Best babymoon destinations in Asia: treat yourself to a luxe getaway right after a conceptionmoon

You’ve done the hard work creating that baby, now it’s time for a luxe holiday with your partner before you welcome your little bundle of joy!

You are pregnant in Singapore and thankfully the dreaded morning sickness phase is a dim memory. Take a break from organising your baby shower and plan a luxe babymoon with your partner. It’s the last holiday you’ll take as a couple before two become three (or more) and all your holidays are direct flight getaways to family-friendly resorts with kids clubs. A week putting your feet up and having spa treatments is just what the doctor ordered so we’ve come up with a list of the best babymoon destinations in Asia.

A little prior preparation

Before you jet-off, grab a letter from your doctor stating you’re medically fit to travel. Imagine the disappointment if you’re not allowed to board your flight in Singapore, or worse, the panic if you’re stuck in a remote airport abroad. Check with the airline the cut-off for pregnant travellers – 34 weeks is the absolute latest (and some are earlier). Review the terms of your maternity insurance, and top up with additional travel insurance as necessary. It’s also worth investigating the quality of hospital care at your destination in the event of an early labour.

Kuredu Resort & Spa, Maldives

“Lets take our four kids to the Maldives” said no parent ever. It’s a destination made for couples both in terms of romance and expense. We flew in there by seaplane on a babymoon sans kids and it was truly a trip of a lifetime. The Sangu Water Villas at Kuredu Resort & Spa (with private deck) are incredibly indulgent (pictured top). Located on the tip of the island, surrounded by crystal turquoise water and teeming sea-life you are transported to a paradise like no other. Wander about your adults’ only retreat on immaculately maintained sand (no need for shoes) and satisfy your pregnancy cravings with nightly candle-lit dinners. Depending on energy levels you can head to the family-friendly section for snorkelling (we saw turtles!) or a sunset cruise on the Indian Ocean. The lovely couples spa more than accommodates blooming bellies.
Kuredu Resort & Spa, Maldives, Lhaviyani Atoll, Republic of Maldives; www.kuredu.com

Telunas Private Island, Indonesia

best babymoon destinations in asia

Telunas Private Island is one chilled-out getaway, and you’ll probably love it so much that you’ll want to return for a minibreak with the baby! Just a short 50-minute ferry plus a scenic 90 minute long boat from Singapore – it’s a close, flight-free option. It’s a rustic, castaway style experience where you can enjoy the simple pleasures in life like reading books, relaxing by the beach, taking a dip in calm waters…. and indulging in a blissful massage or two. Given it’s a digital detox retreat (no Wi-Fi or TV), it’s the perfect place to unwind from busy city life and connect with your partner.
www.telunasresorts.com

COMO Shambhala Estate, Bali

best babymoon destinations in asia

Oh COMO Shambhala Estate Bali, how we love you

Renowned for wellness programmes and spa treatments lush COMO Shambhala Estate, Bali is PERFECT for expectant mums. Your personal consultant will tailor your stay to ensure you’re packed off home refreshed for the final months of pregnancy. Select to-die-for spa treatments and a bespoke food plan to remove toxins and provide nutrients for you and your baby. The prenatal yoga classes are excellent (we take classes at the COMO Shambhala on Orchard Road). Book in for a post-baby treat once you’re ready to leave your little one in Singapore for a long weekend.
Banjar Begawan, Desa Melinggih Kelod, Payangan, Ubud,
Gianyar 80571, Bali, Indonesia;
 www.comohotels.com/comoshambhalaestate

The Nam Hai (Four Seasons), Hoi An, Vietnam

best babymoon destinations in asia

Picture yourself pool side at sleek The Nam Hai? Us too

Hoi An is a favourite family holiday destinations, and on babymoon you can’t do any better than the lavish Four Seasons Resort, The Nam Hai. Nestled on a one-kilometre stretch of private white sandy beach, this resort is all class. The food is second-to-none and it’s only 11km from UNESCO listed old Hoi An town. You’ll be nipping there for a hit of culture, bespoke leather shoes and fresh local eats. As if things couldn’t get better, the Nam Hai offers a spa that is rated amongst the world’s best. Impeccable service only seals the deal.
Block Ha My Dong B, Dien Duong Ward, Dien Ban Town, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam; www.fourseasons.com

