As schools around the country reopen for the autumn term, kids arrive at the gates still giddy with memories of family escapes and endless summer days. But while they reluctantly swap sand castles for calculus, it may be the perfect time for you to plan a beach break of your own. Now schools are back in session, holidaying without the kids becomes a more attractive – and affordable – proposition.
Not only do holiday prices drop as tour operators traditionally launch sales in September, but availability increases too and resorts quieten down in the wake of departing families. Tempted by a tranquil couples’ holiday somewhere hot? Read on for our experts’ top-picks of the best grown-up getaways right now. Oh, and speaking of September sales, you’re just in time to catch our own; each hotel listed below also features in Kenwood Travel’s See The World Sale. We’ve done our homework, and it all adds up to great value.
Playground for grown-ups
Say you’re holidaying without the kids to most people, and one place will spring immediately to mind. That’s right; it wasn’t for nothing that Las Vegas gained its Sin City moniker. This desert outpost in Nevada state has long attracted big kids in search of extracurricular activities. From casinos to rooftop pool parties, risqué cabarets and novelty weddings – all washed down with a cocktail or two – the charms of Las Vegas holidays come with an 18 certificate.
And no hotel knows this better than The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas. Set in the heart of the Strip for convenient access to all the thrills and spills, this well-connected mega hotel has everything you and your grown-up gang could dream of. Classic casino; fountain-view terrace suites; dive-in movies; nightclubs & bars; live theatre shows; an indulgent spa; a see-and-be-seen pool district, and a total reinvention of in-hotel dining in the shape of 27 distinct and delicious restaurants.
WHAT THE EXPERTS SAY
“Once you’ve stayed at the Cosmo, you wouldn’t want to stay anywhere else in Vegas.”
James, USA specialist
The clue’s in the name
Children are, in the politest possible terms, not allowed at Couples Negril hotel in Jamaica. Nor, for that matter, are non-coupled-up guests. The resultant atmos’ at this smart, elegant resort is imbued with a tangible sense of romance and tranquillity, allowing guests to absorb the best of Jamaica’s beach life, food, culture and scenery in total peace. Completing a range of four oceanfront resorts that also boasts the leisurely Couples Swept Away, enticing Couples Sans Souci and stylish Couples Tower Isle, Couples Negril is known as the most intimate resort in the Couples’ Jamaica collection.
We were particularly smitten by the treehouse spa and island vibe that make this hotel feel exclusive and unique. So grab your soul mate and sidle up to Couples Negril for a loved-up Caribbean holiday without distractions. Best of all? Couples Negril is all-inclusive, so you can celebrate being together till your heart’s content.
WHAT THE EXPERTS SAY
“Despite its size, there’s a laid-back rustic feel and the beach is lovely”.
Aaron, Caribbean specialist
At Jardin Tropical Hotel in Tenerife, golf and gastronomy gear up to provide travelling couples with plenty of grown-up activities when holidaying without the kids. Alongside these sophisticated pursuits, find time for each other at this charming luxury hotel overlooking La Gomera Island. Swim in the saltwater pool, bathe in your heated pool and admire romantic sunsets from a private cabana.
Rustic-chic in design, with whitewashed Moorish architecture for an authentic feel, Jardin Tropical Hotel showcases the Canary Islands’ best assets, not least a daily average temperature of 23 degrees. And, as the real-life accommodation for blind dates on the fictional island of Fernando in ITV’s Take Me Out show, Jardin Tropical is well versed in the language of young love.
Thinking of booking a holiday to Thailand? Layana Resort & Spa in colourful Koh Lanta is an adults-only, five-star sanctuary with an award-winning spa and a reputation as a bit of a stomping ground for it-crowd couples beating a path to Asia’s most exclusive enclaves. And little wonder – Layana Resort & Spa’s sublime setting on the Andaman coast in western Thailand affords stunning sunset views, making every day romantic and memorable.
WHAT THE EXPERTS SAY
“It’s the perfect desert-island-style retreat; unspoilt, with an uncrowded, soft golden-sand beach.”
Maryna, Far East Product Manager
Swinging round the southern tip of Malaysia and across the Java Sea, Indonesia needs no introduction as a couples’ holiday destination. Wellness and spirituality are integral to its appeal, alongside otherworldly scenery and mouth-watering cuisine. Couples’ holidays to Indonesia invariably put Bali high on the wish list, and with good reason following its turn as a blockbusting movie backdrop. And you can eat, prey and love in style with a stay at the luxury all-pool-villa retreat of Banyan Tree Ungasan.
WHAT THE EXPERTS SAY
“Poised 230ft above the sea, this blissful retreat affords sublime ocean views; great for a couples’ holiday”.
Sandy, Asia specialist
Holidaying without the kids? The glittering emirates of the UAE have lots to offer travelling twosomes on holiday in the Middle East. In Dubai, why not try Waldorf Astoria Dubai Palm Jumeirah, a luxurious hotel with an exclusive Club Lounge and adults-only swimming pool. Or how about One&Only Royal Mirage? This luxe resort complex is made up of three properties (the Palace, Arabian Court and Residence & Spa) and sits in a great location that is perfect for exploring Dubai together.
Those looking to escape the high-rise energy of Dubai for a slower, lower-rise alternative should head to Abu Dhabi – the St. Regis hotel includes butler service in all rooms and you can even enjoy champagne sundowners on the helipad (supplement applies). Or discover private pool villas and a convenient-for-the-airport location at The Oberoi Beach Resort Al Zorah in the up-and-coming emirate of Ajman.