A romantic getaway right in Southern California? Try a village! Southern California couples considering a romantic weekend getaway will find Claremont a very inviting choice with a range of creative and relaxing options.

This lush, European village-like “city” in the middle of urban Southern California quickly transports couples into an idyllic, romantic setting where they can stroll tree-lined streets adorned with charming shops, outdoor cafés, historic neighborhoods and nearby college campuses.

Claremont abounds with highly rated restaurants, inviting boutiques and evening entertainment to let couples design their own custom getaways that will provide lasting, loving memories.

Begin by considering the range of lodging options. Local hotels, such as Hotel Claremont and Tennis Club, Hotel Casa 425, the DoubleTree by Hilton Claremont Hotel, Claremont Lodge and Howard Johnson Express Inn Claremont, provide a full range of amenities and price levels.

Next, find the perfect dining experience with dozens of locally owned restaurants throughout the city, including many in the Claremont Village. Top choices include La Piccoletta (Italian fare at 114 N. Indian Hill Blvd.), The Back Abbey (Bistro, 128 N. Oberlin Ave.), Arrufo’s (Italian, 126 Yale Ave.), Harvard Square Café (French, 206 W. Bonita Ave.), La Parolaccia Osteria Italiana (201 N. Indian Hill), Tutti Mangia (Italian, 102 Harvard Ave.), Viva Madrid (Spanish, 225-B Yale Ave.), and Union on Yale (American, 232 Yale Ave.).

Or consider an evening at the Candlelight Pavilion Dinner Theatre, which provides patrons with fine dining and performances the caliber of the Broadway shows. The 2012 season includes “Aida,” “The Music Man,” “Miss Saigon” and “Anything Goes.” Make reservations at www.candlelightpavilion.com

With dinner secured, it’s time to enjoy the rest of those special moments.

Couples may find inviting a quiet morning or midday walk among the many shops of the Claremont Village. Start the day with the warmth of a special brew of coffee, homemade pastries or crafted breakfasts at one of the local cafés, such as the Last Drop Café (119 Harvard Ave.) or Some Crust Bakery (119 Yale St.). From there, consider a tour of the internationally famous Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden, or visits to the many local museums and art galleries.

The San Gabriel Mountains beckon to the north, and a dramatic view of Southern California is just minutes away by driving up Padua Ave.and continuing onto Mt. Baldy Rd. Couples who enjoy hiking and mountain biking together will find trails in the Claremont Hills, Marshall Canyon and the Glendora Ridge.

To start or end an evening with drinks, appetizers and/or dessert, consider the intimate settings found at the Lounge of Hotel Casa 425, walk across the street to the Packing House Wine Merchants, or enjoy the selections at Walter’s (310 Yale St.).

If nighttime entertainment is part of your romantic retreat, consider musical choices at the Hip Kitty Jazz and Fondue (502 W. First Street), the PianoPiano dueling piano bar at the Doubletree Hotel (555 W. Foothill Blvd.) or The Press restaurant (129 Harvard Ave.).

A complete listing of shops, hotels, events and more can be found at www.discoverclaremont.com.