The Upper House, Hong Kong

best babymoon destinations in asia

You’ll be seduced by the sexy Hong Kong skyline at The Upper House

For the parents-to-be that prefer the cosmopolitan life select The Upper House for your urban retreat in Honkers. Proximity to a wealth of shops, bars and restaurants in the Admiralty district, coupled with unpretentious, round the clock personalised service are what make this property one of our favourites in the Pearl of the Orient. The rooms and bathrooms are among the biggest in Hong Kong (which is a big deal on a densely populated island), with sweeping views of the city from your tub. Must be why Victoria Beckham’s partial to a visit… Check out our adult’s only guide to Hong Kong to plan your ultimate babymoon.
Pacific Place, 88 Queensway, Hong Kong; www.upperhouse.com

Kahanda Kanda, Sri Lanka

We’re just quietly a little bit obsessed with Sri Lanka right now, so it just HAD to be on our babymoon list. Kahanda Kanda is an exquisite ten-room boutique hotel on Sri Lanka’s southern coast, just a quick tuk tuk ride from historic Galle Fort. You won’t have to schlepp your pregnant belly far to experience what this region is renowned for, as it’s set within a stunning tea estate. Once you’ve tired of the views of palm fringed jungle on one side and the Indian Ocean on the other, venture out for a easy stroll through Galle to discover its local cuisine, darling trinket shops, and rich history.
Angulugaha, Galle, 80000, Sri Lanka; www.kahandakanda.com

The Datai, Langkawi

best babymoon destinations in asia

Put your feet up and relaaax surrounded by nature at The Datai Spa Langkawi

If you’ve got your heart set on Langkawi, make The Datai Langkawi your home away from home. Secluded in a lush ancient rainforest, you’ll have no desire to leave the resort – you can even swim in the jungle stream after spotting abundant wildlife on a gentle nature walk. Or if chilling out is more your speed, put your feet up as you gaze upon exclusive untouched Datai Bay. You also deserve more than a few treatments (including a soak in stream-side tub) at the open air Datai Spa. Send your other half to the in-house golf club. Escapism + extravagance = happy bump. PSST: Ask for the discount available for ASEAN residents. It’s actually just had a major facelift, so not all the facilities will be up and running just yet, so do check ahead before you make your booking.
Jalan Teluk Datai, 07000 Langkawi, Kedah, Malaysia; www.thedatai.com

Abaca Resort, Philippines

One of the most exclusive boutique hotels on Mactan Island in the Philippines, Abaca Resort is a tranquil hideaway set in a lush tropical oceanfront retreat. Contemporary and traditional Filipino touches make Abaca a little different to our usual holiday in the region (off the beaten track). The huge, well appointed rooms make for an uber-relaxing stay, because let’s face it, we’ll be spending plenty of time napping.
Punto Engano Road, Mactan Island, Lapu Lapu City, 6015, Philippines; 
www.abacaresort.com

Four Seasons Resort Koh Samui, Thailand

best babymoon destinations in asia

Nobody will call you a beached whale as you lounge on the beach at the Four Seasons Resort Koh Samui

Perched on a headland overlooking the Gulf of Siam’s turquoise waters lies the Four Seasons Resort Koh Samui (and just 30 mins from the airport, bonus!). The luxurious pool villas offer a private refuge with all the mod cons and you may not want to leave the confines of hideaway all holiday! Should you decide to venture outdoors, take part in the hotel’s yoga classes, island hop or just laze on one of the two private beaches. And when you do come back with the fam in tow, don’t forget to check out our guide to acing it with kids before you arrive.219 Moo 5, Angthong, Koh Samui, Surat Thani,Thailand, 84140; www.fourseasons.com/kohsamui

Twinpalms, Phuket

best babymoon destinations in asia

Plump for the Presidential Penthouse at Twinpalms, Phuket. You’re worth it.

