Valentine’s Day is around the corner, and if you haven’t had time to figure out the right romantic and surprising plans for your sweetheart, we’ve got you covered. Here’s a list of luxurious ideas guaranteed to please those with beating hearts and great taste.
Santa Barbara is one of the most romantic destinations in America. Overlooking the American Riviera, El Encanto, a Belmond Hotel, is the perfect place for a last-minute getaway. This February, the hotel’s new executive chef, Alex Bollinger, will make his culinary debut with a series of Valentine’s Day specials, with the help of pastry chef Too Luna. All three menus source ingredients from local farms, coastal cattle ranches, fisheries and the hotel’s very own chef's garden.
The “Lakeside Love Package” at Cedar Lakes Estate in Port Jervis, New York, promises a romantic, idyllic and therapeutic getaway for New Yorkers who don’t have time to travel far. Their “Lakeside Love Package” includes Champagne on arrival (and on demand), a magical private dinner under the stars, and a 60-minute couples massage in the pop-up spa. With luxury cottages, cozy cabins and nostalgic suites sprawled across 500 acres, the sweet, enchanting retreat combines minimalism with modern luxury in a setting with seriously special vibes.
Nestled in the heart of Uptown Dallas, the Hôtel Swexan is the perfect, fun-hearted escape this Valentine’s Day, with its beautiful design and vivacious Texan spirit. For an especially flirtatious vacation, the hotel's romance package includes two monogrammed Frette bathrobes, a dozen roses, complimentary Champagne, chocolate-covered strawberries and macarons upon arrival, full breakfasts in their delicious restaurants or through room service, and the hotel’s crown jewel: an expansive rooftop infinity pool, perched 20 floors high with 180-degree panoramic views of the electrifying city skyline.
Ring in Valentine’s Day in the most literal sense over at The Ritz-Carlton New York, NoMad, where they have partnered with luxury jeweler Ring Concierge to create the "Everlasting Love Package," available exclusively Feb. 9-14. The package includes a personalized in-room or in-store appointment with Ring Concierge to explore and select the perfect engagement ring or fine jewelry from its one-of-a-kind offerings. For couples ready to take the next step, the hotel will provide bespoke proposal coordination services to ensure that the moment is unforgettable. Also included are an abundance of flowers, spa treatments, caviar servings and dinner for two at chef Jose Andres’ The Bazaar.
If you want a phenomenal excuse to visit Portland, Maine, chef Colin Wyatt's (Eleven Madison Park, Daniel) seasonally focused, modern New England restaurant Twelve is offering a French-inspired four-course menu highlighting the romanticism of Lyon. Perched on Portland's waterfront in a historic landmark building that was carefully rebuilt brick by brick, Twelve is truly a love letter to Maine, and to you and your honey this month.
Shota Omakase, the Edomae-style sushi spot in Brooklyn led by veteran sushi chef Cheng Lin, has a luxurious and sophisticated 21-course odyssey for Valentine’s Day. It includes premium omakase with unique offerings like Kue-Nagasaki, wild longtooth grouper; Tennen Madai-Kyushu, wild red sea bream; Aka Mutsu-Kyoto, wild nodoguro or rosy seabass; Aka Kamasu-Nagasaki, wild Japanese barracuda; and Gin Garei-Hokkaido, wild marbled flounder. The chef sources from the Toyosu Market in Japan as well as locally.
This Valentine’s Day, Tyler Malek, head chef and co-founder of the beloved Portland-based Salt & Straw ice cream, is teaming up with acclaimed chefs Mary Attea and Camari Mick of the Michelin-starred Musket Room in New York City for an extraordinary tasting-menu experience, highlighting a frozen element in every course of the meal — available for one night only. Called “the Willy Wonka of ice cream,” Tyler is known for pushing the boundaries of creativity, and his seven-course menu will feature original ice cream dishes in both sweet and savory renditions. The Salt & Straw-Musket Room collaboration dinner will be at the Musket Room on Feb. 14.
Fancy a quick, spontaneous trip to Phoenix? Enjoy a gorgeous and delicious dinner at the newly opened, highly-praised Kembara from acclaimed chef Angelo Sosa. Kembara embraces the rich tapestry of Asian street food culture and offers incredible dishes to share, such as lamb spring rolls, chicken khao soi and chilled pho salad. Bonus: The restaurant has one of the largest Asian spirits lists in the country.
Visit the Baobab Collection, either on the Upper East Side or online, to experience this extraordinarily romantic and luxurious home and fragrance brand. Their limited-edition candle, Crazy Love, is hypnotic, with scents of mimosa sprigs, hawthorn and musk. Each flicker of its flame is a true embodiment of crazy, everlasting love and lust. If you call the boutique in advance, they’ll even engrave it.
For some "Sleepless In Seattle"-level goosebumps, check out this Empire For Two package presented by the Empire State Building and State Grill and Bar — where, for $10,000, a couple can participate in the “Sleepless in New York” package. This includes a private tour of the skyscraper’s 86th Floor Observatory, complete with Champagne. Then the couple will be escorted up an all-glass elevator to the Top Deck, where they will be provided a rarely seen look inside the tower’s mast and a glimpse of its world-famous tower lights, turned pink for Valentine’s Day. There awaits a private table and live musician. Chef Morgan Jarrett of the delicious State Grill and Bar, the landmark’s flagship restaurant on the building's ground level, will curate the, let’s say, highly elevated menu.
Romance is unequivocally alive and buzzing at The Portrait Bar at The Fifth Avenue Hotel, one of The Leading Hotels of the World, where the snacks are as enamoring as the cocktails and the only stress involves scoring an exclusive reservation. Try their Mapo District drink — a transformative mix of tokki soju, sesame-oil-washed Laphroaig single-malt whisky, cucumber, lemon and pineapple-vanilla cordial — and be sure to order the life-affirming Royal Ossetra caviar, because it’s Valentine’s Day.