We explore the hottest new properties from Japan to Australia, the Bahamas and Vietnam.


IRAPH SUI has led the way for a string of new hotel openings in Japan this year.

The seafront property on Irabu Island, overlooks Japan’s southern Okinawa Islands. Rooms are up to 120 square metres with several featuring private swimming pools. Excursions include visits to Sawada Beach – famed for its unique landscape of large boulders left there by a tsunami in 1771 – and the iconic Irabu Bridge, the longest toll-free bridge in Japan.

In July, Halekulani Okinawa (okinawa.halekulani.com), a luxurious beach-front resort set within the Kaigan Quasi-National Park in Nakama, Okinawa, opens. The 360-room resort includes 47 suites and five private villas, each with views of the East China Sea, as well as a spa, large pool and four signature restaurants. For sweeping views over Tokyo, Okura Tokyo (okura-nikko.com) reopens in September after its main building was demolished for a new 17-floor wing and prestige tower. The hotel will also include a tea ceremony and banquet room.

At the end of the year Ace Hotel, renowned for its ‘cool’ ethos, opens its first Japanese property in Kyoto. The design is said to blend new with old, incorporating the former Kyoto Central Telephone Office.


A $500 million luxury eco-resort is to be built on pristine Long Island, in the Bahamas.

Called Port St George, the StarPort Resorts Inc development will span 3.5 kilometres from coast to coast and include a five-star hotel, 100 acre protected harbour (the largest in the Bahamas) and golf course.

A commitment to eco-engineering and sustainability will see the extensive use of photovoltaics and high-tech battery storage systems, rainwater retention systems, an organic hydroponics farm, water purification system and geothermal air conditioning. Construction begins in the first half of 2019 and will take five years.


Meanwhile, at Long Island in the Whitsundays in Queensland, luxury eco-resort Elysian Retreat, will open its doors to guests for the first time in March. The former Paradise Bay Eco Resort has been under renovation for three years after it was hit by two cyclones. The entire resort will be run with renewable energy as its primary power source. The all-inclusive, adults-only retreat will cater to a maximum of 20 guests, and can be rented out as a private island with personal chef.


The mainly untouched region of Quy Nhon, in the Binh Dinh Province has a new five-star ultra-luxury resort.

Anantara Quy Nhon Villas has just opened its doors with 26 ocean-facing villas set among 18 acres of landscaped gardens. The spacious villas boast sleek timber and granite sundecks, oversized bathtubs, private lap pools and extended low overhanging roofs. The port town has a population of only 260,000 people, and has largely avoided the tourism of northern areas such as Da Nang and Hoi An. Guests will be able to immerse themselves in authentic cultural experiences such as non la (conical hat) and rice paper making workshops. There are also the usual Anantara touches – in-room butler service, a range of customised luxury amenities and in-villa wine cellar.


Floating penthouse, Lilypad Palm Beach, is about to open in Sydney’s northern beaches. Operating on a membership-only basis, there will be just ten applications accepted each year to stay in the exclusive accommodation.

Arrival to the two-storey structure is via seaplane from Rose Bay.

Inside is solid French-oak flooring, stone bench tops, rose gold tapware and exposed hardwood timber rafters. There are massages and beauty treatments, a private chef, and use of stand-up paddleboards and snorkelling equipment.

Membership for a year starts at AU$43,000.

  • Gold Coast, Queensland

    3 to 9 Nights

  • Ultra-Luxe QT Gold Coast Ocean-View Escape with Daily Breakfast, Nightly Drinks & A$50 Dining Credit

    QT Gold Coast

  • $ 493 /room New

    Valued up to $ 1,219

  • Noosa, Queensland

    3 to 10 Nights

  • Award-Winning Noosa Eco-Glamping Escape with Lake Cruise & Nightly Drinks

    Habitat Noosa Ecocamp

  • $ 419 /room Selling Fast

    Valued up to $ 711

  • Cairns, Queensland

    3, 5, 7 or 9 Nights

  • Five-Star Cairns Oasis with Rooftop Pool, Daily Breakfast & Dining Credit

    Crystalbrook Bailey

  • $ 429 /room Selling Fast

    Valued up to $ 879


Deals of the week

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  • Kokoda Track 2022 Small-Group Tour with All Meals: Anzac Day Dawn Service & Trekking Options Available

  • $ 2,279/room

    Valued up to $ 3,002

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  • Tours by Luxury Escapes — South Australia & Northern Territory

  • Red Centre to Kangaroo Island: 11-Day Small-Group Tour with All Meals, Scenic Flights & Iconic Outback Experiences

  • $ 8,359/room

    Valued up to $ 10,070

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  • Magnetic Island, Queensland

    4 to 10 Nights

  • Magnetic Island Waterfront Apartment Escape with Breakfast Hamper & Welcome Wine

    Grand Mercure Magnetic Island

  • $ 422/room

    Valued up to $ 1,261

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