Valentine's Day by Numbers

Valentine's Day by Numbers

One day. Two people. Three of the most romantic destinations in Europe. Four suggestions for an unforgettable Valentine’s Day.

Steal your loved one away to Europe on a trip that is sure to capture their heart. Look forward to a timeless railway adventure or a serene spa getaway; a creative cookery class or a feast fit for the Tsars. When it comes to romance, Belmond has you covered.

Romance on Rails

From the metropolitan buzz of London to its postcard-perfect villages, Britain is full of uniquely endearing destinations perfect for a Valentine’s getaway.

Let your loved one know just how important they are and start a new tradition aboard one of our vintage trains. Travel is an elegant affair aboard the Belmond British Pullman and the Belmond Northern Belle, with carriages dating back to the 1920s that have been lovingly restored to their former glory. Liveried stewards, intricate marquetry and dazzling crystalware set the scene for a feast like no other. Dress up for the occasion and be transported back to a more sophisticated age, where the spirit of adventure can still be felt in the air.

Treat someone special to a romantic lunch on either train this Valentine’s Day, departing from London, Leeds or York. Savour five delicious courses, accompanied by champagne, fine wines and red roses as you wind through the beautiful British countryside.

The numbers: More than 150kg of caviar and 22,000 bottles of champagne are served on our UK journeys each year—dining aboard is an extravagant affair.

Lessons in Love

For those seeking a more hands-on experience, show off your culinary flair at The Raymond Blanc Cookery School at Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons. Journey to the idyllic manor house, nestled in the heart of verdant Oxfordshire. Don your apron and head into the acclaimed cookery school kitchen for the fun-filled Patisserie and Desserts course. Strengthen the special bond between you and your partner as our expert chefs show you how to create sublime sweet treats, inspired by Maman Blanc’s recipes and the hotel’s expansive repertoire.

Taking the time to prepare something delicious for someone you care about will not only sweep them off their feet, but, science has proven, will also help build positive psychological associations. In 2015, researchers at the University of Buffalo proved that our preferred ‘comfort foods’ are those given to us by our loved ones. In turn, these foods draw us into feelings of togetherness and belonging, reminding us of people dear to us. So by learning how to whip up some delicious dishes for your special someone, you’ll always be close to their heart and first in their mind when they see those same treats in the future.

Combine your cookery course with a luxurious night at the hotel with our Cook and Stay package. You’ll both be treated to a world-class dinner in the two Michelin-starred restaurant, before retreating to the sanctuary of your individually-designed room or suite.

The numbers: Europeans account for nearly ½ of the world's chocolate consumption, with Brits, Swiss and Germans eating on average 11kg per year—so your sweet creations are sure to be well received.

Spa Serenity

Nestled between sub-tropical gardens and the shimmering Atlantic Ocean, Belmond Reid’s Palace is the perfect place to escape the world. Whisk your partner away to this dream-like spot in the Madeiran capital of Funchal and lose yourself in each other’s company. Blue skies, warm smiles and cherished memories await.

Whether you plan to explore the island or simply unwind with cocktails beside the pool, make the time to head to The Spa. Expert therapists will help you find a new level of inner harmony, using world-class products from Aromatherapy Associates, La Prairie, LaStone and Ytsara. Each treatment suite boasts an individual outdoor terrace and ocean views, allowing you to further appreciate the secluded location and warm sea breeze. Rooms can also be customised for couples, letting you enjoy your treatments side by side.

For true head-to-toe pampering, opt for the Head over Heels spa package. Begin with a stress-banishing full-body Swedish massage from La Prairie, followed by a Na Plai Recovery Head Massage from Ytsara. A hot herbal compress further eases tensions, while a blend of rosewood and orange stimulated Ayurvedic marma points to promote total balance.

The numbers: 16% of Madeira's plants are endemic, meaning you won't find them anywhere else in the world. The island is known for its enchanting, colourful and diverse flora, earning it the nicknames ‘Sleeping Garden’ and the ‘Island of Flowers’.  

A Feast for the Senses

With its dazzling baroque buildings, silver-threaded canals and streets brimming with storied history, Russia’s St Petersburg is a city alive with culture that offers a unique sense of grand romance. Nowhere is this more palpable than at Belmond Grand Hotel Europe, the venue of choice for those looking to make a lasting impression. Although it has been a cultural and culinary landmark for the past 140 years, its charm remains timeless.

It is often attested that good food is the best way to capture someone’s heart, so spoil the one you love with an extravagant Valentine’s Day feast at the hotel’s illustrious L’Europe ballroom. On this magical evening the hotel offers a seductive Aphrodisia menu, with each course beautifully designed to symbolise the key moments of falling in love. Exotic flavours and ingredients have been chosen to stir your senses and awaken your passion.

The freshest seafood, delicately marinated in lime and coconut, reflects the mysterious appeal of your first meeting, while a piquant sweet chilli sorbet adds the dash of excitement that fires your imagination and leaves you seeking more. Rich pan-roasted duck foie gras with persimmon crème brûlée represents the sweet and indulgent moment of the first kiss.

A main course of milk veal mignon in coco with morel parmesan fondue is followed by a succulent chocolate martini sphere with mandarin and warm raspberry coulis to mirror your most passionate encounters, while a final smooth dark chocolate creation echoes the tranquillity of enduring love.

The numbers: Valentine's Day first arrived in Russia in the early 1990s—experience the celebrations while the country is still in the honeymoon phase.

A Gift to Remember

Still can’t decide what your loved one would pick? Then opt for the perfect present, a Belmond Gift Card, and let them choose their own inspiring, romantic experience from across our range of hotels, trains and river cruises worldwide.

by Daniel Hayden