This intimate, luxury boutique hotel is located on the aptly named “millionaire’s row” of golden sands on Surin Beach, Phuket. While kids are not banned, they’re few and far between. Chillax by the sleek pool, hop across the road for a swim and a beverage at Catch Beachclub and don’t miss the lovely Sunday brunch at in-house restaurant Oriental Spoon (patrons come from around the island, it’s that good). Splash out for the presidential penthouse, it’s dreamy. Five star The Surin Phuket is just up the road if you’re looking for a romantic dinner.
106/46 Moo 3, Surin Beach Road, Cherng Talay, Phuket 83110, Thailand; www.twinpalms-phuket.com

Capella Singapore, Sentosa Island, Singapore

best babymoon destinations in asia

No need to leave the warm embrace of your impeccably styled room at Capella Singapore

If you’ve a left it a little too late to travel (we hear you, it’s a busy time), why not have an indulgent staycay at Capella Singapore on Sentosa Island? Our former Editor, Lindene, had one brilliant babymoon staycation at Capella, and we think you’ll be just as floored by its sophisticated, mod-colonial charm. It offers low-rise luxury nestled amongst lush greenery. If you opt for a spacious one-bedroom villa you’ll be rewarded with a separate living room, balcony and private plunge pool: perfect for that mocktail overlooking the South China Sea. Pleasures abound throughout the resort from the tranquil Auriga Spa, to the stunning multi-level pool and the hotel’s three stellar restaurants. Cassia boasts fine Chinese cuisine, the Knolls’ Mediterranean fare will transport you to the Isle of Capri, Chef’s Table plates up home-style nosh and Bob’s Bar serves up hot Cuban dishes with flair.

Credits: Georgina Hockley , Honeykids

Tips for Trying to Conceive on a Holiday

Between decorating the tree, baking cookies with the family and pulling out your go-to ugly Christmas sweater for everyone’s favorite party theme, it’s no wonder the season calls for merriment. But when you’re trying to conceive during the holidays, seeing Christmas stockings strung up for your newest nieces and nephews can sting, and even well-meaning relatives can stress you out with prying personal questions. What helps? Having a game plan to deal with tricky TTC scenarios. Here, some potential holiday pitfalls and how to handle them.

1. YOU’RE IN YOUR OLD BEDROOM

Let’s see, what’s the opposite of romantic? Staying at your parents’ or in-laws’ house. First off, there are the über-thin walls. Then, there are the photos of you or your partner during a particularly awkward preteen phase. Add to that a few juvenile decorations and the fact that you’re squished together in one of your (teeny) childhood beds with your sibling’s room right next door, and you’ve got the recipe for a major mood kill.

How to Deal: If TTC sex is starting to feel routine, this holiday conundrum might just be the perfect excuse to spice things up. Slip away one afternoon for some much-needed alone time—check in to a local motel for a few hours or make like teenagers and steam up those car windows (just be sure you’re parked somewhere extra-private!).

2. YOU’VE GOT THOSE TSA AGENTS TO CONTEND WITH

It’s aggravating enough being the one randomly selected for a bag search, but just imagine your sexy lingerie, fertility monitor and home pregnancy test spread across the TSA counter for all to see. In the movies, that’s right about the time your high school rival would walk by with her gorgeous triplets all wearing perfect little Christmas outfits.

How to Deal:  This one’s a no-brainer. Don’t bring anything you’d be embarrassed about in your carry-on. Pack it discreetly in your suitcase and check your luggage through. Or better yet, ship a TTC package ahead of time to your destination—it will travel incognito and be waiting safely for you when you arrive. (And if anyone asks, just tell them there are presents in the box.)

