Escape Winter & Indulge: 8 Private Island Getaways
Spa-ing Private Island Style
By Kate Phillips | December 10, 2012
Accessible by such transportation as seaplane or speedboat, private island getaways provide the perfect escape for a romantic honeymoon, anniversary or rendezvous, where days are spent spa-ing, dining underneath the starry skies and splashing in the crystal-clear surf.
Take the plunge and plan on these isle resort spas selected by our SpaFinder® Wellness editors for your next destination, or simply click through the slideshow and enjoy your own private island getaway…
I once wrote, “If you must escape somewhere, escape to Parrot Cay.” The paradise of pristine, isolated anonymity is a 1,000-acre private island, one of the 40 Turks and Caicos Islands that make up this British colony south of the Bahamas. You’re whisked from airplane to marina to boat for a 35-minute ferry ride; upon arrival, indulge in Eastern-inspired treatments at the hilltop COMO Shambhala Spa (Sanskrit for “center of peace and harmony”), gourmet spa fare and complimentary yoga and Pilates classes (Parrot Cay is also known for its extensive retreats)—all in a setting lush with tropical vegetation, sugary beaches and marine life.
Seventy-five minutes by luxury yacht from Male International Airport, the private island One&Only Reethi Rah in the Maldives, an archipelago in the Indian Ocean and about 400 miles southwest of India, is home to the One&Only Spa by ESPA. The spa is exquisitely designed with bamboo, thatch, Batu Chandi stone and Burmese teak and showcases crystal steam rooms, ice fountains, open-air relaxation pavilions and experience showers with cool mint or tropical mists. Luxury exudes beyond the spa, with over-water and beach villa accommodations and an open-air chi pavilion that sits lagoonside.
Set within a private island resort not far from Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, this Leading Spas of the World member is on my spa wish list. The vibrantly blue Coral Sea sweeps up along pristine beaches, and Hayman Spa, a wellness-oriented oasis, sits cozily among verdant vegetation and water features. Designed in a nature-inspired esthetic evocative of its Whitsunday Islands surroundings—colored flora, exotic animals and translucent sea waters—the 35-acre resort also boasts five world-class restaurants. Romantic touches include intimate dinners on a candlelit balcony and couple’s spa treatments.
While the beachfront Le Touessrok, along the shores of Mauritius’ eastern coast, is not a secluded isle per se, guests of the five-star resort can island hop with exclusive access to Ilot Mangénie, a private island a short boat ride away, home to 4.5 kilometers of beaches, Le Touessrok’s Crusoe’s restaurant (inspired by the tale of Robinson Crusoe) and, in the center of the island, freshwater springs. On its “big sister” island of Ile aux Cerfs, you’ll find the Le Touessrok Golf Course, two additional resort restaurants and a water sports center; back on the mainland, you’ll feel pampered with treatments at Givenchy Spa.
Only 50 villas are available at Park Hyatt Maldives Hadahaa on the North Huvadhoo Atoll, said to be one of the largest and deepest atolls worldwide. It’s more than 10 kilometers from the closest inhabited island, and with all of its on-site amenities you never have to leave: the award-winning Vidhun Spa with its Maldivian treatment rituals, a freshwater pool, PADI Five Star Dive Centre and rooms not far from a sparkling lagoon.
With unrivaled views of the Blue Lagoon, the hidden treasure of Turtle Island in the South Pacific, rich in Yasawan culture and history, permits just 14 couples at a time, who can relax in traditional Fijian bures, sunbathe on 14 private beaches and savor fresh seafood from the local waters and produce from the island. Adventure seekers have a myriad of sea and land sports on the 500 acres, while those looking to simply unwind can treat themselves to a massage (each guest receives a free 30-minute lomilomi massage!).
Your own little island awaits at Little Torch Key off the Florida Keys coastline, charmingly reachable only by seaplane or boat. The oasis of Little Palm Island Resort, a secret hideaway for celebs and U.S. presidents, bans high-tech contemporary touches like phones and TVs to ensure its remote vibe but promotes classic concepts of relaxation, romance and understated luxury. Thatched-roof bungalow suites, French and Pan Latin culinary delights, beach bonfires at dusk and tropic- and Far East-esque treatments—the Coconut Sugar Body Polish, Margarita Key Lime Pedicure and Lemongrass-Infused Soaks—welcome you to island life.
This 96-acre deserted island resort resides off the northeast coast of Andros Island in the Bahamas, bordered by three miles of sugary beach, aqua waters and coral gardens. The “barefoot luxury” Kamalame Cay is ideal for those uninterested in the more touristy resort areas, as it hosts just 19 guest rooms (all of which are 100 feet from the sea), has a private beach exclusive to resort guests and features one of the only overwater spas in the Caribbean.
Images courtesy of Kamalame Cay Private Island & Residences