Dreamy Bridal Inspiration in the Most Romantic City on the Planet

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Paris can do no wrong in our eyes and that sentiment shines through in this gorgeous bridal inspiration crafted by French Grey Events. A lush bouquet and a lace and chiffon gown are the perfect match for the architectural beauty of the most romantic city in all the land. And so too is the photography genius of Michael and Carina. Get lost in the beauty of Paris and a stunning bride with each and every image right here.

From the Photographers… The American Church of Paris with its stunning architecture made for the most beautiful backdrop for this elegant Parisian bridal editorial. The set of images showcase the different emotional stages a bride goes through before getting married: she is nervous, excited, playful, feels empowered, feels bittersweet. This introspective journey in the “city of love”, which is rich in love, happiness, loneliness and heaviness all at once, created an appealing backstory to this editorial.

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Photography: Michael and Carina Photography | Dress: Lihi Hod | Shoes : Jimmy Choo | Hair and Makeup: Harold James | Event Venue: American Church In Paris | Film Lab: Richard Photo Lab | Floral Design, Planning and Styling: French Grey Events | Model: Fanny Beladona | Mohair Jumper: Maison Floret

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A Garden Wedding Inspired by the Couple’s Love of Art

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It’s not every day you come across a wedding quite as striking as this. And that’s saying a lot coming from an editor who sees pretty amazing nuptials on the reg. No surprise, vendor masterminds like A Modern Plan were behind the scenes on the making of this art-inspired celebration, and our beloved Jose Villa worked his usual magic behind the lens.

From the planner, A Modern PlanKatie + Clark are both from Alaska. They met in high school and are simply the most lovely couple. They share a strong love of art and traveling. Their wedding was filled with lots of personal touches. Katie’s love of the quaint flower shops in Paris was echoed in the beautiful abundant blooms displayed in vintage flower buckets by Brown Paper Design.

Clark and Katie’s affection of the arts was seen throughout their day. In the programs created by the bride and also their menus. Each menu had a print of one of their favorite paintings or drawings. The week leading up to the wedding date showed rain in the forecast. The rain added such an intimate touch to their day. A beautiful tent was set up at Beaulieu Garden for their reception and guests gathered around their ceremony with clear umbrellas. Such a beautiful day.

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Photography: Jose Villa Photography | Event Planning: A Modern Plan | Cake : The Whole Cake | Calligraphy: Bespoke Aesthetics | Lighting : Got Light | Dj : DJ CAMS | Venue: Beaulieu Garden | Classic Car: Wine Country Classic Limousine | Floral Design + Decor : Brown Paper Design | Linens: La Tavola Fine Linen Rental | Lounge Rentals : Found Vintage Rentals | Paper Goods : Made by the Bride | Rentals: Bright Event Rentals | Rentals : Classic Party Rentals | Rentals : Encore Events Rentals | Shuttles: Napa Valley Tours & Transportation | Tabletop Rentals: Frances Lane | Tenting: Classic Party Rentals | Venue, Food and Rentals : Paula LeDuc Fine Catering

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A Parisian Dream Wedding that all Starts with a Couture Gown

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It’s a given that anything with Greg Finck behind the lens is destined to be pure magic. And when you add Paris and a couture Elie Saab dress into that equation…it’s heart-stopping territory. Feast your eyes on this château celebration made even prettier at the hands of event planner and designer extraordinaire Sarah Haywood along with on-site coordinating by Alejandra Poupel Events and florals by Kitten Grayson. Plus see another couture dress in action with the couple’s wildly pretty engagement right here!

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Sonny&Ann are both from Singapore, and had decided to organize their wedding day at stunning Château de Vaux le Vicomte. This is undoubtedly the most prestigious venue around Paris, and I had never had the chance to work in that amazing XVIIth century castle before. The couple trusted Sarah Haywood, a celebrity luxury wedding planner from London, to organize the weekend festivities. The day started at The Shangri-La Hotel in Paris, where Ann got ready and the couple led the tea ceremony. For the ceremony, Ann wore a stunning couture dress from Elie Saab, with a 30 feet long train. The ceremony was held outdoor despite the chilly Parisian weather that day. Reception was absolutely stunning with amazing florals by The Isle of You, and an amazing main table. Guests were then invited to the gardens of the Château, for a glorious firework, and an incredible video mapping on the facade of the Château.