3. EVERYONE ELSE IS WASTED

’Tis the season for holiday parties, and while it’s totally fine to have a glass of wine with dinner while you’re TTC, you probably don’t want to drink too much. (If you didn’t know already, excessive alcohol consumption has been linked to fertility problems; plus, there’s lag time between conception and getting a plus sign on a pregnancy test, so you could already be pregnant.) And when you’re not drinking, everyone who is is so much more annoying. Right?

How to Deal: Some say babies and toddlers are like little drunk adults, so think of this as great practice for parenthood! See how patient you and your partner can be as you help your uncle clean up the cookies he knocked on the floor or listen to your cousin babble on about her snow globe collection. When you’ve hit your limit, escape to a quiet corner of the house and take a break from the insanity (that’s one thing you won’t be able to do with baby, so appreciate it now).

4. YOU’RE IN STORE FOR NOSY QUESTIONS

Depending on how much you’ve revealed about your TTC status, you’ll probably have some relatives asking questions like “When are you going to have a baby?” or “Come on—why not have one little drink?” While others are bound to give you unwanted advice like “Just relax and it will happen!” Those are awkward enough for anyone TTC to have to answer, and even worse if you’re struggling with fertility issues.

How to Deal: The best way to handle insensitive questions is to be prepared with witty comebacks. Get ready by reading some of our favorite responses to some of the worst comments here.

5. ALL YOU CAN EAT = NOT SO SEXY

Let’s face it: Watching your partner go whole hog on a Christmas ham or a giant serving plate full of latkes isn’t likely to get your hormones raging. Neither is having that overstuffed feeling after too many holiday cookies.

How to Deal: True, the food is often the most memorable part of the holidays, but maybe this year make a pact with your partner to both go easy on the buffet. If you absolutely must have more of mom’s pecan pie, remember that there’s bound to be leftovers, so try to at least space out your food-fest over a few days.

6. CUTE BABIES ARE EVERYWHERE

Your nieces, nephews and friends’ kids decked out in their adorable holiday outfits will be totally cute, and while you’re crazy about them, you might find yourself sad you don’t have your own baby to celebrate with this year. And, understandably, that can be tough to take.

How to Deal: Decide beforehand what works for you. If holding a baby or playing with toddlers will bring comfort, go right ahead, but if that will make it harder, try to distance yourself and focus on interesting conversations with the adults in the room. And if at any point you experience baby overload, don’t be afraid to excuse yourself and leave early.

Credits: First Featured on TheBump, by Elena Donovan Mauer and Lauren A. Greene

How Stress Affects Conception

If pregnancy tops the list of your New Year wishes this year, you probably already know that not everyone finds it easy to get pregnant.

About 80 percent of women who attempt to get pregnant succeed within a year. Several factors, however, can influence conception, including stress, which can serve as involuntary birth control.

But what actually happens in the body when stress hampers pregnancy?

If you have sexual intercourse and sperm is sent up into your vagina, it’s not like they can turn around and high-tail it home. So when sperm first make their way to where they should meet an egg, and it’s at the right time in the woman’s cycle, it seems logical to assume that the egg will be fertilised. That’s not always the case, though.

Hormone mix-up

“Stress can hamper ovulation. No amount of sperm will make a difference if the woman’s body hasn’t released an egg,” explains Tore Henriksen, a professor of obstetrics and gynaecology at the University of Oslo. Henriksen and works at the Women’s Clinic of Oslo University Hospital, Rikshospitalet.

The explanation of what happens in a woman’s body when she is stressed begins in an organ the size of a chickpea on the lower side of our brain, the pituitary gland.

A woman’s body is involved in a constant monthly dance of hormones, for which ovulation is the biological grand finale.

The pituitary gland has responsibility for ovulation.

The pituitary communicates with the ovaries by sending hormones through the bloodstream – first hormones that cause the egg to mature, and then hormones that trigger ovulation.

But when a woman is stressed, other hormones are released in the brain, which can bungle the hormone cycle.

