This article was originally published on Christies International Real Estates blog Luxury Defined.

 

Inspired by Valentine’s Day, Luxury Defined presents five sumptuous homes in some of the world’s most romantic locales, special places for a proposal of marriage, a wedding, a honeymoon, an anniversary. Paris is the place for proposals, and a grand mansion on Square de l’Avenue Foch in the heart of the city’s prestigious 16th Arrondissement awaits. A wedding in Manhattan in a spectacular sky-high duplex in Midtown East puts all of New York City’s glamour and excitement at your feet. Consider a permanent honeymoon in a tropical hideaway in Hawaii, or within the walled gardens of a Spanish-Colonial hacienda in Mexico’s romantic San Miguel de Allende, or in a fairy-tale Renaissance palace overlooking the Eternal City. Remember: The world will always welcome lovers.

And in the service of St. Valentine, we have gathered the advice of experts on how best to celebrate the revels of the heart, whether popping the question, tying the knot, honeymooning, or dancing the anniversary waltz.

 

Parisian Proposal

Square de l’Avenue Foch, in the heart of the 16th Arrondissement of Paris, is the romantic setting for this elegant home. The beautifully restored 13,315-square-foot mansion has three floors dedicated to recreation and entertainment. A wine cellar, movie theater, 16-meter indoor lap pool, and private nightclub are among the extraordinary amenities.

 

Gay Paree! Epicurean delights, high fashion, fine art—no city can surpass the City of Lights, and of love. The mother of romantic destinations for honeymooners and dreamers alike, but if a proposal is in the cards, make it in Paris to make it unforgettable. The wedding planning website The Knot concurs: “Paris is full of urban parks and gardens, and the beautiful Seine River runs right through its heart. Tease your beloved by visiting all the standard pop-the-question spots—the Eiffel Tower, the steps of Montmartre and Luxembourg Gardens. But surprise them with that question on bended knee when the spirit moves you—along a romantic lamplit back street, at the tip of Ile St-Louis or in the lovely Place des Vosges, the oldest square in Paris.”

 

Epicurean delights, high fashion, fine art—no city can surpass the City of Lights, and of love.

 

New York City Nuptials

Beloved by residents and visitors alike, New York City is one of the most popular destinations for a glamorous city wedding. According to The Knot, the Big Apple offers something for everyone with its “Broadway shows, museums and galleries, four-star restaurants, crazy-fun nightlife, block after block of tiny boutiques, as well as classic tourist attractions such as the Empire State Building, the Statue of Liberty, and Times Square.

 

 

Soaring more than 700 feet above Midtown Manhattan, Penthouse 51/52W at One Beacon Court has dazzling helicopter views that span from the East River to the Hudson River, and the Freedom Tower to the George Washington Bridge.

 

One Beacon Court is a triumph of contemporary architecture in Manhattan Midtown. Penthouse 51/52W at One Beacon Court is the only residential duplex in the building and the largest in the Midtown area. Designed by architectural legend Charles Gwathmey, the sky-high 9,000-square-foot residence towers over the city, capturing breathtaking vistas of Central Park and the city skyline.

 
Beloved by residents and visitors alike, New York City is one of the most popular destinations for a glamorous city wedding.
 

When it comes to wedding-planning resources, too, there’s no shortage: You’ll have innumerable caterers, florists, photographers, and bands to choose from.” And it’s easy for your guests to get around: “With taxis on every block, there’s no need for them to rent a car, wrestle with maps, or designate drivers.”

 

Mexico´s most romantic city, San Miguel de Allende is consistently ranked among the top destinations in the world. “The beautiful Spanish-colonial city in the Mexican Highlands is also the top wedding destination in Mexico, hosting up to a dozen weddings each weekend,” says Ann Dolan, Vice President of Sales and Marketing at CDR San Miguel, the exclusive Affiliate of Christie’s International Real Estate in the region. “Brides are drawn to the city’s history, culture, magnificent architecture, and warm ambience. There are the traditional parades of the wedding party that pass through the cobblestone streets serenaded by mariachis; beautiful churches are the ceremonial heart, while elegant intimate venues play host to bustling receptions.”

 

Casa Heyne has played host to numerous weddings through out the years.

