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Islands We Love

Idyllic beaches, one-of-a-kind hotels and a tempting range of restaurants single out these destinations worth a detour

Soho Roc House

Please check the latest government advice before booking travel and departing on any trip, as this may affect the travel insurance cover provided with your card account (if held).


These past months have been transformative for many of us. We’ve shifted our lives to new digital frontiers, re-examined our preferences and proclivities and, in some cases, overhauled our living and working spaces. Travel, has, in the interest of our collective safety, been curtailed – leaving us dreaming about a new trip. Now that many hotels have reopened, we’ve assembled this multifaceted guide that explores the idyllic isles – the uber trendy, old favourites and half-forgotten gems – we can’t wait to tour. 




A 15th-century Franciscan monastery on the island of Lopud in the Elaphiti Islands of Croatia has been restored with input from Italian designer Paola Lenti. Lopud 1483 took 20 years to complete, the brainchild of Francesca Thyssen-Bornemisza, and the results are staggering. With five opulent hotel suites converted from 13 former monk cells, this is a true oasis complete with works from one of the world’s greatest private collections of Renaissance art and huge gardens lined with lemon and olive trees.




Proximity to and immersion into the waters are pivotal to the Maldives’ appeal. Soneva Fushi blends the two requirements with its new overwater villas, which feature a two-storey waterslide so you can, almost literally, slide from your bed into the warm, turquoise sea. Cheval Blanc Randheli Resort & Spa has recently raised its already serious spa credentials with a new hyperpersonalised spa programme. Located on Gaafu Alifu Atoll in the far south of the nation, Raffles Maldives Meradhoo is really getting away from it all. The new Royal Residence, spread over 1,700 square metres with a private beach and 40m pool, only heighten the sense of glorious isolation.



Credit: Soho Roc House


For unabashed hedonism with style, Soho Roc House delivers with its location in the fulcrum of the Paraga and Paradise beach party scene, its Cycladic curves and whitewashed suites. Rustic meets luxe in the brand-new Kalesma Mykonos just off Ornos Bay. A 25-suite bolthole designed to look like a traditional Mykonian village, the local larder is given serious prominence here at the in-house restaurant Pere Ubu. For a sense of Mykonos’s history beyond its golden sands, The TownHouse Mykonos exudes regal charisma with the top-floor 54 Bar and Sunset Lounge offering the finest views of any bar on the island.




Rustic, unforgettable flavours abound amid the Baroque architecture of the Val di Noto region in the southeastern part of the island. Indulge in the Sicilian larder before spending the night within the stone-flagged palazzo of AD1768. Farther north, Capofaro, on the island of Salina, effortlessly fuses bucolic majesty with its 27 whitewashed villas. Black lava cliffs await halfway between Italy and Tunisia, where the tiny isle of Pantelleria is renowned for ancient Arab dammusi. Twenty of these iconic stone dwellings have now been converted into luxurious suites at Sikelia Pantelleria.




Scheduled to open next year, the Sky Lagoon is long-awaited competition to the Blue Lagoon, located right on the coastline. Geothermal spa facilities and turf-topped buildings all come with a front-row seat for the Northern Lights. Deplar Farm is a former sheep farm that now offers the ultimate Icelandic luxury adventure experience. In just one day, you can heli-ski, fish for salmon and take on a black ski run. With an outstanding location amid the natural wonders of the Golden Circle, Torfhús Retreat beguiles with its 25 turf-covered guesthouses, which each come with their own basalt hot tub.




Anassa continues to charm with its location hidden amid greenery in the fringes of the Akamas, where you’ll find butterflies, orchids and paths that lead to quiet coastal villages. Near central Limassol, Amara is the gourmet capital of the island. Nobu Matsuhisa and Giorgio Locatelli both create their sublime dishes here while native cuisine is on offer in The Dining Room.

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