Resort Hotels

This luxury pick in Guatemala lies in the shadow of four volcanoes (two of them active -- for a truly hot honeymoon).

For this edition of Honeymoon Hotel of the Week, we’re heading to La Reunion Antigua Golf Resort in Guatemala. An outstanding luxury boutique located in the shadow of four volcanoes (two of them active — for a truly hot honeymoon), La Reunion is about 30 minutes from the colonial city of Antigua. Luxurious facilities and incredible volcano views are highlights here that the bride and groom are sure bask in during their stay. There’s also a fabulous infinity-edge pool and a Pete Dye-designed golf course, if couples feel like stretching their legs. Plus, the upscale restaurant and rooftop bar both have volcano views. The 26 rooms mix elegant decor with hand-woven textiles from local artisans to create comfortable, romantic spaces. Featuring private patios with infinity-edge swimming pools and fantastic bathrooms with soaking tubs and private outdoor showers, they are perfect for couples.

Honeymooners should consider booking the Romantic Package, which includes a bottle of sparkling wine and either a relaxing couples massage in your private suite or a piece of jewelry designed exclusively for La Reunion by Silvia Asturias. See more honeymoon-inspired photos of La Reunion after the jump »
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Who doesn’t like to get their drink on while taking a dip? It’s both the ultimate cool down and the possibly best way to spice up a relaxing vacation. We’re craving some refreshing fun in the sun, so we’ve picked our favorite places to liquor up — all from the cool comforts of hotels’ pools. So get your blender and piña colada mix ready — you’ll be thirsting for a fruity cocktail after browsing these awesome hotel pool bars.

The Watering Hole: Catalonia Bavaro Beach, All Inclusive — Punta Cana, Domincan Republic

Pool Bar at the Catalonia Bavaro Beach

Pool Bar at the Catalonia Bavaro Beach

You can almost imagine you’re on the set of the movie ”Cocktail” at Catalonia Bavaro Beach‘s swim-up bar, where the bartenders are quite entertaining. This laid back property comes with lots of awesome amenities, including a gorgeous beach, a golf course, and room balconies that feature private hammocks.
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We can’t help but get a little nostalgic when thinking of Disney World; after all, it’s where dreams come true! And whether you’re six or sixty, a pair of Mickey Mouse ears never looked so good as when you’re spinning in a teacup or roaming the theme park grounds, cotton candy in hand. However, one thing that decades of Disney experience can change is where you want to stay on the massive property. A resort with a pool teeming with tots, waterslides, and floaties? Great for families, not so fab for couples looking for a bit of romance — you catch our drift. So we’ve done some digging into Disney’s digs and have found the resorts that’ll best suit all types of Disney-bound Disney fanatics. Whether you’re planning a girls’ getaway or a family vacation, Disney World can be just the spot to relax, reconnect — and most importantly – have the time of your life. So without further adieu, first up: Disney for families.

 Disney Digs Best Suited for the Fam: Disney Animal Kingdom Lodge

Kids love the long, winding slide at the pool at the Disney Animal Kingdom Lodge.

Kids love the long, winding slide at the pool at the Disney Animal Kingdom Lodge.

Have some rambunctious kids on your hands? Twenty minutes at the playground will wear them out.

Have some rambunctious kids on your hands? Twenty minutes at the playground will wear them out.

Modeled after an East African safari lodge, with giraffes and gazelles that freely roam the grounds, the 762-room Animal Kingdom Lodge is one of Disney’s most unique resorts — and is arguably the best option for families looking to have highly-entertained tots. Though it’s a bit more removed from Epcot and the Magic Kingdom than other properties, the resort is adjacent to the Animal Kingdom theme park and features a massive pool, a playground, a great kids’ club, and numerous free activities — such as cookie decorating and African drumming — throughout the day. Older children can enjoy the on-site arcade.

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The infinity pool at Garza Blanca offers stunning views of Puerto Vallarta's rugged coastline.

From the polished stone finishes of the daylight-saturated atrium lobby to the gorgeous infinity pool with its rock formations and fountains, this 73-unit resort is a posh spot for contemporary oceanfront luxury. Standing on a secluded stretch of beach on Bahia Banderas’ south shore, which offers stunning views of the ocean and jungle-covered hills that surround it, the Garza Blanca features spacious guest rooms, an exquisite pool, a private beach, and a gourmet restaurant with an extensive wine cellar and tequila tasting room. Couples will also enjoy the Buddhist-inspired Hamara Spa — a great place to wind down before the big day. And if that isn’t quite enough, adventurous duos can explore the preserve, a large swath of land on the jungle-draped mountain behind the hotel. Plus, Garza Blanca’s history as a playground for Hollywood stars in the 1960s is sure to put newlyweds in a glamorous mindset.

