There’s something magical about staying on a private island. A private island offers a level of exclusivity and privacy that’s unsurpassed. It’s the perfect escape from our busy, hectic lives.
We were inspired by the opening of the new Bawah Island in Indonesia to bring you some of our favourites.
Bawah Island, Indonesia
Opening at the end of this month, Bawah is not just a new resort but a new destination. Escape to this Eco friendly, untouched paradise of five islands which feel like a world from 10,000 years ago despite being just 150 nautical miles from Singapore by private seaplane.
This paradise is home to three crystal clear lagoons and 13 powder beaches. The islands are covered in a lush jungle canopy providing wonderful cover while trekking. At Bawah, “luxury” is about being reacquainted with your true self. Amongst nature, peace, quiet and space, you return to a state of wellbeing by integrating with nature. Yes please!
Set on its own small private island, Pamalican, in the Sulu Sea, Amanpulo is the essence of a South East Asian tropical paradise. The island is only accessible by Amanpulo’s private charter plane – the flight a highlight in itself.
Kathryn, one of our experts who visited recently, truly believes that Amanpulo’s 5.5 kilometres of beach, is the best she has ever been to! Walking round the island, full circle, on the softest sand you will ever find, takes about 90 minutes.
Surrounded by a 3 square-mile coral reef, in crystal-clear water, teeming with marine life, Kathryn saw huge turtles, stingrays and even a black tip reef shark!
Thanda Island, Tanzania
Thanda Island is one of the world’s most exclusive island getaways, a paradise to enjoy in complete privacy with family and friends. Thanda Island is a tropical island with a single luxurious villa and two traditional Tanzanian Bandas in the Indian Ocean, off the east coast of Tanzania. Situated in its own marine reserve, you can bathe in blue heaven with whale sharks and watch sea turtles nesting. Here, you can rest, rejuvenate and enjoy adventure sports, where shades of turquoise infuse your days and tropical spices your nights.
Thanda Island was voted the World’s Leading Exclusive Private Island by the 2016 World Travel Awards and features on the Condé Nast Traveler ‘Hot List 2017’.
Zaya Nurai Island, Dubai
This is a slick, Asian-style lair in the Persian Gulf, reminiscent of the loveliest villas in Phuket. There is a wonderful spa and five restaurants serving locally grown organic fruit and vegetables from the Ripe Market, line-caught fish and biodynamic wines.
The 32 vast beach villas are highly modern, dominated by clean lines, cotton-wool-white linen and bleached wooden furniture. The outdoor terraces have private infinity pools, deep day beds and views out over the caramel-coloured sand to a sea full of dugongs and dolphins. If the collective speedboat ride from Saadiyat is too public, come by chopper, which is how the A-list do it.
The Brando, French Polynesia
Contained inside a living coral reef in the remotest South Pacific, the atoll of Tetiaroa is made up of a dozen white-sanded islets surrounding a five-mile lagoon so pure that its silvery blue can be seen from outer space. All guests arrive by six-seater private plane from Tahiti and the sight as you approach is breathtaking. Coral gardens stretch hundreds of feet into abyssal depths and rare orchids surround freshwater pools.
Marlon Brando first found the area when scouting for locations for Mutiny on the Bounty in 1963, and owned it for the rest of his life. It opened in 2014 as an ultra-polished hideaway, with two quiet restaurants, an immaculate spa and 35 glass and ironwood villas set back from a blinding beach amid thick trees. Every detail is perfect, but the real star here is the island’s natural beauty.
Song Saa, Cambodia
Cambodia’s first and best luxury private island resort has just 27 luxury villas, all built with sustainable materials to blend in with the unspoilt natural setting on two pristine white sand fringed islands just 30 minutes by speedboat from the Cambodian town of Sihanoukville.
Song Saa has untouched rainforests, glorious white sandy beaches and a protected marine reserve – perfect for swimming and snorkelling with super-clear water and lots of marine life. Décor is a mix of slick modern design with rustic touches – natural and homely luxury. Highlights for us were watching the sunset over the sea from the swing seats at the bar with a delicious cocktail and the incredible star gazing in the clearest of skies. The food is also fantastic with lots of little places all over the island for private dinners.
Petit St Vincent
Petit St Vincent private island hideaway is perfect for honeymooners and for families wanting to spend quality time together. It is a proper digital detox as there are no TVs or Wi-Fi in the cottages and villas. There is amazing diving at Cousteau dive centre and on Tobago Keys – fabulous for beautifully coloured, vibrant coral. You can hire out the island’s speedboat or yacht for a day trip around the island or if that is too much like hard work, just relax in the Balinese treetop spa.
North Island, Seychelles
All our luxury island escapes are exclusive and North Island is certainly no exception. Everything is tailored to your needs, from the food to the excursions. There are no menus – the chefs will cook to order whatever you desire.
If you want privacy and perfection then North Island is the perfect escape. As one of our experts said on her return – ‘it’s the ultimate!!!’