- Solana Royston
Pandemic Pampering: Top 10 places in the world you can go in 2021
It is no doubt that experiencing a global pandemic takes a toll on you. COVID-19 has now rang in its first anniversary, yet the virus still has a hold on a majority of the planet. We have been in quarantine, placed in front of our laptops on Zoom for hours on end, seen the vacant shelves of department stores, and watched as devastation has overtaken much of the world. Though coronavirus has enlightened us on how to truly appreciate what we have, the number of cases has been decreasing steadily, something we celebrate vibrantly.
In order to reestablish a sense of sanity and once again connect with other parts of the world, you deserve the ultimate pandemic pampering. Following the CDC’s guidelines for premium safety precautions - wearing masks, sanitizing consistently, and maintaining social distancing - here are the top 10 destinations across the world offering the highest levels of luxury and the opportunity to disconnect to reconnect in 2021.
1. Australia: Qualia
Qualia, located on Hamilton Island’s northern-most point, is an award-winning Australian luxury awaiting your arrival. They offer three laidback, effortlessly luxe pavilions for guests ages 16 and older with attentive service, private pools, and complimentary golf buggies to cruise around the resort. There are a multitude of experiences guests may choose from—such as visiting Spa qualia, enjoying the expansive number of facials and therapies, or going on excursions to marvel at Whitehaven Beach and the Great Barrier Reef. Their two restaurants invite guests to taste their fresh and unrivaled cuisine surrounded by crystal-clear waters, calm beaches, and luxury indulgences.
2. British Virgin Islands: Rosewood Little Dix Bay
This British Virgin Islands retreat sits on the one of the Caribbean’s finest shorelines, making it imperative to your 2021 bucket list. Rosewood Little Dix Bay, accessible by plane or private ferry, a selection of stays boasting a mid-century modern design with bright and airy spaces and natural materials. The rooms and suites are hidden in lush gardens near the resort’s beach, meanwhile luxury villas are nestled in the hillside overlooking the water or directly on the water. Sense, the resort’s spa, allows guests the perfect opportunity to relax and rejuvenate, offering a vast array of treatments to truly destress. Their four restaurants include different menus, all inspired by the breathtaking land and sea surrounding them; however, poolside and beachside dining are also available, if you find the water too perfect to part with. Make sure that you explore the resort’s hiking trail and Anegada Island throughout your stay to truly take in the powder-white beaches and bright water of the BVI.
3. Cambodia: Song Saa Private Island
Song Saa Private Island - a luxury Cambodian getaway - is the ultimate oasis from the craziness of the world. Only accessible by boat or private helicopter, the resort amazes from the very moment you arrive. Offering a selection of luxury villas, you can choose from their jungle, ocean view, and overwater locations for your stay, or even experience the off-the-grid seclusion of the Royal Villa. Due to the resort’s commitment to sustainability, each villa is constructed from reclaimed materials, incorporating them into the architecture and design. Each villa includes an abundance of amenities, boasting private pools with sundecks and the villas’ spacious interiors; however, there is plenty to experience off the coast of the island. Guests are invited to delve into the clear waters to snorkel, sail, or enjoy various watersports as they explore more of what Cambodia has to offer.
4. Cayman Islands: Le Soleil D’or
Set on twenty acres of gardens, elevated above the sea, Le Soleil D’or is a unique luxury stay you need to experience. The Caribbean escape is made up of three separate locations across the gardens that you may choose to stay: The Coast House, The Manor House, and The Beach Club. The Coast House remains close to shore, a villa with incredible ocean views, a private pool, and the sandy beach on your doorstep. In the center of the property, The Manor House offers spacious suites with large terraces to step out and take in the views. Two miles away from the other stays, The Beach Club immerses you in the vacation life with grand oceanfront pools and sparkling beaches. You experience a unique cuisine, for grown on-site, meals full of fruits and vegetables are harvested straight from the acres of gardens. During your stay, you can explore the Cayman Brac island by hiking, rock climbing, or cycling the surprising terrain, or, if you are more inclined to wade in the clear waters, dive and snorkel.
