Dolphin Island has been fully rebuilt, over a year and a half after finding itself in the path of Tropical Cyclone Winston, which also battered surrounding properties and left thousands homeless in the scenic Rakiraki region in February 2016.
Located off the coast of the mainland, between the Nananu – i- Cake and Nananu-i-Ra islands, the exclusive island will mark the final stages of its restoration since the cyclone with a spiritual blessing on September 21.
“Such is the spirit of the local community, many of whom come from nearby Rakiraki, that they immediately set about working to rebuild and replant the grounds of Dolphin Island after the cyclone, as many derive their livelihood through the area’s pristine Bligh Waters, famous for fishing and diving,” a statement from the property confirmed.
“In a testament to their sheer determination and goodwill during tough times, Dolphin Island has been fully rebuilt, and all original staff retained. Almost two years on, the region is more beautiful in its natural ruggedness than ever, with much-loved Manager Dawn Simpson and her team ready to welcome guests to its new chapter.”
Located on the Northern point of Fiji’s largest island, the area has long been a drawcard for foreign investors, with resorts and private holiday homes dotted over Volivoli, outside Rakiraki’s main township, and its surrounding islands, with villas on the letting market when not in personal use by their owners.
“While Dolphin Island had been used for the owner’s own family holidays for many years, he decided the region was so beautiful he wanted to share it with other travellers from around the world.”
Several years ago, the property’s owner invested in rebuilding and expanding its accommodation, allowing up to 8 guests to share four bungalows bordering Dolphin’s main pavilion.
“The island also has an infinity pool looking back to Viti Levi so that guests can enjoy beautiful sunsets, making it perfect for memorable al fresco celebrations with family and friends, or for couples wanting a truly romantic setting. Dolphin Island is not like other ‘private islands’ where there are other guests, as being for exclusive use it allows guests to celebrate the simplicity of the real Fiji, to dine on fresh seafood off the beach as you want, to lie in a hammock and read all afternoon, or to sleep in the outdoor bure and watch the sunrise over the Pacific. “
Other neighbouring properties that were extensively damaged included Volivoli Beach Resort, which reopened doors in November last year after massive renovations. Owned by the Darling family, Managing Director Nick Darling has noted that their background in construction enabled the quick progress towards reopening, with the property now adding new villas to its accommodation.
The nearby Dreamview Villas also suffered extensive damage and plans to reopen on November 1 after full repairs and new furnishings.
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