The Brando, Tetiaroa private Island
The Brando, Tetiaroa Private Island
BP 6014 – 98702 Faa’a
Tahiti French Polynesia
National Geographic Unique Lodges of the World
Date of Creation
Opened July 1, 2014 as a new resort
Hotel General Manager
Silvio Bion, General Manager. General Manager of The InterContinental Bora Bora le Moana, InterContinental Moorea Resort & Spa, opening General Manager of the InterContinental Bora Bora Resort & Thalasso Spa, Silvio has held key senior management roles for the past 20 years within InterContinental French Polynesia hotels.
De Luxe All Inclusive
• The Brando is an exquisite luxury resort on French Polynesia’s breathtakingly beautiful private atoll of Tetiaroa, just 30 miles north of Tahiti, comprised of a dozen idyllic islands surrounding a spectacular lagoon.
• The all-inclusive resort features 35 deluxe villas each with its own private beach area and plunge pool, restaurants showcasing Polynesian and French cuisine, a luxurious Polynesian spa, a lagoon-view bar, beach bar, pool, organic garden, library, boutique, water sports, and an environmental research station with guest programs.
• The Brando is unique in the world in concept and scope, combining stunning environmental purity, luxury, and sustainability. The Brando is endeavoring to operate exclusively with renewable, non-fossil energy sources drawn from the sea, the sun, and other renewable resources, with no sacrifice to luxury and comfort. With innovative and pioneering technology, the goal for The Brando is to become the first new resort in the world to obtain LEED Platinum certification, the organization’s highest accolade, as new construction in the campus category.
• Tetiaroa is a special place of rare biodiversity and a natural sanctuary for birds and marine life.
• The award-winning cuisine of Guy Martin of the Michelin two star restaurant Le Grand Véfour in Paris is featured in The Brando’s dining venues and in-room dining.
• Tetiaroa was once Marlon Brando’s personal retreat. He was passionate about preserving Tetiaroa’s cultural richness, natural beauty, and incredible biodiversity. The Brando is that dream brought to life
History & Story
“The Polynesian people have a contribution to make to the rest of the world. Tahiti does not have the reputation it enjoys without reason. Tahiti is not pie in the sky, it is real. It is not a myth so much as a way of looking at life … a life that can be described as chiffon in the wind.“
– Marlon Brando
Marlon Brando was passionate about preserving Tetiaroa’s natural beauty, astonishing biodiversity and cultural richness. He also was a visionary, and had great plans for Tetiaroa as a model for sustainability and a place where world-shaping ideas might spawn.
We share Brando’s passion for Tetiaroa and are striving to implement his vision and go beyond.
At least 167 fish species have been observed around the atoll, from colorful parrotfish and spotted eagle rays to blacktip sharks and bonefish. During the nesting season, turtles come in the hundreds to lay their eggs on the coral sands beneath the trees.
One of the motus surrounding the lagoon, Tahuna Iti, is an island of birds. Thousands roost here every evening. There are parrots and other land birds, but most are seabirds, including the noddy and the majestic great frigate. Every evening they are joined by an exodus of birds from Tahiti, making the short flight across the sea to roost in the safety of the dense vegetation, free from predators.
On the twelve motus there are 38 indigenous plants, six of them very rare. These plants range from very small flowers to the magnificent Puatea, pisonia grandis, stretching to 65 feet in height. No surprise that international plant hunters and botanists have organized at least nine expeditions to Tetiaroa since 1921.
One of the goals of the research station on Tetiaroa is to help study ways to preserve animal and plant diversity on tropical atolls notwithstanding the onslaught of modern civilization.
The stars have been guiding people to French Polynesia for millennia. The first people to follow guiding stars from Southeast Asia arrived 4,000 years ago, reaching the most easterly Society Islands by AD 500. They came in outrigger canoes with coconuts, bananas, breadfruit, chickens, pigs—and new gods.
Much later, the Europeans followed, searching for knowledge. Most famous among them was Captain Cook, who first came to French Polynesia in 1769. His second in command, Captain Bligh, returned years later to retrieve the local breadfruit plant to feed the far-flung British Empire and was overthrown by his crew, as recounted in “Mutiny on the Bounty.”
Despite these interruptions by European explorers, Tetiaroa remained sacred to the local people. They created a place of sanctuary, ritual, and tapu (taboo) on Tetiaroa, where the gods and ancestors were said to come down to earth to visit the marae (temples). Tetiaroa was also the favored retreat of Tahitian royalty. While Tahitian princes competed in archery tournaments and sharpened their war skills, the queens retreated to the deep shade of the coconut trees to be pampered, as they lightened their skin and became ever more voluptuous. These were the sacred pleasure gardens of Tahitian royalty.
Because of its rich history, Tetiaroa will forever be charged with meaning for Polynesian people.
“My mind is always soothed when I imagine myself sitting on my South Sea island at night. If I have my way, Tetiaroa will remain forever a place that reminds Tahitians of what they are and what they were centuries ago.” —Marlon Brando
Marlon Brando first came to Tetiaroa while filming Mutiny on the Bounty and was immediately smitten with the island’s beauty and the sense it gave of being closer to paradise. Enchanted by the Polynesian way of life (and especially by leading lady Tarita, the love of his life), he resolved to own the island and succeeded in this goal in 1967. It was in this natural wonderland that he settled down, and finally found a home.
