Once mangrove swamps, Denarau Island was reclaimed, revamped and re-energised into a sparkling resort destination on the west coast of Fiji‘s Viti Levu. The name’s misleading, it’s not an island at all, but you will find glittering views of the Pacific Ocean, plus water sports aplenty. The resorts veer towards the upscale end of the market, but boutique shopping, an 18-hole golf course and a buffet of respected restaurants mean you won’t regret the outlay.
Overlooking the serene South Pacific Ocean and sitting on 2km (1.2mi) of sands, this Hilton resort offers a luxurious beachfront experience. Each of the guest rooms and suites has floor-to-ceiling windows framing beach or tropical garden views; some also have private dipping pools. There’s also a selection of enticing in-house restaurants, a dedicated concierge team and a relaxing private spa with plenty of therapies and treatments – try a Fijian massage.
If you’re looking for an extended stay, Sheraton Denarau Villas is a collection of two- and three-bed villas, each with a living room, dining space, kitchen and a large private patio or balcony. A beachfront infinity pool has (the aptly named) Wet Edge swim-up bar for lazy afternoons sipping cocktails. Or you can ramp up the thrills with a water sports activity – jet-skiing, kayaking, sailing and snorkelling are all available.
The Sofitel is a five-star blend of warm Fijian hospitality and timeless French style. Drawing inspiration from the hotels of Paris, each of the spacious suites features chic interiors, with an effortless atmosphere of comfort and luxury. True to the inspiration, there’s a selection of in-house restaurants and bars to tickle even the fussiest of gourmands: Bazaar offers a mix of international dishes from six live cooking stations; beachfront Solis serves Mediterranean cuisine under a thatched roof; and Suka Bar plates up Fijian tapas and rum-based drinks.
Coming with children? This Sheraton resort is a great option for families with a fantastic kids’ club and a Stay and Play Free plan, which offers meal savings for children under 12. The little ones are sure to love the lagoon-style pools, too, while older kids will get a kick from the jet-skiing, snorkelling and kayaking. By staying at this resort, you can also use services at the neighbouring Marriott resorts, including the spas, restaurants and activities.
Around the corner from Port Denarau marina, and a short trip from some of the best beaches on the island, the Palms is perfect for first-time visitors and romantic getaways. The open-plan apartments and guest rooms come with kitchenettes, pristine en-suites, and large open living rooms leading to private balconies. A short walk from the resort, you’ll find the bustling Denarau dock and marina, lined with boutique shopping and a range of tempting restaurants.
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