Honeymoon destinations in Europe for romance on a grand scale

For your first getaway as a married couple, you deserve romance on a grand scale so we've rounded up the best hotels for your honeymoon in Europe.

Honeymoons are a rite of passage for newly married couples. Why? Well, once the last slice of cake has been eaten, the confetti swept away and all the guests have all left, not only is there the elation of having celebrated such a momentous occasion, but Mr and Mrs can now head off into the sunset to not only relax – wedding planning can be stressful – but to digest and dissect their big day.

Which is why I remember my honeymoon in Italy with such fondness. We talked about our wedding day constantly and told each other stories and tidbits, as well as luxuriating in a beautiful romantic hotel. Enjoying our new-found status and acting like we were in the first flushes of love. It’s such a romantic European destination.

But then, there are so many honeymoon locations in Europe that offer up gorgeous settings for newlywed couples to amble hand in hand, to gaze at one another over candlelit dinners, to sigh at breathtaking views and, of course, to unwind in decadent hotel rooms. And here are just some of the ultimate romantic cities in Europe – from old-world opulence to modern-day glamour, these European honeymoon ideas will impress.

Experience timeless elegance in romantic Italy

One of the most romantic cities in Europe is undoubtedly Venice. Meander along the canals and over intricate bridges, marvel at the Venetian architecture and glide down the waterways in a gondola. Escape the crowds and soak in the atmosphere at the Belmond Hotel Cipriani, the very essence of elegance and perfection. Not only does the hotel have a prime position overlooking the lagoon towards St Mark’s Square, but its location offers a serene and calming respite from the epicentre, which is only a short stroll away.

As well as the first-class service, all rooms have a private balcony and feature divine furnishings and marble bathrooms. After wandering the breathtaking gardens, and shopping in the hotel’s boutiques, sip a cool drink poolside while admiring the views and then head to the Casanova spa for a couple’s massage. As night draws in, sit down for dinner at Oro, where you can dine on bigoli and sea truffles underneath Murano chandeliers and hear the lapping of the water nearby.

Hotel Cipriani, A Belmond Hotel, Venice

Top rated
9.7 Excellent (241 reviews)

L’amour and passion on a luxury honeymoon in Paris

Paris to romance is like a fine wine paired with artisan cheese – they are made for one another. And for those couples looking to start their European honeymoon in wedded bliss, the Le Roch Hotel & Spa is the perfect boutique accommodation. Turn up the passion-o-meter with your very own private in-room hammams, or splash around in the hotel’s candlelit black lava rock pool before heading to the sophisticated spa for a signature Codage treatment including a rub down and scrub.

The relaxed living spaces combined with a contemporary edge, think arty books and comfy sofas, give ample opportunity to chill out after exploring the city – the Louvre and Opéra are nearby. A vast array of drinks (chosen by their region) can be sipped at Le Roch’s bar or outdoor terrace. And if you don’t fancy dining out, then cosy up on velvet banquettes and let Executive Chef, Rémy Bérerd wow you with his delectable dishes including roasted pigeon and langoustines.

Le Roch Hotel & Spa

Top rated
9.2 Excellent (316 reviews)

Marvel at Vienna’s majestic views from a central location

The Steigenberger Hotel Herrenhof exudes luxury on a grand scale. Its historic façade hides an extensive interior that is touched by aubergine hues and a mixture of both modern design and interpretations of different styles from Baroque to Art Déco. Your Vienna honeymoon can begin by relaxing on your own private verandah in the Terrace Suite, while you drink in the magnificent panoramic view over the rooftops of Vienna.

It is the Steigenberger’s location that makes it all the more special. In the heart of the city, and just a stone’s throw from the beautiful Hofburg Palace, honeymooners can easily explore on foot – catch the opera, take a ride on one of oldest Ferris wheels in the world, Reisenrad, and just get lost in Vienna’s enchanting streets. Afterwards, return to the hotel for a steamy encounter at the bio sanarium and Finnish sauna. And with a choice of two restaurants and bars, serving up traditional and Austrian fare, couples can truly sit back, relax and soak in the amorous atmosphere.

