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While it can be tempting to jet out of the country to a tropical destination or an exotic getaway, you don't actually have to go far to find a romantic honeymoon resort. With skiing, hiking, beach-side relaxation, and desert exploration, these resorts in the continental U.S. promise you and your partner the best ways to de-stress and bond after your wedding. Not only that, staying inside the States means that these trips will be lighter on your wallet as well.
Best for Active Travelers: Sundance Resort, Sundance, Utah
Founded by Robert Redford in 1969, this idyllic mountain resort is a haven for active travelers any time of year. In the summer, it’s all about hiking the Alpine trails, rafting the Provo river and, of course, taking advantage of Park City’s legendary golf. In the winter, the best cross-country trails and Park City ski resorts are just minutes away. If the two of you work up a sweat, you can always come back to the spa for a hot stone couple’s massage. As far as the rooms, this resort delivers some seriously luxurious mountain romance with stone fireplaces, wood-paneled walls, exposed beams, soaking tubs and Native American art. For dinner, the resort’s iconic Tree Room is one of the best, most award-winning fine dining experiences in Utah—the elk loin with fennel, pecans and golden raisins is an indulgent favorite. The two of you may never want to leave the mountains.
Best for Skiers: Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch, Colorado
There’s no shortage of luxurious ski resorts in Colorado, but this one takes the cake as far as service, privacy and variety of terrain. A prime slopeside location mid-mountain at Beaver Creek Resort means there’s an abundance of Colorado scenery everywhere you look—and you’re only steps from the lifts, making those early morning first tracks a breeze. There is even a ski concierge who will carefully manage and store all your ski equipment upon arrival, and have it warmed up and ready to go for you every morning, so there is absolutely zero schlepping or cold boots involved. After a full day on the slopes, indulge in some aprés-ski short rib sliders and regional craft beers at Buffalo’s gastropub before a soak in the adults-only outdoor hot tub. Make sure to pencil in a massage at the mountainside spa, which uses nature-inspired treatments to rejuvenate tired legs—the two of you will be more than ready to hit the slopes all over again the next day.
Best East Coast: The Wauwinet, Nantucket, Massachusetts
Is there anything more charming than a New England seaside escape? This iconic Nantucket resort is head-and-shoulders above the competition, thanks in large part to its secluded location on a quiet stretch of beach. Located nine miles east of town, it sits between two separate beaches, so there are plenty of options for long seaside walks and catching some sun. Each guest room is uniquely decorated with fresh flowers and personalized note cards, and the extraordinarily warm staff are here to make your Nantucket experience perfect. It’s pretty easy to hop on the Wauwinet’s shuttles for an evening in town, but be sure to dine at at least once at the resort’s iconic restaurant Topper’s—where you can indulge in award-winning cuisine and one of the best wine cellars in all of New England. The seasonal menu bursts with locally sourced seafood and produce, including Retsyo Oysters sourced from just 300 yards down the road.
Best Lowcountry: Montage Palmetto Bluff, Bluffton, South Carolina
Nestled amongst the marshes, streams and tidal forests along the May River in the beating heart of South Carolina’s iconic Lowcountry, this resort offers breathtakingly green landscapes and unparalleled Southern hospitality. Enjoy a mint julep on a Spanish moss-draped veranda while the sun sets, then head into dinner at Octagon for refined Lowcountry favorites like she-crab soup and housemate crab cakes. Sign up for a ride on the Grace, a 103-year-old yacht which offers tours through the hidden nooks and crannies of these waterways. Thanks to the resort’s partnership with Mercedes, it is possible to reserve a convertible for a self-guided joyride through winding Southern backroads and into nearby Savannah. There is also an Audubon-certified golf course, as well as miles and miles of nature paths for long, romantic walks through the woods. You can even set up a guided tour from the nearby Palmetto Bluff Conservancy to learn more about the region’s diverse wildlife populations—just keep an eye out for the gators.
Best Luxury Farm Experience: Blackberry Farm, Walland, Tennessee
This impossibly charming and luxurious inn sits on a 4,200-acre estate in the rolling foothills of Tennessee’s Smoky Mountains. Opt for one of the romantic one-bedroom cottage suites, which offer a little more privacy away from the action of the main guest house. During the day, there are plenty of activities to choose from, like swimming, horseback riding, hiking, tennis, and touring the property’s enormous wine cellar. Foodies will love it here—the fine dining at The Barn at Blackberry Farm offers inventive farm-to-table menus using ingredients harvested straight from the property. After dinner, grab a seat in front of Dogwood bar’s two fireplaces and order one of the signature cocktails (which also use farm-fresh ingredients). After a day of adventures on this farm, there’s no better way for the two of you to relax than by sharing stories in front of a crackling fire.