Weddings at Garza Blanca are stunning, with couples having ample ceremony locations to choose from, including beachfront, poolside, or patio services. The resort has a variety of packages for couples to consider, and an on-site wedding coordinator is on-call to help make the day more memorable. Couples will generally receive a free suite upgrade, as well as a romantic turndown service and a bottle of sparkling wine on their wedding night. We’ll say “I do” to that! Check out more wedding-inspired photos of the Garaza Blanca Preserve here »

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The spa pool at the Bernardus Lodge is a perfect spot to relax on your honeymoon.

This 57-room rustic-luxe retreat in Carmel Valley sits in a lovely setting among rolling hills and vineyards. Details such as vaulted beamed ceilings, wood-burning fireplaces, and chic country-inspired decor help to create an atmosphere that is cozy and romantic. Rooms are especially perfect for newlyweds, featuring stone fireplaces, feather beds, plush white bedding, and patios or decks with private whirlpools. Large bathrooms are another delight, with walk-in showers and two-person soaking tubs. There are several restaurants here — including the famous Marinus restaurant with its chef’s table where diners can watch the chef cook (Julia Child is among the many famous culinary gurus to savor the experience). Additional appealing amenities include an outdoor pool, pool bar, and inviting spa where wine-based treatments are available.

Overall, the Bernardus is a sophisticated, romantic spot in Carmel Valley just waiting for couples to celebrate their nuptials. The lodge ups the ante, however, with the Vineyard Romance Package. Couples are greeted with chocolate, champagne, and a set of monogrammed robes before enjoying a candlelit dinner in their room and having a bath drawn for them by the resident Bath Butler. A couples treatment is also arranged at the spa, as is a VIP tasting at the Bernardus Winery. Cheers to that — and to you! Check out more honeymoon-inspired photos of the Bernardus Lodge here »  Read More »

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Set off into the sunset at the Marriott Wailea Resort in Maui.

Situated on a (large) rock between two beaches, the 22-acre, 546-room Wailea Marriott has panoramic ocean views and a serene vibe that’s often missing from some of Maui’s more crowded, neighboring resorts. Renovated in 2008, the Marriott’s spiffy rooms, gorgeous adult-only infinity pool, reputable spa, and popular restaurant make it the best mid-range option in ritzy Wailea, especially for newlyweds looking for indulgent romance without busting their wedding budget. The Marriott has consistently been considered one of Oyster’s best Hawaiian hotels for a destination wedding and honeymoon thanks to its gorgeous setting, great amenities, and reasonable prices.

Honeymooners might consider booking the hotel’s “Experience Romance — Wailea Style” package during their stay. The package offers couples a stay in an oceanfront room with breakfast-in-bed each morning, and champagne and chocolate covered-strawberries upon arrival. Check out more honeymoon-inspired photos of the Marriott Wailea Resort here »

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The Wedding Pavilion at Ladera overlooks St. Lucia's awe-inspiring landscapes.

This unique luxury resort in St. Lucia provides a gorgeous, one-of-a-kind setting for an exchanging of “I dos.” The Ladera is made up of 32 one- and two-bedroom villas, each carefully carved into the surrounding hillside overlooking the island’s iconic twin Pitons. These villas – which have missing fourth walls, and in most cases, private plunge pools — are a main draw, as are the spectacular views and lush grounds. The resort also features some fabulous amenities, such as an infinity lagoon pool, a gorgeous open-air restaurant and bar, an (albeit tiny) open-air fitness center, and a lovely spa with black water soaking baths, perfect for calming any nerves before the big day. All of this comes at a price, but the Ladera nonetheless offers significantly cheaper (by about half) rates than the ultra-glam Jade Mountain. Ladera is also within close range of several of the island’s top tourist attractions: Notable cocoa plantations are within walking distance, the pristine white sands of Jalousie beach are a short drive away, and popular spots like the volcano and Tet-Paul nature trails are nearby — so you and your guests won’t lack for things to do before and after the wedding.

