Five luxury escapes in Polynesia
Astonishing beauty comes as standard at these island lodgings.
Saturday 17 January 2009
Aggie Grey's, Samoa
This legendary Samoan hotel started life as an English gentleman's club; it subsequently expanded with the arrival of American servicemen during the Second World War and began selling drinks and burgers, then offering rooms. Today, it's run by founder Aggie Grey's son, but retains its kitsch charm, with plenty of wicker, frangipani, banana trees and live music. In addition to the obvious coastal attractions, the Robert Louis Stevenson Museum – where the author is buried – is a short drive away.
Aggie Grey's Hotel, Apia, Samoa (00 685 22 880; aggiegreys.com). Doubles from $150 (£107), room only
Heliconia, Cook Islands
Comprising a beach house, bungalow and villa, this Rarotonga retreat offers a stunning private setting. Separated from a bath-warm lagoon by a stretch of coconut palms, the lodgings come with deck areas that lead down to white sand. The degree of luxury varies from the simply furnished bungalow to the tropical chic villa. All come with self-catering facilities and a home-entertainment centre, but the focus is undeniably outdoors, with a marine reserve on the doorstep.
Heliconia, Titikavaka Village, Rarotonga, Cook Islands (00 61 2 8006 4798; heliconiahideaway.com). The bungalow starts at NZ$300 (£113), including a welcome hamper
Posada de Mike Rapu, Easter Island
Part of Chilean group Explora's portfolio of bold lodgings in dramatic locations, this 30-room hotel overlooks the Pacific. Built using local volcanic rock, it has glass-fronted public spaces that spiral out into the wilderness. A perfect base for diving and volcano treks.
Posada de Mike Rapu, Te Miro Oone, Easter Island (00 56 2 206 6060; explora.com). Doubles from $1,520 (£1,086), full board with excursions
Pension Raimiti, French Polynesia
Accessible only by boat, and blissfully isolated in a lagoon of dazzling turquoise water, each of Raimiti's six thatched fares (bungalows) is ventilated by the ocean breeze and lit by hurricane lamps.
Pension Raimiti, Tetamanu District, Fakarava, Tuamotu, French Polynesia (00 689 55 05 65; raimiti.com). Bungalows from 44,500 French Pacific francs (£339), full board
Situated on Hawaii's biggest but least-populated island, Big Island, this Hawaiian-owned B&B offers a traditional, personal experience. The homestead has four cosy suites, and also offers spa treatments – perfect after a day visiting the nearby Volcanoes National Park.
Kalaekilohana, 94-2152 South Point Road, Na'alehu, Big Island, Hawaii (001 808 939 8052; kau-hawaii.com). Doubles start at $222 (£158), including breakfast
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