Welcome to the 1% Travel Guide, your bible of the most tricked-out, exclusive destinations that money can buy.
From the moment you first stepped into that cookie-cutter cubicle fifteen years ago and signed that financially appetizing job offer, you’ve accepted the fact that life is dull, you’re a corporate sellout and you might as well have stuck to that paper route all those years ago. You work late hours, you’re pretty sure your trophy wife married you for your refillable cash card and you have a sneaking suspicion that your boss is involved in some hedge fund scheme that is likely to bankrupt the company.
After a nightmare of your likely end as some workaholic hoarding scrooge-like figure forces you awake one night, you head to the kitchen to grab a glass of water and try to get your thoughts in line. You glance down at one of your wife’s trashy celeb magazines spread across the table and recognize the grin of that royal English prince and his new wife, the one with the sister who has a hot ass. The magazine goes on to describe the couple’s honeymoon jaunt off the coast of Africa last year on some island that is the literal iteration of paradise on earth. Be it your midlife crisis or the post-dinner heartburn, you make the most spur-of-the-moment decision of your life: if I’m going to waste away my golden years unappreciated by the masses, why shouldn’t I splurge this cash on something other than my wife’s new Coach purses? If life is going to hell anyway, why shouldn’t I at least spend a week of my life living like the future king of England? It’s decided – next stop, somewhere called Desroches Island in the aptly named beach nation of Seychelles!
After convincing the local travel agent that this place isn’t Disney World and will require her to use some skills to locate it on a map, you’re booked into a flurry of international flight destinations that see you from Mid-America to Europe, and eventually to the island of Mahé. Arriving at your penultimate stop several days later, you’re struck by the growing sense of societal disconnect as you venture further into the abyss. Life just seems easier cruising between continents in first class, and the in-flight open bar doesn’t seem to hurt that analysis. As you board your private charter flight for the 143-mile final leg of your journey, your pilot informs you that from this moment on, your cell phones will be rendered useless. Despite your wife’s comments about losing her newfound Twitter popularity over this “tech issue” (you decide not to tell her that bots don’t count as followers), for the first time in years you feel strangely relieved to be going off the map. Will you be missed? Unknown. Do you care anymore? Not a chance!
Upon landing, you’re greeted by a sense of awe at the remoteness you now see before you. You are now on a private island, one untouched by skyscrapers, smog or that ever-present smell of an urban sewage system beneath your feet. After being met by your golf cart, you’re driven through the virgin forest toward the coral atoll and sandy beaches. As you check in you survey the bill, which is presented to you. When you requested their most expensive suite earlier, you didn’t expect to hear that the new Madame Zabre Villa is actually the most expensive “hotel room” in the country. At 12,000 euros (about $15,500) a night, this week of indulgence might well cost a white-collar worker his yearly salary.
Entering your villa for the first time, you walk into 650 luxurious square meters of living space, with three bedrooms, each with its own private pool. Your wife heads straight for the built-in spa as you say hello to your personal team of staff, including private chef, Balinese masseuse and 24/7 butler service. As you relax on the expansive sun deck and take in the views of the Indian Ocean, you begin to unwind, as this is one trip you were meant to take.
After a few days of experiencing life as its best at Madame Zabre, you begin to partake in the amazing range of activities that this tropical paradise has to offer. Be it learning the ins and outs of diving in the Seychelles’ crisp clear waters or catching succulent sailfish or tuna, your time is never wasted, it’s time well spent. As the days grow long like the stunning skyline, you begin to ponder how to remain like this forever. But when reality sinks in, you realize you can always find peace in the fact that you’re still king of the bedroom…unless she was lying about that.
For more information, check out www.desroches-island.com
Photography: Image 1, Desroches Island; Image 2, Martin Falkland; Images 3-6, Michael Lewis; Image 7, Peter Verhoog