Inside Fiji’s most expensive resort

Inside Fiji’s most expensive resort

The pampering starts before you even arrive.

Words by Ute Junker

Photos supplied


It could have ruined the whole trip. We were already on a tight schedule. Our stay at COMO Laucala, Fiji’s most exclusive resort, was limited to three nights, which is why we were booked on the crack-of-dawn flight out of Sydney. One flight to Nadi, another flight to the island, and we could be at the resort by mid-afternoon, making ensuring we would at least be able to enjoy the afternoon of our first day.

Unfortunately things didn’t go to plan. A sick crew member delayed our flight by several hours, meaning we didn’t land at Nadi until late in the afternoon. Anyone onboard heading to one of the islands was doomed to spend the night in Nadi, as transport to the islands is by seaplanes, which can’t land at night.


Well, anyone except us. Laucala is known for doing things differently, and that includes transfers. The island has its own runway and two private planes so once we had gathered our luggage we boarded our next flight, landing in time for dinner, ready to start exploring the next morning.

And there is a lot to explore at Laucala. The resort’s mastermind, Red Bull co-founder Dietrich Mateschilz, designed this as a resort without limits, which is why the likes of Oprah Winfrey and George Clooney are happy to pay rates that start at US$5600 a night for a one-bedroom villa.


The island covers 12 square km but has just 25 villas, each of which functions as its own retreat.

My one-bedroom villa has two separate pavilions for living and sleeping, a freeform infinity pool, indoor and outdoor bathtubs and showers, an al fresco dining pavilion and yoga deck overlooking the beach, as well as a fully-stocked (complimentary) mini-bar with a generous selection of wines and spirits. You could hole up here for your entire stay and be perfectly happy.


That would be a waste, however. The all-inclusive rates cover a wide range of activities, everything from diving and snorkelling to horse riding and yoga. There is a tennis court with a pro happy to hit with you, and a jungle-shrouded 18-hole golf course designed by David McLay Kidd that is gorgeous enough to convince me to give the sport a go. A 60-minute massage on arrival is also included, kickstarting the relaxation.

The food is equally impressive, whether that is breakfast at the colonial-styled Plantation (juice menus include a superb watermelon, ginger, cucumber and mint combo) to lunch by the beach and dinner at the clifftop Seagrass. Most ingredients are sourced from local suppliers or grown on the island’s 240-acre farm, and the chefs have a lot of fun thinking up ways to spoil their guests – the Magnum-inspired ice creams are a favourite.


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