SEVEN HOTEL ROOMS TO MAKE YOU GO OOOH
Looking for a bed that’s worth a lot more than 40 winks? Let Sarah Jappy – author of Mr & Mrs Smith’s latest coffee-table tome, The World’s Sexiest Bedrooms – point you in the right direction. Here are seven swoon-inducingly seductive stays for your next romantic trip
Singita Lebombo Lodge, South Africa
Indulge your inner Simba at this secluded safari star, which puts a private patch of the wilderness at guests’ disposal. To maximise Big Five encounters, Singita in Kruger National Park has an A-team of guides and trackers. Back at the lodge there’s a spa, pool, wine studio, deli and espresso bar. Hire camera kit and edit your snaps at the photographic library, or visit trainee chefs at Singita’s community-driven culinary school. You could also perfect your archery skills by the N’wanetsi River.
Bedtime: Nest like eagles in the Lebombo Suite, which hovers above the river. Keep your eyes peeled for visiting locals: thirsty wildebeest and co.
Jardins Secrets, France
The walled paradise of Jardins Secrets is chock-full with olive trees, bougainvillea, bananas and giant palms, but the more-is-more interiors put up stiff competition to their neighbouring greenery. This rose-pink, 18th-century coach house in the Provençal city of Nimes is decadently adorned with canopied beds, shimmering silks and antique baths. There’s also a pretty breakfast room, heated outdoor pool and serene Source des Secrets spa.
Bedtime: Not for shrinking violets, papal-red Suite Edith is tucked away in a cloister, with lofty ceilings and a bed that drops handsome hints about sinfully good nights ahead.
Aman Venice, Italy
Rewind to the Renaissance at Aman Venice, the frescoed, gold-clad blaze of glory, which occupies a prime perch on the Grand Canal. This 16th-century palazzo was built for Bergamo nobility and was La Serenissima’s first building to get electric lights. (It’s also the city’s only palazzo with two gardens.) A more recent claim to fame comes in the photogenic form of George and Amal, who hosted their nuptial festivities here. If it’s good enough for the Clooneys…
Bedtime: Items worth losing sleep over: the Giovanni Battista Tiepolo-painted ceiling
in the Alcova Tiepolo Suite, whose lures include a grand salon and a doge-worthy bath tub.
Riad de Tarabel, Morocco
Behind a hefty door in Marrakech’s madcap Medina, Riad de Tarabel reveals itself with a series of surprises. First there’s that calm courtyard garden, with orange trees and orientalist murals. Then there’s the peaceful pool and vintage curios: peacock chairs and vases aglow with pearl-white roses. A rooftop terrace is your setting for breakfast, and further exploration uncovers snug little lounge areas, perfect for impromptu drinks or a quiet read. Rooms are ravishingly romantic, thanks to grand beds, claw-foot bathtubs and fragrant Ortigia products.
Bedtime: Diaphanous curtains, traditional tiles and antique furniture make an irresistible combo in the Junior Suite, which has an enticing open-plan bathroom.
Coqui Coqui Mérida Residence & Spa, Mexico
If you’ve ever wondered what the hotel love-child of an Argentine model and Italian designer would look like, Coqui Coqui Mérida is your answer. This one-suite wonder in mellow Mérida packs a lot into its storied quarters. In addition to the solo-but-regal room, there’s a cosy courtyard café, a perfumeria stocked with Coqui scents and candles, and a treasure-trove boutique abrim with honey, tisanes and chocolates. One-on-one yoga sessions can be arranged, as can in-room beauty treatments.
Bedtime: The rooftop L’Epicerie Suite woos with claw-foot bathtubs and a four-poster bed. Floor-to-ceiling glass doors open onto a plant-bedecked courtyard.
Cap Rocat, Spain
Militia meets romance at Cap Rocat, a former fortress on a clifftop by Mallorca’s Bay of Palma. Spanish starchitect Antonio Obrador transformed former shooting pads into beautiful bedrooms and recast the kitchen as a bucolic setting for wine tastings and private dining. Your cues to surrender include two restaurants, an infinity pool and the hotel’s private pocket of coastline. Cap Rocat’s peace-keeping credentials also include sourcing produce from local farms, and precision-planting flora and fauna to minimise watering.
Bedtime: Retreat to one of the Sentinels, former lookout stations. Survey the horizon from your terrace and private plunge pool, or draw up a peace treaty in the king-size bed.
Tap into Thai whimsy at Keemala in Phuket, whose sensational sleeping quarters – clay cottages, leafy tree-houses and vertiginous ‘birds’ nests’ – are inspired by mythical tribes. Keemala’s unconventionality extends beyond architectural wizardry: its restaurant champions produce from its ‘enchanted gardens’; private dining options include two-person hidey-holes; and one of the spa’s most popular treatments involves being tapped with wooden sticks. Also visit the pair of amiable resident water buffaloes, or get schooled at the culinary academy.
Bedtime: Keemala’s Bird’s Nest Pool Villas are a bonkers blend of woven wood, shiny steel and glittering glass, with eye-widening views of the rainforest, mountain and Andaman Sea.