Whether you’re searching for family fun in the sun, a wellness retreat, or the perfect honeymoon – our guide to the best luxury resorts in Cook Islands has the right hotel for you.
Brimming with laid-back South Pacific charm, the Cook Islands offers an enticing mix of relaxation and adventure. Sunseekers come for the white-sand beaches, while adrenaline junkies go exploring with snorkelling, diving, and hiking.
Ready to escape? Check out our collection of Cook Islands Luxury Hotels
Thanks to its easily accessible international airport, the island of Rarotonga, the largest island in the archipelago, is the perfect first port of call. Stay here or take the short flight across to Aitutaki – slightly smaller and wonderfully peaceful. Both have a vast selection of resorts from adults-only with picturesque infinity pools, secluded spas and gourmet dining, to family-friendly resorts with extensive activities and kids’ clubs.
With our guide to the Cook Islands’ best hotels, you can find the escape that’s right for you.
Best for honeymooners: Aitutaki Lagoon Private Island Resort, Akitua
Welcome to the South Pacific’s answer to the Maldives: The Cook Islands’ only adults-only private island luxury resort, and the only property with overwater bungalows. Set on tiny Akitua island, a two-minute boat ride from Aitutaki, the resort is romantic seclusion at its finest.
Pampering guests with a spa, gourmet cuisine and beautiful bungalows with a Polynesian-style design overlooking the impossibly blue lagoon, honeymooners will love the direct access to the lagoon from the deck and a private walled garden with an outdoor shower.
Best for families: Te Manava Luxury Villas & Spa, Rarotonga
If you’re travelling with kids, Rarotonga is a fantastic luxury resort in Cook Islands – direct flights to the international airport ensure a fuss-free start to your escape. Te Manava Luxury Villas & Spa hits that perfect balance between catering to little ones while ensuring luxury for adults.
The location on Muri Beach is ideal for sunbathing or action-packed water adventures. Families will love the self-contained two and three-bedroom villas with full kitchens and private pool options available. Make use of free stand-up paddleboard, kayak and beach towel hire or catch the complimentary shuttle to sister hotel Pacific Resort Rarotonga, where you’ll find a lagoon-style swimming pool, separate kids’ pool, and kids’ club.
Best for wellness: Rumours Luxury Villas & Spa, Rarotonga
With an award-winning spa and strict adults-only policy, Rumours Luxury Villas & Spa was made for quiet moments. The professional therapists at Waterfall Spa are on hand to pamper you with relaxing massages, revitalising body scrubs, beautifying facials and hot stone treatments.
When you’re not at the spa, retreat to your private villa for a dip in your private pool or head to the beachfront for a stroll among the palm trees. For the ultimate in wellness, upgrade to a Platinum Villa with a romantic private spa pool and private movie theatre – there's really no need to leave.
Best for escaping it all: Pacific Resort Aitutaki
A little more remote than Rarotonga, Aitutaki offers pristine isolation – and Pacific Resort Aitutaki does romantic seclusion best. Stay in one of just 29 beachfront bungalows, scattered among a landscape of shimmering blue-green lagoon, nodding palm trees and crystal-clear skies.
Here, nothing stands between you and nature. Go snorkelling amid the coral reefs, take a lazy kayak ride across the lagoon or take leisurely strolls to secluded beaches and picturesque lookouts. That all-important me-time seems slightly less elusive here – you’ll also find it at the award-winning spa, in the palm-fringed infinity pool and intimate beachfront restaurant.
Best for personalised service: Little Polynesian Resort, Rarotonga
With just 14 luxurious bungalows onsite, the adults-only Little Polynesian Resort has time to offer each guest individualised service. This award-winning luxury resort, a member of the prestigious Small Luxury Hotels of the World collection, is a place where everyone knows your name and friendly staff are always on hand to cater to your every need.
Take a seat at the open-air, poolside restaurant for authentic service and wonderful food. Everything here is prepared fresh with a Polynesian twist on classic dishes. From coconut crepes for breakfast to island-style sashimi and Polynesian spiced lamb – everything is cooked with care.
Best for authentic boutique luxury: Pacific Resort Rarotonga
With a focus on authentic Polynesian culture and natural beauty, Pacific Resort Rarotonga knows how to make the most of its picture-perfect surroundings. Rooms at this Cook Islands luxury resort are decorated with traditional Polynesian touches and resort activities emphasise the island’s natural playground.
Guests of all ages can enjoy snorkelling, paddleboarding, boat trips and kayaking. When you’re not in the water, head to the Beach Hut for a schedule of fun local activities. Watch a coconut cream demonstration, place your bets on the crab race, or drop the little ones at the kids’ club, where they can try their hand at coconut husking, basket weaving and traditional dance while you relax poolside.
Read more: The South Pacific: Which Island is For You?