The Mermaid & The Alligator in Key West doesn’t allow anyone under 16. (All photos: Courtesy Oyster.com)
By Jane Reynolds
Many see summer as the perfect time to get away with the family: The kids are out of school, and with “summer Fridays” and several long holiday weekends, that family vacation you keep meaning to take can actually become a reality. But we gotta say, there’s something to be said for leaving the kids at home and planning a summer escape a deux.
We promise there’s still plenty of time for family bonding (like, you’re basically responsible for your spawn till they’re 18), and after all, it’s important to get away with your significant other for some alone time to keep that spark alive. So here we bring you the 10 best hotels in the U.S. for a romantic couple’s trip, which are either adults only or don’t allow small children..
The Mermaid & The Alligator, Florida Keys
The Mermaid & The Alligator is a nine-room, upscale bed and breakfast housed inside a historic Victorian estate. The owners have taken great care to renovate the home with bold and vibrant decor and updated furnishings. Located on Truman Street in Key West, three blocks from popular Duval Street, the home is a quiet and peaceful area – thanks in large part to its “no children under 16” policy – that is steps from the heart of the entertainment district. There is a lush interior garden with hammock, lounge chairs, and plunge pool.
The Wauwinet, Nantucket, Massachusetts
Guests come to Natucket to get away from it all – and with a remote location away from downtown, The Wauwinet is about as away from it as you can get. The charming New England property is surrounded by both the bay and the ocean, and some (bayside) guest rooms offer amazing sunsets. One of the island’s most loved restaurants is here, and since children under 12 are not allowed at the property, you can be sure to enjoy a romantic meal.
Post Ranch Inn, Big Sur
The 39-room, adults-only Post Ranch Inn is one of the most beautiful hotels in the United States – if not the entire world – and offers a romantic, intimate stay amid gorgeous natural surroundings. The hotel is built into the cliffs of Big Sur, and the organic architecture is breathtaking, seeming to grow out of the ground beside the hotel’s surrounding redwoods. The spacious, eco-sensitive rooms have ocean or mountain views (that are sometimes obstructed by the pervasive fog that the area is known for) and many feature floor-to-ceiling windows to better show them off. Rooms also have wood-burning fireplaces, radiant floor heating, outdoor showers or hot tubs, and private decks.
Korakia Pensione, Palm Springs
Korakia Pensione is a striking hotel. Modeled after a Mediterranean pensione, it looks like something out of Greece or Morocco – Forbes named it one of the sexiest hotels in America (so it’s no surprise that children under 13 are not allowed). The two pools and many outdoor spaces, including fire pits, fountains, and stone paths, are all beautiful and unexpected. And the hotel plays old movies every night outside on the terrace. The rooms are named, not numbered, and each is slightly different, but all have an old-world feel.
Captain Jefferds Inn, Kennebunkport, Maine
This historic sea captain’s home is now a charming, 15-room inn full of indulgent freebies and modern touches. It’s in a quiet, residential area of Kennebunkport, within walking distance of the shops and restaurants downtown. Cozy rooms vary in size, decor, and amenities – some have fireplaces, soaking tubs, and private entrances – while all include modern perks such as free Wi-Fi, iPod docks, and flat-screen TVs. Free breakfasts here are a gourmet, sit-down affair, and more yummy snacks are available throughout the day, including at afternoon tea. Some couples seeking romance complain about the communal breakfast table, but with a no-kids-under-10 policy, the inn maintains an intimate and peaceful atmosphere.
The Plantation Inn, Maui
One of Maui’s most intimate properties, with 19 mostly courtyard-facing rooms and suites, a small pool, free breakfast from the top-notch Gerard’s Restaurant, and a small staff that coddles guests, the Plantation Inn is a rare and lovely option in Lahaina. The inn asks that families only bring children who are 13 or older to maintain the tranquil vibe.
Travaasa Austin, Texas
The adults-only Travaasa Austin is set on its own nature preserve on a hilltop amid forested canyons, 20 miles west of downtown Austin. Its 72 rooms are housed in seven buildings built on three different levels, with correspondingly different views from their balconies. Hiking trails, an infinity-edge pool enclosed by a wooden deck, a luxurious spa, and a restaurant with panoramic views are just some of the amenities providing inspiration and relaxation for visitors. It’s far from the city’s downtown core, but that’s probably why most guests are looking to stay here.
Little Palm Island Resort & Spa, Florida Keys
Reachable only by boat or seaplane, Little Palm Island Resort & Spa is located on a private island where wild key deer roam. It includes 30 luxurious suites, many with private oceanfront verandas. A favorite getaway for celebrities, it provides a secluded place to unplug from the world (use of technology is discouraged) and experience a romantic vacation in a lush, tropical environment. Adding to the romantic ambiance? There are no children under 16.
Rabbit Hill Inn, Vermont
The 19-room Rabbit Hill Inn combines the peaceful atmosphere of Northern Vermont with an elegant B&B experience catering towards couples (there is a “no-children-under-14” policy). The clean, spacious rooms are more “L.L. Bean cozy” than “Manhattan chic,” and each is individually decorated. Outstanding features in some of the rooms include wood-burning fireplaces and soaking tubs for two. This Vermont inn offers a lovely restaurant with free breakfast, personalized service, and an escape from technology – rooms are TV-free and cell phones have limited service.
The Veranda House, Nantucket, Massachusetts
Nantucket tends to evoke an image of classic New England decor and luxury. The 18-room Veranda House offers luxury, but in a chic and modern setting that sets it apart from the many historic inns and hotels on the island. You’ll pay a good amount for these trendy rooms, but high rates come standard in the area. It’s a great choice for young adults or couples, with a central downtown location and no children under 10 allowed.
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