Princeton, NJ is probably not the first place you’d think of for a romantic getaway, but it can hold its own when it comes to amour. The downtown area and Princeton Shopping Center both offer diverse restaurants, spas and shopping from the luxurious to the whimsical, and the narrow, winding roads through the bucolic countryside are absolutely beautiful. It doesn’t matter if you’re planning to escape the city, visit with your child who attends the university, take a staycation, or stay over the weekend after a wedding, here are ways to woo your love and help you connect as a couple.
Where you stay sets the mood for your weekend. I’ve found some of Princeton’s best hotels for a romantic interlude.
Best location – The Nassau Inn is at Palmer Square, in the heart of Princeton. Its 18th century history and traditionally furnished rooms and suites give the inn charm. It has a new patio for dining al fresco from its famous restaurant The Yankee Doodle Tap Room. There’s a 24-hour fitness center and room service from 6 AM–10 PM.
Best hotel restaurant – The recently renovated Peacock Inn is now a boutique hotel. They only have 16 rooms, of which seven have a fireplace, and there’s one jacuzzi suite. The inn provides complimentary wired and wireless internet, beautiful bathrooms and comfy beds, and it’s just a five-minute walk to the center of town. The Peacock Inn is a member of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World.
Most amenities – The Chauncey Hotel and Conference Center offers Wii Games in the bar, a fitness center, and tee times can be arranged at the remarkable TPC Jasna Polana private golf course. There’s complimentary wired and wireless internet, shuttle service to sites in Princeton, bikes, bocce ball, croquet and horseshoes. They even have a Romance Package.
Best view – Laurie House is a bed and breakfast next to the Chauncey Center. Each room has a lake view in every season. It offers luxurious bed linens and towels, breakfast and complimentary afternoon tea.
Only spa hotel – Just a 10 minute drive away and you can stay at the Princeton Marriott at Forrestal. They provide room service 7 AM-11 PM, have a 24-hour fitness center with an indoor pool and connected whirlpool, offer complimentary on-site and valet parking, and boast one of the best full-service spas in the area.
Best room service hours – The Westin Princeton at Forrestal Village has 24 hour room service for those who have a hard time leaving the room, an indoor/outdoor pool, valet and complimentary parking, a gym and a free shuttle to the surrounding area. They don’t have an on-site spa, but just blocks away is the full-service Koi Spa, as well as the adjacent Forestal Village Shopping Center.
Most romantic – The Inn at Glencairn is an 18th century Georgian manor furnished with antiques, yet has modern amenities. There are only four rooms and one suite. They offer a complimentary breakfast featuring local and organic foods, and overstuffed down comforters. It’s just a 10 minute drive from downtown Princeton. The Inn at Glencairn is a member of the Small Elegant Hotels.
- The Brothers Moon
- Chambers Walk
- elements (private dining)
- Eno Terra (private dining)
- The Ferry House
- One 53
- Peacock Inn
- Rat’s Restaurant
- Rocky Hill Inn Eatery & Tavern
- Indoor Picnic – Pick up some delights from Bon Appetit, D’Angelo’s or Olssen’s , add a bottle of wine from The Corkscrew or CoolVines, and have a picnic in your hotel room. You can even feed each other.
- If you live in town have Princeton Errands cook for you in your own home and clean the mess, set the table, leave so you can have privacy and return after the meal to clean up.
…and be merry. A good cocktail, glass of wine, or flute of champagne in a cozy bar atmosphere can be the right elixir of love. Here are places to let your hair down.
- Big Fish
- Clocktower Cabana – This is outdoors. In warmer weather you can enjoy fun, tropical drinks
- Eno Terra
- Peacock Inn
SPA and WELLNESS
Going to a spa isn’t necessary to have a romantic escape, but it will enhance the weekend. Since most area hotels and inns don’t have a spa in-house, here’s a selection places you can visit that will melt away daily stress and pamper you.
There are plenty of unique things for the ladies to discover in these areas, but the guys will also find great items, i.e. gadgets, fine watches, clothing, cigars and more!
- Princeton Shopping Center
- Antiques – If you like antiquing, you should pay a visit to The Guilded Lion, which has furniture, silver, art, rare books and more. You can also venture out to Lambertville or New Hope, PA for more serious quests.
JUST ADD WATER
- Balneotherapy – Vallerie European Spa
- Swimming pool – Princeton Marriott at Forrestal and The Westin Princeton at Forrestal Village
- Sensory Soak in Thermal 3i hydrotherapy tub – Koi Spa
- Whirlpool – Princeton Marriott at Forrestal and Jacuzzi suites at Peacock Inn
- Secluded beaches – Need I say more?