Recommend Magazine, one of the leading travel trade publications of North America, recently issued their 14th Annual Readers’ Choice Awards, in which France was, for the 11th year, awarded as the Sexiest Romance/Honeymoon Destination in Europe.
Indeed, beyond France’s romantic “piece de resistance,” Paris - a.k.a. the “City of Love” - every corner of France is about romance. Like Recommend states it: “Roads to romance wind through France, hugging Mediterranean and Atlantic shores, passing beneath snow-capped Alps and Pyrenees heights, linking picturesque villages and treasure-filled historic towns.”
According to the France Tourism Development Agency, more than half of American visitors to France are repeat travelers.
For romantics, Paris is usually the centerpiece, and over the next two years, the Paris luxury brand – with Asian accents – is in for a big expansion. Just opened in October, the Raffles Royal Monceau
, whose guest attractions range from a private library and art gallery to a 100-person cinema. This month, Shangri-La Hotel Paris
becomes the second new entry, occupying a building originally built in 1896 as the home of Roland Bonaparte, Napoleon’s great-nephew. Here, rooms boast an exceptional Eiffel Tower view. Mandarin Oriental Paris
, set to open in mid-2011, will be home to Michelin-star chef Thierry Marx. In the summer of 2012, look for the debut of the Peninsula Paris
in the former International Conference Center of the French foreign ministry.
And, no doubt, hotels with a “palace” label fill many a romantic traveler’s dreams, and palaces will get new meaning when France awards a handful of hotels displaying “excellence, perfection, luxury and timelessness,” a special palatial class rating – only one fifth on the 100 five-star hotels in France are due to receive this honor. This is an extension of a new hotel classification system under which previously rated French four-star-luxe hotels were moved into the five-star category. This official classification of hotels makes them more transparent and helps travelers pick the right place to stay. Beyond Paris, the top region for U.S. visitors is Provence/Cote d’Azur, where the romance of France stretches from Marseilles. Always a favorite here is Antibes, which just celebrated the 50th anniversary of its famous Jazz Fesival.
Get inspired with some of France Cruises romantic trip selection: http://www.francecruises.com/themecruiselist8.html#Honeymoon