England

Romantic hotels in the UK for a loved-up couples weekend

Candlelit dinners, views to die for, historical mysteries and luxuriously furnished bedrooms can all help reignite the passion.

The last time my husband and I were lucky enough to get away for a few nights without our two little boys, we laughed…lots. We even held hands and chatted about stuff other than our children. And while there was an element of guilt associated with enjoying some much-needed alone time, those thoughts were soon pushed aside after the realisation that our mini-moon was a rare opportunity to inject some romance back into our relationship.

Of course, the location of any romantic break also plays a key part. While we love being close to the sea, there are also many other elements that I think combine to make the perfect romantic break. Here are some of the dreamiest, most romantic hotels that I’ve picked from all over the UK, which will have you dialling the relatives for a spot of childminding…

Romantic hotels in the UK close to water

For me, there’s something ultimately relaxing being near water – whether it’s a lake, the sea or river. Perhaps it’s the fresh air, the bracing winds, or the spectacular views; but as soon as I hear the crashing of waves or the gentle lapping of water, I’m already de-stressing and my mood is instantly lifted.

A romantic getaway to the Lake District

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You cannot fail to be impressed by the sheer scale and breathtaking landscapes that greet you in the Lake District. It’s not a UNESCO Heritage Site for no reason and nestled near the shores of Lake Windermere is a truly exceptional hotel.

Set in a 20-acre estate The Gilpin Hotel and Lakehouse exudes timeless elegance and has all the hallmarks of offering a truly private, romantic experience for two. After a lie-in in your king-size bed, pad over to the outdoor deck and take a dip in your own hot tub and enjoy the views over the Lake District Moors – then afterwards take a pew in your own private sauna.

After relaxing in the morning you can go on a boat tour across the lake, returning for a delectable afternoon tea and champagne, before spending the afternoon exploring the grounds. Guests will then have the option to dine Gilpin’s one-Michelin starred restaurant HRiSHi which serves classic modern cuisine with a twist…

Gilpin Hotel & Lake House

Top rated
9.2 Excellent (332 reviews)
Excellent Cleanliness 9.6 / 10
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A classic seaside romantic break in Brighton

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Sometimes it’s all about the location and Drakes Hotel, which is located right on the seafront in Brighton, not only offers up uninterrupted views of the English Channel but is right in the centre of the action, if you so wished to leave the confines of your bespoke designed chamber.

However, before venturing out into the seaside resort, guests might want to first take a long soak in the free-standing bath overlooking the sea and make use of The White Company products available. For those looking for extra romance – Drakes will happily have the bath ready for you adorned in fresh rose petals and chilled champagne on standby before your arrival.

Drakes Hotel

Top rated
Brighton, 2.5 km to Booth Museum of Natural History
8.8 Excellent (697 reviews)
Excellent Service 9.3 / 10
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Romantic weekend breaks in the UK's big smoke

Just because you’re in the city, doesn’t mean there isn’t an abundance of romantic opportunities to be had. I love strolling the streets and immersing myself in the big smoke – getting lost and discovering little tucked-away bars and restaurants.

And if you’re in the capital, like my hometown of London, taking in the iconic skyline at night, as well as other famous landmarks is an experience in itself. And what better way to explore London than staying in a Georgian Townhouse… Meanwhile, Manchester, where my husband is from, is also a city we love to stay in – vibrant, buzzy and full of charm.

Cocktails for two during a romantic stay in London

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If the award-winning grandiose cocktail lounge wasn’t enough to entice couples to the Georgian delights of The Zetter Townhouse in London, then perhaps their own private bath on top of the roof will seal the deal in the hotel’s opulent Lear’s Loft.

Luxurious Egyptian cotton and fluffy white robes come as standard, but don’t expect the interiors to be anything but eclectic and decadent. Modelled on Sir John Soane’s Museum nearby in Holborn, guests will be able to peruse artwork and curiosities while sipping drinks in Seymour’s Parlour and partake, too, in some afternoon tea. After a long day pounding the pavements exploring the city, why not order in room service and share some charcuterie and a bottle of red…

King Street Townhouse

Top rated
Manchester, 7.9 km to Airkix
9.2 Excellent (163 reviews)
Excellent Cleanliness 9.5 / 10
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A romantic weekend away in Manchester

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Housed in a striking Italian Rennaissance building in Manchester’s Conservation Area, The King Street Townhouse is city chic meets homely vibe. The King Street Townhouse is grand but on a small scale, and there is a real sense of calm. Guests who opt for the Luxe J will have the added romance of a roll-top bath in the bedroom, with outstanding vistas across the city.

