An hourâ€™s flight in a turboprop from Manila followed by 25-minute boat ride across karst-studded waters brings you to the newestâ€”and most luxuriousâ€”of El Nido Resortsâ€™ Bacuit Bay hideaways. Arrayed between lush rain forest and a sweep of sugar-white sand, the islandâ€™s 42 thatch-roofed villas (some with plunge pools) are designed in a contemporary Filipino style, with sumptuous interiors done up in neutral tones and locally sourced materials such as acacia wood; they also offer easy access to the bayâ€™s coral-rich waters, which you can explore by kayak or on outings with Pangulasianâ€™s top-notch dive center (there are more than 20 dive sites in the area). Should guests wish to venture farther afield, sister properties Miniloc Island and Lagen Island are a short speedboat ride away, as are natural attractions such as the vast limestone cavern of Cathedral Cave. But thereâ€™s plenty to keep you busy on Pangulasian, whether itâ€™s dining on tropical fruits and fresh salads from the resortâ€™s organic gardens, sampling a traditional hilot massage at the spa, hiking the islandâ€™s nature trail, or just soaking up the ravishing views from your balcony.
63-2/813-0000; Pangulasian Island website; doubles from US$681
See more fromÂ The Luxe List 2013