10 private-island resorts you can book with points
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Editor’s note: This is a recurring post, regularly updated with new information.
Travel looks a bit different these days, with a bigger emphasis on privacy and exclusivity than ever. In addition to a rise in private jet demand, travellers are more inclined to stay a secluded property than before.
“Expensive” and “far-fetched” are typically the first phrases that come to mind when people think of staying on a private island. However, if you’re an avid TPG reader, you know that the world’s most luxurious travel experiences can often be booked for little out-of-pocket by redeeming points and miles. Fortunately, the same is true with booking stays at private island resorts.
Rather than list out every single points hotel located on a private island, we’ve curated a list of some of the best properties in different regions of the world. So, while the Maldives has a slew of amazing private island points hotels, we’ve only included one on this list.
Points per night: 40,000 Hyatt points or 35,000-45,000 points starting in July 2021 when peak and off-peak pricing begin.
Through its partnership with Small Luxury Hotels of the World (SLH), Hyatt unlocked the ability to earn and redeem Hyatt points at hundreds of new hotels. Many of these properties are absolutely stunning.
For example, the Calala Island resort is located off the coast of Nicaragua and is part of a group of islands known as the Pearl Cays. It’s so exclusive that it only has four beach-front suites and can only accommodate eight guests at a time. With room rates regularly topping £1,500 per night, this is an absolute steal with points.
Calala Island brands itself as “ultra-inclusive” because everything from food, drinks and activities to airport transfers is included in the price. When you compare that to resorts in the Maldives, where you can spend £400+ per person on transfers, this easily earns the top spot for private island resorts.
Cape Fahn Hotel
Points per night: 20,000 Hyatt points or 17,000-23,000 points, starting in July 2021.
The Cape Fahn Hotel is located on a private island just off the northern tip of Koh Samui in Thailand. The resort is made up of 22 villas, each with its own plunge pool and private sun deck.
You can get to the hotel either by boat or, when there’s low tide, by walking across the narrow strait from Choeng Mon beach on Koh Samui. The property isn’t very large, but it does offer two restaurants and an on-site spa.
At 20,000 points per night, award rates are relatively reasonable here.
St. Regis Maldives Vommuli Resort
Points per night: 70,000-100,000 Marriott points.
TPG founder and CEO Brian Kelly, along with TPG Editor-at-Large Zach Honig both consider the St. Regis Maldives Vommuli Resort to be one of their favourite hotels in the world and for good reason. The property is only a few years old, has breathtaking views and offers an endless array of activities that will keep you entertained for as long as you’re there.
While 85,000 points for a standard award night may sound steep, keep in mind that room rates are regularly £1,000+ per night. The lowest-level awards book into overwater villas, so redemptions here can get you serious value for your points.
The Park Hyatt Maldives Hadahaa comes in a close second for properties in the Maldives and offers better award redemption possibilities at 30,000 points per night. But the St. Regis took the crown in our hotel face-off.
There’s also the new Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi, which some may even prefer over the St. Regis. It’s more expensive overall and finding standard room award availability is much harder. A free night goes for 150,000 Hilton Honors points per night.
JW Marriott Venice Resort & Spa
Points per night: 50,000-70,000 Marriott points.
The JW Marriott Venice Resort & Spa is set on a private island called Isola delle Rose (Rose Island) off the coast of — you guessed it — Venice, Italy. The 40-acre island resort boasts 250 rooms, four restaurants, the city’s largest spa and an early 20th-century church.
The highlight of the property is not the century-old park or the on-site Sapori Cooking Academy, but the rooftop lounge and pool that offers panoramic vistas as far as the eye can see. Guests have easy access to the heart of Venice thanks to a complimentary boat service to St. Mark’s Square.
Sheraton Resort & Spa, Tokoriki Island
Points per night: 30,000-40,000 Marriott Bonvoy points.
Tokoriki Island is one of the 20 Mamanuca Islands — the closest group of islands to Nadi International Airport (NAN) and arguably the most picture-perfect. Guests visiting the Sheraton Resort & Spa on Tokoriki can expect white sand beaches and clear waters, perfect for diving and snorkelling.
The island’s central location makes it easy to go “island-hopping” and explore everything that the Fijian islands have to offer.
