You can always have snow and ice in wintertime. Therefore, if you believe shushing down a ski trail while freezing your extremities is romantic, go for it. Maybe cuddling by a roaring fire in the ski lodge helps warm up the blood until you feel that sudden urge … to fall asleep. Instead, why not do your romantic winter getaways where it’s already hot, hot, hot?
1. Las Vegas: Winters are mild in Sin City, but not many romantic visitors venture outside to experience the weather. Every decade or so, Las Vegas experiences one winter night of light snow. Otherwise, the night temperatures rarely dip below the 50s, and January daytimes often top 70 degrees.
While hotel rooms are relatively inexpensive, there are enough totally free evening stroll destinations to appeal to every couple. For example, walk together along the Bellagio Resort in the evening as you watch the fountains dance in the sky as Sinatra sings romantic songs from hidden speakers located all along the walkway.
Stroll hand in hand to the lake in front of the Mirage Resort and watch the volcano spew colorful lava-like water into the air to the sounds of stirring music. Then, stroll on to Treasure Island next door, and enjoy the outdoor display, pirates versus English Navy in two authentic sailing ships. Don’t expect authentic 17th Century buccaneers in Las Vegas. They’re actually showgirls in very brief pirate costumes.
One of the most romantic experiences anyone can have in Las Vegas is the gondola ride along very authentic-looking canals at the nearby Venetian Resort. The gondolier will seranade your amore with soothing Italian love ballads.
2. Miami Beach: Back in the 1930s and 1940s, Miami was the place for people from the cold North to escape to the winter welcome of this venerable Florida destination. With warm January daytime temperatures and cool ocean breezes, Miami is still a hot destination for romantic couples. At sidewalk cafes, you can savor the taste of ethnic dishes ranging all the way from New York deli to Cuban bistros.
In the evening, you can go funky or traditional at the trendy clubs in South Beach’s Art Deco District.
3. Maui: This jewel of an island in the Hawaiian chain is famed for its powder-white sand beaches and white-capped waves. You can walk, dip, wade or grab a couple of surfboards. Strolling the beach at night, with just the sound of the wind through the palm trees and pounding surf, can be a paradise experience for romantic couples.
4. Buenos Aires, Argentina: January is mid-summer in this beautiful South American capital city, and daytime temperatures often rise to 80 degrees. This is a beautiful modern city that still retains much of its Spanish and European colonial charm.
Its nickname, Paris of the Americas, is an apt description. The center of the city resembles Paris, with wide, well-landscaped gardens along wide boulevards. As in the French capital city, Buenos Aires is a perfect destination for romantic couples, including outdoor cafes and cozy hotels.
5. Malibu: This movie-star haven on the oceanfront has all-year cool ocean breezes. Winter daytime temperatures average in the mid-60s, just right for romantic strolling or hiking along the famous beach and splashing in the surf.
Winter evenings cool down into the 50s, and are perfect for private campfires on the beach or an outside table for two at one of Malibu’s many cozy restaurants. The Beachcomber on the Malibu Pier offers great meals and endless Pacific ocean views.
For an upscale hotel that caters to couples seeking a winter getaway, the Huntley Santa Monica Beach is one of the best. It’s slogan is: Modern Beachside Glamour meets Casual Urban Chic. According to guests and critics alike, that accurately sums up the Huntley experience.
The top romantic winter getaways are those that offer warm sunshine, tropical beaches and midnight strolls in the surf. Can any snowbound ski resort match that perfection?