Three of a kind

Pri­vate is­lands

Paradise - - Contents -

YUO IS­LAND, PNG

This de­light­ful small is­land, a one-hour boat ride from We­wak, isn’t tech­ni­cally pri­vate since there are about five fam­i­lies liv­ing on it. But Naig­boi Guest­house is the only place to stay and gives guests that cast­away ex­pe­ri­ence, for a fan­tas­ti­cally low price too. Owner Robert Marek, and his wife and chil­dren, will make you feel part of the fam­ily, with his wife cook­ing up de­li­cious seafood meals, Marek telling you where the best snorkelling is, and his sons head­ing up spearfish­ing ex­pe­di­tions.

SOME­THING SPE­CIAL

This isn’t a lux­ury prop­erty by any means; the tra­di­tional palm-thatched bun­ga­lows and beach huts are ba­sic, but very com­fort­able and set right on the beach. Plus, feel­ing as though you’re part of the Marek fam­ily, who have lived on the is­land for over 80 years, is an ex­pe­ri­ence money can’t buy.

DON’T MISS

Spend­ing the ex­tra PGK100 to take the trip to lush Kairiru Is­land to visit the hot springs.

PRICE + WEB­SITE

PGK75 a night, per bun­ga­low or beach hut; see naig­boi.com.

BROTHER IS­LAND, PHILIP­PINES

A pris­tine sweep of white sand beach, fan­tas­tic snorkelling just 10 me­tres from the shore, tra­di­tional Filipino cui­sine us­ing freshly caught seafood – it’s all there wait­ing for you at Brother Is­land, the only ex­clu­sive pri­vate is­land for rent in El Nido. It’s all about slow­ing down and sink­ing in here: laz­ing in a ham­mock, swim­ming and snorkelling in the crys­tal wa­ters, fish­ing and kayak­ing, ex­plor­ing the for­est and, by night, light­ing a bon­fire and gaz­ing up at a tapestry of stars.

SOME­THING SPE­CIAL

Host and owner, Al­fred Lee, or ‘Alee’, who has lived on the is­land since 1991, is renowned for his friend­li­ness, re­li­a­bil­ity and at­ten­tion to de­tail. Also, be­cause there’s zero Wi-Fi on Brother you will be com­pletely in the mo­ment for the du­ra­tion of your stay.

DON’T MISS

Book­ing a beach mas­sage or an is­land-hop­ping tour, weav­ing through the karst for­ma­tions out on those emer­ald-green wa­ters.

PRICE + WEB­SITE

From about PGK1025 a night for the en­tire is­land and all meals; see airbnb.com.

DOL­PHIN IS­LAND, FIJI

There are 333 is­lands in the Fi­jian ar­chi­pel­ago but only one of them is gen­uinely pri­vate, mean­ing that when you book Dol­phin you have the en­tire is­land at your dis­posal. Just a 15-minute boat ride north of Fiji’s main is­land, Viti Levu, this lit­tle slice of par­adise has four el­e­gant tim­ber-floored, palm-thatched bu­res with free­stand­ing bath­tubs and out­door show­ers, and an im­pec­ca­bly styled en­ter­tain­ing bure that’s home to the lounge and din­ing room. Spend your days laz­ing by the in­fin­ity pool, kayak­ing, pad­dle board­ing or snorkelling around the is­land with up to seven friends, get­ting a mas­sage or nap­ping in the hill­top open-air bure.

SOME­THING SPE­CIAL

Each night, as the Dol­phin team pre­pares your pre-din­ner cock­tails, no less than 100 lanterns are lit and placed around the sprawl­ing palm­sprin­kled lawns.

DON’T MISS

The food at Dol­phin, whipped up by your per­sonal chefs, is some­thing to re­mem­ber: fresh prawns, fish and cray­fish pulled from the ocean each day and ac­com­pa­nied by sea­sonal sal­ads, fruit and an­tipasti.

PRICE + WEB­SITE

From PGK2660 a per­son, per night; see dol­phin­is­land­fiji.com.

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