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Photography: Greg Finck Photography | Floral Design: Kitten Grayson | Assistant Photographer: Marie Film Photographer | Assistant Photographer: Oliver Fly Photography | Chateau: Château De Vaux Le Vicomte | Fireworks: Grand Final Fireworks | Hair Styling: Phuc Le Trung | Live Music: Vogue Band | Live Painting: Maerta Wydler | Video Mapping: Rupert Newman | Wedding Planning&Production: Sarah Haywood | Wedding dress and shoes: Elie Saab | Wedding on-site coordination: Alejandra Poupel Events

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If Paris is Your Dream Wedding Destination, Don’t Miss this One.

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Fair warning—if you are dying to get married in Paris, this slice of inspiration from Rebecca Yale and Vanessa & Caroline will send you over the edge. Or, maybe you’ll dive head first (we would). Because really, it’s just too difficult to resist bridal portraits in gilded rooms and equally charming dinner scenes like this, followed by macarons galore, of course—we get it. Go on, pin your heart out in The Vault destination dreamers.

From Vanessa et CarolineI loved the Pavillon de Musique de la Comtesse du Barry from the moment I stepped into the garden with the beautiful fountain and the view over this gorgeous historical building. Inside the architecture is fit for a princess and feels like you’ve stepped into a fairytale with beautiful paintings on the walls, gold mouldings and rich blue. The Pavillon de Musique is the perfect combination of a classic french venue and a magnificent garden, just outside of Paris. We were inspired by the contrast in the venue of the chequered floors, the deep blue curtains in one room and hard wood floors, and the white and gold mouldings in the dining room. We used that contrast in the design of our inspiration editorial by mixing gold and silver on the table, styling a glamorous and sexy bride in a gorgeous Inbal Dror gown with a soft princess-like hair and makeup with gold floral pins in her loose updo. The gown featured a delicate lace back, which was echoed in the delicate lace of the invitation envelope and the delicate beading of the blush pink bridal shoes. In addition to a beautiful gold and white cake decorated with white sugar flowers we created a dessert display in the dining room with the classic french dessert, macarons, the perfect way to end a lovely Parisian wedding!

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Photography: Rebecca Yale Photography | Event Planning: Vanessa & Caroline – Creatrices de Mariages | Floral Design: Frederic Bertin | Dress: Inbal Dror | Wedding Cake: L’atelier des surceries | Stationery: La Belle Histoire | Shoes: Bella Belle | Jewelry: Messika Joaillerie | Hair and Makeup: Honorine Makeup Studios | Cutlery and Glasses: Blanche Patine | Dress Shop: Metal Flaque Paris | Hair Accesories: Hushed Commottion | Photo Lab: Richard Photo Lab | Plates: Bernardaud | Ring Box: The Mrs Box | Silk ribbons and runner: Orchidee De Soie

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A Real Bride Inspired By Grace Kelly

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When Grace Kelly serves as the point of inspiration, you get a timeless bridal style with no shortage of sophistication. That was certainly the case for this bride who designed her own wedding gown, sourcing Chantilly lace from France and working directly with her dressmaker throughout the 10-month process. The result? A dress that truly set the scene for an incredible day planned by Twine Events. See all the photos by Brancoprata plus clip below by Robert Michael Films.

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From the Bride…

What did you envision your wedding being prior to planning?

We had a memorable engagement in Paris with my family and soon after, the two of us celebrated with a spontaneous getaway to the Italian coast. Everything about that trip felt like a dream. We knew we wanted to incorporate a very romantic European touch with each detail.

What was your color palette and your style vision?

I always love muted, neutral hues like cream, taupe, sand and pale blush. The palette is so effortless and there’s a softness and elegance to it. I wanted to keep everything classic with small hints of French-inspired decor like the blue bouquet blossom china we used for our tableware. While everyone dined outdoors during sunset, music by Edith Piaf played in the background. It felt like we were transported to another place in another era.

What unique elements or DIY details did you include?

