Where there’s a penchant for privacy but a soft spot for the frills of a five-star hotel, our edit of the very best standalone residences is your go-to. From intimate hideaway homes and spa houses to large chalets fit for global get-togethers.
With no more than 52 guests circumventing the surrounding wilderness at any one time, Kwandwe Private Game Reserve is championed as being amongst the most exclusive Big Five Safari destinations on the continent. In fact, the reserve plays host to one of South Africa’s highest land to guest ratios so complete solitude is an innate virtue.
Take your pick from a profile of lodge accommodation or a trinity of soleuse safari villas equipped to facilitate families and gaggles of friends in style. Each dreamy abode comes complete with vistas as far as the eye can see, extensive facilities, private safari vehicle and the dedication of your very own ranger and tracker.
Where in the world? Nuzzled safely in the very heart of South Africa’s Eastern Cape, Kwandwe presents a spectacular repurposing of former farmland
Perfect for… Families, couples or friends with a thirst for wildlife adventures and a simultaneous tendency towards the chic and the contemporary
Not to be missed… See some of nature’s most majestic animals on a Big Game Walk including black and white rhino, elephant and buffalo, or drive over the Great Fish River at dawn then make sure your own pack are nourished with a Campfire Cooking experience.
Time spent at Palm Point, Antigua is a spectacle to say the very least. Nestled on an exquisite private beach, this sprawling luxury home is famed for being one of the finest residences on the island. Just one of a host of extravagant inclusions is the on-site concierge who will handcraft a bespoke itinerary of experiences just for you and your companions, many of which are just a short stroll away around the twinkling marina.
Contemporary and elegant with a hint of British personality, the highlight of the villa is the master pavilion. This circular suite is situated away from the main property on the tip of the peninsula, offering its residents gaspinspiring 360 degree views of the ocean.
Balmy climates make coastal exploration on the villa’s 22-metre yacht a must, while the zealousness of Antiguan hospitality makes for a vibrant local culture. Steep yourself in soul-lifting surroundings or take a helicopter ride to Monserrat to see the active volcano.
Where in the world? On its own alluring peninsula, Palm Point is situated at the entrance to Antigua’s Jolly Harbour.
Perfect for… Discerning guests looking for complete seclusion amidst tranquil, sumptuous surroundings in climes that will warm mind, body and soul.
Not to be missed… An afternoon spent teeing off on the immaculate, 18-hole championship course at the premier Jolly Harbour golfing venue
The mesmerising Raffles Seychelles resort might be veiled beneath a jungle of tropical vegetation and fenced by the silken white sands of Anse Takamaka Beach but its prestige is macroscopic. Acclaimed worldwide for its graceful hospitality and glamorous aesthetic, it boasts 86 luxury villas each with private plunge pools and expansive pavilions. The realms of recreation include kayaking, snorkelling, paddle boarding or a dip in two stunning infinity pools, while a repertoire of diverse restaurants indulge even the most insatiable tastes.
Cool down in the ultra-luxe spa with an extensive range of rejuvenating treatments then when dusk draws in, head to the Losean restaurant and enjoy a taste of contemporary Indian Ocean cuisine.
Where in the world? Teetering on the beautiful North East tip of Praslin Island within the pristine waters of the Indian Ocean.
Perfect for… Multi-generation families hankering after some wellearned downtime for the grown-ups and otherworldly activities for young whippersnappers at The Sugar Palm Club.
Not to be missed… One of the regular excursions out to Praslin’s equally idyllic neighbour, Curieuse Island. Home to the Marine National Park and the perfect pit stop for giant turtle spotting. The jaw-dropping Vallée de Mai UNESCO World Heritage Site and the heavenly beach of Anse Lazio are also just a stone’s skim away
Asia’s illustrious Kata Rocks is a beachcomber’s paradise, with access to the unspoilt sands of Kata Noi and Kata Yai and just a short drive to the electric crescent of Patong Beach. Swanky one, two, three and four bedroom Sky, Ocean and Spa Villas are dotted across the hillside, each with its own infinity pool and equally satisfying view.
