It makes sense that Valentine’s Day falls in the middle of winter; after all, what’s more romantic than escaping the cold and cozying up with a loved one?And when you’re with someone special, a ski chalet with a roaring fireplace is every bit as wonderful as a sunny, secluded beach resort.
No matter what kind of romantic getaway you choose, though, finding the right hotel is the single most important factor for making your trip memorable. That’s why we’ve scoured our list of the world’s 500 top hotels for America’s best romantic inns. These are the accommodations that Travel + Leisure readers voted the best in the world through our annual survey. And, as we found, many of these top hotels incorporated some super-romantic elements—like rooms with fireplaces, hot tubs, and terraces worthy of a Shakespearean drama.
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Several of the romantic hotels that were highest-ranked by our readers seem custom-tailored for wintertime snuggling. Like the Four Seasons Resort in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, where curling up in front of a fireplace is practically mandatory. Set right at the base of the famous ski resort, this 124-room hotel offers rooms with stone fireplaces and terraces overlooking the mountain. It’s ski-in, ski-out, of course, and when you’ve finished your final run of the day, après-ski s’mores at the hot springs-style whirlpools are just a few ski-boot steps away.
Another snowy U.S. resort that makes our top 10 list: the St. Regis Resort in Aspen, Colorado. After a day of glamming it up on the slopes, you and your significant other can sit down to dinner at the Todd English restaurant, Olives, then retire to your deluxe room. Be sure to stay in the new wing, where the rooms have romantic fireplaces.
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Of course, snow-covered mountains aren’t for everyone. For those who crave endless water views, there’s the Ritz-Carlton in Laguna Niguel, California. Set on a cliff 150 feet above the Pacific, it’s the perfect spot to take in gorgeous sunsets from an ocean-view room. Or head to the secluded, Little Palm Island in Florida, where 30 thatched-roof bungalows are set on a private island, reachable only by boat or seaplane.
In fact, our list of America’s best romantic hotels is just as varied as the idea of romance. Some look for it on a Hawaiian beach, while others find it on a California ranch. Some crave the relative anonymity of a larger resort, while others seek the intimacy of a quaint New York City inn or a stately Southern mansion. So no matter how you define romance this Valentine’s Day season, you’re bound to find a hotel in our list that sparks your—and your loved one’s—passion.