Pri­vate patch of par­adise

In the far north of Fiji, a pris­tine is­land awaits the rich and reclu­sive

The Weekend Australian - Travel - - Destination Luxury -

As we tuck into a de­li­cious bowl of kokoda (Fi­jian-style ce­viche) and tem­pura soft shell crab spi­der rolls at the nearby Beach Bar, we spot the Red Bull boss and his beau­ti­ful girl­friend sun­bak­ing in a se­cluded cove be­side the pool. ‘‘He likes to keep to him­self,’’ a staff mem­ber tells us.

So did Oprah Win­frey, who is among the well-heeled guests who have parked their j ewel- en­crusted thongs be­side the plunge pool that seems to teeter on the edge of a cliff at the three-tiered Penin­sula Res­i­dence. Its pavil­ions are linked by wooden bridges that step down the is­land’s rocky far north­west perime­ter.

We feel a lit­tle sorry for the ev­er­sunny staff (there are about 300) who may have fewer than 10 guests on whom to lav­ish their at­ten­tions. Surely they must get bored?

But there is much go­ing on be­hind the scenes. Lau­cala’s re­mote­ness means self-suf­fi­ciency is im­por­tant and a short drive to the south coast re­veals a small work­ing farm, ex­pan­sive veg­etable gar­dens and a row of hy­dro­ponic green­houses in which herbs and salad leaves are grown.

Aro­mat­ics — jas­mine flow­ers, roses, ylang ylang, laven­der, lemon­grass — plucked from beds ad­ja­cent to the spa are in­cor­po­rated into home­made sham­poos, scrubs and wraps.

A co­conut press pro­vides a con­stant sup­ply of oil for the soaps and body lo­tions used in vil­las.

As for mo­tor­ing through the depths of the South Pa­cific in a Deep­F­light Su­per Fal­con sub­mersible — the state-ofthe-art sub­ma­rine Mates­chitz added to his hi-tech line-up in Septem­ber — that will have to wait un­til next time.

From top, the ex­trav­a­gant Penin­sula Res­i­dence on Lau­cala Is­land; all vil­las have pri­vate plunge pools; the Thai-themed Sea­grass restau­rant

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.