Manchester’s plethora of dining and drink options are right on the doorstep, but there’s no need to leave – after all, why not grab a cocktail or three in the heated South Side Terrace bar or take a romantic dip in the hotel’s infinity spa pool located on the seventh floor?

King Street Townhouse

Top rated
Manchester, 7.9 km to Airkix
9.2 Excellent (163 reviews)
Excellent Cleanliness 9.5 / 10
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Romantic holidays in the UK with a touch of history

There’s something quite romantic about stepping back in time. I love visiting historical buildings because they all have so many stories to tell, hidden in the very foundations. Secret gardens, old manor houses and majestic castles bathed in mystery, allow for plenty of discovery or shared conjecture about what might have been.

We always find it’s a great talking point over dinner. Tales of passion, love and honour, and a timeless ambience mean historical hotels offer, like the ones below, couples a truly peaceful break…

A romantic UK break along the River Thames

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As guests approach the magnificent Cliveden House in Taplow, Berkshire, they will be left in doubt that the hotel, set on the banks of the River Thames and overlooking the stunning 19th-century Parterre Gardens, is a special spot to enjoy a romantic break.

Steeped in history, Cliveden has been owned by royalty, and it’s evident in not only the surroundings but the grand interiors. The emphasis in the 38 rooms and suites is that of elegance and comfort – handmade beds and luxurious furnishings.

After wandering the extensive National Trust grounds and gardens, guests can relax and take a soak in their own private hot tub, before dressing for dinner and making their way to the award-winning André Garrett restaurant to enjoy a tasting menu with culinary delights such as loin of locally stalked wild roe deer.

Cliveden House

Top rated
9.0 Excellent (340 reviews)
Excellent Cleanliness 9 / 10
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A couple's weekend in Bath

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One of the most recognisable areas of Bath is John Wood the Younger ’s spectacular curved terrace of 30 houses, overlooking the Lawn, with views to the city beyond.

The Royal Crescent Hotel & Spa can be found in the middle – and guests looking for impeccable service and a warm welcome will find it in spades at this luxurious five-star getaway. With traditional features, such as open fires and resplendent sitting rooms, there is much to explore in the hotel’s tranquil and romantic gardens.

Guests can also enjoy the extensive spa area – from floating in the relaxation pool to getting a massage treatment, no visit is complete without a glass of fizz in the Tattinger Spa Garden to end the experience. Meanwhile, the historic delights of Bath itself are close by, just a pleasant five-minute stroll to the centre.

The Royal Crescent Hotel & Spa

Top rated
Bath, 0.9 km to Bath Abbey
9.2 Excellent (1222 reviews)
Excellent Cleanliness 9.5 / 10
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A regal romance with a castle stay

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What says romance more than a castle – and a 19th-century one at that. Surrounded by lush evergreen trees, flanked by mountains behind, and the sparkling loch in front, this fairytale setting of Inverlochy Castle will be enough to melt even the coldest of hearts.

Wrap up and stroll hand in hand and marvel at the views of Ben Nevis, which Queen Victoria once wrote: “I never saw a lovelier or more romantic spot.” Inverlochy Castle is rich in history, and with only 17 rooms and suites, guests will truly feel like the lords and ladies of their own manor. Individually designed, the accommodation is traditional yet inviting with roll-top baths and oodles of space to kick back and enjoy the ambience.

Meanwhile, foodies will be in for an extravagant treat as the legendary pairing of father and son team Albert and Michel Roux Jnr’s eponymous dining room serves up sublime dishes such as Whisky Barrel Smoked Loch Fyne Salmon.

Inverlochy Castle Hotel

Top rated
Fort William, 5.9 km to Ben Nevis
9.1 Excellent (331 reviews)
Excellent Cleanliness 9.4 / 10
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Ting Dalton is a freelance journalist who has a real passion for travel. Her blog, My Travel Monkey, recently won Best Travel Blog in the Flight Centre UK Awards 2018 and seeks to dispel the myth that travelling around the globe should be put on a hiatus if you have young kids. Ting’s sons have been on several marvellous adventures including Iceland, South Africa and Thailand – as well as plenty of trips around the UK.