Wallace J. Nichols, author of “Blue Mind: The Surprising Science That Shows How Being Near, In, On, or Under Water Can Make You Happier, Healthier, More Connected and Better at What You Do” comes to mind as I dream of places to send New Orleans Bride’s honeymooners. While we all love to splash in the sea, lounge beside a crystalline pool, and float atop waves, we may not realize why water recharges and restores us. Nichols’ book explores the science behind it: water slows our heart rate, clears our mind and awakens our spirt. “Water quiets all the noise, all the distractions and connects you to your own thoughts,” he says. Playing or resting near water eradicates stress and anxiety. It delivers hope. Isn’t that what we’d all want after the ordeal of wedding planning — let alone after enduring the COVID-19 pandemic. So, as Wallace would say, for your honeymoon aspirations, “I give you water.” Soon, you’ll be ready to immerse.
It’s a long way to the Maldives. That’s why you’ll appreciate that the Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi lies close to the airport, its own island paradise, just a boat ride from arrival. Whether you choose overwater bungalows, beach or reef side villas, you’ll enjoy your own private infinity pool to lure you to water play. Add in the dining gazebo and outdoor deck, and you’ll likely not leave your Maldivian home for any reason at all. To splurge, book the Stella Maris overwater villa, which you’ll access by traditional dhoni boat, an unforgettable transport.
Anguilla has 33 perfect beaches, but Maundays Bay will steal your heart, when you celebrate your love at Belmond Cap Juluca, one of the island nation’s most cherished hotels. Newly renovated, the resort now offers multi-story Beachfront Pool Villas, each anchored with a private swimming pool. Order up an in-villa reggae concert while you float for the ultimate party a deux.
Greece’s most festive island, legendarily home to Greek gods and beloved by sophisticates and artists, Mykonos never disappoints. Be among the first to stay at Kalesma, which opens in Spring 2021. Crowning a hilltop above Ornos Bay, less than two miles from buzzy Mykonos town, Kalesma’s 25 accommodations will be spread across five acres, enlivened by lush gardens. All suites will offer unobstructed vistas from private patios, as well as full-sized, bedazzlng personal heated pools.
The Mediterranean is synonymous with water and crowded beaches, brimming with revelers. But, who wants to socialize while in honeymoon mode? Instead, stake out a villa at La Réserve Ramatuelle, set clifftop, near France’s chic St. Tropez. Each of the intimate property’s peerless suites includes an exclusive pool and garden. Go for Villa No. 2 for its immense, 22,000 square-feet of green space, plus infinity pool and Jacuzzi overlooking tantalizing Cap Taillat.
On Koh Samui, delve into the grace and elegance of Thailand, a land of exotic mystery and beauty. Encompassing 17 acres of tropical gardens, Belmond Napasai replicates island architecture with standalone villas and suites overlooking Baan Tai beach. Your multi-level, oceanfront pool residence not only boasts a jaw dropping swimming hole, but a personal massage sala, as well.
No hotel epitomizes the magic of Marrakech like Royal Mansour , a pampering, all-riad palace, owned by the King of Morocco. Unique, an all-pink extravaganza, the retreat holds 54 private, three-story riads (guest house like accommodations) with rooftop terraces and private plunge pools. Choose the Grand Riad, for its stunning, two-terrace, rooftop spread, pool and views of the Atlas Mountains.
Go sloth spotting at Nayara Tented Camp, one of the first safari-style, luxury sanctums Central America. With views of the Arenal Volcano, each spacious tent dots a hillside among verdant rainforests, where you can gape at creatures like hummingbirds and macaw. To relax, soak in your volcano-heated, mineral-spring-fed, private pool, the showpiece of your terrace.