Right after Jason proposed, we strolled along the Pont de l’Arcevêché where we wrote our locks and threw the key in the river. I will always remember the significance of that moment. After months of trying to find enough vintage locks, I had to get creative and settle for hand making guest escort cards for every couple. They were twined together with a small brass lock and key where they were displayed on a wrought iron gate to mimic the bridge. We also had a gentleman’s lounge / library where everyone enjoyed the cigars and whiskey tasting. I’ll give my husband credit for that one!

What was your favorite moment? Your favorite crafted detail?

Exchanging our personalized vows. Although I was a crying mess and we stood in front of a lot of people, the moment was so quiet and genuine that it was as if we were the only two there. My favorite crafted detail would have to be the collaborative work between my girlfriend, Heather from The Pointed Pen, who helped me design my formal invitations, and my brother who hand watercolored the artwork of the villa on the front face of the invite. It was all made with love.

Tell us about your flowers, your gown, your cake, etc.

The grounds already had aligned Italian Cypress trees, a side garden of rose bushes and the 1920’s villa was built with so much character that we didn’t need to overdo it with flowers. Our florist, Of The Flowers, did an amazing job highlighting areas to accentuate the natural beauty.

I designed my wedding gown with my dressmaker, Lucille (who I refer her as my ‘fairy godmother’). Grace Kelly was my wedding style muse. I envisioned the style and silhouette to be timeless and classic. We sourced the Chantilly lace from France and the top bodice was all hand sewn. It was such a fun and meaningful process for me that took nearly 10 months. Hopefully one day, I can pass it down to my daughter.

We opted out a cake and chose a dessert bar. We preferred to have many options of bite size sweets!

What is one piece of advice that you could give brides-to-be?

The same advice I was given: On the day of your wedding, take a moment. Sit in silence, be observant and reciprocate the gratitude and joy to everyone who is there to celebrate your special day. It all goes by so quickly.

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Photography: Brancoprata | Videography: Robert Michael Films | Event Planning: Twine Events | Floral Design: Of The Flowers | Wedding Dress: Custom | DJ: Dart Collective | Officiant: Rev. John Moore | Venue: Sanata Anita Gardens | Deserts: Fantasy Frostings | Film Lab: Carmencita Film Lab | Rentals: Archive Rentals | Rentals : Dish Wish | Strings: Angelica Strings

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6 Proposal Tips from a Real Groom

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Proposal season is upon us, so if you think an engagement is in your near future…consider not-so-subtly forwarding this article to your man. It’s an epic Jardin des Tuileries proposal with tips from Ryan, the most romantic groom-to-be you’ll ever meet. He surprised his love, Marianne of The M.A. Times with a moment she’ll always remember and we’re thrilled to officially kick off this wedding journey with them.

6 Proposal Tips from a Real Groom

Know where she wants to go or places that she loves

Marianne obsesses over Paris. Her books and decor screamed Francophile! I started planning a long time before to make sure that I could bring her here for the first time. Trips are expensive, so plan far enough in advance and that way you can pivot or adjust if anything comes up. It’s important to make the occasion one to remember…you can only propose to her once!

Talk to her family

I spoke with her Dad and got his permission several months before. Though Marianne and I knew that we wanted to be together and this is more of a gesture, I’d still recommend this step not only to show respect but because they can offer very useful advice and provide extra hands in planning the proposal. After I proposed to Marianne in Paris, we were having lunch and I handed her hand-written letters from our parents and that evening we had a planned Skype call to celebrate with family. The proposal should be special and you want to make it memorable not just for her but for those close to her too.

Know the style of ring she wants

Girls want you to know what jewelry they want, you just have to listen and pay attention. Some girls don’t want a diamond, some girls like silver, platinum and white gold over yellow or rose gold. Some girls want a simple ring, other want one that is more detailed. I knew she wanted something that was vintage inspired. That’s how I landed on Heidi Gibson’s site. Amazing hand-made Art Deco rings that any girl would die for. Don’t just go out and buy a ring (she’ll love it either way), make sure the ring speaks to her personality and personal style because she will be wearing this FOREVER.

