Sneaking away to a far-off island is always a good idea. No need to pack much beyond a swimsuit and sun tan lotion, ignoring your cell phone is highly encouraged, and did we mention the water? Enough said. Time to start planning. Take your pick from these four insanely cool resorts.
BORA BORA: THE ROMANTIC ISLAND
Bump up the romance at this stunning hideaway Hilton Bora Bora Nui Resort and Spa.
You may recognize this place if you’re a fan of The Bachelorette, Amazing Race and Keeping Up With the Kardashians. This resort has made a cameo on each of these hit shows. It comes as no surprise that the overwater bungalows dotting the shore are postcard perfect, and you can even have room service breakfast delivered by outrigger canoe each morning. (Kim wouldn’t have it any other way.) The 1,000-square-foot mountaintop villas are equally amazing. Rooms feature Indonesian mahogany canopy beds, Italian marble bathtubs and visiting birds on the balconies. When you want some alone time, request a trip to Motu Tapu, the resort’s own private island. It used to belong to Polynesian Queen Teriimaevarua in the late 1800s. These days guests get to enjoy it with a private chef who prepares a feast at a picnic table set in the water. The fish tickle your toes as you chow down on grilled lobster, shrimp, shark steak and tuna sashimi. hilton.com/frenchpolynesia
MALDIVES: JEWEL OF THE INDIAN OCEAN
If you’re serious about snagging some R&R, make your way to Outrigger Konotta Maldives Resort, a new luxe hideaway, which opened in August.
First, a private yacht drops you off at Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll. Have your camera out, because you’ll want to document your first time stepping onto the dock of the resort. Next, settle into your room. With only 29 beach pool villas, 21 overwater pool villas and a palatial new three-bedroom overwater presidential villa, you’ll feel like you own the place. For water-lovers: Get your water fix with scuba diving (Best Dives Maldives treats guests like VIPs), parasailing and SEABOBs, a cross between a jet ski and a boogie board. And, as if that wasn’t enough, snorkel above brightly colored coral and starfish. Come nighttime, take a sunset cruise on a traditional dhoni boat and then nosh on a medley of local seafood at Blue Salt restaurant. Or opt for Nala Rah, the resort’s teppan-raw bar, where you can watch the chefs prepare sushi and sashimi rolls using the freshest ingredients from the sea. In the morning, soothe your muscles at Navasana Spa where the green tea scrub and Balinese massage top the list. outriggermaldives.com
CAYMAN: EASY BREEZY
The Ritz-Carlton has the island lifestyle down pat.
The Ritz-Carlton in the Cayman Islands is utterly amazing; it’s everything you hope an island resort would be, and it’s smack dab on the famous Seven Mile Beach. This AAA five-diamond property will have you at hello. The luxe hotel is divided into two buildings. One faces a lagoon; the other faces the ocean. Connecting the buildings is a long, lovely corridor packed with local art. Once you are beachside, activities include boogie boarding, snorkeling and scuba diving. Afterward, snag one of the floating water hammocks where an aqua butler will wade over to bring your drink of choice. Kids and adults will enjoy the Ambassadors of the Environment program, created by Jean-Michel Cousteau, for its kayak trips through the mangroves and night snorkeling excursions. It’s a glamorous property, but it’s extremely family friendly. You can stargaze alongside an astronomer, enjoy a movie night or schedule a kids’ tuck-in, which involves milk, cookies and story time. ritzcarlton.com
BALI: EAT, PRAY, LOVE
If staying at The Mulia is not on your bucket list, it should be.
his crowd-pleasing getaway is right on the Indian Ocean, so you’ll always have a picturesque backdrop. And it’s over-the-top luxe, so you’ll be in heaven. The spacious beachside suites offer private butler service and an extensive room-service list. Once you are ready to venture out of your room, the comfort continues. First, make a beeline toward the turquoise water. On the way you’ll see an epic swimming pool flanked by massive statues (plus, there are three other equally impressive pools on property). Opt for a poolside cabana for some shade or grab lounge chairs right on Nusa Dua beach. Then, start your to-do list: Skim the water’s surface via paddle board or kayak, then top it off with an aqua aerobics class. When hunger hits, dine at Table8, a signature Chinese restaurant serving authentic Cantonese and Szechuan delicacies. Be sure to order tea. A kung fu tea master will stop by your table with a long-nosed brass kettle pouring hot water from afar, Ninja-style. themulia.com