7 Luxury Destinations
It’s a dream of many people’s that they could have enough money to live like an oligarch or a Hollywood star. A world that involves travelling by private jet and a suite’s your absolute minimum requirement in a hotel. But for all but the very wealthiest in the world this has to remain a dream. For the rest of us we simply have to indulge ourselves to an occasional extra-indulgent holiday or maybe some designer clothes once in a while. But if money really was no object, here are 7 destinations where we’d all feel perfectly at home.
The Caribbean has always been a pretty exclusive destination and few parts are more exclusive than the British Virgin Islands. It’s because they’re relatively inaccessible that adds to this aura plus the fact that the super-rich like Sir Richard Branson have made them famous. Staying on his Necker Island is, theoretically, possible for anyone but with prices of around $13,000 for a three night stay you’ll want to make the most of every second you’re there. Luckily there are lots of watersports to enjoy in the crystal-clear waters and all meals are included. Plus, if you’re lucky, you could be rubbing shoulders with Sir Richard who spends a fair amount of his time running his many businesses from there too.
Renowned as being outrageously expensive, especially if you’re not careful about your choice of restaurant, Venice is certainly somewhere you won’t enjoy a great value break. From the moment you catch a water taxi from the airport to transport you into the city the euros will positively start to slip through your fingers. However, in such a unique place that’s in a constant battle to avoid disappearing under the water, it’s no wonder that prices are so high. So make the most of your time there sightseeing and visiting iconic locations like the Doges’ Palace and the Bridge of Sighs, named after the sounds convicted prisoners made as they crossed over the canal to their cells. There are also plenty of galleries boasting incredible renaissance art with the greatest of all being the Gallerie dell’Accademia.
In recent times, Macau has overtaken Las Vegas and now dwarfs it in terms of the gambling revenues it generates. So it’s hardly surprising that it’s where many of the world’s high rollers head attracted by the stunning casinos and exciting nightlife. Of the former, The Venetian is undoubtedly the most stunning. With 546,000 sq. ft. of gaming space it’s the biggest casino in the world and it has an incredible 3,400 slot machines and 800 gaming tables. It’s also especially famous for its Poker King Club with eight tables. Two of these are VIP high stakes ones so if you really want to live like the rich and famous you’d better learn how to play poker before your visit. Aside from playing poker, Macau is a fascinating place to explore with both Chinese and Portuguese influences left over from the 450 years when it was their colony.
Dubai Luxury Destinations
For many, Dubai is the absolute epitome of opulent extravagance. Rising up from the desert it boasts one of the world’s most photographed hotels, the Burj Al Arab. Designed to look like a billowing sail of one of the many dhows that ply the waters beneath, its luxury features include a helipad, suites that cost up to $24,000 a night and a fleet of Rolls Royce’s to ferry guests around the city. In terms of leisure retail therapy is the main order of the day in huge malls where you’ll find the world’s most exclusive brands – so remember to also pop in to Louis Vuitton to buy some more suitcases to carry all your purchases home with you.
This collection of islands in the Indian Ocean is another global hotspot where it pays to have deep pockets. The main island Mahé whose capital, Victoria, is one of the smallest in the world with a population of just 26,450 people has many attractions but for a truly exclusive experience head for Fregate. This is a private island with just 17 villas on it and one can be yours for $1000 a day. They’re all built from mahogany and African teak with marble floors and sea views, not to mention infinity pools if you’d prefer that to the ocean. It’s also a big honeymoon favourite where celebrities ranging from Paul McCartney to Brad Pitt have chosen to celebrate their marriages to Heather Mills and Jennifer Aniston respectively.
The largest of the Whitsundays, a chain of islands off the Queensland coast, Hamilton Island has everything that you could possibly want for an exclusive escape. It even has its own airport for your private jet but forget about also having the Ferrari shipped over because cars aren’t allowed on the island. It’s the perfect base for taking a boat out to explore the Great Barrier Reef and there are watersports like snorkelling and windsurfing to help pass the time nearer to shore. For a truly luxurious experience you could rent one of the 60 luxury pavilions at qualia, the island’s most exquisite resort whose previous guests have included Taylor Swift, Leonardo DiCaprio and Oprah Winfrey. At around Aud$2,350 it’s certainly not one for the backpackers.
Sitting about 8 miles off the coast of Maine, Martha’s Vineyard has been the summertime escape of the wealthy for over a century. Everyone for presidents including Barack Obama to stars like Bill Murray have spent time on the island. Despite the laid-back and easy going atmosphere you’ll find the prices eye-wateringly expensive even if you’re just paying for a lobster meal at one of its many high-end restaurants. The island’s coolest souvenir, though, is surprisingly affordable. The Black Dog sweatshirt costs just $38 but if you’re seen wearing it that means you’re a real island regular. So get on down there, hire some bikes for the day and you can also visit some of the locations which made another Hollywood legend famous – the great white shark from Jaws which was filmed on an around the island.