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LIST: SECRET HOLIDAY HIDEAWAYS

These are secret hideaways (with varying degrees of secrecy!) located around the world, for those who "vant to be alone, darlink!"
Anjajavy Madagascar Luxury resort located on a white sand beach on the remote western coast of Madagascar - so remote it is accessible only by light aircraft and the address is given in longitude & latitude. Opened in Dec 2000, it is a member of Relais & Chateaux.
Bagus Place Retreat Tioman Island, Malaysia Bagus Place is run by a UK-based couple, Claire Seager and Ajay Barai. It is located on Tioman Island, off the east coast of mainland Malaysia, 30 mins flying time from Singapore. The Island is mountainous with craggy peaks and its slopes are carpeted in lush tropical forest which drops down to white sandy beaches and crystal clear sea. Excellent for diving, snorkelling, jungle trekking, honeymooning, nature watching or simply relaxing, Tioman was once voted ‘one of the world’s top 10 most beautiful islands’ by TIME magazine. Bagus Place offers two large chalets, each of which has two double bedrooms, a lounge and bathroom and can sleep up to five.
Casa Iguana Nicaragua Ok, you're looking for somewhere remote? Somewhere where it's almost guaranteed that, afterwards when you mention it at a dinner party, nobody says "Oh yes, we were there last year! How did you like it?" ..... try Casa Iguana.
Cerf Island Seychelles Not a huge secret, but it tends to get overlooked when people talk about the Seychelles. A mile long and half a mile wide, with few inhabitants and no roads, Cerf is located in a marine national park just a 7-minute boat ride from Mahe (the Seychelle's main island). The 5-star Cerf Island Marine Resort has 12 luxurious thatched timber lodges and perfect sandy beaches.
Chaa Creek Belize A lodge with simple cottages set in a private 330-acre nature reserve on the banks of the Macal River in the foothills of the Maya Mountains. Beautiful tropical garden setting with plenty of eco-activities. (One of my fav resorts worldwide)
Cocoa Island Maldives Probably won't remain much of secret for long, but Cocoa Island opened at the beginning of 2003 so it's not quite in the mainstream yet. There are a handful of villas built over the water and a pier stretching out into the lagoon with thirty 'Dhoni' house boats moored along it.... 'cept they're not really floating. Just an illusion. The single room houses are on stilts and just look like boats.
Dugong Beach Mozambique Beach resort with 10 luxurious framed tented rooms with hardwood floors, en-suite bathrooms, huge feature baths and outside showers, under thatched Jekka grass canopies.
Eagle Island Georgia, USA Private 10-acre island among the saltmarshes on the coast of Georgia. Perfect for wildlife enthusiasts - there's a reason it's called "Eagle Island".
Guana Island British Virgin Islands Think 'private island in the BVI' and most Brits come up with Sir Richard Branson's Necker - hardly a "secret hideaway". But those in the know will whisper 'Guana' and tell you it's bigger, taller, more interesting and more discreet than Necker, despite being only a few minutes offshore from Tortola. It takes up to 30 guests in elegant secluded cottages. (I've been and it feels very exclusive! So I probably shouldn't tell you about it.)
House, The Barbados Luxury boutique hotel hidden away on the Caribbean side of Barbados with 31 suite and popular with celebs. Kids (under 12) not welcome, 24-hour Concierge service, private beach, Evian spritz sprays and iced fruits. Opened in 2002.Part of the Elegant Hotels Group.
Islands of Siankaba, The Zambia A retreat with six secluded chalets on two forested islands in the middle of the Zambezi River upstream (like Tongabezi, see below) from the Victoria Falls.
Kamalame Cay Bahamas Ninety-six acre island resort in the Bahamas (just off Andros), best-known to deep-sea fishing enthusiasts, and comprising nine private villa suites many with private pool and garden backing onto a huge and near empty beach.
Kasbah du Toubkal Morocco A mountain retreat, available to groups, hidden away in the heart of the High Atlas near the foot of Jbel Toubkal, the highest mountain in North Africa. It's 40 miles from Marrakech. Explore the mountains and Berber villages on foot or by mule and relax in a steam bath when you get back. Owned and operated by a UK company, Discover Ltd.
Kimberley Coastal Camp Western Australia Tucked away on the remote north-west coast of Australia, the facilities and decor are basic ("un-pretentious" they call it) but the setting is sublime.
Little Palm Island Florida, USA Not much of a secret anymore, it's won several 'hideway' awards already. Twenty-eight thatched roof bungalows on a little island among the Florida Keys.
Little St Simons Island Georgia, USA A private island which you can rent in its entirety or one of the five houses/cottages (sleep a total of 30).
Little Thatch British Virgin Islands Little Thatch is a privately owned island in the British Virgin Islands. The owners (who are only in residence at certain times) have their house at one end of the island, and Seagrape cottage is available as a holiday let at the other.
Macanao Lodge Los Roques, Venezuela Macanao is on Gran Roque, the largest of dozens of coral islands in an archipelago lying off the coast of Venezuela close to Barbados. Empty white sandy beaches, with excellent diving and sailing.
Marlin Lodge Benguerua Island, Mozambique Another of Mozambique's hidden jewels. Benguerua Island is part of the Bazaruto Archipelago, a National Marine Park. Nineteen environmentally-sensitive luxury chalets blended into the trees along a pristine white sand beach. There's plenty of diving and fishing, good food, sun-lounging and no phones.

