Discover The World’s Most Expensive Resort Yet: The Philippines’ Banwa Private Island

Well-hidden in an untouched tropical paradise, surrounded by pristine white-sand beaches, and teaming with natural beauty and wildlife, there is a small island with a big story to tell.

To some, $100,000 is enough to afford a decent house where one can live with a family until retirement. At the ritzy Banwa Private Island resort though, that sum is worth just one night of accommodation making it the most expensive resort in the world at the moment.

After a decade of conceptualization, construction, and detailed preparations, the island has now silently opened its doors, welcoming a fortunate few to the well-preserved haven it holds. Now revealed to rest of the world, Banwa is certain to be among the list of the elite’s must-experience luxury hotels and resorts.

We take a trip to the exotic location of Palawan in the Philippines so as to learn more about the newest kid on the hospitality block.

Banwa is only accessible by plane

The only means of transport available is by a seaplane from Manila or a two-hour helicopter ride from the said city. Consequently, it’s a preserve for the high and mighty providing 15 acres of sandy seclusion within the heavenly Palawan archipelago.

A helicopter hovers above the untouched white sands of Banwa.

Going by a statement from the management of the world-class resort, the onus of meeting transportation expenses lies on you. A nine-passenger seaplane offering a one-way trip costs $10 shy of $1,000 while a five-passenger helicopter will set visitors back $11,580 for a round-trip.

How many accommodation packages are there?

Spread out along the edges of the somewhat circular island, Banwa offers six beachside villas totaling between one and four bedrooms with each villa coming with its own Jacuzzi and state-of-the-art infinity pool.

The resort has 6 beachfront villas each featuring its own infinity pool.

The island can fully satisfy a capacity of 48 people with added options coming in the way of a top-level residential suit and a dozen scenic garden rooms. Varying in line with the time of the year, the minimum stay period can be either three or five nights or somewhere in between.

World-class dining and personalised services

This private island has no shortage of jaw-dropping nature and to provide a top-notch cuisine that’s equally unforgettable as the tantalizing seascape. Banwa employs a team of expert chefs with world-renowned track records ready to delight diners with the finest culinary creations. Guests are even welcome to enter the kitchen and have a masterclass session with the chefs.

Guests are served with dishes made from ingredients grown on the island itself.

The neighboring Sulu Sea proves the source of fish for the resort’s private organic farm which also grows indigenous vegetables used to execute tantalizing menus which are themselves a notable highlight of the experiential service on offer. Only the finest wines make it on to that menu- premium quality is not an option- with price tags on bottles reaching up to as much as $36,000.

Aside from that, an island concierge is another add on for guests ensuring all the needs of occupants are met accordingly as and when required. If one of those needs proves to be a soothing spa treatment, you’ll be happy to know that there’s unlimited service to go around.

Outdoor activities at the resort

Banwa has you well taken care of with all sorts of delightful sports including kayaking, snorkeling, jet skiing, yoga, sailing, scuba diving, tennis, and yoga ensuring there’s no time to get bored.

Palawan is one of the best locations for star gazing in Asia.

You can get a better understanding of the brimming biodiversity of the nearby sea from on-site marine specialists who’ll also be happy to give you some insight on the rare Tabon birds and Hawksbill sea turtles native to the location. Free from any light pollution, the evening canopy at the resort is a spectacle boasting the title as one of the best star-watching locations in the continent.

Read our article about another of the Philippines’ private island resorts, the Amanpulo Resort.

Contact Details

Private Concierge:Vanessa Acierto
Email: [email protected]
Mobile: +63 (0) 917 888 2858‬‬
Telephone: +63 (2) 8396 8888‬‬

Images courtesy of