How to hire a private island: Top tips and where to book

Think desert islands are only for the Bransons of this world? Fly away to your secluded paradise in the sun.

Peter Island, British Virgin Islands

With over 1,800 acres of unspoilt land, five pristine beaches and only three villas, Peter Island is a real isolated hideaway in the Caribbean. It has a spa though, and a range of activities to try if you get bored, such as private diving, snorkelling excursions, deep sea fishing and hikes around the island’s Sunset Five-Mile Loop.
Stay seven nights for the price of six at Peter Island Resort & Spa from £2,660 per person. Call 01244 897538.

Necker Island, British Virgin Islands

The super-exclusive, Richard Branson-owned Necker Island is known for being an anything-goes playground for the rich, famous and beautiful. But the island is just as much about sophisticated luxury as it is about debauchery. Set among breathtaking scenery, the 74 acre island paradise only accommodates 30 guests at a time, so you’re guaranteed both uninterrupted peace and the full attention of the immaculately trained staff. For exclusive use of the island, rates start from £43,171 per night for 30 people (£1,438 per person, per night).
Rates staying at The Great House from £19,126 per couple for seven nights. Call 01993 899 430.

Anantara Medjumbe Island, Mozambique

This incredibly thin archipelago puts you in a naturally exclusive location right in the heart of the Indian Ocean off the northern coast of Mozambique. Just one kilometre long and 300m wide, the tiny paradise is home to just 12 private villas. It’s currently being considered for World Heritage Site Status.
Nightly rates start from £515 on an all-inclusive basis. Call +27 11 658 0633.

Coco Prive Kuda Hithi, The Maldives

The super-isolated Maldives is the ultimate place to have the private island experience, and you can’t get much more luxurious than Coco Privé Kuda Hithi. Not only will you be surrounded by perfect azure seas stretching as far as the eye can see, and exquisite interiors designed by architect Guz Wilkinson; you’ll also have a butler at your beck and call. Cocktail bar, jacuzzi, outdoor shower, exclusive wine cellar – Kuda Hithi has everything you could possibly hope for in the way of exotic luxury.
Prices start from £5,312 to £21,583 per night. Call 01993 899 430.

Henriksholm, Sweden

The manor house sitting on top of Lake Ånimmen in Dalsland is the embodiment of isolated beauty. From the white wooden walls to the green tin roof, the beautifully renovated, 24 high-ceilinged rooms have an incredible assortment of antique furniture and paintings.There's no television or internet in Henriksholm. Peace is of the essence – the perfect place to get away from it all.
From £3,173 a week, including exclusive use of the island, motor boat, two kayaks and sauna. Call 0046 5313 3168.

North Island, The Seychelles

This is how to do the Seychelles. The verdant North Island is home to 11 large private villas, all of which share four pristine white beaches and all the turquoise water anyone could hope for. The master suite of each villa has a large ocean-facing king-size bed and an ensuite open air bathroom with both inside and outside shower, large sunken tubs and massage bed. In the unlikely event you tire of the luxurious, the natural wonders of the Seychelles are yours to explore: scuba diving and snorkeling are included, as well as kayaking, mountain bikes, sunset cruises, guided walks, and shore-based fishing and half day fishing trips.
Prices start from £1,841 per person, per night. Call 01993 899 430.

Rubondo Island, Tanzania

Rubondo Island Camp’s eight luxury cottages sit in the shade overlooking the sublime lakeshore scenery. If you’re the adventurous type, partake in forest and water-based activities around the island (including guided forest walks, chimpanzee scouting and game drives through the wild forest). If you’re not, soak yourself in the pool or sit on the veranda and gaze at the stunning landscape.
From £2,590 per person for three nights, all inclusive including flights from UK. To book, call The Luxury Safari Company on 01666 880 111.


By Diana Cherry, director of operations at Oxford Private Travel
­1 Plan your stay with travel in mind - One of the best things about private islands is their total seclusion, so by their nature, they can be a tricky to get to. If you only have five days or a long weekend for a short break, think about how easy it is to get there.
2 Work out a budget - You may need multiple flights, helicopters or boats to get there and this means transport alone can add to the cost. Private island holidays can be expensive or accessible, depending on where you stay.
3 How private is private? - To some, it’s enough to be in the relative privacy of a room or villa, but with some shared facilities. Others want to walk around naked for a week and not see another soul. Speak to an expert before booking.
4 Plan a party - Private islands are amazing venues for a special occasion like a wedding or family gathering and many offer incredible bespoke event services – they’re not just for isolation and relaxation.
5 Size is everything - Islands really do come in all shapes and sizes and one size does not fit all. Speak to an expert to find what you’re looking for
6 Do your research – Some destinations are desert islands with barefoot luxury accommodation, while others are modern resorts with 5* spa and fitness facilities. Think about what you want from the holiday and find the right fit.

Related articles