Inside the Stunning Bora Bora Resort Where Celebrities Honeymoon (and You Can Too)
Bora Bora is not the easiest of destinations to get to—an 8-hour Air Tahiti Tui flight from Los Angeles takes you to Tahiti, the capital of French Polynesia, then you have to take another 40-minute flight to the island—but once you see the silhouette of Mount Otemanu towering over the small South Pacific island, you forget all your travel woes. And you also, very quickly, realize why everyone refers to Bora Bora as "paradise." The color of the ocean is a perfect shade of blue and so saturated that it really feels like you are constantly looking at it through Instagram's Juno filter. Speaking of social media, trust us, it is literally impossible to take a bad picture here so 'grams will rack up the likes #nofilter needed.
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It's easy to see why A-listers flock to this remote piece of land in search of peace, privacy and some seriously gorgeous views. And if there's one resort that offers all of the above (plus a lot more), that's The St. Regis Bora Bora. Just ask Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban or Alyssa Milano and husband David Bugliari, who honeymooned here, or Justin Bieber who's also been a guest here.
And while we are certain A-listers chose the property for its gorgeous location, its amenities are also what makes your stay here feel like paradis (yes, you end up picking up some French as well).
The resort has 89 overwater and beach villas, some of them with whirlpools and private swimming pools. And since we mentioned Kidman and Urban's honeymoon, when the couple stayed here, they picked the sprawling Royal Estate—a whopping 13,000-square-feet estate with a private beach, spa, and pool overlooking the ocean.
But if the idea of staying at a 3-bedroom 4-bathroom compound that's ten times bigger than your apartment sounds like a tad too much splurging, do like Justin and opt for one of the overwater villas. The one Bieber stayed at, the Overwater Royal Otemanu, has one of the largest suspended pools in the South Pacific.
But let's be honest, who needs a pool when you have direct access to the lagoon's waters via a ladder at the terrace outside your bedroom. Waking up in the morning and going directly for a swim will be your favorite thing to do every day. And with 24-hour in-room dining service available (Pizza at 2am? Sure.) you may not even leave your villa at all.
Actually, we take that back. You absolutely have to leave, because otherwise you will not get to experience one of the best restaurants in Bora Bora and probably in this part of the world. At Lagoon by Jean Georges, you can enjoy the beautiful views of Mount Otemanu while dining on exquisite dishes such as rice cracker crusted ahi tuna (a favorite among visitors) and crusted black papio, a local fish prepared with flavorful shiitake mushroom broth.
And it wouldn't be a proper honeymoon if you don't take some TLC time for yourself and your partner. We recommend booking a massage or a body treatment at the 13,000 square-foot Miri Miri by CLARINS Spa the day after you arrive. Seriously, can you think of a better way to deal with jet lag? For those of you who responded "yes, yoga," don't worry, you can also sign up for a private yoga or meditation class with the resort's trainer and re-align your chakras.
Bora Bora is also a fascinating place to explore—if you are interested in knowing more about the island's history and local culture, at The St. Regis you are a quick boat-ride away from the main island that about 10,000 people call home. It's a wonderful place for an afternoon tour with a local guide—stop at Vaitape, Bora Bora's biggest town, to shop for souvenirs.
And for those of you who've always wanted to do something crazy like swim with sharks, for example, take a day-long tour of the lagoon and around the island and you can check that off your bucket list. Just be warned, that it's going to be you and tens of nine-feet-long sharks, no cage in between, so good luck.
We hate to sound cheesy, but, really, the worst thing about The St Regis Bora Bora is leaving it. And frankly, after a week-long vacation or honeymoon there, re-adjusting back to your "normal life" will take a lot of effort, but hey, the good news is that you can at least start telling everyone you've been to paradise.