When daylight starts to dip, refine your palate at the resort’s gourmet fusion restaurants, elegant cocktail lounges and premium Wine Cellar. Prefer something more intimate? There’s the in-villa barbecue experience hosted by a private chef.
When morning calls and the rustle of pandan leaves rouse you from your slumber, head to the Ila Spa where the great outdoors are brought indoors for an innovative wellness experience. Seasoned practitioners use light chromotherapy and water massage beds as part of a bespoke list of treatments, employing natural elements to heal and rejuvenate.
Where in the world? Kata Rocks is situated on a remote hillside along the southern west coast of Phuket. The soothing waters of the Andaman Sea and gilded sands of Kata Beach its border.
Perfect for… Those who love to pick and choose their seclusion. Boutique shopping and infinity pools seduce the grown ups while youngsters unwind at the Kids' Club relaxation suite.
Not to be missed… A sojourn to Koh Pu, or Crab Island when translated into English. It’s a modest islet just off Kata Beach lauded for its snorkelling and scuba diving possibilities.
Total tranquillity and zerostrain living are requisites at The Beachfront Collection, part of Sugar Beach St Lucia, a Viceroy Resort. Here, guests have access to the plethora of amenities on offer at the resort to marry the best parts of both luxury private living and five star hotel facilities. Each of the esteemed residences have been skilfully designed by acclaimed architects, Michaelis Boyd to blend into the unblemished landscape and becloud the boundaries between interior and exterior.
As well as expansive outdoor terraces, reflective infinity pools and maximum privacy, guests can also enjoy private access to Glenconner Beach. This intimate crescent-shaped haven has been specially created with imported white sand to synthesise immaculately with its neighbouring Jalouise Beach. As a resident of the Sugar Beach resort, guests can also take advantage of priority reservations for all water sports experiences.
Where in the world? This majestic destination is a gem of the West Indies, neighbouring the Piton Mountains and a National Marine Reserve which can both be explored alongside the resort’s guides.
Perfect for… Beachcombers, adventurehabitués and families fanatical about spine-tingling escapes.
Not to be missed… The resort’s treehouse spa which is a haven of mindfulness and physical healing amidst the lush West Indian rainforest, using nature’s minerals and ingredients within its treatments.
All of the deluxe villas belonging to The Resort at Pelican Hill are a complete transcendence of normality. Expansive terrace views are a feature of all residences with a fully stocked Chef’s kitchen in each. Enjoy space, serenity and a sophisticated ambience whether it’s a two bedroom Garden View Villa with friends, or a four bedroom Ocean View Villa for a family escape to remember. Feed the soul with a taste of the global menu at the Piccolo restaurant, reserved solely for the indulgence of villa guests.
Destinations like this one don’t get five-star, world-class status for creating ordinary experiences. The magnificent Private Clubhouse, customised grocery packages and a glimmering pool saved for villa guests exclusively are just part of what makes each and every enclave feel like a home away from home. Your assigned butler will even be on hand to tend to everything from unpacking your bags to plumping your pillow.
Where in the world? Studding southern California’s iconic shoreline, this idyllic seaside resort is nestled between Newport Beach and Laguna Beach.
Perfect for… Golf aficionados or guests who like to hit the green as part of their breakaway itinerary. The resort boasts an exquisite golf course with vistas spanning the Pacific Ocean.
Not to be missed… A foray along the coast to the spectacular Crystal Cove. Here you can marvel at the oceanfront nature reserve or explore the unique Historic District which houses forty six beach cottages preserved since the early 20th Century
Scarp Ridge Lodge’s preserved façade might look devastatingly delicate but step across the threshold and it’s snug sophistication in every corner. The standalone five bedroom lodge carries a premium price tag but deluxe skiing experiences, access to Wagner skis custom-designed for the local conditions and a full day with a professional photographer are just a few of the features which make this unimaginable experience so invaluable.