If you can't get in here, try Benguerra Lodge on the same island (even though they like to spell it differently!).
Matemo Island Resort Quirimbas Archipelago, Mozambique A secret hideaway, not least because it has only just opened (Feb 05). Matemo island is 8 kilometres in length and 3 kilometres wide with private beaches and countless coves to be discovered. The resort consists of 24 air conditioned Chalets, situated just 10 metres from the beach. All chalets are en-suite with indoor and outdoor showers, a custom-made bath, a large front veranda with loungers and hammock. To get there, guests fly into nearby Pemba with LAM and then take a light aircraft transfer - duration 30 minutes.
Medjumbe Island Resort Quirimbas Archipelago, Mozambique Opened in April 2005 and popular with scuba diving and angling enthusiasts. The island is only one kilometre in length and 500 metres in width, featuring a number of small bays and coves, complete with white beaches surrounded by the turquoise waters of the Indian Ocean. Accommodation is in 12 luxury air-conditioned chalets, situated in secluded spots on higher ground between 10 - 20 metres from the beach. All chalets have a bath, shower and external shower. The resort will have a restaurant with inside and outside decks with verandah, a lounge / bar, a swimming pool and an activities centre. To get there, guests fly into nearby Pemba with LAM and then take a light aircraft transfer - duration 20 minutes. Sister resort to Matemo Island (above).
Mnemba Island Zanzibar Simple, unspoilt, and where the richest man on the planet (Bill Gates) chooses to unwind. Ten bandas (thatched huts) and a main building on a tropical island just off the coast of Zanzibar.
Musha Cay Bahamas Not a particularly 'secret' hideaway, but a pretty exclusive one. A private 150-acre island resort in the Exuma Chain of the Bahamas, with miles of glorious white-sugar-sand beaches, luxurious accommodation, 35 staff including private European chefs, and every imaginable fun-in-the-sun activity including snorkeling, scuba diving, water skiing, windsurfing, deep sea and flats fishing excursions, shelling, & hiking. Three surrounding out-islands, also owned by the resort, ensure "ultimate privacy".
Orpheus Island Great Barrier Reef, Australia Private island resort for up to 42 guests on the Great Barrier Reef with no telephones, televisions, day-trippers or children under 15.
Quilálea Island Mozambique 'Heaven on a stick' for divers and nature lovers. Quilálea Island is part of the Quilálea Marine Sanctuary in Mozambique's Quirimbas Archipelago with sea turtles nesting on the beach, humpback whales sheltering their young in the channel and the occasional dugong spotted in the seagrass meadows. The island is malaria free and accommodates 18 guests in 9 'villas'. It opened in November 2002.
Ranguana Caye Belize A tiny (3 acres) white sand and palm tree island on the Belize barrier reef with just three cabins for guests and no other land in sight. It lies 18 miles off the resort town of Placencia, and is one of two private islands operated by the Inn at Roberts Grove on the mainland. The other being Robert's Caye, which is even smaller, has four cabins, and is 10 miles away.... so, less remote, more crowded!
Red Pepper House, The Lamu Island, Kenya Luxury and tranquility combined. The Red Pepper House has just five Nyumbas (cottages) and private access onto the beach. If you get restless, there's lots of cultural activities, but the pervading theme is simple R&R.
Royal Zambezi Lodge Zambia Luxury safari lodge with 14 tented suites on the bank of the Zambezi with game viewing, spa, and fishing.
Taprobane Island Galle, Sri Lanks A single villa (sleeps 8-10) perched on its own tiny private island in Weligama Bay, Sri Lanka within wading distance of the mainland. A colonial house built in the 1920s and set in tropical gardens. When it all gets a bit too hot there's a choice of swimming options close at hand: the swimming pool, the rock pool or the sea!
Tongabezi Zambia Not quite as secret as it used to be, Tongabezi has a small collection of luxurious 'accommodations' built on cliffs, in trees and on grassy lawns on the banks of the Zambezi, a few kilometres upstream from Victoria Falls. For those who want a real hideway, Sindebezi is a small island in the middle of the river (20 mins boat ride downstream from Tongabezi) with four thatch cottages. And Tongabezi also operate overnight camps and glamorous tablecloth lunches on Livingstone Island, perched right on top of the Falls.
Turtle Island Fiji Private all-inclusive island resort catering for only 14 couples at a time in 14 "bures" - traditional, two-room, thatched cottages. Plenty of beach space and palm trees to sling your hammock. All the usual water-sports, and horse-riding.
Vamizi Island Mozambique Private island with picture perfect deserted white sand beaches, iridescent seas, gently swaying palms and 13 villas. Vamizi has hosted the rich and the famous from Daniel Craig, Sven-Goran Eriksson, Nancy dell Olio & Will Young to the Aga Khan Nelson Mandela and the Qatari Royal family. The design concept of the pristine white billowing muslins surrounding vast beds, colonial style chairs and day beds stuffed with cushions and sensational marble bathrooms might also have been what appealed to Dolce and Gabbana.
Wilson Island Great Barrier Reef, Australia Classic image of a small desert island of the sort where people are marooned with discs! It's a coral cay island that sleeps 12 in private, luxury tents.
Young Island St. Vincent, WI A 35-acre private island resort just off the coast of St Vincent, with around 30 rooms, suites & cottages, plenty of beach space, scuba diving & crewed yachts, and a floating bar moored just off the beach serving drinks in coconut shells.

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