5. Cook Islands: Pacific Resort Aitutaki
The Pacific Resort Aitutaki’s colonial interior design of their expansive bungalows and villas makes it the perfect place to experience the sanctuary of the Cook Islands. Whether you desire for tranquil mornings relaxing at the Tiare Spa, picture sunny afternoons discovering exotic marine life through the Aquatic Eco Trail, or want exciting evenings watching cultural night dancing, the resort offers memorable moments to remember look back on in decades to come. Dining at the Rapae Bay Restaurant is something of an overwhelming experience, boasting oceanside views and mouthwatering cuisine.
6. Tobago: The Villas at Stonehaven
Your next destination: Tobago’s Villas at Stonehaven. The secluded island is the hidden sanctuary calling your name, located next to a bird sanctuary extending 260 acres. This Caribbean gem offers beach-view villas surrounded by thick forestry with refreshing plunge pools and a sought-after sense of privacy. The tropical oasis is nothing short of luxurious, a hotspot for destination weddings and honeymoon retreats. Lush flora and fauna allow for incredible jungle expeditions and opportunities to immerse yourself in the island’s flourishing environ, meanwhile the sea welcomes you to explore glass waters.
7. Greenland: Ilimanaq Lodge, Disko Bay
Though Greenland is known for its icy landscapes and chilly weather, Ilimanaq Lodge in Disko Bay is the quiet relaxation spot you just may need to unify your mind and body from the world. With a large emphasis on sustainability, the two-story cottages are equipped with solar panels for a clean source of energy. No matter the length of your stay, Greenland’s Ice Fjord is a must-see with massive icebergs and trails through glacial terrain. The small villages are only a boat ride away, and the comfortable feel of the neighborhoods is something from a storybook setting. Water-filled views and whale watching through the cottages’ large glass windows will surely make your getaway one difficult to emulate.
8. New Caledonia: Le Mèridien Noumea Resort & Spa
As one of New Caledonia’s only oceanfront locations, the Marriot’s Le Mèridien Noumea Resort & Spa allows guests to immerse themselves in views of the lagoon or lush flora throughout the resort. Their breakfast buffet, three restaurants, and lively coffee house (and, later, cocktail bar) invite those staying to delve into delicious dishes and beverages. During your stay, there are a myriad of activities to enjoy, offering horseback riding, rock climbing, and various water experiences. From a selection of eight luxury rooms and suites, you have the ultimate space to relax before exploring the resort’s Deep Nature Spa, pampering you with natural treatments, rejuvenating your body and mind with their selection of body wraps, therapy baths, and various other relaxing services.
9. New Zealand: Lizard Island Resort
New Zealand’s all-inclusive Lizard Island Resort is the ultimate escape to experience the relaxation and peace you may have been missing during the craziness of the past year. The luxury stay is usually only open to children 10 and over; however, due to the pandemic’s harrowing influence, the resort is open to little ones 3 and older from June 26th to July 11th, 2021 to allow a family getaway. Lizard Island has an array of pristinely styled rooms, suites,and villas to choose from, each with floor-to-ceiling windows, a bright and modern design, and quick access to the beach. The turquoise water beckons for you to explore the marine life from glass bottom kayaks or walk the tranquil beaches from your own personal motorized dinghy. After a long day of adventuring, the Essentia Day Spais the perfect place to unwind with nature-inspired Australian iKOU Spa Treatments, massages, and soothing facials.
10. St. Kitts & Nevis: Park Hyatt St. Kitts
For your next getaway, Park Hyatt St. Kitts Christophe Harbour should be at the top of your list. Its luxury rooms and suites are nothing less than spectacular: spacious and modern interiors with pale tones to enhance the vibrant colors of the island. With four exclusive restaurants spread across the resort’s landscape, guests are never without an exquisite, Instagram-worthy meal during their stay. Although the resort’s immersive excursions and breathtaking tours are currently unavailable due to COVID-19 precautions, there are still endless experiences to envelope yourself in on the island. The Sugar Mill Spa & Sanctuary is everything you need to unwind and reground yourself in the beauty of the Caribbean. For those invested in the fitness of their body and mind, there are wellness classes where guests can participate in Hatha Yoga, Cross Fitness Workout, and Boot Camp opportunities.