Editor’s Note: Sure, jetting off to the Maldives and staying in an over-water bungalow sounds incredible, but it’s not exactly budget-friendly. But just because you need to economize on your honeymoon doesn’t mean you’re stuck chilling at the Motel 6 outside your hometown.
For (much, much) better options, we talked to Cheryl Rosner, CEO of Stayful, an awesome website that helps you find and book unique boutique hotels all over the country. She shared some fun honeymoon ideas that are wallet-friendly and still full of romance and fun:
If you live in New England …
Drive to one of the major cities like New York or Washington DC.
In New York: Picture you and your amour in a stunning Manhattan-style loft in the sky at The Chambers. Sipping champagne on a balcony enjoying the bright lights of this special hotel, enjoying a downtown design experience nestled in the exciting treats a Midtown address has to offer. Your mini-moon can include 5th Avenue Shopping before a stroll to the Theater District for the latest Broadway has to offer. Return to The Chambers to enjoy the legendary pies and cookies at the Momafuku coffee shop in the lobby or the incredible French-Vietnamese fusion cuisine (simply amazing) at Ma Peche Restaurant.
The Hotel on Rivington is a classic lower east side experience. You can enjoy beautiful views from the rooms and step outside to experience the coolest downtown vibe.
In Washington DC: The Normandy Hotel is a cozy special place. Their rooms are delightful and they have a complimentary wine and cheese hour in the lobby for guests.
Unique city ideas: New York is bursting with culture and there is always something awesome going on. In the winter months, enjoy the great deals on theater tickets, easy reservations on coveted restaurants and great shopping without fierce crowds.
Related: We Heart (Honeymoons in) New York!
Washington DC is also a joy for couples who love to walk around. History is everywhere and museums are free! Take a stroll in romantic Georgetown among the shops and restaurants while you meander the streets with beautiful townhouses.
If you live in the Southwest …
Hotels to stay and unique on property perks: The Inn & Spa at Loretto features a world-class full service spa with special treatments and rooms for couples.
Unique city experience: For a truly unique adventure full of history, drive 30 minutes north of Santa Fe to Puye Cliff Dwellings. Reserve a tour of this spiritual land and take in the amazing New Mexico sunset.
If you live in Northern California …
Hotels to stay and unique on property perks: Inn on the Market is ideally located for a romantic getaway. You’ll be steps away from the infamous Pike Place Market and take advantage of the large open-air deck. BYOB and watch the sun fade into the Pacific.
Unique city experience: Just east of Seattle about 30 miles is a breathtaking nature wonder, Snoqualmie Falls. Take in the 268 ft waterfall or hike down to the bottom for a truly unforgettable view. Pack a picnic lunch and take in the scenery.
If you live in Southern California …
Drive to one of the major cities like Los Angeles: LA has it all with hills for hiking and the beach for sunbathing.
Hotels to stay and unique on property perks: Le Montrose tops our list of great hotels. All rooms are suites and feature a fireplace and cozy sitting area. The rooftop desk and pool showcase the LA skyline.
Unique city experience: For a one of a kind view of the city, head to Griffith Park but wait – go at night! The Sierra Club leads nightly hikes, lit only by the lights of the city.
If you live in Florida …
Hotels to stay and unique on property perks: The Inn at Ellis Square provides the structure and amenities of a big hotel with the charm of the south.
The Kehoe House is an authentic historic mansion that has been fully restored. There is an unbelievable home cooked breakfast daily plus a cozy afternoon tea.
Unique city experience: Savannah’s historic district is enchanting in every way. Enjoy the one-of-a-kind home and accessories selection Paris Market or the soaps and more at Savannah Bee Company. For a romantic night out, The Collins Quarter is a beautiful restaurant worth trying out. Make sure to take home some local pralines to your loved ones.
If you live in Virginia/D.C. …
Hotels to stay and unique on property perks: The Restoration on King has beautiful, huge suites and they deliver breakfast every morning to you in a picnic basket.
The Market Pavilion is another local gem with a hopping rooftop bar and a smashing view.
Unique city experience: When in season, check out the Magnolia Gardens for a romantic walk in nature. Shopping is a joy in this small town. Start at the World Market where you can find lots of unique clothes and décor items – might be a nice place to pick up a special item for your new place together.
If you live in Midwest …
Hotels to stay and unique on property perks: The International House is perfectly located within blocks of the quarter yet on the other side of Canal to give you a peaceful night sleep. The candlelit bar Loa is a must.
Unique city experience: A late night horse-drawn carriage ride around the Quarter is a perfect excuse to cuddle up next to the one you love. If water is more your style, get a ticket aboard the Steamboat Natchez for a cruise along the Mississippi River.
If you live in Texas …
Hotels to stay and unique on property perks: The Hotel Telluride is the ideal spot for a special trip. All rooms feature a private balcony or patio and shuttles to the gondola are complimentary.
Unique city experience: Hiking, skiing and mountain biking are a given however we suggest you take it a steps further. In winter, we’re talking about a Dog Sledding adventure in a sled made for two.