June 21, 2017
Vacation, All I've Ever Wanted
The sweetest places on earth to honeymoon.
Jasmine Robinson knows a thing or two about planning a good vacation: As a Goldsmith Travel Consultant at Mr & Mrs Smith Hotels, it’s her job to discover the foxiest hotel properties worldwide for wanderlusters everywhere. She speaks English, French, Spanish, and Italian, once, in Melbourne, jumped out of a plane at 14,000 feet—on a whim.
She loves ziplining in Costa Rica, swimming in the Maldives, and drinking tea in the plantations of Sri Lanka, but maintains that the best breakfast in bed is “anywhere with my husband—it’s the most important meal of the day.”
Here she gives us the down and dirty on all things newlyweds need to know when planning their honeymoon. If you’re about to put a ring on it, proceed with caution.
What are your favorite six properties?
Six Senses Ya Noi, Thailand. The views are breathtaking, the service is perfection at its best, the breakfast is to die for, plus you dine in the treetops!
Chena Huts, Yala, Sri Lanka: Nature at your doorstep, plus the best sunrise I have EVER seen.
Ceylon Tea Trails, Hill Country, Sri Lanka: Tea time is the best time—you just lose yourself in the blissful beauty of the surrounding tea plantations. Breathe it all in and love it all out.
Pacuare Lodge, Costa Rica: Getting there is an adventure (you have to either zip line or white water raft), but it’s so worth it. I’ve hiked through the rainforest to meet with indigenous tribes, immersed myself with the sounds of the jungle and the river, and cut myself off from the outside world completely. (There’s no electricity or wifi—but they have an amazing wine cellar to make up for it!).
Amangiri, Lake Powell, Utah: Surrounded by the Grand Canyon, this is the perfect destination for hiking lovers who appreciate for the National Parks and all things nature.
The Greenwich, NYC: Best hotel in the Big Apple and a safe haven from the hustle and bustle of the city that never sleeps.
What about your favorite honeymoon properties?
One & Only Reethi Raa, Maldives: Dip into the turquoise oceans from your private overwater bungalow, sample their culinary delights from their array of international cuisine, and explore any of their 12 beaches. Their motto: no tan lines!
Cayo Espanto, San Pedro, Belize: It’s your own private island in paradise, where everything is tailor made for you down to the last detail.
Cape View Clifton, Cape Town, South Africa: This is a food & wine destination. The perfect first stop before you journey into the bush for some adventure.
Lion Sands Ivory Lodge, Kruger National Park, South Africa: Take in the spectacular scenery and abundant wildlife by day and bathe in the beauty of the infinite night sky at night. It will literally take your breath away.
What are the most healing, transformative properties that couples return to again and again and why?
Esencia, Riviera Maya, Mexico: The most beautiful stretch of beach I have ever walked on. There is something really magical about this part of Mexico. Venture 20 minutes further south to Tulum and stay at Casa Malca or Be Tulum, the perfect destinations for those who want to unwind, meditate, focus on mind, body & soul—with the occasional moments of satiating your thirst with the local elixirs of course!
Uxua Casa Hotel & Spa, Bahia, Brazil: It has been voted the Best Smith Hotel over and over again. It’s located in the beautiful town of Trancoso where there is a little something for everyone to experience and enjoy, from cooking classes to capoeira lessons, to deserted beaches that go on for miles to bike riding through the mangrove forests.
Kura Design Villas, Uvita de Oso, Costa Rica: This stunning eco-friendly property is set on a hillside with views of the Pacific Ocean where you can zip line through the dense tropical jungle. It’s also the perfect destination for those who love to swim with dolphins, manta rays, and discover the secrets of underwater world. You can even catch the humpback whale migration.
Burning Man: It’s not a property, but it’s definitely transformative, and I’ve been going for 19 years.
How do you ensure to have a good night’s sleep on your honeymoon?
Consummating your marriage every night! Plus mezcal or top quality tequila, star gazing, and laughing—it’s the best medicine. But if all else fails, Ambien.
What are the essential items a couple should take on their honeymoon?
His and her books so you can read out loud to each other, bluetooth speakers and good playlists, sexy lingerie, and scented candles. My favorites are Dayna Decker in Kashmir or Dyptique in Baies.
Best activities for newlyweds to do together on a honeymoon?
Romantic dinner for two on a secluded beach, skinny dipping after midnight, scuba diving in the cenotes near Tulum, ATV adventures, a hike to a waterfall, or a champagne sunset sail. You should also meet the locals and immerse yourself in the culture. On a rainy day, a good game of Scrabble or backgammon.
Any recommendations on the best books to pack to decompress?
Ready Player One by Ernest Cline and The Secret History of the World by Mark Booth are two favorites. I also love anything by Malcolm Gladwell, Danielle Steel (can’t go wrong with romance novels), and the whole Harry Potter series. For honeymooners, I would also suggest a book of Jalaluddin Rumi’s poetry.
Best vacation you ever went on and why?
I have had so many amazing vacations, but one epic moment that will remain ingrained with me forever was when I went to Australia for work last year. I spent five nights in Sydney and four nights in Melbourne meeting with clients and spreading the word of Mr & Mrs Smith. I was determined to do one thing I had never done before—and I did.
While at dinner with friends in Melbourne, I somehow agreed to jump out of a plane at 14,000 feet the following morning at 7am! The next morning, at St. Kilda, (yeah that’s right it’s called SAINT KILLED YA) there I was ready and terrified. The good news is my tandem partner, Clayton Werner was the spitting image of Russell Crowe so I felt somewhat safe. As we reached our cruising altitude and the door of the plane opened, I watched in complete panic as others just leapt into the sky.
I took a deep breath and found my inner courage and it was the best experience ever. Free falling was the most exhilarating 60 seconds of my life—the adrenaline and euphoria is something that is so hard to put into words. Plus, my trusty partner Clayton, is now one of my most dearest friends for life.
Originally posted on Domino.com. Pics by Mr & Mrs Smith