property offers luxury at its finest: Bang & Olufsen electronics, Egyptian-cotton sheets, no less than eight pillows per bed—your choice of type—and most rooms have picturesque sea views. Spend the day wandering Costa Brava and then escape to the resort’s Molton Brown Spa for the Pinda Thai Massage with the ritual use of flowers. Or float your worries away during an Indian Princess Bath, a warm salt-water pool with underwater music. The Alva Park was made to be a honeymoon wonderland and is a destination unto itself.
Just a thirty minute flight from Barcelona, on the island of Mallorca, is Castillo Hotel Son Vida. This Luxury Collection property was completely redesigned by Fernando Truyols & Despuig
in the early 1900s as a gift to his wife, Magdalena Villalonga. The redesign of the 16th-century estate left it with the castle facade and tower. Each of the rooms has a view of the surrounding valleys and gardens where almond trees boast their white and pink flowering buds in the spring. Most suites have terraces or balconies perfect for breakfast or that special honeymoon dinner. Wander the streets of Palma, shop in one of the many markets or try visiting a neighboring village.
Spain offers every kind of setting for a passionate and magical honeymoon, whether you are looking for mountains, beaches, wineries or an island setting. That special location is awaiting your arrival.
> Written by Kleon Howe