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Your Honeymoon, Take 2

8 super-romantic destinations for grown-ups who are (still) in love

By Abbie Kozolchyk | September 11, 2012

Hopeless romantics might rightly note that when you’re in love, a Red Roof Inn off I-75 could make for a dreamy getaway. And yet when you’re thinking about a second honeymoon — or the one you never had, or a vow renewal, or another marriage, or any trip intended not only to rekindle the flames but to throw incautious quantities of accelerant on them — you’re generally thinking a bit bigger.
Yes, as magical as being a couple of love-crazed kids in Niagara Falls, Key West or Acapulco may have been, the picture is probably different now. The nest is empty, your savings account is showing signs of post-college life, you can get away for more than a week — and your bucket list is full to overflowing.
In other words, the moment is right. To seize it in ways you never could (or would) have before, click through this slideshow for some romantic inspiration.
But First: Some Tips to Save While You Splurge
Although “dream trip” and “budget travel” rarely go hand-in-hand, a little insider intel can save you money in even the poshest of places, according to Aimee N. Monihan–Greening, owner and event planner at Tropical Occasions, Mountain Occasions and Santa Teresa Beach Weddings.

Here are her dos and don’ts:

  • DO: Score freebies on your honeymoon simply by announcing you’re on your honeymoon. “People love love, and often want to lavish you with all sorts of little extras — or big extras,” says Monihan–Greening. “The best views, the best balconies: If the hotel staff has it, chances are, they’ll give it to you.”
  • DON’T: Assume that just because you’re a twosome — or a small group, in cases of vow renewals or second weddings — you don’t qualify for a hotel discount. “You don’t need to occupy a massive block of rooms,” says Monihan-Greening. “Just ask how many ‘room nights’ are necessary for a reduction. If the answer is 12, for example, it doesn’t matter how you get to that number: the two of you for 12 nights, you and another couple for six nights, three couples for four nights, and so on.” You could pay 10 to 15 percent less in high season and 20 to 25 percent in low season.
  • DO: Inform your hotel if you’re booking directly and bypassing a travel agent. “When a hotel gets business through a third party, they pay an average commission of 20 percent,” says Monihan-Greening. “Sometimes just noting this will get you a discount.”
  • DON’T: Book activities through your hotel’s (commission-making) concierge or activity desk. Get a guidebook before you go and pick up the free local tourism magazines on arrival so you can do this on your own. “Again, ‘I’m booking directly’ are the magic words,” says Monihan-Greening, “so don’t be shy about saying them.”

Abbie Kozolchyk is a New York–based writer and editor who contributes to Conde Nast Traveler, Travel + Leisure, The San Francisco Chronicle, World Hum, Martha Stewart Living and other publications.