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Good Taste: The World's Most Romantic Restaurants

Good Taste: The World's Most Romantic Restaurants

A collection of the world’s most romantic restaurants, from European cities to exotic desert escapes – the best places to eat and be seduced.

Candle-lit tables overlooking the Tyrrhenian Sea at La Sponda in Positano

ITALY, POSITANO, LA SPONDA AT LE SIRENUSE

The Michelin starred La Sponda at boutique hotel Le Sirenuse in Positano commands panoramic views across the sparkling blue of the Tyrrhenian Sea from its traditional tiled terrace. Light and local Mediterranean cuisine is served at pretty, wrought iron tables illuminated by the soft glow of the 400 candles attentive waiting staff light every night. It’s a leisurely and elegant place, devoid of pomp and pretention despite its global reputation. It is intimate, sweet and as delicious as the ice-cold, home-made Limoncello they serve there. An Italian haven from which to enjoy a slow and indulgent pranzo in the late afternoon sun, or an intimate dinner amongst the bougainvillea and gentle sea breeze. Your very own slice of la dolce vita on the Amalfi Coast.

INDIA, UDAIPUR, SHEESH MAHAL

At first glance, the floating palace of India’s Lake Pichola in the northern region of Rajastan looks like a mirage. Now a luxury hotel, the Taj Lake Palace offers its own dining locations from garden courtyards and pillared balconies. However, the best way to enjoy its buoyant, palatial splendour is from the banks of the lake at the Leela Palace restaurant Sheesh Mahal, in the stone walled city of Udaipur. Built in the style of a grand maharaja’s royal residence, authentic Indian cuisine is served by moonlight with traditional ceremony from its enchanting terrace. On a balmy Indian night, enjoy early evening drinks with breath-taking views of the 18th century palace on the lake – a fine dining experience in the heart of pre-colonial India.

Linen-covered tables in the Clos Maggiore conservatory restaurant overhung with cherry blossoms

UK, LONDON , CLOS MAGGIORE

Clos Maggiore comes so highly recommended as a romantic dining destination that to include it in this list comes as something of a cliché. But no collection of romantic restaurants would be complete without it. A tranquil space set in London’s historic Covent Garden, starry-eyed lovers can dine in the candle-lit conservatory amidst flowering boughs of cherry blossom. A burning fire in the hearth and the heady promise of London’s West End seal the romantic deal. There’s more to this restaurant than pure aesthetics (as there is with love), and Chef Marcellin Marc’s Provencal-inspired cuisine made from local and seasonal produce is a gastronomic experience sure to set hearts aflutter.

ABU DHABI, LIWA OASIS, QASR AL SARAB

Set in the edge of the Empty Quarter close to the Liwa Oasis, the Qasr al Sarab Desert Resort resembles an old fortress amid the desert’s towering dunes. The feel is of being at the end of the earth, with only the sand, your lover and the luxurious welcome of the resort for company. Against the hauntingly beautiful backdrop of the dunes and raging desert heat, the Middle Eastern opulence of the hotel’s dining experiences are a cool, sweet relief. More of a gastronomic trip than an evening out, be waited on by a private butler in a Bedouin tent for two, or fall in love under the desert stars at their seasonal Al Falaj open-air dining experience.

The yellow dining room with round tables and decorative lamps at Restaurant Lasserre in Paris

FRANCE, PARIS, RESTAURANT LASSERRE

Secretive and a little bit dirty, the magic of Paris, otherwise known as the City of Love, has long inspired romance. From the cobbled side-streets of Marais and Montmartre to the pavement cafes, leafy boulevards and hidden courtyards of St-Germain-des-Prés, the opportunities for romance are enough to make one giddy. The Restaurant Lasserre is one of the city’s most luxurious locations for courting. Located in the heart of the 8th arrondissement, near les Champs-Elysées and Montaigne Avenue, a gilded lift will spirit you up to dine beneath the stars. The dining room has an opening roof (designed with lovers in mind) and a menu of fine French fare and champagne served with old-world service amidst elegant surroundings.

Images courtesy of: Le Sirenuse, Sheesh Mahal, Clos Maggiore, Qasr Al Sarab, Restaurant Lasserre