Top 7 luxury escapes in the islands

CHARLIE MITCHELL
Last updated 05:00 10/07/2014
Vomo
HAVEN: Vomo Island Resort, Fiji.
Yasawa Islands, Fiji
LUXURY ISLAND: Yasawa Island Resort & Spa, Fiji

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The Pacific Islands are cocooned from the stresses of everyday life, and provide perhaps the greatest luxury of all; complete and utter peace.

For those looking for a tranquil escape, the Islands boast many luxurious, five-star resorts that exist purely to help you forget what's waiting for you back home, even if only for a little while.

All of them offer something special and serene, but the following go one step further, providing luxury in a form that is difficult to find anywhere else in the world.

1. Likuliku Lagoon Resort, Fiji

It has become one of the premier destinations of the Pacific - a five-star resort styled like an ancient village, with beachfront bungalows perched over the azure blue seas. It's so exclusive you have to be ushered there by a private boat.

There are a host of activities to keep you occupied, if lounging on your elegant bure becomes too relaxing - paddle-boarding, snorkelling, and bush-walks with stunning views of the Mamanuca Islands are all just steps away.

And to seal the deal, it's strictly adults only, so those looking for a romantic getaway won't have to worry about the chaos of a wailing child disrupting the peace.

2. Vomo Island Resort, Fiji

This five-star resort is ensconced on a secluded island in the Yasawa island group. You have free reign of the island, so have a wander, and you'll likely stumble across your own personal, private beach.

It's a breezy 15 minute helicopter ride from the airport, just enough to give you your fill of adventure. You can also enjoy the modern fitness centre, journey the lush gardens, and even play on a nine hole golf course - the resort is truly well-equipped. Or you can just simply relax on your beachside hammock and soak up the rays, dine in the restaurant, or even reserve your own Vomo lailai (a smaller island offshore) if you're looking for true relaxed isolation.

3. Yasawa Island Resort & Spa, Fiji

Take your pick of 18 luxurious bungalows concealed amongst the palms, all secluded in their own little hideaways. Dive amongst the kaleidoscopic corals, or snorkel in the shimmering clear waters just steps from your room.

The white sand beach was made for resting on, but if you want to be pampered to within an inch of your life, book yourself in for Fiji's first beach-front spa - you can gaze over the ocean and relax in the warm breeze, while lounging on the open-air massage deck.

4. Eratap Beach Resort, Vanuatu

Eratap is the first development of its kind in the region, which means it offers something truly unique. The spacious villas stretch right up to the lagoon, putting you in the perfect position to enjoy the water. If you want a bit of adventure, take a packed lunch and enjoy a day-trip to Castaway Island - you can take a motorboat, or kayak there yourself.

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Otherwise, you can traverse the coconut palm lined road to Port Vila, or you can hire quad bikes to zip around the island. Take a bicycle and ride through the forest to the black sand beach, or take a tour of the local villages - there's plenty for you to do, if the life of luxury makes you impatient.

5. Te Manava Luxury Villas & Spa, Rarotonga

Affixed to the white sand beaches of the beautiful Muri swimming lagoon, Te Manava is the Cook Island's most extravagant hideaway. The private, self-contained villas contain their own kitchens and laundries, and also have their own private swimming pools overlooking the beach - you don't even have to step out of your villa to enjoy true luxury.

It's only 15 minutes to the main town of Rarotonga, if you do feel the need to get out. You can also indulge in a massage amidst the tranquil surroundings, attend the Friday night markets on Muri beach, or dine in the local restaurants.

6. Pacific Resort, Aitutaki (Cook Islands)

This boutique island resort offers a sheltered location, right on a beautiful secluded atoll. Watch the sunset over the crystal blue Aitutaki lagoon from your own private balcony, or take the few steps to the water and snorkel with the tropical fish.
All the rooms are beachfront, and all rooms face the sunset side of the island - it was designed with proximity in mind, which always leaves you in the best possible position to enjoy the magic. Though it has a laid-back, casual atmosphere, there are more exciting things to do - you can take a bike and cycle around the island, watch the fire-dancing performers, or charter a boat for a half-day snorkelling tour out in the perfectly calm water.

7. St Regis Bora Bora Resort, Tahiti 

The sprawling 44 acre resort is situated on its own island off the coast of Tahiti. Despite the high occupancy rate, its size will make you feel like you have the place to yourself.

Most will be familiar with that iconic image - bungalows stretching out over the water, resting above the still, blue water under the sun.

St. Regis fulfils that image perfectly. Stay in one of the overwater bungalows and dive into the emerald water, or go for a spot that has remarkable views of Mt. Otematu. Palm trees line every walkway, and the pitch black night sky was made for stargazers. Jump on a bike and cycle around the resort, try your hand at paddle-boarding, or dine in the three acclaimed restaurants - you won't be left wanting for anything.

- Stuff

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