50 Romantic Hotels: Country Grandeur
Introduction | Secluded Retreats | City Lights | Into the Wilderness | Along the Shore | Best Values | Urban Classics | Country Grandeur | Beachfront Property | Rustic Lodges | Inns and Country Houses | Overwater Bungalows | Private Islands
Posada Del Ángel, Guatemala
Five thousand feet above sea level, within driving distance of four volcanoes and five mountain ranges, the Spanish colonial city of Antigua remains almost exactly as it was 200 years ago. Cathedral bells echo through the air, and Tzutuhil women sell their wares at the market. When your feet tire from wandering the 12 cobblestoned streets, seek refuge in one of the tiny posada's seven rooms. 4A Avda. Sur 24A, Antigua, Guatemala; 800/934-0065 or 502/832-0260; www.posadadelangel.com; doubles from $150, including breakfast.
Pousada do Castelo, Portugal
Built into the crenellated walls of an 11th-century castle, this pousada is Portugal's only fortress hotel. Polished suits of armor stand in the hallway, walls made of stone trap heat in the six guest rooms, candelabra light the stairwells and three suites. Love has a rich history here—the town and the castle were traditionally given as a gift from the king to his new bride. Óbidos, Portugal; 351-262/959-105; www.pousadas.pt; doubles from $130.
The classic Edwardian hunting lodge in Scotland's Tay Valley doesn't miss a wee trick: from the tins of fresh shortbread by your bed to an encyclopedic array of single malts in the billiards room. The attentive staff is almost clairvoyant: tea and scones appear while you lounge in front of a log fire; a croquet game is set up before you even think to request it. Reserve the private study for a tête-à-tête over roast venison, smoked salmon, and passion fruit soufflé. Kilts optional. Near Dunkeld, Perthshire, Scotland; 44-1796/482-440; www.kinnairdestate.com; doubles from $400, including some meals.
Hotel Schloss Fuschl, Austria
Built in 1450 as a summer residence for the archbishops, the castle sits on 85 manicured acres that stretch into a private lake. Have a late-night Fuschlgeist (house-made schnapps) by the fireplace or beside a window overlooking the lake and extend the evening until dawn. Then tiptoe through the vaulted entrance hall, past the tapestries, and up the creaking steps to bed. 19 Vorderelsenwang, Salzburg, Austria; 43-6229/225-3502; www.luxurycollection.com; tower suites from $387.