Top 5 romantic beach retreats

Sometimes all you need is the right setting of sun, sea and sand for love to simply blossom. Here are our favourites!

1. Six Senses Ninh Van Bay, Nha Trang, Vietnam

Set on a private peninsula that's just a sexy speedboat ride from coastal town Nha Trang in south-central Vietnam, romantic boutique hotel Six Senses Ninh Van Bay offers luxury for lovers. Its 58 dreamy villas all feature seductive beds and bath tubs open to the outdoors, with private pools for cooling dips (choose between beach, spa or waterside settings). You can also dine alfresco by the bay, the pool or up on the rocks for serene sea views - or book a table for two in the atmospherically lit Wine Cave, perfect for popping the question. After quality pampering at the Six Senses Spa, make a date with a sunlounger on the secluded beach.

2. Cap d'Antibes Beach Hotel, Côte d'Azur, France

With design as glittering as the surrounding sea, chic Côte d'Azur retreat Cap d'Antibes Beach Hotel in the south of France is all about Gallic glamour. Once a beachside club for the jet-set, including film stars Sofia Loren and Cary Grant, this heavenly hotel has its own beach for sandy sojourns. With just 27 rooms, it's intimate, too; Deluxe Room 208 has dazzling views, but Room 201 has a fabulous fish mural. Even the restaurant is named Les Pecheurs (The Fishermen) after the maritime setting. Dine here for gastronomic gravitas, or casual beachside Le Cap serves up pasta, fish and local dishes by the waves. Bring this season's swimwear for poolside posing.

3. Lizard Island, Great Barrier Reef, Australia

For a romantic hotel on the Great Barrier Reef, look no further than Australian boutique retreat Lizard Island, a short flight from Cairns off the Far North Queensland coast. With just 40 secluded rooms and 24 ivory-white beaches to choose from, you're likely to have a seductive cove of sand all to yourself for that picnic by the waves. Swim off the beach, take a kayak or boat out, or go snorkeling or diving at famous Cod Hole on the outer reef with turtles and rays for company. Back at base camp, enjoy a hot-stone massage at Azure Spa, then dine on fresh fish and seafood at airy Osprey's restaurant. This idyllic island has honeymoon written all over it.

4. The Datai, Langkawi, Malaysia

Set on beach-blessed Langkawi Island, a back-to-nature getaway off Malaysia's northwest coast, the Datai occupies a dramatic perch between pure white-sand beaches and verdant rainforest. Famed for its opulence, this beachfront luxury hotel attracts the great and the glam, with 112 wood-crafted rooms, including standalone villas in jungle pockets. The striking main pool boasts beach views, and is for adults only, so you can relax in peace. Alternatively, take a couple's cooking class, enjoy a spa or yoga session, or go on a guided nature walk (look out for monkeys and eagles). With delicious Malaysian and Thai dishes up for grabs, as well as a beach club restaurant, dining is an affair in itself.

5. Masseria Torre Coccaro, Puglia, Italy

A fortified farmhouse set amid sea-scented olive groves, Masseria Torre Coccaro boutique hotel in Puglia offers refined romance on Italy's Adriatic shores. Located between Brindisi and Bari on the country's south-east coast, its 37 stone-walled rooms are exquisitely decorated with linen bedding, silky sofas, baroque mirrors and antique furniture. Chill out in a poolside hammock, warm up in the Turkish baths or treat yourself in the Aveda spa. For nautical romance, commandeer Masseria's private 14-meter yacht, then relax at the beach club restaurant. The hotel also runs a horse riding center, if you fancy a trot along the sand.

Take a look at the rest of the top spots here.

Click here to see a collection of photos of the resorts.

- Reuters

Read more on: honeymoon  |  romance

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