Commission the help of others

Our friend Tyrone lives in France and helped me scout out the perfect place to propose to Marianne in Paris. I had no idea what the place would look like since I’d never been there, let alone whether the leaves would still be on the trees. Tyrone checked it out beforehand to make sure. For Marianne’s ring, I wanted to choose the center stone locally so I spoke with my friend Tessa who works in a jewelry shop and she set aside the best oval stones she could find. After choosing the stone, Heidi shipped me the finished ring and I had it set here in Raleigh. People are always willing to help as long as you ask!

Do NOT be predictable

I knew the key to surprising her was getting someone involved that she wouldn’t expect. I worked with Anthropologie and our local Anthropologie in Durham, NC to concoct a story to get Marianne to show up at the designated location at the right time. She thought she was showing up for a photo shoot. I looped in the photographer that I hired (Tala Nicole) and Tala emailed Marianne the same details that were planned with Anthropologie to close the loop.

Listen to her (the perfect proposal is in the details)

I didn’t just buy a ring and propose in Paris. I knew she didn’t want a hotel so I chose a HomeAway apartment in Le Marais. I knew the style of ring she would want, and the garden we got engaged was one she had talked about numerous times (Jardin des Tuileries). She was wearing a dress that I got for her that she had previously mentioned she loved from Anthropologie. Marianne read the letters from our parents at a restaurant I knew she wanted to go to (Carette). Upon returning to our apartment, there was a bottle of her favorite champagne (Veuve Clicquot) and a framed photo of us on the table (done with help of the property management company). We ended the night with a planned Skype video chat with her sister and sister’s husband, and parents. The day doesn’t have to be elaborate, but make sure that you listen to her and do things that show her that you listen. A girl that wants to marry you will drop all of the clues you need to pull off the perfect proposal, so absolutely take the things she says to heart.

“This will help you pull off a proposal she will love

and also prepare you to be the husband she deserves.”

-Ryan

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About the proposal from Ryan… Since I had met Marianne in 2012, she had always dreamed of Paris. Everything in her apartment was French-inspired, and even her coffee table books were about Paris. I come from a camp that believes life is too short to wish and dream, and that you should always aspire to make dreams come true. I knew Paris was the perfect place for us to start our love story, so I cashed in my credit card miles to buy two tickets.

A self-confessed Francophile, Marianne already knew ALL the places she wanted to go in Paris, but I wanted to choose a surprise location for the proposal. The Pavilion de Marsan in the Tuileries Garden at the Louvre Palace was a place I had seen online when planning our trip and I loved the way it looked. As a photographer, I always capture surroundings that interest or inspire me. It was important to me to have this moment captured too, so I began researching photographers in Paris. Standards held high, I was thrilled when I came across Tala Nicole Photography. I sent her pictures of Marianne, introducing myself and my plan, and she responded almost immediately, saying she would LOVE to shoot my proposal. I also arranged with Tala to shoot our engagement photos following the proposal at several of Marianne’s favorite spots in Paris.

I told Marianne that I would take care of our accommodations and I wanted it to be a surprise. I knew she wanted to be in Le Marais, and had dreamed of lavish details like hardwood floors and a balcony with a view. I had booked several beach houses and cabins through HomeAway in the past, and I knew I wanted to stay in something like that…a home away from home, but I wasn’t sure if they offered properties overseas. Luckily it turned out HomeAway had several thousand properties to choose from in Paris; which eased my hunt for the perfect property. I was able to narrow down properties in Paris by the location, the number of bedrooms, number of guests, etc. After sorting through hundreds of options, I found a property in Le Marias that was that not only 2 minutes walk to the Metro stop, but also had a wrap-around corner balcony with the most amazing view. Without hesitation, I booked.

Getting Marianne to Paris was easy (I mean, who wouldn’t jump on a plane if handed a ticket?), but how was I supposed to make sure she showed up to a given location and not get suspicious of a photographer on the grounds? Marianne partners with our local Anthropologie at The Streets at Southpoint, and after she helped host a fashion show with them, I got the idea to use Anthropologie as a way to get her to show up. With the help of Ashley and Carey at the SouthPoint Anthropologie and Kelly at the corporate office, we began crafting a master plan. I had Carey text Marianne to say that home office reached out and wanted to shoot with some of their blogger partners who had upcoming travel plans, and Marianne (as I suspected) replied that she’d love to do a shoot in Paris. Anthropologie told Marianne if she would be in Paris with a male friend to have him wear a suit, as he may be needed for some of the shots. I feigned reluctance to the idea, but eventually “caved.” To top it off, I worked with Carey to make sure Marianne had her dream Anthropologie dress to wear that day. Every little detail was coming together.

