There’s something about New York that makes it perfect for a honeymoon. Bright lights, bustling avenues and a thrum of eight million heartbeats… this concrete jungle (where dreams are made) has its unique brand of enchantment.
The city has a distinct feel that if you can dream it, it can happen. And while romantics may see every corner of the world through rose-tinted glasses, there is a reason almost every rom-com is set in the Big Apple. Still not convinced?
Let our tips for the most romantic things to do in New York persuade you to have your honeymoon amid the bright lights of the big city.
Discover our collection of curated, carefree New York escapes here.
A shared journey of rejuvenation: New York’s most romantic spas
Nothing says romance like a couple’s treatment at a tranquil spa – and New York is brimming with them. Eastern elegance and state-of-the-art healing techniques are effortlessly combined at The Spa at Mandarin Oriental, a cornerstone of New York’s five-star hotel scene. Beautifully designed with the city skyline as its backdrop, the spa offers deep holistic discoveries as inspiring as the city itself. The yoga suite, steam rooms and 20-metre lap pool erase stress, but it’s the customised treatments that work wonders. Enjoy an Oriental Essence treatment with your better half, feeling the healing power of a tension-releasing massage using specialist oils.
L. Raphael Spa at Four Seasons Hotel New York is another perfect oasis to ignite that romantic spark. Spend time together with a massage or treatment for two in a private couple’s suite, where you can simply switch off and relax with that special someone. From Dead Sea detoxifying treatments to customised massages, this is the ultimate way to unwind together.
A restorative city escape for two: New York’s most romantic hotels
Known far and wide for its timeless sophistication and 16-story Beaux-Arts façade, The Knickerbocker New York offers a charming taste of elegance just moments from Broadway, Radio City Music Hall and the Rockefeller Center. It’s played host to legendary figures over the years – including The Great Gatsby author F. Scott Fitzgerald, who is rumoured to have met his wife Zelda on these very grounds. If that’s not romanticism itself, we’re not sure what is. In case you need further convincing, a rooftop bar with panoramic city views offers the honour of a tranquil haven away from the bustling city below.
Not only is the ultra-eclectic Mondrian Park Avenue one of the most art-froward abodes in Manhattan, but this awe-inspiring urban utopia is an architectural gem rife with avant-garde glamour. This fashionably bold hotel is unafraid to make a statement across the New York skyline, so you know it’s the perfect choice for those seeking a romantic stay with a twist. Each of its 189 guestrooms is unique and equally well-appointed, featuring showers stocked with Ciel toiletries and minibars fuelled by Grey Goose and bottled cocktails. There’s no better place for an extended date.
What was formerly the iconic Hotel Seville is now the location of the James hotel group‘s luxurious NoMad branch. Behind the spectacular Beaux-Arts façade of The James New York – NoMad are surprisingly spacious, light-filled rooms that offer a medley of soothing textiles, modern art, mid-century furniture and large picture windows — perfect for people watching from one of the best spots in the neighbourhood. Should you feel the urge to ditch the bathrobes, indulge in the most heavenly pasta at onsite Scarpetta, sip on a cocktail in the lounge or try small-batch coffee and flaky pastries at Bourke Street Bakery.
A delicious evening of fine company: New York’s most romantic restaurants
Elegantly accessed by a sweeping staircase in The Langham New York Fifth Avenue, Michelin-starred Ai Fiori brings the romance (and cuisine) of the French and Italian Rivieras to Fifth Ave. Walls of windows, espresso-dark wood, leather chairs and a rich marble bar provide an intimate setting for acclaimed chef Michael White’s contemporary take on regional dishes inspired by land and sea. The simple, yet exquisite, menu includes handmade pastas, and succulent venison with pan-roasted veal and plum mostarda. With an elaborate wine selection and world-class service, this restaurant more than lives up to its romantic reputation.
Romance abounds at the nostalgia-fuelled Dowling’s at The Carlyle, where it’s all about timeless 19-century Manhattan favourites. Helmed by newly appointed Executive Chef Sylvain Delpique, the dark wood atmosphere and interactive service are a nod to throwback dining traditions — think roving flambé stations and salt-crusted branzino filleted tableside. Be sure to pick something from the ‘butcher’s cut’ section, and linger over a perfectly grilled filet mignon with red wine jus or a roasted half-chicken with sauce Périgord. Dining here is like stepping back in time to an era of old-world romance, and the cherry on top of any New York honeymoon.
A backdrop for special moments: New York’s most romantic activities
In a city brimming with hidden speakeasies, under-the-radar art galleries and vibrant marketplaces, there’s plenty of romance to be found if you know where to look. Better still, you don’t need to be a big spender to experience New York’s most beautiful treasures on your honeymoon.
Stroll hand-in-hand through Central Park, before reciting a quixotic sonnet at the Shakespeare Garden or channelling your inner Gossip Girl on The Metropolitan Museum of Art steps. Impress your date with a psychedelic, three-and-a-half-minute trip on the SeaGlass Carousel at The Battery, admire the Manhattan skyline and Williamsburg Bridge from Domino Park, or if you want grandeur (and that perfect Instagram couple’s shot), stroll across Brooklyn Bridge with your camera close by. Sometimes the simplest things really do set your heart aflutter.
Discover our collection of curated New York escapes here.