OK, it's panic time. With Valentines Day fast approaching, which happens over a weekend, if you haven't yet made travel plans with or for your significant other, "Today" travel editor Peter Greenberg shares a number of last minute, romantic getaways.
Affordable romantic getaways
Alexander House (Maryland)
The Alexander House is the "Booklovers Bed and Breakfast", in Princess Anne, MD: Valentines Day is a day of celebration for those in love. All guests staying on Valentine's Weekend will receive a book of love poems and a rose. In addition, a poetry reading featuring favorite love poems from Shakespeare, Barrett-Browning, Keats and more, will top off the perfect Valentine's Day. Not a poet and you know it? But you have a love poem you'd like to read to your loved one? Plan to bring it and profess your love through poetry. Stay two nights on Valentine's Day weekend for $150 - $220 including breakfast each morning, afternoon tea, after-dinner liqueurs and the gift of poetry. Info: 410-651-5195 or BookloversBnB.com.
Oak Park Inn (Wisconsin)
An unusual Valentines Day package is in Whitehall, Wisconsin. That's where you'll find the Oak Park Inn and Historic Hopkins House. This Valentine's Day, plan to get the blood moving with an exhilarating dogsled ride, led by a team of what the Inn claims are friendly and energetic Alaskan Huskies. Take photos with the team of rare Canadian Inuit dogs, and receive instruction from the experienced staff at Sno-Trek Sled Dogs. Snow is not necessary to enjoy this adventure, as sleds are also equipped with wheels. The package includes all the above, continental breakfast for two, and one night lodging for two $99-109. Info: oakparkinn.com or 877-479-7024.
For active couples
Nestled in the secluded Santa Ynez Valley, the Alisal Guest Ranch and Resort lies 150 miles north of Los Angeles and 300 miles south of San Francisco. Their Valentines Day romantic getaway starts at $1,700 per day, couples get a round-the-clock western-style butler (think chaps and spurs) who will transport couples to their digs, one of 73 telephone- and television-free suites festooned with 100 red Amazon roses and 100 scented candles glowing next to the crackling wood-burning fireplace.
Chill down with an in-room massage for two with a live harpist; a custom oil blend from nearby Claremont Lavender Farm is certain to soothe all the senses before saddling up on one of 100 thoroughbred horses for a sultry sunset ride on 50 miles of wild west terrain. Should a chill hit the air, monogrammed his/her cashmere throws heat things up.
Epicures will revel in the gourmet dining, including a private candlelit repast tucked miles from civilization in the Ranch's rustic Old Adobe. The next morning, jump in the kitchen with executive pastry chef Susan Schneiderbauer for chocolate confections course and indulge in an all-out sugar high of wonderful creations, which are later packaged for home. The "Saddle Your Sensualilty" package is $1,700/day, two day minimum, double occupancy, taxes and service charges included. And don't forget the horseback riding.
For additional information or travel accommodations, contact the Alisal Guest Ranch and Resort at 866/4-ALISAL, via e-mail at email@example.com or visit the Ranch on the web at alisal.com.
A perfect proposal
Club Med Crested Butte, Colorado
Think it's just for singles? Not necessarily. In the Rocky Mountains, a Club Med Total All-Inclusive vacation package to Crested Butte, Colorado starts at $720 for 3 nights. Yes, you get to ski, but there's an added bonus. For just $10 more, Club Med will equip a skier with a banner to zoom down the hill with your special message!
Wild, over the top
At the Ritz Carlton -- Lake Las Vegas (Nevada)
"Valentine's Fantasy" Package (including his & her Mercedes-Benz convertibles, which you get to own after your stay.
Ritz Valentine's Day Pkg #1
Three nights in the 2,400 square-foot Presidential or Ritz-Carlton suite. A welcome extravaganza of chocolate, champagne, cigars, and caviar for two An evening stargazing experience, "Stars and S'mores," that includes a spectacular view of the heavens using a state-of-the-art GPS telescope, enhanced by personal instruction from a professional astronomer, then followed by the presentation of "s'mores" created with the resort's hand-made marshmallows, butler-prepared over a private lakeside bonfire.
- Unlimited use of Spa Vita di Lago at The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Las Vegas, including a full day of complimentary treatments for him and her and the Spa's signature "Couple's Massage" complete with champagne and hand-made chocolates.
- A personal butler on-call throughout the weekend.
- Two days of unlimited golf at The Falls Golf Club.
- Breakfast in bed each morning.
- His and her Bvlgari watches.
- Limousine pickup at a local home address or at McCarran International Airport.
- His and her brand-new Mercedes-Benz CLK convertibles -- to take home and own.
Price for 3 nights: $125,000
Ritz Valentine's Day Pkg #2
You get a suite at the Ritz Carlton, private helicopter transport from McCarran airport in Las Vegas, a private lake cruise, dinner for two, champagne, roses and strawberries delivered to the suite all for $1099. And no, you don't get to keep the helicopter.
With the exception of the Valentine's Fantasy Package, Valentine's package reservations may be made at (800) 241-3333. To reserve the Valentine's Fantasy Package, please contact the resort directly at (702) 567-4700.
And if money is absolutely not a problem
Musha Cay (Private Island in the Bahamas)
Located in the waters of the Southern Bahamas' Exuma Chain of islands, Musha Cay is one of the more luxurious private island resorts in the world. And on Musha Cay, anything goes, because, well, you've paid for it!
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The island offers more than 150 acres of pure privacy in an unspoiled tropical environment, with sparkling white sugar-sand beaches, crystal clear waters, superb elegant accommodations, and a staff of thirty-plus to attend to your every need. Couples may choose to stay in their own private thatched-roof Beach House far from sight and sound of another human being, or in a 10,000-square-foot Manor House on the crest of a hill.
Romantic couples can play Cupid like country music star Tim McGraw, for whom the island's staff provided thousands of rose petals on Valentine's Day to cover the bed for his Grammy Award-winning wife, recording artist Faith Hill.
Now, here comes the tough part. You don't rent a room here, you rent the entire island, and rates start at just $24,750 -- per day. But you can also bring along six of your friends at no additional accommodations charges.
Rates are inclusive of all meals, all beverages (both alcoholic and other, including fine wines and champagnes) and unlimited usage of all island amenities. So the three day Valentines Day getaway to Musha Cay is just -- $74,250 -- but this includes everything from caviar, Dom Perignon, all you can eat and up to 4 couples. And, 21 private beaches, no one in sight, your own private island, 8 jet skis, 35 staff, extreme pampering. How sexy is that?
Spending Valentine’s Day alone?
Arawak Beach Inn (Anguilla)
And finally, a valentines day package for the rest of us. Who says one is the loneliest number? At the Arawak Beach Inn on the island of Anguilla in the British West Indies, you get the special me, myself and I package. That's right, no date needed, dinner for one, room for one. You get three nights, breakfast, lobster dinner, airport transfers, also a trip to a nearly uninhabited deserted island -- complete with packed lunch. The price: $599 - that's, uh, single occupancy, of course. And one more thing, the me myself and I package is available through March 31, because Maria Hawkins -- the innkeeper and, single herself, says, "you don't need a special day like Valentines to love and appreciate... yourself."
For reservations contact the reservations office at 1-877-4-ARAWAK or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. For information visit arawakbeach.com.
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