Precious time to yourself is essential, whether you have, or don’t have children. Grown up getaways provide moments of peace without the distractions and humdrum grind of everyday life getting in the way. Throw out the schedules, put life’s tribulations on pause and focus on the more important things in life: dressing up for dinner, chatting over cocktails and indulging in a well-deserved spa treatment!
Whether regrouping under that generous Caribbean sun as the UK hibernates, beelining for the Cote d’Azur for beach clubs with a green-juice twist, or reconnecting with nature’s slower rhythms on horseback along the wild prairies of Portugal, here’s our grown-up getaway inspiration for all the seasons…
With its shaded verandas and porous rooms with floor-to-ceiling shutters, inhaling the salty ocean air, Hermitage Bay in Antigua embodies all idylls around far-flung winter sun escapes. Occupying a calm, and positively lovely stretch of Antigua’s coastline, the hotel blends unapologetic hedonism (expect enormous roll top baths, yacht charter itineraries and long afternoons in the spa) with a cast adrift character, where suites are carved from dark woods and blend seamlessly into the sloping tropical gardens that meet the sea. Watersports are on tap here, for those willing to leave their balcony daybeds.
Birkenhead House, just two hours from Cape Town, also enjoys a privileged vantage point, though the cinematic views of Walker Bay and the Atlantic, flanked by coves on either side, are less serene – more prehistoric and invigorating. Inside, rooms dressed in elegant fabrics and European furniture spanning Venetian to pre-revolutionary France all twist towards the ocean views, offering a gentille ‘welcome home’ to the Whale watchers and coastal walkers.
Saint Tropez’ superyacht and Champagne-fuelled hedonism is well-documented, though its burgeoning wellness scene is not. Enter Lily of the Valley whose winning formula of health and fitness programmes, with a blast of sunshine and a dash of rosé has been drawing in those in need of a reboot, though not an austere Swiss clinic. Philipe Starck’s intriguing modernism threads into the surrounding pines and hilltop setting, which guests can snake down for seafood salads and Provençal rose at the hotel’s own beach club.
Foodie-first Thyme is in its element in spring, when the kitchen gardens are in full bloom, the surrounding Cotswoldian countryside slips on its emerald and violet coat. Couples can gorge on exquisite food crafted (cooked is an understatement) from their own produce or local farms’, explore the surrounding countryside on bikes or stew in the botanical spa, then later in front of a fire pit on the terrace.
Paros is one of those islands people get shifty about if you reveal its allure or the coordinates of its stylishly pared down hotels such as Cosme. Set along the beach on Paros’ north coast, this whitewashed sprawl in Naoussa plays to the aesthetes, with its clean contemporary lines and architectural play with the brilliant Aegean light. Having lathered thick Greek yoghurt in honey for breakfast, couples can move onto the spa menu, or explore a string of secret coves by caique, in the languorous style Greek summers are best known for.
The Dolomites may not spring to mind for a summer holiday, though with their spa prowess, glassy lakes and daisy-fresh air, they almost certainly should. With a Nordic flare that informs the architecture, the design, the food, and the itch to explore the surrounding wilderness, FORESTIS is Alpine minimalism at its best, where splendid simplicity sits front and centre. From its Finnish sauna to the photogenic indoor/outdoor swimming pool, the spa is a veritable wellness sanctuary with unpolluted air to inhale and unrelenting Dolomiti views to absorb any cortisol.
Meadows carpeted in wildflowers and ancient olive trees, cellars leaning on generations of wine-making nous, lines of horses pounding the wild herbs – São Lourenço do Barrocal is the Portuguese countryside at its most exquisite, particularly in autumn when temperatures are civil. Adults will relish its gently renovated scatter of terracotta tiled barns, its serene walled-garden pools and drawn-out lunches of roasted octopus and local reds, but most of all, its rural soul that has been preserved amid the spa treatments and cultish lamps.
A little further afield, Oman is a stellar autumnal choice for adventurous adults and nomadic-luxe camp, Hud Hud, cleverly bottles all the epic, spring-tingling beauty of Oman into one trip. The mobile luxury tented camp accompanies groups on epic bespoke journeys such as the Empty Quarter, past flocks of flamingos in the eastern salt flats or at the foot of the Qara or Al Hajar Mountains. The sort of tot-unfriendly adventures parents fetishise over and couples reminisce on for years to come.
Start planning your grown-up getaway now! We can’t emphasise enough the importance of booking early as all of our properties fill up fast! Trust us, it will be worth it. Contact Gemma or Jo on [email protected] , call +44 (0) 1306 264005 or