The resort boasts that weddings at Ladera are “perfect in every way” — and it’s pretty hard to dispute that claim. The Wedding Pavilion, seen here, overlooks the world heritage Piton Mountains, St. Lucia’s lush rain forests, and the Caribbean Sea 1,000 feet below. Ceremonies are as memorable as the setting, and are  arranged quite easily thanks to an on-site wedding specialist. There are three wedding packages couples can choose from, the most basic of which includes the handling of legal documents, securing a wedding officiant, and reserving the pavilion. The next tier includes the floral wedding arch, champagne and canapes, and a wedding cake, while the most extravagant package also includes floral arrangements, music (steel drums or a guitarist), a Romantic Bliss Massage for two, a private candlelight dinner for two with one bottle of Ladera wine, and a sunset cruise. For intimate, extravagant weddings — or elopements (sometimes you just gotta do it your way!) — there is no place more unique or stunning. Check out more wedding-inspired photos of the Ladera Resort here »  Read More »

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Built in picturesque Deer Valley, the hotel never lacks for stunning mountain views.

The Montage Deer Valley in Park City is a large, luxurious resort with a ski-in/ski-out location that slope-loving couples and guests will enjoy. The rooms feel like upscale apartments, with warm wooden accents, chandeliers, fireplaces, and marble bathrooms complete with heated floors, soaking tubs, and separate showers. The hotel has a massive spa (all guests have free access to its pool, steam rooms, and saunas — perfect for some pre-wedding jitters-calming) and several restaurants (one with a bowling alley). But pricey hotels have pricey extras, and everything from spa treatments to kids’ club activities to Wi-Fi is expensive. Couples should definitely discuss their budget — and that of their guests — when considering this luxe property.

But after seeing what a wedding in Park City entails, the bride and groom will have a difficult time passing up on the experience. On-site wedding coordinators will walk brides (and grooms)-to-be through the entire planning process and are dedicated to ensuring a personalized experience. Ceremony and reception location options include two ballrooms, a sprawling lawn (open seasonally), and an apres ski terrace overlooking the forested valley. Your event planners can also assist with rehearsal dinners, bridal showers, and wedding brunches, as well as with selecting spa treatments, florists, photographers, and stylists. Your guests will also be well taken care of, with coordinators arranging room blocks, mountain itineraries, and Park City excursions for every age group. They’ll also throw in a ring bearer — of the four legged variety — for those couples in need of one. Check out more wedding-inspired photos of the Montage Deer Valley here »

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The Waterside Chapel at the Inn at Palmetto Bluff in Bluffton, South Carolina is a charming place to say "I do."

This “inn” — which is really more akin to a sprawling estate – in Carolina Lowcountry is surrounded by natural beauty: rivers, misty marshes, old oaks draped with wispy Spanish moss, and salty breezes characterize this gorgeous property. The main building at the Inn at Palmetto Bluff (an Auberge resort) looks like a classic Southern mansion, and the 50 Cottages and Cottage Suites are simultaneously homey and utterly luxurious, with working fireplaces, screen porches, and beautiful bathrooms. Guests can enjoy a range of recreational facilities, including golf, bicycling, tennis, croquet, kayaking, and swimming (in the two pools), and the luxury spa is highly acclaimed.

Many couples choose to get married at the inn, particularly those who are drawn to its Southern charm. Plus, the sunny South Carolina weather makes it a popular wedding destination year round (Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds said their “I dos” just a couple of weeks ago in Charleston). The Waterside Chapel, seen here, offers expansive views of the May River and moss-laden Spanish oaks. (Take a look inside the chapel, here.) After the ceremony, the quaint Village Square — nestled under massive branches of ancient oak trees — is an attractive spot for a champagne toast with guests. Couples can choose to either move the party inside — via horse and buggy, if so desired — to the elegant ballroom and oversized verandas of the River House, or continue the celebration outside under a starry Southern sky. First class service (including the help of an on-site wedding planner) and gourmet catering round out this luxurious wedding experience. Check out more wedding-inspired photos of the Inn at Palmetto Bluff here » Read More »

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The organic garden at Belize's Turtle Inn is just one of the resort's many eco-practices.

Belize is best known for its lush rain forests, Mayan ruins, and gorgeous barrier reef — one of the world’s best sites for snorkeling and scuba diving. As so much of the country’s tourism is dependent on its breathtaking natural surroundings, a determined commitment to eco-friendly practices can be found in most hoteliers throughout the country, and Oyster has stayed in everything from compact eco-lodges to rustic-luxe hideaways during our visits to this small Central American country. Check out photos of our favorite eco-friendly stays — and find out what exactly makes them green — in this slideshow:

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