An Island Named Desire
Tetiaroa, best known as Marlon Brando's private island, is a retreat fit for royalty. Once considered a playground for the wealthy, this atoll served as a summer residence for the former chiefs and kings of Tahiti. After many years of being inaccessible to the general public, a new eco-friendly, ultra-luxurious resort, The Brando, has changed that.
Tetiaroa is part of the Society Islands in French Polynesia. This small, secluded atoll is located 30 miles (50 kilometers) north of Tahiti and considered an extension of the Arue commune. Fittingly, the island name is a Polynesian word meaning "stands apart" or "at a distance." The inner lagoon, which is only 4.5 miles (7 kilometers) wide, is completely enclosed and protected by 13 surrounding coral islets.
Marlon Brando became enamored with French Polynesia when scouting the islands for his 1962 movie, Mutiny on the Bounty. While on location, he also fell in love with his third wife, Tarita Teriipia, the Tahitian beauty who starred alongside him in the film. In an effort to keep the islands close at heart, Brando sought to purchase his own section of paradise—and he set his sights on Tetiaroa.
Tetiaroa was a highly desirable piece of land. The atoll once belonged to the royal family and was subsequently passed through the hands of many private owners; thus, Brando's negotiations were met with much resistance. In 1966, after several failed attempts, he finally landed the 99-year lease that granted him exclusive "ownership" of Tetiaroa.
Over the years, Tetiaroa served as a secluded hideaway from his life in the Hollywood spotlight. The atoll had remained a pristine South Pacific paradise—and Brando sought to keep it that way. His lifelong dream was to maintain the atoll in its purest condition and allow others to enjoy it. He pictured a sustainable, ecological habitat; and although he died in 2004, his dream has been realized.
Tetiaroa is a delicate atoll with a rich history and strong spirit. Although once very regal, it offers the most humbling experience in French Polynesia. By hardly leaving a carbon footprint on the earth, this tiny locale will leave a lasting impression on your heart.
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Featuring The Brando
Experience the luxury eco-resort, The Brando, on the famed actor's private island, Tetiaroa. This VIP all-inclusive vacation package includes round-trip international airfare from select California gateways, VIP fast track arrival, inter-island air, five nights in a One Bedroom Villa with private pool and private beach access, daily spa treatments, daily excursions, all meals and beverages, business lounge access upon departure from Tahiti, and personal concierge service throughout your vacation.