Everyone has their own set of preferences and ideas when it comes to the perfect holiday – and while for many this is captured in the experiences and the hustle and bustle of a brand new place, for others the number one must-have on their list is peace, tranquillity, and exclusivity.
Private island retreats are notoriously luxurious (and expensive), offering everything from exclusive experiences and one-of-a-kind activities to the complete discretion, a five star service, and some of the best food and drink available to purchase.
Without further ado, here are our top 10 private island retreats that you can experience on your next adventure.
North Island, Seychelles
If it’s exclusivity and peace you’re looking for, look no further than North Island in the Seychelles. With only 11 private villas on the island, this destination was the honeymoon location for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and offers every guest the epitome of luxury overlooking the vast beaches and blue water. The retreat is considered an eco-reserve and provides a series of experiential facilities including outdoor showers, plunge pools, spas, and dive centres for all your favourite activities.
This location is exceptionally romantic and makes for the perfect honeymoon spot.
Soneva Jani, Maldives
The Maldives is infamous for its water side apartments and villas on stilts – and as such offers the kind of immersive experience that most holidaymakers can only dream of. The island where Soneva Jani is located is part of a collection of 5 small islands which are all uninhabited by locals, giving guests the exclusive intimacy that draws so many towards this particular retreat. Every one of the villas within the retreat boasts its own pool, its own slice of paradise, and a slide to give guests direct access to the water below.
The build of every villa means that the aesthetic is polished without looking too modern and out of place.
Time + Tide Miavana, Madagascar
Madagascar may have built a name for itself through the animated movie, but as an exclusive holiday destination it is up there with the best. Time + Tide is considered one of the most remote island destinations in the world, with perfect beaches and uninterrupted seas giving every guest a haven and an escape from everyday life. The retreat is made up of 14 villas each with their own pool and access to their own bit of private beach – and unlimited activities and experiences to enjoy while you’re there.
The Brando, French Polynesia
French Polynesia, like the Maldives, is famous as a honeymoon spot with the waterside apartments and villas creating the kind of picture perfect moments that we dream about. The Brando is particularly unique for its commitment to the environment, with every one of the 35 villas in the retreats giving guests access to the beaches, the oceans, and all the marine life that inhabit the island and surrounding waters. Food is a big part of this retreat with two on-site restaurants showcasing local delicacies and cuisine, and a beautiful spa encouraging relaxation all day long.
The Brando is the brainchild of actor, Marlon Brando.
Laucala Island, Fiji
Laucala Island retreat is one of the bigger sites on our list, set on 3,500 acres of land which benefits from mountains, beaches, and infinite paths to wander and explore. With only 25 villas on the island, this destination is perfect for those seeking intimacy and a chance to immerse themselves in their surroundings – with tons of activities available and encouraged by resort staff and guides. As much as possible in the restaurant, bar, and spa is grown by the retreat on the island itself to further add to the immersive nature of every guest’s stay, while inside-outside living is supported with every villa giving guests direct access to their surroundings.
The varied landscape makes this retreat particularly popular with adventurous travellers.
&Beyond Mnemba Island, Tanzania
This sounds like something out of Jurassic Park but is in fact one of the most exclusive island retreats you can experience. Accepting only 24 guests at any one time, the &Beyond resort is exceptionally romantic and gives every guest their own piece of the beach and sea beyond thanks to the presence of just 12 beachside villas opening out onto the sand. With such a small number of guests present at any one time, the service at &Beyond is unrivalled and every guest has the chance to lose themselves in countless activities – or simply dream the day away at the side of the pool or on the white sands of the beach.
Como Parrot Cay, Turks & Caicos
If you haven’t heard about this retreat already, then you’re obviously not reading enough celebrity magazines. This particular destination is a favourite among A-listers and offers direct access to sand, sea, and over 1,000 acres of unspoilt landscape around the island. The retreat itself is buoyed by award-winning spa treatments and therapies, with a total of 72 unique rooms, beachside houses and suites available depending on budget. There are two restaurants built into the overall retreat experience, with a selection of activities available for those who want to truly immerse themselves in the surroundings and experience all that the Caribbean Island has to offer. A favourite destination for its commitment to health, experience, and luxury.
The exclusive nature of this high class retreat starts with the journey – available only by private plane. The retreat itself is managed by one of the most luxurious hotel brands in the world, and yet the vibe created is infinitely unique, exclusive, and unlike anything else. With 40 apartments and villas opening out directly onto the island’s sandy beach, backed by an intriguing jungle, this destination is one which offers every guest an array of options and ways to spend their days – from adventuring in the jungles to lying back on the beach, turtle spotting in the waters and exploring the reefs just off the main shore.
The only property and retreat on the entire island, Amanpulo is perfect for those seeking intimacy and privacy.
Calala Island, Nicaragua
The go-to private island retreat for incredible food and memorable experiences, this particularly private island resort offers just four suites on the entire island and accommodates a maximum of 8 guests at a time. With service from a dedicated staffing team of 30, every guest receives the upmost care and attention to detail in this resort, benefitting from Michelin-inspired food, tasting menus, unique experiences and luxury around every corner. The island itself is a nesting site for Hawksbill turtles giving guests exclusive access to watch them lay, hatch, and make their way down to the sea.
A truly exclusive experience with the kind of luxury and attention to detail that is rare in today’s developed world.
Hayman Island, Great Barrier Reef
The last private island retreat on our list is an InterContinental-owned resort just off the coast of Australia, making the most of the incredible reef through endless activities and guest experiences. The retreat houses 160 guest rooms, suites, villas, and penthouses with plenty of space given to each and every group to enjoy their own version of luxury. This is one of the best private island destinations from which to enjoy activities and immersive experiences, from nature trails and tours to water-based sports and activities, land-based sports and so much more.
This destination can be chosen as a romantic spot or as somewhere for the whole family to enjoy.