Good Friday weekend: 5 private islands near Singapore for the perfect escape
Why jostle with the crowd when you can steal away to these quiet spots?
Everyone dreams of that island getaway. What better way to make the best of the upcoming long weekend than finding your own slice of paradise? We've mapped out five idyllic spots for that private island escapade — and you don't have to go very far to check in.
Imagine 15 sea villas fanned out against the shore with the picturesque charm of an idyllic seaside village. This exclusive property is nestled against the beautiful terrain of Sugi Island, a mere three-hour ferry journey from Singapore. Each villa comes with a private balcony, perfect for sun salutations or lazy afternoons with a good book. Delectable Indonesian fare can be had at the resort, but if you're hankering for a taste of local cuisine, the staff can arrange for you to have lunch at a nearby village. You can even get a taste of rustic islander life with some traditional fishing, either from a boat or from the comfort of your own balcony.
A secluded island off the West coast of Malaysia, Pangkor Laut is a privately owned island that offers quiet bays and pristine beaches. At Pangkor Laut Resort, a property of YTL Hotels, you can opt to stay in one of the sea villas that stand elegantly above water on stilts. Only a fraction of the island has been developed into the resort's property and the island's foliage is a perfect backdrop for both relaxation and exploration. If you grow restless from an afternoon of lazing on the beach, there's the option of kayaking, snorkeling, jungle trekking, and even island-hopping by yacht. When the day is done, call for the private dining experience set against the backdrop of Emerald Bay. There, dinner is served with a little help from your butler.
Desiring to provide a holiday option that was neither too opulent nor rustic, the owners of Nikoi Island found a way to capture the best of both worlds by bringing comfort and class to an authentic island experience. We love how a mere 2.5 hour ferry ride can whisk us from Singapore to paradise. Handcrafted beach houses combine lush interiors and traditional Indonesian architecture in a way that gives this treasure trove of an island that extra bit of character. With sweeping views of the South China Sea, one can easily check-in just to luxuriate in the natural beauty of the island. Spectacular coral reefs mean that snorkeling and diving is a treat here. Seeking total seclusion? The resort can arrange to ferry you along with a well-stocked picnic basket to a deserted island nearby.
If barefoot luxury was a place, Cempedak Island would be it. Featuring a 17-hectare private island 9 kilometres off the east coast of Bintan, Indonesia, the respite is surrounded by white unspoiled beaches and studded with majestic granite boulders. Villas here are isolated and luxuriously equipped with private plunge pools with a huge deck to boot. Here's where true serenity lies, away from the city folk and their little ones — credit given to its "no kids under 16" rule. Apart from indulging in their spa facilities or recreational activities out at sea, the resort also strongly believes in nature conservation. Those seeking an experience within the wilderness can take a walk in their rainforest that's home to a population of hornbills, eagles and kingfishes, while its other inhabitants include the critical endangered pangolin and a family of sea otters.
Getting to Six Senses Con Dau might require more than just a ferry ride, but we're pretty sure it's worth the while. A 45-minute flight from the Ho Chin Minh City puts you on the isolated Con Dau islands. In fact, it is one of the few tropical destinations in Southeast Asia that remains untouched and predominantly undeveloped. Think sheer granite cliffs, uncrowded beaches and crystal-blue waters. The Six Senses resort comprises 50 contemporary pool villas, all designed to reflect the spirit of a traditional fishing village. Best part? Getting to marvel at the Lo Voi Mountains, a vista easily spotted while you're getting your knots kneaded at the Six Senses Spa. This might be the secluded paradise your body has been waiting for.