The COVID-19 pandemic placed a giant wedge between us and our friends. Talking to them through screens wasn’t the same. You missed milestones. Friends got new jobs. Friends got engaged. You didn’t have the chance to celebrate in person.
Well, what better way to make up for lost time than with a private island escape?
Bury your feet into the cushiony sands of one of these seven private islands. All isolated, tropical getaways, enjoy a momentary reprieve from crowded cities and winter weather with those closest to you. Here’s where you could be.
Voavah Island, Maldives
This island is so pristine and undisturbed that it’s smack in the middle of a UNESCO site: Hanifaru Bay. Plus, it comes with its own luxury yacht named Voavah Summer. Embrace that sailor life and spend your day on deck with friends suntanning and exploring the surrounding coral reef.
Dive into the crystal water to swim with reef sharks, manta rays, turtles, and kaleidoscopic fish all before retreating to your seven-bedroom beach house.
Hawkins Island, Bermuda
This treasured hideaway houses 25 acres of lush woodland with a private beach facing the Great Sound. Swim in turquoise water, catch glimpses of turtles, explore the island’s walking trails, and enjoy lunch prepared by your own private chef.
Between the Main Villa and the Guard House, the island sleeps 16 guests, and includes laundry and internet, plus kayaks, paddleboards, and a small sailboat.
Brother Island, Philippines
You’ll feel some fraternal love on this island getaway. Indulge in three traditional Filipino meals a day from your own private chef or relax with a beach massage beneath the island’s swaying palms.
Surrounded by a coral reef and a bamboo forest, the villa, which was built in 1991, has seven bedrooms, housing a total of 16 guests.
Bird Island, Belize
Set within a coral reef, the Bird Island villa—named after the frigatebirds and brown footed boobies that frequent the area—is built on stilts raised above the water. A vibrant turquoise and orange paint job causes the property to melt into its surroundings. If you’re looking for things to do, take a ride on the island’s swings suspended above the water, snorkel through the nearby reef, or cast out the old fishing line.
The villa houses up to eight people.
Fort Morgan Cay, Honduras
Just off the coast of Roatan, this 40-acre piece of paradise is part of Honduras’ Bay Islands. With three meals a day made from fresh, local ingredients, and access to sailboats, kayaks, paddleboards, yoga classes, fishing gear, and even a swimming pool, the rental is a great spot to log some much-needed bonding time with friends.
The island has eight bedrooms, housing up to 16 guests.
Islas del Rosario, Colombia
Part of an archipelago off the coast of Colombia, this private island looks like it could be the location for a James Bond flick. Set amid turquoise waters, the island features two docks and a private yacht that you and your friends can charter to explore the area. If you’re looking to hang out around the rental, you can watch the sea roll in from your personal jacuzzi or stare up at the night’s stars from the solarium.
With three bedrooms, the villa houses up to six people.
Little Peter Oasis, Belize
A three-acre island accented by palm trees and a thatched-roof bungalow, Little Peter is only a 10-minute boat ride from the second largest barrier reef in the world, the Belize Barrier Reef.
Grab your snorkeling gear and head out for an underwater adventure, or you and your friends can hop on the kayaks and paddleboards for some above-water excitement. The island even comes with a personal concierge who can coordinate off-island tours for you. Now that’s service!
The island’s bungalow houses up to four people.