Finally, on Wednesday, November 2nd at 7:30 AM CEST, the time was finally here! We headed over to the Tuileries Garden to meet Tala and started shooting; just Marianne at first and then Tala told me to step in. While we were shooting, I turned to Marianne and started saying sweet things to her, but she tried to ignore me because she thought she needed to remain professional for the shoot. She seriously had no idea. I got her attention though and turned her toward me, grabbing both of her hands. In that moment she realized what was happening, and couldn’t hold back tears. The next little bit was a blur, and the only thing I can remember clearly after I asked and she said ‘YES,’ was that, in all my excitement, I couldn’t figure out which finger the ring went on! After soaking in our engagement at the Tuileries, we continued our journey around Marianne’s favorite places in Paris: the Louvre, Musée d’Orsay, Pont Alexandre III, Palais Royal and then the Trocadero view of the Eiffel Tower. This wasn’t just important to me so that we would have photos together but each spot and each photo helped to capture the feeling of that day.

The day wasn’t over after parting with Tala. I had both of our parents write letters to Marianne which were tucked in my jacket pocket. When we arrived at Carette for a late breakfast, I gave Marianne the letters from our parents – cue the waterworks again! We savored our tea and pastries and then headed back to the HomeAway. While we were out, I had our property manager set up a framed photo of us and a bottle of champagne so we could come back and celebrate our engagement. I’d also coordinated with Marianne’s family beforehand a time to do a Skype call so that they could be a part of the excitement. It was the perfect ending to the most perfect day. And that’s how Marianne Verrilli made my dreams come true and became my fiancé.

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Photography: Tala Nicole | Engagement Ring: Heidi Gibson | Apartment: Marais HomeAway Apartment | Bride-To-Be: Marianne Verrilli | Center Stone: Diamonds Direct | Groom-To-Be: Ryan Sides | Housing: Rutherford Private Estate | Ring Box: The Mrs Box

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10 Amazing Honeymoon Airbnbs

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For me, there’s nothing quite as addictive as getting lost on Airbnb.

I can spend hours on imagined holidays and would-be city breaks, exploring the world through other people’s homes. (That’s probably why this blog post was supposed to go live yesterday, and didn’t).

But when it comes to planning a honeymoon, we often want something a little more special and luxurious. And the thought of exchanging emails, organising the collection of keys, and unpacking your toiletries in someone else’s bathroom, doesn’t sound so romantic.

But I reckon these places might just change your mind…

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Architect-Designed Villa, Ubud, Bali, Indonesia

As Airbnb has grown, so too has its extensive collection of holiday lets. And while the spare rooms and apartments still make up the bulk of its inventory, when you look a little closer, you can find castles and private islands, luxury villas and cute cottages, and homes in the trees and under the ground.

And while they are not all budget stays, often, these immersive accommodations come in at a fraction of the price of a similarly unique hotel.

So, to help you wade through the thousands upon thousands of listings (and weed out the big resorts who pretend to be private homes, pffft!) we’ve put together a list of ten of the best rentals for an Airbnb honeymoon.

Some are a little bit fancy, others are simply one of a kind stays you’ll never forget, but I reckon there’s at least one gem in here that will get every couple excited about a homestay honeymoon.

1. The Private Island in the Coral Reef

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Bird Island, Placencia, Belize

I actually sailed past this island on my own honeymoon, and it’s just as magical as it looks.

No frills, no luxuries, but if you want to make like Robinson Crusoe and spend your post wedding getaway in solitude under the stars, this place will be your paradise.

2. The Poolside Treehouse with a View

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Casa Arbol, San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua 

If you’re looking for a honeymoon with other-level sunsets, this is the place to stay.

