7 reasons to get excited about the all-new Hayman Island

Hayman Island is officially back.

There’s nothing like an Aussie rising from the ashes to reinvent themselves. In the wake of its closure after Cyclone Debbie in 2017, Hayman Island (previously managed by One&Only) re-opened in July 2019 as the much-anticipated Hayman Island by InterContinental.

Sparing no expense on the luxury front, the 166-room resort has undergone a $120m refurbishment, and it’s our giddy pleasure to re-introduce all the offerings, features and initiatives of this grand relaunch.

Whether you’ve had this slice of paradise – the northernmost island in the Whitsundays group – on your bucket list since forever, or you’re dying to check out Queensland’s ‘newest’ island escape, then dive right in.

1. Hop on a scooter… underwater

The island is teeming with water activities – as in, there’s a whole team dedicated to leading the lineup of aquatic experiences for Hayman Island. But it’s the underwater scooters that have caught our eye, because of their ability to get more reef time in than any other. Plus, they’re just as fun as they sound.

Zoom around under the surface holding onto a scooter built for exploring the reef and its glorious marine life, while being able to propel yourself to depths of 2.5 metres. 

If you’d like something a little more above the water, there’s tours of glistening Whitehaven Beach and Hill Inlet, guided jet ski adventures and luxurious private boat charters. Below sea level, Hayman’s got diving experiences and snorkelling lessons covered.

2. Private sunset beach picnics

Hayman Island

Photo by @jordzfitzy

Hayman Island is located on 400 hectares with a coastline stretching out as far as your eyes can possibly squint, so it’s rude not to enjoy the spectacular beaches she boasts. The curated sunset beach picnics are a must because, well, they feature a private island and a speedboat.

Whisk your significant other off, indulge with your family, or treat your friends with a beautifully arranged gourmet picnic, packed by Executive Chef Erwin Joven. Watch the sun dwindle behind the horizon and swap your sunnies for stargazing; you’ll see a lot without the city light glow.

3. The new Hayman Spa

There’s no better time to embark on a wellness and relaxation journey than when you’re already halfway there on holidays.

The new Hayman Spa has 11 treatment rooms as well as its Spa Oasis (wet room) offering mindful body, face and massage treatments that make use of local botanicals. Hayman Spa lives by “Sodashi” – a Sanskrit word meaning wholeness, purity and radiance – three pillars it uses to underpin their services.

To keep you on your wellness journey, Hayman offers a range of wellness moments. Think meditation and energy healing practices to sunrise yoga sessions, clean eating and detoxing body wraps.

4. The Grove

Hayman Island The Grove

The Grove is Hayman Island’s answer to a Hamptons boutique. It’s a casual daytime eatery and cafe serving barista crafted Vittoria coffee – and has a dedicated cellar. 

If you’re looking for an all-inclusive holiday, you’ve found it. At The Grove, sip coffee while browsing the resortwear and luxury brands, then come back for a sleepy afternoon gelato pick-me-up while grabbing a bottle of bubbles for later. 

Don’t forget to write that postcard for friends who’ll wish they came with you after reading it.

5. The ocean-front bar


There’s no shortage of good food and beverages on Hayman. Even more abundant? The very best views of one of the planet’s most beautiful places.

Start with Pacific’s gourmet breakfast, served daily with a side of jaw-dropping Coral Sea view in the background. Then there’s AQUA, the poolside bar (and view) with a cocktail list bursting with tropical fruits from the island, fresh salad bowls, and seafood share plates.

Next, there’s Bam Bam’s heavenly pan-Asian flavours for lunch, followed up with Amici Trattoria’s mouth-watering wood fired pizza and Italian vino for dinner.

6. The VIP beach house

Hayman Island three-bedroom beach house

With 168 beautifully appointed rooms, suites and villas spread across three distinct wings – beach, pool and lagoon – you’ll never tire of the view, no matter where you gaze at it from.

Each residence has been intuitively designed with impeccable taste, from sea-facing to lush garden sanctuaries. Looking for an extra special abode? Upgrade to the residence that takes the cake: the brand new three-bedroom beach house complete with glorious views out to the Coral Sea. Each bedroom comes with its own ensuite and private pool, while the house has another beachfront infinity pool, making it perfect for family and group stays.

For the best of both worlds, rent out one of the new private residences in the hilltops while still enjoying the hotel services.

7. Two words: Kids Club

Parents need time off to reconnect, relax and recharge. Hayman offers a range of child minding and kids’ club services: private babysitting during the day or as part of the Planet Trekkers activity program around the resort, through to evening in-room bookings.

Planet Trekkers is the resort’s bespoke Kids Club designed for ages 4-12. Each activity connects kids to the island with thoughtful lessons on the reef, coral planting and meditation sessions – so your little ones will be well entertained while you get some well-deserved time for yourself.

Looking for other islands to call home? We’ve got 12 others to show you. While you’re there, find out which Queensland island is right for you.


This post was published in June 2019 and updated in October 2019.