Rising From Ashes

By Kashvi Mahajan

Tycoon Sir Richard Branson’s luxury island retreat in the Caribbean has finally been rebuilt, more than two years after it was destroyed by an inferno. A team of construction workers has been rebuilding the main property – named the Great House – ever since, and the home in the British Virgin Islands finally reopened this month.

Necker Island

Inspired by the beautiful features and Balinese style of the original structure, the new Great House offers breath-taking panoramic views of the Caribbean, the Atlantic and neighbouring islands. The ten-bedroom main house has a master bedroom with a sitting area, Jacuzzi, and a Victorian bathtub on the private terrace. A great place to soak and watch the sunset. Nine bedrooms with either king or twin beds have private bathrooms and balconies. International furnishings complete the quality lifestyle here, with woods and fabrics almost as terrific as the views from every room. Increasing the guest capacity to 30 people, authentic Balinese Houses “Bali Hi”, “Bali Cliff”, and “Bali Lo” offer villa accommodations with private pools, open-air lounges, and private dining areas.

Bali_Lo, necker Island

Great-House-Master-Bedroom-216Arrange for a helicopter transfer to take you to Necker Island and enjoy absolute privacy in a vacation on your own island. The staff, a total of forty-two people, will ensure that your meals are ready and prepared to your tastes, and in the meantime, you can enjoy any of the islands several beaches. Because you have full access to Necker Island, you can sit down to both a sunrise and sunset view. Spend a day playing tennis, or listen to each other play a piano. A fireplace and book library offers richness, and for times of special moments, there is a gazebo. When it comes time to gather everyone together, the formal dining seats 30.

Necker_Beach_House_upstairs

aNecker_Beach_House_viewPrivate white sandy beaches wouldn’t be complete without laser sailing, snorkeling, and water-skiing. Two lighted tennis courts, a gym, video, book, and music library; the snooker table and board games are just some of the things to do here when you’re not soaking up the sun, relaxing, or enjoying meals and beverages. Necker Island provides you with the space and time to do just as you like; when you like, escape to an unforgettable island happily out of step with the world.

neckerisland-gallery-beach_bbq-li

Sir Richard Branson commented: “Necker Island has been my home for more than 30 years and for me it is the most beautiful place in the world. The brand new Great House is the heart of the island and I’m thrilled with the results. This signals a new dawn for Necker, which I’m very excited about.”
Rate: $60,000 per night for 30 adults

Cruise Control

We all grew up crooning Celine Dion’s “My Heart will go on” from the movie Titanic, and besides having a crush on Leonardo and cursing Kate for letting him lose his life the one thing that fascinated me and I am sure a lot of other people was the ship itself. It looked so grand and luxurious, the most romantic thing a girl could dream off (besides Leo’s lips ofcourse). Anyway that was 1997, where going on a cruise seemed like a fairytale, atleast to me who had even decided I will get married on a ship, I still want to if I do ever get married, well atleast sail to my honeymoon destination, oh well fine go on a vacation with my girl friends, basically a cruise has been my fantasy since 1997. Anyway move ahead two decades and in 2012 a cruise does not seem like such a distant dream, thanks to company’s like Royal Caribbean International.


Royal Caribbean International,a global cruise line has 22 innovative ships touching more than 290 destinations like Alaska, Asia, Australia/New Zealand, Dubai, Bahamas, Bermuda, Canada/New England, Caribbean, Europe, Hawaii, Mexico, Panama Canal and South America.They provide a world-class vacation experience with a wide range of signature on board amenities, entertainment, and award-winning family programming. From the lure of the Caribbean to the charm of Europe, enjoy the serenity of endless beaches, tropical breezes and sunsets over shimmering blue waters. Basically all you can ask for and more.

   

 

And if you are honeymooners or know a newly married couple, guess what they also have amazing honeymoon registry options. These include couple massages and other Spa packages to romantic dinners at specialty restaurants of your choice; from swimming with dolphins to other exciting land and shore excursions that let you discover the amazing sights, sounds and flavors of different destinations.Royal Caribbean International’s Honeymoon Package is the ideal wedding present. The stateroom will be beautifully adorned with Just Married decorations including a fragrant 6″ rose heart arrangement upon arrival. Then, at sundown, a bottle of Moet and Chandon Champagne and Royal Caribbean International vanilla cupcakes will be delivered to the room. The couple receives ‘His and Hers’ Wraps and Slippers and a Keepsake Framed Portrait to remember their incredible time onboard, for years to come.
If not a honeymoon couple, fear not Royal Caribbean offers a varied range of activities to family vacationers as well as singles.Try your luck at the world-class ‘Casino Royale’, get an adrenaline kick and conquer new heights at the on-board rock-wall, indulge in sumptuous culinary preparations, partake in wine tasting and enjoy exciting beverage packages, purchase keepsakes from the onboard shops, discover a world of tranquil bliss in the day spa and fitness center or just relax by the pool and simply do nothing at all. All in all planning your vacation could not sound more fun!

 

Price varies from Cruise to Cruise. For more information log onto www.royalcaribbean.in