In Depth

Where to visit for a stylish stag

Luxury travel connoisseur Sebastian Schoellgen, founder and managing partner of Eighty Four Rooms, shares his recommendations for the most stylish stag trips

Lisbon, Portugal

Where to stay

Palácio Belmonte

Famed for its colonial history, ornate architecture and most importantly its typically pleasant year-round weather, Lisbon has rapidly become one of Europe’s buzziest cities. With plenty of flea markets and food markets to occupy the stag party during the day, in the evenings the Bairro Alto district is the place to be, with the entire city seemingly pitching up here to drink, eat and dance until the early hours.

If you are looking for a private setting for your group then a great place to stay is the Palacio Belmonte. Situated in Alfama, the tranquil palace is seated on the walls of the castle overlooking the dainty sun-kissed city of Lisbon, perfect for a getaway stag weekend. After partying the days away, perhaps with your own private Fado singer, round off your trip with a fabulous yacht trip on the Rio Tejo to watch the sunset with several bottles of wine.

Lake Iseo, Italy

Where to stay

L’Albereta

If you are looking to escape the city in favour of an activity-based stag, then you can’t go wrong by choosing to stay at L’Albereta on Lake Iseo. Encircled by lakes, golf courses and vineyards, this beautiful hotel is the perfect spot for a lively stag. Along with billiard and drawing rooms all dressed in classical Italian style, each private room includes exposed wooden beams, fireplaces and marble finishing and each is fitted with a hydro massage tub or Jacuzzi.

If you want to spoil yourselves, the Bellavista suite sits at the very top of the 19th-century villa where you will be surrounded by glorious views of the Franciacorta vineyard, Lake Iseo and the Alps. You can take a private motorboat around the three islands, stopping off for lunch or dinner on Monte Isola. Complimentary mountain bikes are available, and you can organise vineyard tours and wine tasting during the stag break.

Noto, Sicily, Italy

Where to stay

Dimora Delle Balze

Famous for its lavish baroque architecture, the town of Noto is tourist-free, which makes for a perfect stag destination if you are looking for an authentic Italian experience. I recommend staying in the luxurious Dimora delle Balze, an elegantly restored manor house. The luxury hotel is filled with collections of Italian design pieces, vintage finds and lavish interiors.

Each room differs in concept and the names refer to Sicilian works and artists from cinema to art, poetry and opera, each room encapsulating a stylish mix of both old and new. If you are interiors-mad like me, you will find the decorative style a great source of inspiration. In true Sicilian style, your stag break breakfasts will consist of a fantastic spread of freshly squeezed local oranges, homemade apple cake and local cold cuts and cheeses. There is also the poolside Limonaia bar, where you can enjoy a delicious cocktail while overlooking the beautiful countryside.

Bodrum, Turkey

Where to stay

Macakizi Hotel

The coastal town of Turkbuku – home to high-end beach clubs, restaurants and hotels – has often been referred to as Turkey’s answer to St Tropez. If you choose this as the location for your stag break then you may well find yourself rubbing shoulders with many of the celebrities who favour this location for a quick getaway, including Mick Jagger and Donna Karan.

Located just outside Turkbuku, surrounded by pine-clad hills, is the boutique hotel Macakizi. Established in the 1970s as a retreat for artists and writers, Macakizi moved to its new home in 2000 and is now arranged over four decadent levels. Acres of covered wooden decking for dressed sun loungers ensure that this is the perfect place for your group to relax and recover from a heavy night while the DJ plays through the day and into the evening.

The hotel’s facilities are great for stags searching for a true celebration. Windsurfing is readily available, and I recommend hiring the hotel’s yacht while enjoying a long lunch. When the group needs some TLC head to the Nuxe Spa for total relaxation. The spa includes Bodyism, nutrition coaching and unforgettable massages in the luscious gardens.

Lake Tegernsee, Bavaria, Germany

Where to stay

Lanserhof

If you are looking to organise a more unusual stag getaway and want to ensure that the party returns home more rejuvenated than when they left, then consider a trip to the Bavarian Alps, where I recommend staying at the Lanserhof, Europe’s most modern and comprehensive health resort. 

Lanserhof is the perfect place to encourage your group to detox and regenerate, with everything from doctors and dieticians to personal trainers on hand to help. This time away is spent consuming no caffeine, alcohol or sugar, ensuring that you and your fellow stags will return trimmer, refreshed and fully detoxed.

During the day one can enjoy the many facilities they have at Lanserhof including a fully equipped gym, huge sauna and outdoor pool. In the evenings you can enjoy relaxing performances from a variety of musicians before returning to your beautiful room; draped in white linen, the beds are renowned for their utmost comfort. Unlike most stag breaks, you are guaranteed to return with a bounce in your step ready for the wedding ahead.

For more, visit eightyfourrooms.com

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