Top Honeymoon Destinations and Q&A with Crafted Escapes for Custom Luxury Travels
Something we have in common with a lot of our couples is a passion for travel. Exploring new places near and far is a priority every year for us. We love chatting with our couples and learning more about their honeymoon plans and destinations and we're always inspired by their adventures. One of our 2021 couples worked with Annie from Crafted Escapes and we eagerly followed along on Instagram to see what they were up to next. They had the most dreamy European vacation we knew we had to talk to her to more and we're so excited to have Annie on the blog today sharing her expertise in honeymoon planning as well as custom luxury travel.
Q: What are you seeing as the top honeymoon destinations for 2023 & 2024?
Mallorca- we like this as a combo with Spain or Portugal. Our favorite properties are Cap Rocat on the coast and Belmond’s la Residencia. Deia is a charming town and El Olivo outdoor restaurant is just stunning. The best part of Mallorca is cruising around and finding the hidden beaches.
Bali-Southeast Asia is back! Summer is the high season in Bali and we’re seeing a big uptick this summer and anticipate being back to pre-pandemic levels by 2024. Our top favorite romantic properties are Capella Ubud, Amankila, and Nihi on Sumba Island. At Nihi, a private island, they have a spa safari where you hike up to the spa and you can ride wild horses on the beach. At Capella Ubud, you’re in the jungle in a tented camp; it’s a very wild and luxurious experience.
The Amalfi Coast, Greek Islands, and South of France will remain some of our top booked European destinations. We don’t see this changing in 2024, but we do see price hikes in these popular destinations possibly pushing honeymooners to alternatives like Ischia or Puglia in Italy, smaller islands like Milos or Paros in Greece, and coastal towns like Biarritz and smaller Provence villages versus St Tropez.
Q: What are the categorizations of honeymoon types?
Sun and sand/ relaxing: Caribbean, Mexico, French Polynesia, the Maldives
Cultural Exploration: Europe, mostly France, Italy, and Greece for honeymoons, but clients have also loved Croatia, Mallorca, and Portugal. Japan and parts of southeast Asia also top the list for honeymooners wanting to explore cities and enjoy culture.
Adventure: Patagonia, Vietnam, Thailand, Bali, Costa Rica, Belize
*Clients seeking adventure, culture and relaxation opt for Africa. I love combining Kenya/Tanzania and Zanzibar or South Africa with the Seychelles or Mozambique. Another out-of-the box combo is Sri Lanka and the Maldives. The Maldives also couple well with Dubai or Abu Dhabi as a stopover for a cultural/city element.
Q: What do you wish more couples knew about working with a travel agent?
I wish they understand the value we provide and that we’re justified in charging planning fees. We’re not more expensive than booking the hotel on your own, we just add VIP amenities like a $100 credit, daily breakfast, room upgrades, and special welcome surprises.
Q: How far in advance should couples be planning their honeymoon?
This is dependent on location, but safari lodges and camps in Africa are small, some with only 6-10 tents/rooms so they will book up a year in advance. Europe is very busy, especially Italy, Greece, and France in the summertime. I’m seeing hotels book up about 9 months prior, so if you want a summer European honeymoon, plan ahead. As of late, the summer season is extending into May and September, so account for that in European hotspots. I prefer at least 3-6 months to plan a honeymoon to ensure we can arrange our favorite guides, secure favorite hotels and restaurants.
Q: What is the budget range you work with?
For a 7-10 day honeymoon, budgets start around $10K to include hotels, transport, and some tours. The average for my clients is about $20K and the other advisors on my team work with a range of budgets.
Q: Top tip for planning your honeymoon?
Try not to be too influenced by friends, family and Instagram. Couples will come to me and think that they want a multi-city European honeymoon or an exotic overwater bungalow because they saw it on their friends’ instagram, or they’ll come to me with specific hotels they want. Once we actually chat and I get to know them better we reassess what they actually want and often realize their travel or hotel style preferences don’t align with their friends. While the overwater bungalow in the Maldives looks lovely, your work schedule may not allow for the 2-3 days travel time that is eaten up with long flights to get there. While the 5-city European itinerary looks dreamy, you may be exhausted after your wedding and want to enjoy a swim-up bar and beach time.
Q: Can you share more about a couples experience working with Crafted Escapes?
It’s a completely customized experience from the beginning of the planning form where you provide us with as many details as you can about your dream vacation.
We'll share all the information you provide and with our partners in your desired destination to create an itinerary tailored just for you! Our on-the-ground local specialists in each country have Ungoogleable experiences and insights into the best places to eat. We fine tune your itinerary until it’s perfect!
Once we've perfected and you've approved your trip, my team will move forward to book and confirm everything. Concierge services can be added at this time, for an additional fee, which includes a customized digital itinerary.
Prior to your arrival, we will contact your hotels to make sure they know you are extra special guests. We will continue to be available to help you before, during, and after your trip.
One of our talented concierge specialists will contact you to help arrange more details for your trip including:
transportation & transfers
& much more...
This includes a customized online itinerary that is also an app. It consolidates all bookings and confirmations into one place.
Q: What’s next on your travel bucket list?
Kenya and Tanzania, I’m longing for a classic safari experience in some of the luxury tented camps here. I’d like to do a hot balloon ride over the Serengeti during the Great Migration.
Rapid Fire - This or That
All Inclusive or Not
Hotel or Airbnb
Domestic or International
Tropical Beach or Exploring the City
Leave right after Wedding or Delayed Honeymoon
You can connect with Crafted Escapes through their website here: https://www.craftedescapes.com/
or follow them on Instagram @craftedescapes