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Plan the perfect romantic getaway

3 Strategies to help you plan a super-safe, guilt-free, kid-free, sleep-late, romantic weekend away for two

The living room has simmered down, the smells of cooking rich foods and baking sweet treats have dissipated and the days of lazing in the sun have been replaced with looming deadlines, covering books and labelling stationary. This, coupled with the challenges of navigating Lockdown Level 3, is likely to have left many of us with the post-holiday blues.

According to Shaun Lamont, Managing Director of First Group Hotels, the best way to banish post-December, back-to-work and back-to-school blues is by planning your next getaway. “The excitement of planning and counting down to your new adventure will soon get you over the old one.” He adds that Valentine’s Day presents the perfect opportunity to plan a romantic getaway, “With Valentine’s Day less than a month away, there is no better time for couples to celebrate one another, recoup and make new magical, lasting memories.”

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And, planning the perfect romantic getaway has never been easier. Lamont offers 3 strategies to help you plan a super-safe, guilt-free, kid-free, sleep-late weekend away for two:

1. Be thoughtful: Thoughtfulness is possibly the most important element in creating lasting, magical memories with your better half. Consider what your partner enjoys doing best on holiday; is it lazing at the pool curled up with a book, hiking, cycling or perhaps even horse-back riding? Use those insights to find a suitable hotel or resort to visit. Then, look at booking a room or chalet with a beautiful view (there is nothing quite like a good view to spark the romance), a fireplace and arrange an in-room dining experience by candlelight. Don’t forget to switch off the morning alarms on your phones and close the block-out curtains!

2. Be safe: It goes without saying, we’re amid a pandemic after all, but it is important to ensure that you choose accommodation that subscribes to industry best practice, that is accountable to an industry authority such as FEDHASA (The Federated Hospitality Association of SA) and has implemented stringent COVID-safety protocols. First Group, for example, has rolled out enhanced technologies, including electrostatic sprayers with hospital-grade disinfectant to sanitise surfaces throughout our hotels and resorts. Access to our properties are strictly controlled with the use of various measures including no-contact thermometers, disinfection spray tunnels and hand sanitation stations in addition to using ultraviolet light technology for the further sanitisation of all rooms and public areas. It’s always better to be safe than sorry!

3. Be smart: Booking a romantic getaway doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg. Trawl the internet for discounted offers – there are tons of places who have couple’s ‘specials’ (especially this time of year)! Also, when booking online remember to book directly on the hotel’s website as this is often cheaper than going through an Online Travel Agent (OTA). And finally, if you have your heart set on a specific destination that doesn’t have any discounts available, consider booking off-peak, pay your deposit and then gift your Valentine with the promise of a weekend away later in the year.

“A surprise romantic getaway is the perfect way to show your partner how much they mean to you, so get planning, get booking and then make sure you live in the present and enjoy every minute making magical, lasting memories,” Lamont concludes.

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