Amazing Girlfriend Getaways
Weekend Trip Picks
When it comes to your bachelorette party, you and your friends can hit the town for a one-night blowout. Or, you can get away for a long weekend and let the good times stretch out over several days. Of course, we love option #2 -- it gives you the chance to kick back and relax (something every wedding-planning bride needs). But where to go? Keeping in mind budget (that it should be cheap, but chic), travel time (that it's no further than a quick flight or two), and amenities (that there are loads of cool on-site extras), the boutique hotel experts at Mr & Mrs Smith pulled together this list of properties that are great for gal-palling around.
The Surf Lodge, Montauk, New York
Beach bunnies will love this hip Hamptons motel where board-riding lessons are chased by cocktails around a bonfire as the apres-surf scene kicks up. (The property is lakeside, but the shore is a five-minute drive.) If you just want to chill, catch some waves the easy way -- surf films play 24-7 in the Den. (Take note: The lodge is closed from September through mid-May, so time your adventure carefully.)
Room to book: For a gaggle of girlfriends, we love Room 2, the two-bedroom suite with a kitchenette and gingham couches that double as daybeds.
The Carneros Inn, Carneros, California
Nestled between Napa and Sonoma Valleys, this rustic-modern hideaway is a perfect jumping-off point for wine-country exploration, whether by ground (in a guide-driven van or on a bike tour) or by air (the local hot-air balloon trips are spectacular). And the inn's chef will happily prepare a gourmet picnic for you to carry along. Accommodations are individual -- cottages, suites, and houses -- with private gardens, wood-burning fireplaces, old-school porches, and endless views of fruiting vines.
Room to book: Go in on a few of the suites, which are essentially two separate cottages connected by a patio.
La Belle Juliette, Paris
Unabashedly girly girls will heart this sugar-sweet hotel, whose charms include confectionery-colored interiors and an elaborate afternoon tea. What bachelorette party revelers wouldn't want the City of Lights at their disposal with its boutiques, bars, and bistros; culture, cafes, and cabarets? "We'll always have Paris" is a pretty special thing to be able to share between besties. Le sigh.
Room to book: All accommodations have luxurious touches like claw-footed tubs and neat-o amenities like in-room iMacs, but the Junior Suites have convertible couches so you can bunk up together, making the trip easier on your wallets.
Primland, Blue Ridge Mountains, Virginia
If, rather than ladies who lunch, you and your friends are girls who golf, then get thee to this 12,000-acre sanctuary, with a challenging but scenic course. When you're not teeing off, take advantage of the sinfully good spa specializing in American Indian-inspired treatments (for instance, you can have a lemon-verbena body polish and then learn about your spirit-guide animal), game room, and observatory kitted out with a telescope for star searching.
Room to book: Reserve a Fairway Cottage between the 10th and 18th holes -- there's space for 16 people and each cottage has its own putting green.
Waldorf Astoria Chicago
With everything including stellar shopping and lively nightlife, the Windy City is a no-brainer for a cosmopolitan escape. We guarantee you'll be a fan of this glam downtown high-rise's towering ceilings, big-for-the-city rooms, and design-forward decor. Play "eeny meeny miny mo" to choose between the two eateries (or try them both): Balsan is a casual European bistro, while Michelin-starred RIA serves modern French flavors in a sultry setting. And definitely hit up the spa -- at 14,000 square feet, it's an experience by itself.
Room to book: The Deluxe Doubles can connect to another room, making them ideal for groups.
Thompson Beverly Hills, Los Angeles
If you're dying to embark on a boutique crawl with your friends, this cool-kid hotel is just your bag, baby. Taking its cues from the late '60s, it's as swanky as the shopper's paradise it inhabits, with leather accents and fashion-industry references like images by famed photographer Steven Klein. Weary from Rodeo Drive-ing? Plunge into the pool. Which is on the roof. Next to an alfresco bar. It just gets better and better.
Room to book: Since the suites (even the Penthouse) only have one bed, stick to the Double Premium rooms (each with two full-size beds).
Inn at Perry Cabin, Chesapeake Bay, Maryland
Feeling nautical? Rendezvous with your first mates at this manor house, whose maritime-esque interiors play up its bayside location. (It was the setting for the main reception in "Wedding Crashers.") The inn's 200-year-old gardens are leafy loveliness, and the spa alone is reason to visit. On top of it all, there's no prettier place to learn to sail, so sign up with the on-site Offshore Sailing School.
Room to book: Reserve at least one of the bi-level suites (with a bathroom and living room downstairs) so you'll have a communal space for your entourage.
The Surrey, New York City
Few cities are as tasty as the Big Apple, especially when female bonding is on the menu. With a restaurant, bar, and spa that rival the city's finest, this Beaux Arts beauty is as grand as its Upper East Side setting. You'll dig the glamorous extras from top (a 17th-floor roof garden) to toe (sumptuous sink-into carpets), and love the location: Madison Avenue shopping and the Museum Mile are both right at your doorstep.
Room to book: Make yourselves at home in a couple of the Ultra Deluxe Salon rooms (request those with two beds).
Azienda Agricola Mandranova, Sicily, Italy
Staying in this 16-room farmhouse feels like visiting your long-lost Italian family because owners Sylvia and Giuseppe will welcome you like the nonna and nonno you never had. Sylvia whips up the nightly meals -- fancy pesto penne, succulent swordfish, or chile-spiked chocolate cake? -- and oversees the cooking school. Giuseppe will gladly take you out on the Tornado, the hotel's 38-foot vessel, for a cruise. And together they make award-winning olive oil from the property's trees.
Room to book: Reserve a couple of the suites so that you and your BFFs have room to spread out.
More Travel Advice
For more insider tips and to book your next trip, contact the travel experts at Mr & Mrs Smith (800-464-2040, mrandmrssmith.com).
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