Honeymoon with a view
Pristine beaches, glorious climate, romantic hotels, world-renowned cuisine and quick to reach: little wonder the Greek islands are synonymous with honeymoons. And Corfu is perhaps the most scenic of all the islands in the archipelagos and there, perched on a wooded hillside with spectacular views of the Ionian Sea and mainland Greece, lies the five-star MarBella Corfu.
Honeymooners are made to feel special the moment they step into the palatial reception. They’re greeted with smiles and glasses of Prosecco while their bags are whisked effortlessly away.
Despite its size (this is a sprawling, labyrinth of a resort spread over nine levels with six wings), clever design manages to make it still feel very private. There are plenty of tranquil spaces ideal for couples, such as two adult pools and an intimate spa. The private Blue Flag beach, reached via an underground passageway, offers all sorts of water-based activities, such as boat rides along the coast, or across to mainland Greece, snorkelling and kayaking. And if you want to explore beneath the waves, there’s even an independent dive centre.
Room to unwind
Following a recent refurbishment, the rooms and suites (all have a terrace or balcony) are some of the best in the region. Earthy tones and soft, minimalist furnishings create a stylish, modern look you’ll long to replicate once you’re back home. Newlyweds will love the junior suites with a plunge pool. Or splash out on a night or two in a sumptuous honeymoon suite with romantic sea views and a Jacuzzi tub.
Wining and dining
Six restaurants mean it’s possible to dine on fabulously fresh and original cuisine every day. Choose from relaxed seafood lunches at Dolphin beach bar, Mediterranean and Greek suppers at the poolside restaurants, and candle-lit dishes to savour at a gourmet Italian. There’s even a retro-style American diner for finger-licking good fare if the mood takes you. Breakfast is a feast. Think buffet-style tables laden with tasty pastries, cereals and fruit. And there are also cooking stations so you can order eggs however you liked them cooked, or stacks of pancakes. Make sure you don’t miss sunset cocktails at open-air Eleonas Bar. Its rooftop location has staggeringly beautiful views of the lush gardens, olive groves and sparkling sea, plus there’s live music, too.
Out and about
If you’re keen to explore some of this beautiful island as well as the resort, book a hiking trip to Stroggili village. At the foot of Panagia mountain, it’s a steep walk in places, but when you finally arrive your reward is a 16th-Century village which feels like it’s been frozen in time. Boat excursions to Corfu Town are another fun day out – highlights include wandering the narrow streets of the old town, Byzantine buildings such as the royal palace and a buzzing esplanade with cafés and galleries.
Wed in the Med
If you’re looking for a sun-drenched wedding abroad, then MarBella Corfu might be the venue for you. You can get married beneath a decorated arch on the deck overlooking the ocean, followed by a Champagne reception for up to 60 guests at the Beach Bar or La Bussola restaurant.
Go there! From £117 per double room per night and from £253 per night in a family garden view room on a half-board basis (based on 4 sharing), MarBella Corfu (marbella.gr, +30 2661 071183). Around 30 minutes’ transfer time from Corfu airport.