Best Guest Ranch: Triple Creek Ranch, Darby, Montana
If horseback riding, outdoor adventures, and long nights spent by the fireplace are up your alley, then consider a stay at this luxurious guest ranch just ninety minutes from Missoula. Located in the shadow of Trapper Peak, the highest mountain in the Bitterroot Mountain Range, this property features twenty-three individual cabins, each luxuriously fitted with original Western art and furniture, cozy blankets, wood-burning fireplaces, and outdoor hot tubs ideal for long nights spent under the stars. In the summer, sign up for complimentary fly-fishing clinics sponsored by Orvis, or take in the sweeping Montana scenery on a horseback ride. In the winter, activities include dogsledding, snowshoeing and cross-country ski touring. Each evening concludes with an elegant four-course meal prepared with local ingredients, like wagyu beef from nearby ranches. By the end of this trip, the two of you will feel like a couple of real cowboys.
Best Mini-Moon: Terranea, Rancho Palos Verdes, California
Located on the secluded edge of the Palos Verdes Peninsula just 16 miles south of LAX, this California beach resort is worlds away from the commotion of Los Angeles. It sits on top of a dramatic cliff, and since there isn’t a public beach below the hotel, it will feel like you have the entire place to yourself—all you see is ocean, Catalina Island, and perhaps a few dolphins and whales. It’s the ideal West Coast getaway if you’re short on time, or if you’re coming from further afield and have only a night or two to spend in LA before continuing on to Fiji or elsewhere in the South Pacific. There is an enormous 50,000 square foot spa and fitness center, which includes an oceanfront yoga studio to help you find some California zen. And with on-property activities including daily nature walks, falconry, and four heated swimming pools, the two of you are bound to have a transporting experience that feels worlds away.
Best Desert: Amangiri, Canyon Point, Utah
This desert oasis is an architectural marvel—its thirty-four suites blend seamlessly into the surrounding landscape, and the stunning outdoor pool even wraps around a massive boulder. Grand Canyon, Lake Powell and Monument Valley are all a short drive away, and the resort can also arrange Navajo-guided tours of slot canyons, hikes to numerous nearby viewpoints, as well as horseback rides and even hot air balloon rides over Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument. The restaurant offers sustainable, seasonal menus inspired by the rich culinary heritage of the Navajo and the American Southwest. And as with any Aman resort, wellness in an important component of your stay—the spa uses proprietary Aman Skincare products, there are two outdoor treatment terraces with extraordinary views, and you can even sign up for a sunrise yoga session atop a monolithic rock formation with 360-degree views over the desert. As far as finding peace in the desert’s ultimate lap of luxury, it doesn’t get better.
Best Spa: Enchantment Resort, Sedona, Arizona
New Age types, hippies, and alternative healing experts of all sorts have long held that the “energy vortexes” of Sedona are one of the most special places on earth to experience the healing power of nature—and the Enchantment Resort sits right in the middle of one. This resort’s world-class Mii amo spa is a standard setter for luxurious spas everywhere, offering everything from Ayurvedic yoga, to locally-sourced clay wraps, to tarot card readings, as well as every sort of body treatment you can imagine. Even if you don’t believe in the restorative powers of the energy vortex, it’s hard not to find some sense of relaxation here.
Best California: Auberge du Soleil, Rutherford, California
This Napa Valley favorite combines the best of California wine country with the best of Provençale hospitality. Nestled on a serene 33-acre hillside olive grove, this resort offers luxurious rooms, an award-winning restaurant, and one of the area’s best spas. During the day, make the most of Napa Valley with wine tastings, hikes, and adventures like hot-air ballooning. Come evening, indulge in a decadent wine-pairing dinner of seasonal French cuisine that makes the most of California produce, like sunchoke risotto with wild shrimp and hazelnut emulsion. Since every room comes with a view, a private terrace, a fireplace and a California king, you can also expect to find some of the most restful sleep in Napa Valley. Make sure to leave time for a massage or body treatment—the Auberge Spa uses grape seeds and locally-sourced flowers and herbs in their treatments, such as Rituel du Thé, which begins with an Earl Grey body mask followed by a soak in a luxurious jasmine and chamomile bath.