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An Escape to Namale Resort & Spa

My name is: Jemima Cornish.

I’m known for being: spa supervisor at Namale Resort & Spa in Savusavu, Vanua Levu, Fiji.

It’s been open since: Namale’s spa sanctuary opened in 2000.

I was drawn to this destination because: Namale Resort & Spa is one of the leading luxury resorts in Fiji, and the spa sanctuary is one of its most stunning features. Not only is Namale situated on one of the most pristine islands, but our spa is nestled into volcanic cliffs overlooking the Koro Sea—my office has the best view!

Being from Savusavu myself, it inspires me to be a part of a place that celebrates and shares my home with the global spa and travel community. By training local therapists, Namale is helping to cultivate talent and contribute positively to local development, while providing unique, innovative, unforgettable spa experiences to our guests.

This place is special because: Everything we do at Namale celebrates and is inspired by the Fiji Islands.

We source the organic ingredients used in our treatments straight from our own farm or local producers—from the fresh ginger, cane sugar and even beach sand used in our scrubs to the organic coconut oil produced locally. (Namale itself used to be a working coconut plantation.) When we need banana leaves for our body wrap therapies, we harvest them right outside our doors! It creates a truly impactful connection to our indigenous environment and infuses a tropical island flavor into the entire experience.

The spa’s architecture—and really the entirety of Namale’s 19 bures (bu-ray – Fijian for “home” or “bungalow) and villas, restaurants and facilities—is thoughtfully designed to incorporate authentically Fijian elements and to blend seamlessly with the natural landscape. The spa features stunning elevated ceilings, floor-to-ceiling windows looking out over the sea and traditional thatch roofing and rich interiors of local wood. Between gorgeous water features in the entrance, the rushing “waterfall massage” in the hydrotherapy room and the greenery tucked in every corner, the interior and exterior of the spa merge together to feel like one continuous coastal rainforest.

When it comes to well-being, we’re all about: Total mind and body wellness and rejuvenation of the spirit in harmony with nature.

One thing you can’t miss is: A YameYame (yah-mee yah-mee) Fire Balancing Treatment. The cooling aloe vera body mask and full-body banana leaf wrap will have you feeling very tropical and are perfectly suited to the island climate. Another highlight is the Fijian Bobo (bom-boh) massage, a unique and traditional treatment in which a therapist hangs onto a special bar and uses her feet to compress and massage you into pure bliss while you relax on a plush floor mat. The specific skills and knowledge necessary for this therapy are rooted in a special tradition handed down from generation to generation in Fiji.

Your body will thank you because: Our everyday routines and diets, traveling (far distances on airplanes) and too much sun can wreak havoc on our bodies, particularly the skin. Islanders have relied for centuries on the abundant natural elements native to Fiji for a healthful glow, and visitors to Fiji can soak up their knowledge and incorporate the spa secrets of the South Pacific into their wellness routines.

For example, the sacred dilo nut is an ultra powerful plant essence native to Fiji, offering extremely nourishing benefits. Known as the “tree of a thousand virtues,” the coastal dilo tree flourishes in the coral sands of Fiji’s shores, drawing sustenance from the nutrient-rich, warm waters of the sea. The dilo nut’s unique, miraculous properties enhance the skin’s ability to repair damage and soothe irritation and pain. It can be used to treat myriad skin ailments like sunburns, dryness and rashes, or as a topical aid and antihistamine for insect bites, burns and wounds.

Enjoy a dilo wrap treatment and emerge with your skin fully renewed—and take a bottle of Pure Fiji’s Dilo Rescue Gel for use at home.

While you’re in the neighborhood, you must try: A trip to the local farmer’s market, where you can find local sellers offering anything from fresh fruits and seafood to coconut oil and handcrafted artisan souvenirs. Fijians are known as the happiest people in the world, and their friendly, welcoming “bula spirit” is contagious and delightful.

Also, spend as much time as you can in and around the ocean! Take a daily snorkeling tour with Namale’s activities team and witness the “soft coral capital of the world.” Enjoy kayaking or stand up paddle boarding or even just lounging on the beach. Go on a wild dolphin tour to see spinner dolphins in their natural habitat—or experience a sandbar in the middle of the sea, castaway-style.

Fiji is a place you go to to escape, unplug, relax, indulge and celebrate being on island time!

Escaping is part of my process because: It’s so important to escape from our daily routines occasionally. It helps us reset our bodies and minds, refresh our souls and change our perspectives. I love seeing our guests come here—far away from their busy, connected, everyday lives—and leave feeling rejuvenated and inspired.