 

Casa Heyne is one of the finest properties in San Miguel de Allende. The magnificent 18,000-square-foot hacienda is built into a hillside overlooking the historic Centro. The heart of the home is a lushly landscaped central garden, ideal for hosting a romantic wedding reception.

 

One of Ann’s most exclusive listings is Casa Heyne. This house actually hosts numerous wedding parties throughout the year. The romantic hacienda in the historic heart of the city was designed by local architect Pedro Urquizo. The six-bedroom residence features 18,000 square feet of sumptuous indoor-outdoor living spaces, perfect for entertaining on an intimate or grand scale. At the entrance, hand-carved Baroque wooden doors open to a large cobblestone courtyard. Inside, a dramatic staircase ascends to the first-floor reception rooms, including the great room, which opens to a terrace with sweeping vistas of San Miguel. Casa Heyne has every possible amenity: luxurious accommodations, eight terraces, formal gardens, a two-car garage, sound system, wet bar, and an elevator. The residence is offered in immaculate turnkey condition with globally sourced furnishings and accessories.

 
“Rome contains as many perfect backdrops for romance as it does churches and ancient ruins. Think: centuries-old piazzas you can amble through at sunset, charming gelaterias filled with tables for two, and the Spanish Steps, one of the landmarks on which Gregory Peck wooed Audrey Hepburn in Roman Holiday.” — The Knot
 

With its breathtaking architecture, meandering cobblestone streets, romantic trattorias, and legendary history—the Eternal City is a certainly at the top of anyone’s life list, but for honeymooners, it provides a truly unforgettable experience. “Rome is truly a feast for the senses,” says The Knot. “Rome contains as many perfect backdrops for romance as it does churches and ancient ruins. Think: centuries-old piazzas you can amble through at sunset, charming gelaterias filled with tables for two, and the Spanish Steps, one of the landmarks on which Gregory Peck wooed Audrey Hepburn in Roman Holiday. All this means it’s a perfect destination for couples.”

 

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This historic palazzo in the heart of Rome has breathtaking 360-degree views of the Piazza Venezia, the Santa Maria in Ara Coeli, and the National Monument of Victor Emmanuel II.
 
 

In the heart of the city, this remarkable three-story penthouse built during the height of the Renaissance has witnessed nearly six centuries of Roman history. Housed in a former 15th-century palazzo, the residence is framed by the majesty of the Piazza Venezia, the Santa Maria in Ara Coeli, and the National Monument of Victor Emmanuel II. The home has been restored and upgraded for contemporary living. The grand staircase takes residents to the formal reception area, composed of a sequence of gracious halls. The master suite is sumptuous with its ornate boudoir, dressing room, and his-and-her bathrooms—the perfect honeymoon hideaway. Five large terraces and glass-enclosed garden rooms overlooking the city are ideal for both a romantic dinner or grand-scale celebration with friends and family.

 
This Kauai hideaway offers complete privacy, yet is only minutes from Hanalei beach. The two-story cottage has seamless indoor-outdoor living spaces that frame views of the mountains and open to lush gardens graced with tropical plants and flowers.
 

With their tropical climate and raw, natural beauty, it’s easy to understand why the islands of Hawaii are considered among the most beautiful places in the world for a home or honeymoon. “When it comes to romance, one would be hard pressed to find a more magical destination than the island of Kauai,” says Amy Frazier, a luxury real estate broker at Hawaii Life Real Estate Brokers, the exclusive Affiliate of Christie’s International Real Estate in Kauai. “Beloved for the active lifestyle it offers, the island has its own intimate ambience, too, with fine restaurants, boutiques, and galleries, and world-famous beaches.” Amy offers more Kauai lifestyle tips on her blog.

One of Amy’s listings is this idyllic two-story villa tucked away on a private road in Hanalei Bay. The residence underwent a top to bottom remodel in 2017 and is offered completely furnished and turnkey. The elegant living spaces seamlessly transition to enclosed outdoor spaces, which expand the floor plan without losing the cozy cottage ambience. Lush landscaping creates a private oasis, a short walk from the beach. After a day of surfing, residents can relax on the screened-in lanai and watch the waterfalls cascade down the mountains.

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