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Romantic vacations don’t have to break the bank – no really, they don’t have to. It’s still possible to find great deals on warm getaways during the winter, when snowbirds flock to the Sunshine State to escape the cold. If a romantic escape is what you seek, packages can offer more for your money. Of course, everyone’s idea of a romantic getaway is different – mine was a scuba certification mission with my husband to West Palm Beach in January (I scored two round-trip flights from Baltimore for $300!). But there are a few elements that make any winter escape romantic in everyone’s eyes. Privacy is key; a hot tub is a plus. There’s a better chance you’ll get both by booking at a venue that caters to couples. Here’s a look at three wintertime Florida romance packages worth looking into once dreary January comes:
Last week this blog examined underappreciated Orlando pursuits beyond the world of Disney. So it felt right to stay on that path and consider Florida beyond Orlando, looking at Sunshine State locales that may not be top-of-mind when planning a family vacation. One such place, 30 miles north of Jacksonville and over a bridge, is Amelia Island.
Thirteen miles of sandy shoreline, Amelia is an excellent choice for a family desperately in need of lowering its collective blood pressure. Migrating birds and nesting turtles have long known this, hiding out on the serene beaches. You can join them at the granddaddy of the island’s resorts, The Villas of Amelia Island Plantation. The exceptional golf and tennis facilities here at times overshadow one of the resort’s more joyful family activities, biking around the property.
At the Ritz Carlton Amelia Island, kids have the option of being tucked into bed by none other than a (friendly) pirate, a princess, and a real-life parrot. Around bedtime, Pirate Luis Aury, Princess Amelia, and Treasure, a three-year-old blue and gold macaw, will drop by a guest’s room bearing milk and cookies and a keepsake treasure chest full of goodies. The buccaneers will read aloud a pirate story and then be on their way. The service is available every night and costs $45 per child.
Come Valentine’s Day, spas are typically packed with couples getting side-by-side Swedish massages. But this year spas are playing with the concept – and making it even cozier – with side-by-side facials for couples, a valentine that says, Love me, love my clogged pores?
The customized Be My Valentine Side by Side Facial ($230 for two, 60 minutes, www.oasisdayspanyc.com), offered at the Oasis Spas in the New York City area, uses Rose Garden or Chocolate oils, and includes scalp and foot massages.
And body wraps for two that envelop you both – not for the commitment phobic or claustrophobic!
The Ritz-Carlton Spa, Amelia Island is now taking reservations for the Couples Chocolate and Pomegranate Wrap. This Valentine’s ritual ($650 for two, 2 ½ hours, www.ritzcarlton.com/ameliaisland) begins with a Honey Vanilla Milk Bath, then you’re both covered in chocolate “a natural aphrodisiac” and cocooned together in a thermal blanket for the Chocolate-Pomegranate Wrap. It concludes with a massage.
Would you give these treatments as a romantic gift to your Valentine or are they too close for comfort?
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