This is one of those places that will be fun to hang out in all day and enjoy a few drinks in the evening, but is also the perfect base to explore the region. It’s also got access to a secluded beach, which sounds like our slice of heaven.

3. The Geodesic Farmstay

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Geo Dome on Farm, Upstate Catskills, New York

If you and your beau are fans of the great outdoors and cool architecture, then this geodesic glamping stay might be spot on for your honeymoon.

Sleep under the stars in this epic space by night, then enjoy community dining and farming by day, with plenty of hikes, swimming, arts and yoga. An idyllic post-wedding comedown, don’t you think?

4. The Quintessential Irish Cottage

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Traditional Cottage, Donegal, Ireland.

Okay, so I’m from Ireland and it’s pretty rare you see a cottage as idyllic as this one.

Located in one of the most remote but incredibly beautiful parts of the country, a honeymoon here would offer you absolute cosy seclusion. Think long, bracing walks, and curling up by the fire.

5. The Moroccan Riad

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The Djahane Garden, Marrakesh, Morocco

Visiting Marrakesh is up there on my bucket list, and staying in a traditional riad sounds like the best way to do it.

This lavish stay is as extensive as it is beautiful, and with a courtyard pool, four beautiful gardens and five suites, you and your new spouse could stay in a different part of this palace every night of your honeymoon.

6. The Medieval Tuscania Tower

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Cistercian Abbey, Tuscia, Italy

Now this would be a pretty cool pitstop on an Italian roadtrip.

The restored tower of a Cistercian abbey built in 1146 just an hour north of Rome, it offers goosebump-inducing views of the surrounding central Italian countryside. An atmospheric stay, that would also be incredibly romantic. (The host, Ippolita sounds pretty special from the reviews, too!).

7. The Fairylit Treehouse in the Woods

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Secluded Intown Treehouse, Atlanta, Georgia

Oh, this one is just too sweet. A suite of three treehouses, connected by wooden bridges and adorned with fairylights, it’s hard to believe this storybook drawing of a homestay is just minutes from downtown Atlanta.

As you scroll through the reviews, it’s tough to find a single one that doesn’t call this place ‘magical’ – now how often can you describe a hotel stay as whimsical?

8. The Houseboat on the Seine

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Houseboat near the Eiffel Tower, Paris, France

So some people want to go to Paris and pay the big bucks to get a room with a view in a fancy hotel, but this sounds way more up my street (and leaves more room in the macaroon budget). A houseboat on the Seine where to can take in the city from the heart of it, and in walking distance from all the central attractions.

As it is a boat, it won’t be on the spacious side, but if you’re after something a little quirky and drinking wine on the deck of a boat sounds like your kind of night in Paris, then this is definitely one to add to your wishlist.

9. The Indonesian Villa in the Rice Paddies

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Architect-Designed Villa, Ubud, Bali, Indonesia

This place looks pretty special. This villa is one of several immaculately restored Javanese teak houses, nestled into rice paddies with a shared swimming pool.

Combining traditional elements with modern comforts, this is one of the most beautiful and luxurious stays we’ve found on Airbnb, right near the edge of a thriving and charming small down, and just 20 minutes from the regional hub of Ubud.

10. The Stilt House Under The Stars

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Forty Feet Up, Tiller, Oregon

This stilt house is just so freaking cool, I recommend checking it out just for the pictures alone (it’s so high, it sometimes sits OVER the clouds!).

The Pacific Northwest is already a captivating place for anyone with a love of the great outdoors, and if that sounds like you, I couldn’t think of a better place to wake up. A charming cabin on the inside, this one gets booked out way in advance (and with good reason!). Oh, and it has a hot tub!

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Forty Feet Up, Tiller, Oregon

So that’s our round-up of favourites. Perfect for a budget honeymoon that you’ll never forget, or for getting more bang for your buck with a high end holiday too.

We did left plenty behind though so let us know if you’d like us to create a part two!

Not a fan of Airbnbs? Get more inspiration for your perfect honeymoon

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Rhianedr and Maxwell’s Amalfi Coast Elopement

Today we’re inviting you to join us on the Amalfi Coast! Ok, so not really but these gorgeous images of

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