Chain reaction

“Stress affects the brain in a number of regions, including sending signals to the hypothalamus, which is located right on top of the pituitary gland,”  Professor Henriksen says.

The hypothalamus regulates the pituitary, so when stress interferes with the hypothalamus it is hindered from sending the right hormone messages to the pituitary, which in turn is kept from releasing the necessary hormones to the ovaries.

This chain reaction can thus prevent ovulation.

Without ovulation, any eager sperm that arrives on the scene will find no egg to fertilise.

Women can buy a variety of ovulation sticks or strips that determine if she is ovulating. But that is no guarantee if you are stressed, Henriksen says. Even if a test shows you are ovulating, it doesn’t mean you’ve dodged the stress bullet. 

Less sperm

“It’s been discussed whether stress can provoke or facilitate an abortion. In other words, if stress can prevent a fertilised ovum from attaching to the uterine wall,” says Henriksen.

Researchers have seen it happen with animals, but Henriksen says this hasn’t been studied among human beings.

“The problem with research on stress is that it isn’t an unambiguous or quantifiable concept, so it’s hard to determine what discoveries have been made,” he explains.

Another debate concerns males – can stress affect their sperm production? The jury is still out on that too.

Henriksen mentions a more mundane factor that can impact harried, would-be parents:

“If the stress is caused by the couple being too busy, and thus they don’t have time to have sex during biological prime times, no pregnancy will result, even if everything else was just right.”

The impact of holiday season stress

You’ve got your Christmas shopping, Christmas foods and cookies, washing, tidying up, decorating and year-end work deadlines.

You can take your pick of stress factors in December – they’re as abundant as packages under the tree. But according to the professor, yuletide stress doesn’t necessarily throw a wrench in the hormonal works of the pituitary gland:

Stress comes in many different forms, so sometimes it needn’t pose a problem.

Work stress and holiday season stress aren’t necessarily negative if you are enjoying this spike in activities, he says.

“But if you are getting close to the age of 40 and thinking ‘Now I better get pregnant’, this is a wholly different kind of stress, and it’s the kind that can reduce your chances of becoming pregnant.”

Advice to stressed would-be parents

Henriksen can’t give a firm reply regarding how much your chances decrease if you are stressed, and he says it’s hard to make any statistical analysis when stress research is essentially so difficult:

“But we see pretty often that couples who haven’t been able to have children and who are placed on the waiting list for in vitro fertility treatment, successfully conceive while waiting their turn.”

The medical researcher thinks the phenomenon ties in with stress release, so he has some advice to couples who want to conceive and need to lower their stress levels.

“If the stress stems from something you have some control over, like your job or your family, you need to eliminate it.”  That’s easier said than done, so the researcher also has some comforting advice:

“If the stress is from the fear of infertility, remember  you can always seek help,” he says. “Medicine has made so much headway in this area that the majority of couples who have trouble conceiving can get the help they need.”

Credits:
Ida Korneliussen (First appeared in Science Nordic)

Spicy strategies to boost your chances of conceiving while you’re on a romantic getaway!

If there’s one thing couples who are trying to conceive know by now, it’s that babies usually don’t come about on the first try.

In fact, if you go by statistics, every healthy couple has only about a 20 to 25 per cent chance of conceiving in every cycle, if the woman is below 30. At age 30, her chances of falling preggers drops to 15 per cent, and by age 35, she has only a 10 per cent chance every month.

Doesn’t sound very reassuring, does it? But don’t give up yet, start packing instead. Yes, you and your other half should go on a “conceptionmoon” ― a holiday dedicated solely to boosting your baby-making efforts.

Everybody knows that vacations are a great way to unwind and escape from daily stress triggers, two factors that play a major role in your ability to conceive.

Sounds like fun, but not sure how to plan one? No worries, SmartParents comes to your rescue with prime pointers. Follow them to a tee and you might just return from your trip with a tan and bun in the oven.