Submerge yourself in the saltwater lap pool or soak al fresco in a copper hot tub then retire to your kingsize sleeping quarters. When it’s time to head into the great outdoors, the 1,547 acres of snowy ski terrain is quite simply irresistible. A winter wonderland of backcountry skiing, crosscountry skiing, snowshoeing, dog sledding and ice skating makes the resort a once-in-alifetime kind of venue where there’s both adrenaline and wellness in abundance
Where in the world? The renovated Victorian saloon and miner’s dancehall sits 2,860 metres high in the sky in Colorado’s postcard-perfect Crested Butte at the heart of the Rocky Mountains.
Perfect for… Those who prefer ski slopes to sundecks and jet setters who like to enjoy the finer things in life in friendly, fuss-free surroundings.
Not to be missed… Deluxe snowcat skiing. Led by your own certified mountain guide, this is a breathtaking way to take in the views and immerse yourself in the immaculate snowscape.
The trio of deluxe villas at Verdura Resort, A Rocco Forte Hotel strike an ethnic and contemporary balance to blend flawlessly into the backdrop of this elegant resort. Refreshed in time for summer 2018, each spacious residence is equipped to facilitate up to nine guests, offering each unrivalled Mediterranean vistas and luxurious living. Chic and minimal interiors allow precious seclusion for families and large groups, while a schedule of sporting experiences and culinary events promote invaluable togetherness.
One of the resort’s most indulgent assets is its stylish slate-tiled spa which continues the theme of organic design to fuse seamlessly with its pure and natural habitat. Submerge yourself in the thalassotherapy pool, overlooking rolling hillsides and rustic olive groves, where thermal seawater uses nature’s minerals to remedy and revive. Emerge with radiance, vitality and a refreshing disposition.
Where in the world? The Verdura Resort stretches comfortably across the southern coast of Italy, just west of Sciacca, on a pebble-embellished shoreline in Sicily.
Perfect for… Guests looking to lounge in luxury and fully indulge in la dolce vita.
Not to be missed… We recommend including some breathable fabrics in your hideaway haul as a game of tennis on the premium courts or a bicycle ride through the lemon trees is a must.
Sharing the same immaculate coastline as the De Hoop Nature Reserve, Morukuru Beach Lodge offers four luxury suites, sandwiched between lapping waves and rustic dunes, plus a myriad of daily activities. Should you wish to hit the coastal road, Cape Town is but a three hour drive along the stunning Garden Route.
The paradisiacal Nafsika Estate is a breathtaking sanctuary overlooking the Santorini Caldera volcano. One of nature’s most magical juxtapositions with vistas to behold. Complete with its own heliport, the minimalist 350 square metres villa on the Aegean coast houses everything one needs for time spent in paradise.
Coveted for its opulent exclusivity, the recently reopened Four Seasons Resort & Residences Anguilla resort takes 35 acres of Caribbean oasis as its beauteous foundations and more than 180 deluxe villas and residences. Stretched across half a mile of burnished white sands, it attracts a diverse clientele.
Where better to absorb the views of Les Gets and the Portes du Soleil Mountains than from the heated balcony of the exquisitely renovated Ferme de la Corderie farmhouse? Six bespoke bedrooms, gourmet in-chalet dining and an in-house sommelier are the perfect pleasures to return to after being chauffeured home from the après-ski.
Nestled beneath rugged Vietnamese hillsides and sitting pretty upon Amanoi’s balmy lotus lake is a duo of ultra-luxe spa houses. The AMANOI Spa Houses offer extensive thermal facilities, daily 90 minute massages and guest pavilions which marry with stupefying scenery and unruffled seclusion for the ultimate wellness experience.
Featuring a whole host of inspiration and opportunities for enlightenment, wellbeing, self-discovery and fulfilment; whether you’re dreaming of lunch on the equator or of navigating the arctic in a submarine, a bike ride with a former two-time cycling champion or exploring part of the globe untouched by ordinary travellers – all of this is possible and so much more.Request your free copy