Scrub Island Resort, Spa and Marina
Points per night: 70,000-100,000 Marriott Bonvoy points.
The private island is located just one mile offshore from Tortola Airport (EIS) and provides complimentary boat transportation from the mainland. The resort offers three private beaches, three pools, a full-service spa with ayurvedic treatments and a marina.
Renaissance Aruba Resort & Casino
Points per night: 40,000-60,000 Marriott Bonvoy points
While the Renaissance Aruba isn’t located on a private island, the property still gets a spot on this list because guests have exclusive access to the resort’s 40-acre private island.
Renaissance Island is divided between an adult-only side and a family area. It features Aruba’s only private beach, along with chaise lounges, huts, hammocks and even flamingos. Couples can book a romantic overnight package on the island for an additional fee.
There are many nonstop options to get you to and from Aruba (AUA) from major cities across the U.S. — including JetBlue Mint service from Boston (BOS) and New York (JFK).
Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort and Spa
Points per night: 20,000 Hyatt points or 17,000-23,000 points per night starting July 2021.
Located in Bonita Springs, Florida, the Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort and Spa is the closest resort on this list to home — and probably the cheapest. Resort guests have access to a private island and beach with hourly boat transportation. But this resort isn’t just for beach bumming — the property also features three acres of water attractions that include a lazy river, five waterslides and an adult pool.
You can read TPG’s full review of the Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort and Spa here.
North Island Resort, Seychelles
Points per night: 388,000 Marriott points under “exception” pricing
The final property on this list joined the Marriott Bonvoy programme as a Luxury Collection resort in Nov. 2019. However, don’t get too excited, as each night will set you back over 360,000 points — and that’s not including the 814 Euros you’d need to pay for a helicopter transfer each way.
In exchange for those points, you’ll enjoy a two-bedroom villa covering nearly 5,000 square feet. Your stay will also include complimentary breakfast, use of an island buggy, morning yoga and kids activities. With room rates that regularly cross £5,000 per night, this could be considered a great value — as long as you’re sitting on a massive stash of Marriott points.
There are many ways to earn Marriott points towards this stay, though the astronomical award rates likely put it out of reach for the majority of travellers.
Price: 1.5 million Virgin Atlantic Flying Club miles for a seven-night stay for two
This list wouldn’t be complete without Necker Island, Sir Richard Branson’s private escape in the British Virgin Islands. It’s a 74-acre private island oasis north of Virgin Gorda and east of Puerto Rico. The resort only sleeps up to 40 people across 15 total rooms.
On the island, you’ll find amenities like infinity pools, serene relaxation spaces, several bars, elegant dining spaces, lawn games, tennis courts and a hot tub directly on the beach. There are also endless activities for guest to participate in, such as kitesurfing, sailing, paddleboarding, kayaking, snorkelling, scuba diving, yoga, tennis, spa treatments and more.
While you typically need to rent the entire island, from time to time, there are “Celebration Weeks” available, during which you can book an individual room (you can view the available 2021 and 2022 weeks here).
You can normally book these weeklong stays with Virgin Atlantic miles for 1.5 million miles, though redemptions have temporarily been suspended while the resort processes a backlog of previous bookings that have been cancelled due to the pandemic. Also note that miles bookings are restricted to those who have Virgin Atlantic Silver or Gold status, though may be able to status match to Virgin Atlantic from another airline or hotel programme.
Celebration Week packages are all-inclusive, including everything from meals and drinks to transfers, activities and even a DJ for one night. Considering paid rates can be around £5,600 per night, you can get tremendous value from your miles.
The InterContinental Hayman Island Resort is part of the Whitsunday Islands and sits in the heart of the Great Barrier Reef. You can book a night there for 70,000 IHG Rewards Club points. Another private island resort that didn’t make it onto this list but deserves a mention is Amanpulo in the Philippines, run by the famed luxury brand Aman. But, you’ll need tons of fixed-value points (or cash) to book it.
If you want to take your private island experience a step further, learn about the cheapest ways to fly private.
Additional reporting by Summer Hull and Jason Stauffer
Featured photo of Necker Island courtesy of Virgin Limited Edition
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