#1 Head to a romantic destination

First up, you have to nail the ideal location. Remember, this place has to ooze romantic vibes and must live up to its promise of ultimate serenity to set the stage for a baby-making marathon. Keep the duration of the trip in mind when narrowing down your choices. If you both only have a few days to spare, no point taking a long-haul trip since you’re going to end up travelling for the better part and that will only add to your exhaustion. Hot spots for a short trip include Phuket, Maldives and Bali. If you’re able to venture further, then opt for love capitals like Italy and Paris. By the way, don’t skimp on accommodation, it should be pure indulgence all the way. We’re talking rooms with ocean views, a king-sized bed, balcony, and maybe, even a private pool.

Don’t skimp on accommodation, it should be pure indulgence all the way. We’re talking rooms with ocean views, a king-sized bed, balcony, and maybe, even a private pool.

#2 Sync your holiday to when you ovulate

No point going on a baby-making vacation when it isn’t in tune with your fertility window. Not sure when it is? Start charting your cycle at once! Your luteal phase ― the duration between ovulation and your menstrual period ― should be between 14 and 16 days, give or take a few days. For best results, you should be having intercourse a few days before ovulation and on the day itself. If you need help to chart your cycle, invest in an ovulation kit.

#3 Pack a “goodie bag”

Besides packing the usual vacation things, also include items that will get both of you in the mood for lurve. These can be in the form of sex toys, racy lingerie, candles, massage oils, lubricants and a Spotify playlist loaded with soulful, jazzy tunes, a la Barry White. For more ideas on how to spice up your baby-making session, click here.

Conceiving-8-ways-to-include-babymaking-in-your-vacation-2

#4 Load up on “sexy snacks”

Once you’ve set the stage, it’s time to boost your sex drive with delicious bites. Surprise your better half with an impressive spread of aphrodisiacs, such as dark chocolate, avocado, strawberries topped with whipped cream, and fresh oysters. High in zinc, it’s vital in boosting testosterone and healthy sperm production. You can also turn the heat up, literally, with some chilli or spicy foods. Even better, order in room service, and feed each other in bed.

#5 Switch off your gadgets

Because you will be very busy getting down to business during this trip, don’t obsess over your mobile phone, iPad or tablet. Allocate pockets of time during the day to switch on your gadgets to check on important matters, but otherwise keep them off, and be strict with each other about this rule. By the way, this is not the time to binge-watch Netflix.

Do whatever it takes to get chill, even if it means going to the spa, taking a swim, or each having separate “me time” during the trip, so that you’ll have a chance to miss each other.

 

#6 Leave the older kid(s) behind

Speaking of distractions… Ironic as it may sound, the one thing that will put you off your baby-making efforts, is being around other kids! So, leave the older kiddos home with the grandparents, uncles and aunts. And don’t feel guilty for doing so. Your marriage will benefit from enjoying quality one-on-one time. Who knows, junior might be looking forward to that sleepover at his cousin’s place as well and will very likely end up having a blast!

#7 Avoid the sauna  ad anything else that may affect your fertility

While wine and champagne will definitely help you both to get in the mood, too much of itcan hinder fertility, so ensure there’s a good balance during your trip. Fun as it is, it’s also probably a good idea to stay away from the sauna or hot tub as very high temperatures can damage the testes and cause semen quality to decline.

#8 Relax and have fun!

At the end of the day, all these tips aren’t going to help if both you and your spouse don’t feel relaxed. Do whatever it takes to get chill, even if it means going to the spa, taking a swim, or each having separate “me time” during the trip, so that you’ll have a chance to miss each other. Also, this is not the time to talk about heavy stuff like your finances or where you think you’re career is headed. Keep things light, fun and sexy and you never know, nine months later, you just might be welcoming a new member into the family. Good luck!

Credits: Smart Parents

Article first on Smart Parents: https://www.smartparents.sg/conceiving/getting-pregnant/8-ways-to-include-baby-making-in-your-vacation-9416546