In the first private submarine experience ever offered at a resort, Four Seasons Resort Maldives at Landaa Giraavaru gives you and a guest a first-class ticket to the bustling underworld of Baa Atoll, the Maldives’ only UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. Piloted excursions in DeepFlight’s first three-person submarine – the Super Falcon 3S – allow you to explore the reefs in the comfort of a pressurized, climate-controlled cabin with individual viewing domes affording 360-degree views.
You’ll cruise past coral and through kaleidoscopic schools of fish – and maybe even alongside sharks, turtles, stingrays or dolphins – while your knowledgeable guide dispenses facts about the plants and animals that call this fascinating ecosystem home.
Four Seasons Resort Maldives at Landaa Giraavaru
Triathlon training is tough. So why not do it in one of the most beautiful places on earth, under the tutelage of a six-time Ironman World Champion? Three times a year, Four Seasons Resort Hualalai offers the rare opportunity to train with Ironman Hall of Famer and master coach Dave Scott. Each five-day clinic includes intensive training in swimming, cycling, running, nutrition, strength and flexibility, plus video analysis and a personal consultation.
The 28,000-square-foot Hualalai Spa is at the ready with massage, whirlpools, saunas, steam rooms and cold plunges. But the greatest perk is your training ground. “Kona is such a beautiful place, and it makes training here all the more memorable,” Scott says. “We bike on roads that run between the green mountains and the sparkling blue ocean, run next to black lava rock fields and swim in the crystal-clear ocean alongside Hawaiian sea life. Four Seasons Resort Hualalai is unique in that it has some of the most beautiful open-water swimming areas in the world, as well as an amazing 25-metre lap pool, so I can diversify my coaching in the two swimming environments.”
Four Seasons Resort Hualalai
Freshwater mingles with saltwater at Agua Hedionda Lagoon, an aquatic sanctuary teeming with wildlife just 15 minutes from Four Seasons Residence Club Aviara. These brackish waters are an irresistible environment for some 70 species of fish and 192 species of birds, from red-tailed hawks to hummingbirds. Experience this robust nature preserve via the Residence Club’s paddleboard adventure. You’ll take a Beau Lake paddleboard – a gel-coated mahogany masterpiece, essentially the Mercedes S-Class of paddleboards – that’s as comfortable for a beginner as it is for the accomplished rider.
“The adventure begins on the shore, where we get an orientation of the lagoon and a quick paddleboarding lesson,” says Resort Assistant Manager Joanna George. “We start early in the morning, when the water is the smoothest. It’s a calm and soothing ride. We often see fish jumping out of the water.”
Four Seasons Residence Club Aviara, North San Diego
At Four Seasons Resort Bora Bora, it’s easy to find a lagoon teeming with tropical sea life – there’s one within the confines of the Resort. Sign up for a guided snorkel, or help biologists at the on-site research centre as they work to build and restore the ecosystem in and around the property. “Our main duty is to take care of the coral colonies, so we start by explaining to guests the importance of coral to the ecosystem,” says marine biologist Sylvain Lenoir. “We also tell them about the technology we use to help the coral grow, then we go snorkelling with them to show them the different techniques.
“Guests can adopt a GPS-enabled coral nubbin and track it as it grows on our artificial reef,” Lenoir says. “They can also be part of a worldwide study by documenting levels of coral bleaching as they explore the waters around the Resort.”
Four Seasons Resort Bora Bora
Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo fronts the Bay of Culebra in Costa Rica’s northwestern corner, and its calm, cerulean waters are ripe for exploring. The best way to get up close with local sea life? A guided kayak ride with the Resort’s on-site adventure staff. In your self-propelled vessel, you can paddle out to gain the best vantage of the island and its volcanic Guanacaste mountain range and tropical rainforest beyond. Humpback whales arrive to deliver their babies between August and December.
“We normally take guests to Nacascolo Beach, and on the way we sometimes have the humpback whales swimming beside us,” says Recreation Supervisor Alonso Rodríguez. “You might also see dolphins, spotted eagle rays, sting rays, devil rays and lots of fish. When we get to the beach we show you some of the animals we see in that area, like howler monkeys. Kayaking is very relaxing, and it allows people to disconnect.”
Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo
If anyone has the right name for a career in marine biology, it’s Ocean Ramsey. A certified scuba instructor and competitive free diver, this Hawaii native has made it her life’s work to foster understanding and appreciation of the ocean as a whole, but especially sharks. In Ramsey’s day job – running her own marine research and conservation company, One Ocean Research and Diving – she studies shark behaviour by swimming alongside them, and promotes their intelligence and important role in shaping ecosystems. (Photographs of her freediving with great whites are eye candy for her half-million Instagram followers.)
Guests of Four Seasons Resort O‘ahu at Ko Olina can join Ocean, or one of her crew, in a research trip to swim with Sandbar or Galápagos sharks. You’ll get the low-down on shark biology, physiology and behaviour, then don a snorkel and climb down the swim ladder. “I find that no matter how much I talk to people about sharks, they don’t truly believe me until they see for themselves,” Ramsey says. “After experiencing the program, participants have a much more realistic perspective on how sharks behave and how we can adapt our behavior to peacefully coexist – both in the water and in the global community through conservation.”
Four Seasons Oahu at Ko Olina
You may have heard of jetpacks – high-tech backpacks that send you skyward with a hose full of rapidly moving water. Now behold Jetblades, small-scale wakeboards of sorts that use the same technology but allow you to spin, swoop, flip and swirl through the sky with more control. Four Seasons Resort Langkawi is the first resort in Malaysia to offer this thrilling experience. Strap into your boots and prepare for a wild ride over the Andaman Sea.
Four Seasons Resort Langkawi
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