Laucala Island, the luxurious private island resort set in 3,500 exclusive acres in the Fiji archipelago in the South Pacific, is inviting guests to discover an experiential side of the South Pacific ‘Garden of Eden’ with 5 new experiences on offer.From April 2015, all guests to the 5-star resort can become truly immersedin island life througha range of fascinating activitiesfrom cooking classes, participating in Fijian rituals and ceremonies to crafting native art, and learning about island self-sufficiency on tours of the local farms and gardens. In addition, private workshops on soap and candle-making, made from natural ingredients sourced on the island, are available at the Spa & Flower Garden.
Laucala Island is 85 percent self-sustainable and from April 2015, tailored sustainable cooking classes are available for all guests as part of the daily rates package. Guests will learn about the dramatic rainforest-laced landscape that surrounds the island.
Guests can enjoy private tours of the farm and can partake in a follow-on cooking class, alongside Executive Chef Anthony Healy at the Plantation House restaurant. Produce on Laucala Island is farmed, reared, fished or foraged from the island and these elements,as well as organic produce,are used in each cooking class. The class begins with Chef Anthony Healy, bringing guests on a guided tour through the farm and hydroponics, sourcing ingredients for his signature cuisine. He will also explain how the island’s holistic approach worksso successfully.
In the bespoke style that Laucala is famed for, guests can choose a type of dish they would like to learn to make. With cooking classes depending on guest requests, the format can include making pasta from scratch for fresh lobster tortellini to learning how to prepare a freshly-caught fish for a light lunch.
Staying in the kitchen, for guests who enjoy fine dining, Chef Piak Sussadeewong passes on his wealth of knowledge of Thai cuisine, from simple dishes guests can make at home ora favorite from therestaurant’saward winningmenu. One of his specialties is the traditional Thai dish Yaam Goong Sod, a spicy lime dressing salad prepared with diver-caught prawns.
For guests with a sweet tooth, Pastry Chef Jon Gladson uses island ingredients to create imaginative and exquisite desserts as well as low-key fun snacks, sorbets and ice creams. His baking and pastry classes are held in the pastry kitchen at signature restaurant Plantation House, and range from simple bread-making to cake decorating and chocolate-making.
Moving on to traditional Fijian cultural experiences, daily handicraft classes take place at the Cultural Centre,where guests canlearntraditional Fijian Masi paper making, weaving baskets and wood carving, with traditional techniques that date back as far as 600 BC. Masi is the Fijian word for tapa or bark cloth, andthese piecesare traditionallypresented as part of key milestone celebrations, so guests can take the pieces they make home with them as a memento of their special time on Laucala Island.
Guests can avail of private one-on-one classes or family sessions in the Cultural Village. These classes are also available as part of the daily rates.
In addition, a Fijian experience available to guests includes the Fijian night at Laucala Island’s Cultural village, one of the few traditional villages left in Fiji. The Cultural village is also designed to preserve local traditions and culture where guests can enjoy Lovo night, discover kava ceremony and traditional dances and music performed by local Fijians. Also, guests who want to visit neighboring islands can also bring some sweets and ice cream while visiting local children.
For those that want to know more about how the organic products are made at the Spa, guests can now learn how to create their own soaps, candles, bath bombs and body lotions in the spa kitchen. Ingredients used include coconut oil, aromatherapy oiland all are allsulphate and paraben free formulas. Visitors will also enjoy a tour of the Spa garden, learning about the flowers and herbs used in signature products.
Finally, a beautiful walking tour and hike cleanses the soul and connects guests to the natural beauty of Fiji. Guided hikes around Laucala Island and nearby Taveuni Island explore trails, and ambitious four hour treks discover spectacular waterfalls for a cooling swim in the tropical heat.