Steigenberger Hotel Herrenhof

Top rated
9.6 Excellent (3888 reviews)

Swim together on top of a volcanic cliffside in Santorini

Santorini may not be the typical European beach honeymoon, because there are very few beaches in Oia, which is known for its whitewashed buildings and azure blue rooftops. However, stay at the stunning San Antonio which is hewn into the volcanic Caldera cliffside, and you’ll get the most epic and jaw-dropping vistas across the turquoise Aegean sea. Exploring the picturesque winding streets is part of the Oia experience, but while the crowds fight it for a top spot to watch the infamous sunset, you can sink into your own hanging jacuzzi and sip champagne, while gazing at the view, in complete seclusion.

San Antonio combines a cosmopolitan edge with an idyllic retreat, but it’s the majestic surroundings that are the stars of the show. Swim in the awe-inspiring infinity pool and dry off on the comfy sun loungers with a cocktail while looking out to the volcanic vista. If you don’t fancy eating with other guests, opt for the private dining option where you will be served a gourmet meal under the night sky.

San Antonio - Small Luxury Hotels of the World

Top rated
9.5 Excellent (629 reviews)

Soak in Seville’s vibrant atmosphere at this honeymoon hotel

As the guitar strums and the temperature rises, the flamenco dancer claps her hands and stamps her feet in time with the music. Passionate and seductive, the flamenco which originates from Andalusia, embodies the romantic spirit of Seville. From stunning tapas, awe-inspiring architecture and beautiful parks, Seville really is sublime. And the uber swish Mercer Sevilla, once a former palace, has all the hallmarks of providing luxury honeymoons in Europe.

Attentive service is a given, with only 12 rooms over two floors, guests will savour the air of exclusivity in a hotel that has spared no expense when it comes to the modern interiors and designer furniture. Saunter down the curved marble staircase, and feel the sun streaming through the stunning light-filled patio with glass panelling, grand arches and fountain. The rooms are tech-filled havens with Japanese toilets and scientifically tested gargantuan beds for the ultimate snooze. It gets hot in the city, so after exploring the impressive Cathedral, some five minutes walk away, cool off together in the stainless steel rooftop pool and savour the peace.

If you can bear to tear yourselves away poolside, drinks can be taken at the Fizz Bar – why not sample one of Mercer’s signature cocktails, the Mediterráneo made up of gin mare, celery, basil and cava? Meanwhile, the hotel’s new restaurant, Maria Luisa, marries Andalusian cuisine with a modern interpretation and its fresh menu will excite the taste buds.

Hotel Mercer Sevilla

Top rated
9.8 Excellent (232 reviews)

Feel like royalty on your European honeymoon holiday

Clasp hands with your other half and take a romantic walk alongside Budapest’s Danube River, and gaze over the expansive views across awe-inspiring castles and historic city. There are so many panoramic lookouts where you can cosy up together including the Fisherman’s Bastion and Gellért Hill. Effortlessly combining grandiose marble, high ceilings and light-filled atriums, with neo-classical design, the Corinthia Hotel, located on the bustling Grand Boulevard, is the ideal Budapest honeymoon hotel.

It’s hard not to be overwhelmed by the sheer scale of the Corinthia, with some 400 rooms, the hotel is large. But that doesn’t mean the service isn’t impeccable. Rooms are classy, bright and airy, but for couples looking for that little bit of pizzazz, it is the hotel’s stunning column-lined swimming pool covered by a stain-glassed ceiling that really has the wow factor. Likewise, their Royal Spa, which offers a range of massages and treatments, also has two Finnish saunas and whirlpool tubs for couples to de-stress and reset.

Once back on dry land, couples have an extensive choice of dining options from four restaurants, showcasing Hungarian and international dishes. For those after a taste of the exotic, the plush Rickshaw serves up fine Asian cuisine and plenty of opportunities to share delicious morsels including spring rolls and beef satay. Or if you’re heading out to explore for the evening, sundowners at the fourth floor Yard Bar offers up uninterrupted cityscapes over the horizon and the perfect way to begin your evening.

Corinthia Budapest

Top rated
9.5 Excellent (12656 reviews)

Feature image courtesy of / Fotolia