I recently arranged a birthday party for a couple hitting their sixties. They decided to take 40 friends away for a surprise weekend and asked Mason Rose Private Travel to come up with a party to remember in a secret destination. Working to their brief, we chose one of my favourite Aman properties, Aman Sveti Stefan, on the stunning, wild coastline of Montenegro...
This beautiful hotel, right on the water with spectacular views across the Adriatic Sea, pink-sand beaches and distant snow-capped mountains clad in thick pine forests, is ideal for a large party looking to enjoy an intimate private celebration amidst heavenly surroundings, without foregoing seamless service.
Aman Sveti Stefan’s 80-acre estate is spread across both the mainland at 1930’s Villa Milocer, and a picturesque little island offshore, ‘Sveti Stefan’, home to a 15th Century fortified fishing village; a charming cobbled-street network of pretty courtyards and original stone buildings with red-tiled roofs.
Guests sleep in rooms, suites or cottages, each decorated with individual features and style.
Days are spent relaxing, swimming and picnicing in secluded bays (there’s beach service for guests), lounging in the clifftop pool, luxuriating in the spa, and enjoying stunning dining experiences in private corners throughout the property.
Italian restaurant, Arva, is wonderful, as is the intimate dining room in Villa Milocer, and Piazza has a lively village atmosphere - great for dinner al fresco. Menus by their fantastic Chef, incorporate local and organic ingredients, as well as making the most of the treasure chest of seafood proffered by the Adriatic: rock oysters, sea bass and Octopus are Montenegro specialties.
Aman Sveti Stefan guests enjoy exclusive access to one of the most breathtaking stretches of shoreline in Montenegro: Queen’s Beach, and can sail along the coastline to soak up a plethora of cultural highlights, visiting the Unesco-protected Bay of Kotor, or the ancient town of Budva to enjoy incredibly preserved architecture.
Skadar Lake is a must visit – it’s home to an incredible variety of birdlife, and surrounded by the most beautiful ancient fortresses and monasteries that you can pop into to discover the region’s history.
A stay wouldn’t be complete without a visit to the 1,600sqft spa, which they refer to as their temple to wellbeing, for a spoiling therapy and leisurely swim. Montenegro recognises over 650 medicinal herbs and plants, many of which are used in the personalised treatments in the spa.
There’s a pool, gym, hydrotherapy and an array of wonderful treatments to choose from.
Every time I explore a new destination, whether it’s on an adventure holiday in Peru or a luxury beach escape in the Indian Ocean, I return home full of excitement to share the amazing sights I have seen. Through my own experiences I have developed a love of helping others experience the great wonders of the world; truly getting under the skin of the extraordinary destinations that are at your fingertips. Getting the details right, from which hotel is perfectly located for exploring away from the crowds, to which local guide is most knowledgeable on history or culture or art, is of paramount importance to me. I am constantly seeking out new and exciting experiences and exploring off the beaten track to ensure my clients are receiving the best and most honest first-hand advice.
Take a look at my travel diaries for food for thought on your next trip...