With Prince William's wedding to Kate Middleton fast approaching, important questions haunt proletariat minds. We already know she'll don the ring of the late Princess Diana, so we wonder, what will she wear? And, where should they go? On their honeymoon, that is.
Well, the votes are in and some insiders peg Kenya as the couple's perfect honeymoon locale. "Over the course of their eight-year relationship, the couple have escaped together on many exotic getaways, but Kenya certainly holds a special place in their hearts," says Alison Eastwood, editor-in-chief of Hello! Canada. "It's where William spent part of his gap year before university, at a conservancy owned by family friends. One of the first vacations he and Kate took together was a safari in Lewa Downs. And Kenya is, of course, where the prince made his romantic proposal to his future princess last month. I'd be surprised if Kenya didn't feature somewhere in their honeymoon plans."
While a high-end African safari could be tempting, Will and Kate may opt to follow in the footsteps of other regal newlyweds. If so, the Caribbean has always been a hit among sunscreen-sporting royal vacationers. "William's beloved grandparents, the Queen and Prince Philip, enjoyed a low-key honeymoon in the British Isles," Ms. Eastwood points out.
For travel-loving Will and Kate, though, a decadent private island may be more their speed. But how to choose? Kerri Lisa, of ultra-high-end, invitation-only concierge lifestyle management service Four Hundred, calls Calivigny Island an untapped gem. "It's super secluded and you have to take a helicopter or boat to get there," says Ms. Lisa, whose clients include Fortune 500 CEOs and entertainment-industry celebrities. "This is the most talked-about proposal in 20 years," she says. "I think they should tie in over-the-top luxury with seclusion and relaxation. They have to go somewhere where no one's going to be able to find them." Nestled off the coast of Grenada, Calivigny Island definitely fits the bill. Turquoise seas, sporting activities, top-notch service and, best of all, sweet solitude far away from the paparazzi.
However, tropical islands aren't the only family tradition worth following. "Royal precedents are all over the map - literally," says Ms. Eastwood, explaining that in recent decades, cruising has become a popular pastime among royal newlyweds. "Princess Margaret and Lord Snowdon took a six-week cruise around the Caribbean on the Royal Yacht Brittania. Prince Charles and Diana boarded Britannia for a lengthy Mediterranean cruise. Princess Anne and Captain Mark Phillips sailed the Atlantic and Pacific," she says.
If Will and Kate prefer to holiday on dry land, Marrakesh, Morocco, remains a favourite haunt of the rich and famous. Just ask Gwyneth Paltrow, Sir Elton John, Orlando Bloom and Hilary Clinton, all of whom have recently shacked up at iconic luxury resort La Mamounia. Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman honeymooned there when they got married (remember that?) and the palatial property, open since 1923, has housed Princess Caroline of Monaco and was originally an 18th-century wedding gift from King Sidi Mohammed Ben Abdellah to his son, Prince Moulay Mamoun. These days, La Mamounia features a stunning 20-acre garden, private Hammam spa and all the posh indulgences world-class honeymooners could dream of.
"They'll feel like true royals in Marrakesh," Ms. Lisa confirms. "From the service, culture and lavish, colourful decor to the dress and rituals."
Or, if these crazy kids want to venture far from home, elite vagabonds are calling Brazil the new black; specifically, the Brazilian islands. "If they wanted to do something different, they could pop over to South America," says Ms. Lisa, who over the past few months has noticed a surge in interest about the region from trend-setting globetrotters. "Florianopolis is soon going to be the St. Tropez of the western hemisphere." Indeed, this idyllic Brazilian party island is bursting with beautiful people, white sand beaches, buckets of money and an (as yet) uncorrupted bohemian spirit. According to The New York Times, visitors have included Prince Pierre Casiraghi of Monaco and hunky Greek shipping tycoon Stavros Niarchos.
Finally, for the ultimate road less travelled, Will and Kate need only look up. Into the skies, that is. Yes, the dawn of space tourism has risen, and who better to pave the way for cosmic jaunts than the royal couple? Billionaire visionary Richard Branson's Virgin Galactic is now taking consumer deposits for suborbital space flights aboard its six-passenger rocket-ship and powerful mothership (nicknamed Eve, after Mr. Branson's mom). Sold only by Accredited Space Agents, this ultimate adventure includes bona fide astronaut training and trips are set to begin as early as 2011. The price tag? Only $200,000 (U.S.).
Wherever they wander, they're sure to have fun. Says Ms. Eastwood: "One of the many things William and Kate have in common - aside from that now-famous 'naughty' sense of humour - is their passion for travel."
Special to The Globe and Mail