Book Now: Exotic Retreats Closer to Home


If an exotic trip to Sumbawa or Yap isn't on your itinerary anytime soon, try one of these seven unique island resorts. ISLANDS research editor Ashley Fraxedas recommends these luxurious destinations that feel exotic yet make for an easy getaway -- whatever your budget. And for even more of Ashley's island travel bargains, see her daily deals blog.

From $50 a nightFrangipani Hotel, Bequia This hotel-in-aquaint-home fits perfectly with the charming nature of Bequia in St. Vincent and the Grenadines. The Frangipani's two-story, shingle-sided house was originally built by a sea captain for his family almost a century ago. Today, it celebrates 40-plus years as a hotel overlooking the calm Admiralty Bay. Dine on fresh fruit, along with fish and conch plucked straight from the surrounding waters, and wash it down with the famous Frangi Fever cocktail. Book now at

From $100 a night Volcano House, Big Islands, Hawaii It's all about location with the Volcano House: in an Ohia forest as the only resort in the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Sleep in a traditional country lodge, fit with koa wood, petroglyph art and specially designed Kanani O Ka Home quilts. The 42-room hotel also provides box lunches for your walk to Kilauea Crater or a trek along one (or all) of the park's 150 miles of hiking trails. Book now at

From $150 a night Hotel Lanai, Hawaii With just 29 miles of paved road, one gas station, no traffic lights and 3,000 full-time residents, Lanai is an off-the-tourist-path Hawaiian island. Built in 1923, Lanai's first hotel was its only one for almost 70 years. It has just 11 guest rooms in an upcountry plantation style. Hop in a Jeep to bounce across a landscape of gorges, ridges and rocks that you have to see to believe. Book now at

From $200 a night Small Hope Bay Lodge, Bahamas Handbuilt from coral rock and native Andros pine, Small Hope may be located on accessible Andros Island, but it feels like a forgotten corner of the globe. Without TVs, phones, computers or a dress code, the 21-room resort allows guests to relax guilt-free on the beach or in the water. More than 60 dive sites are close by, including shallow-reef dives for beginners and famous blue holes for experts. Book now at

From $400 a night Alderwood Retreat, Kodiak Islands, Alaska After a 20-minute flight from the town of Kodiak, the float plane lands off Alderwood's private beach and lodge on 40 acres at the base of a mountain. With only six to 10 guests at a time here, you're likely to encounter only furry, winged or scaly creatures. Fish for halibut; kayak nearby Kittiwake and Puffin rookeries; and whale-watch from your window. Book now at

From $500 a night The Caves, Jamaica Just 13 thatched-roofed cottages look out from a limestone cliff on Jamaica's West End in Negril. Give into tradition with an early morning jump from the cliffs into the ocean; then melt away with a Caves Massage. Of course, enjoy the namesake caverns, where you can have a private-dining experience complete with fresh bougainvillea and candlelight in a cave all your own. Book now at

From $700 a night Little Palm Island Resort & Spa, Florida Accessible only by boat or seaplane, this 30-suite locale in the Florida Keys makes you feel like you could be floating on a private island in the South Pacific. Find thatched-roofed bungalows, outdoor showers, crushed seashell paths and a Zen garden in this lowkey, barefoot-chic atmosphere. Staying in the Island Grand Suite with British Colonial decor makes the most of it all. Book now at

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