Zaya Nurai Island off Abu Dhabi

Aboard a speedboat, passengers pass the private millionaire islands off Abu Dhabi with all their palaces on their way to Zaya Nurai Island. This makes the journey to Zaya Nurai Island an experience in itself! There are a few dozen islands here, the crossing takes just under a quarter of an hour – and it is most beautiful in the airstream on deck. What awaits me is a luxury resort on a private island: spacious, elegant, with private pools, the utmost discretion, with several restaurants, bright sandy beaches. The owners: a local real estate entrepreneur and a member of the Abu Dhabi ruling family. Their dream: to make Nurai Island an island with a Maldives look.

Many hundreds of palm trees have been planted, hidden irrigation pipes have been laid. At its narrowest point, the island, whose name derives from the Arabic word ‘nur’ for ‘light’, is just 180 metres wide, with a maximum length of just over two kilometres. The smallest suites are 110 square metres, the largest 1,200 square metres. What is the same for all of them? The air, the light, the refreshing breeze – and this magnificent sunrise over the sea! Who has been to Nurai Island without making a secret of it? Richard Branson, Lionel Richie as well as Albert of Monaco. What about the rumor that Brad Pitt was recently there? That is discreetly kept under wraps…

Photo: © Zaya Nurai Island