Three scintillating ships, setting sail in Indonesia and Greece

From Aman’s beautiful phinisi heading for the Banda Archipelago to a traditional Turkish gulet touring the Ionian Islands

Ayana Resort’s 54m Lako di’a phinisi at its new Komodo Waecicu Beach property on Flores Island in Indonesia
Ayana Resort’s 54m Lako di’a phinisi at its new Komodo Waecicu Beach property on Flores Island in Indonesia

The seas around Raja Ampat and Komodo in Indonesia are getting competitive indeed, with the latest forays into the luxe-liveaboard market coming from yet more hotel companies. In September, Bali-based Ayana Resort will launch Lako di’a (ayana.com; from $600 per person per night), a 54m, nine-bedroom phinisi, timed with the opening of its newest resort, Ayana Komodo Waecicu Beach (from $500), on Flores Island. The beauty of this combination? Guests can charter Lako di’a for as little as two nights. Meanwhile, one well-known hotel company with years of form in these destinations is exploring another part of the country altogether: the Banda Archipelago. Guests aboard the beautiful phinisi belonging to Aman Resorts, Amandira (amanwana.com; from $10,750 per night for up to six guests), will scale volcanoes and spend the day at historic Run Island (which the founders of the Dutch East India Company coveted so dearly they traded Manhattan to the British for control of it in 1667). And the single-cabin, über-chic traditional Turkish gulet called Alexa J (alexaprivatecruises.com; from about $65,000 per person per week full-board), which has made its name as one of the best in southeast Asia, is taking its game north to the Mediterranean – specifically, to the Greek Ionian Islands. From May next year, those who charter her will explore the pretty villages of Corfu, beckoning turquoise coves of Paxos and Antipaxos, and empty beaches of Meganisi. 

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