Brando, Tarita and his Tahitian children lived on Tetiaroa for several years. During this time he had a number of visitors, including researchers, noted celebrities and friends. After a few years he built and ran a small inn on the island, Tetiaroa Village, with mixed success. He also built a small marine research station that was never used as he had hoped, and which eventually became a personal sanctuary and guest house.
Brando was passionate about preserving Tetiaroa’s natural beauty, astonishing biodiversity and cultural richness. In 1999 he asked Richard Bailey, a long-time resident of Tahiti who would create and operate some of the region’s finest resorts, to help him conceive a plan that would help Brando achieve his dream. Together, Brando and Bailey formed a partnership to pursue a vision of creating the world’s first and foremost post-carbon resort—an island where innovative new technologies would enable a self-sustaining luxury environment for hotel guests, scientific research and full-time residents. The Brando is the legacy of that partnership.
Main Strengths, Special Touch
The Brando is an exquisite luxury resort on French Polynesia’s breathtakingly beautiful private atoll of Tetiaroa, just 30 miles north of Tahiti. Tetiaroa is comprised of a dozen idyllic islands surrounding a spectacular lagoon. Tetiaroa has always been a place of stunning beauty, tranquility and rejuvenation — first for Tahitian royalty and later for Marlon Brando who chose it for his personal sanctuary. With access provided by private plane, the resort offers carefree luxury in the midst of pristine nature and is a special place of rare biodiversity and a natural sanctuary for birds and marine life. The all-inclusive resort features 35 deluxe villas each with its own private beach area and plunge pool, restaurants showcasing Polynesian and French cuisine, a luxurious Polynesian spa, a lagoon-view bar, beach bar, pool, organic garden, library, boutique and water sports. The Brando is one-of-a-kind and what makes this resort so unique is a pioneering model of sustainable technology featuring deep seawater air-conditioning, renewable energies such as solar energy and coconut oil, and a scientific research station.
Tetiaroa is located 30 miles (60 km) north of the island of Tahiti and is surrounded on all sides by the great blue expanse of the South Pacific. The Brando is located on Onetahi a motu spanning 78 hectares (193 acres).
Tetiaroa is completely private with its own airfield. Two or more roundtrip charter flights a day are planned or will be organized aboard one of two 8-passenger Britten Norman airplanes (turboprop twin-engine), duration of approximately 20 minutes, between a private terminal at Tahiti’s Faa’a International Airport and Motu Onetahi. After landing at Motu Onetahi on Tetiaroa, guests will be greeted by a representative of The Brando and escorted by electric vehicle to their private villa.
The Brando is a unique luxury resort on French Polynesia’s breathtakingly beautiful private island of Tetiaroa – an atoll composed of a dozen small islands surrounding a sparkling lagoon 30 miles north of Tahiti. Tetiaroa has always been a place of stunning beauty, tranquility, and rejuvenation—first for Tahitian royalty, who chose this island above all others for their summer retreat, and later for Marlon Brando who chose it for his personal sanctuary.
The Brando offers carefree luxury in the midst of pristine nature. With access to the island by private plane, the resort features white-sand beaches, swaying coconut palms, exotic birds, and abundant marine life. The Brando was designed to reflect Polynesian lifestyle and culture. The resort’s 35 luxurious beachfront villas, which are available in one-, two-, or three-bedroom arrangements include a sitting room and a media room, and feature a plunge pool and private beach area.
At The Brando, an abundance of activities are available from bicycling, swimming, bird watching, sailing or paddle boarding to a neighboring island, and snorkeling or diving with tropical fish. There is also a Cultural Lounge where guests can read about French Polynesia and attend lectures and demonstrations about Polynesian culture, history and lifestyle.
In addition to being a luxury resort, The Brando is a pioneering model of sustainable technology with sea water air-conditioning and energy from the sun and coconut oil. Protection of the abundant tropical fish and other marine life is core to the resort’s mission, and there is an EcoStation for scientific research that guests can visit.
With deep respect for its cultural legacy and the use of historical practices and new technologies to provide extraordinary luxury in an environmentally friendly manner, The Brando brings the past and future together into a place beyond time, invigorating the spirit and enriching and changing all who visit.
Key sites/activities in the area
Activities and Excursions are abundant at The Brando and available every day. From bicycling to snorkeling, bird watching, paddle boarding or scuba diving. Experience the nature, the plants, birds, the old native forest, the lemon-shark nursery, and other marine life. Spend time on the main island or discover the untouched private islands surrounding the lagoon. Explore the spectacular lagoon by Polynesian outrigger canoe or kayak. Other activities include taking a guided boat tour of the atoll’s motus, stargazing with a naturalist, swimming at Mermaid Bay or relaxing at the beach or pool.
Being a Robinson Crusoe on your own private island but in the modern comfort of an uber luxury all inclusive resort
Youth club dedicated to the education of conservation
The 22 villas along West Turtle Beach and 13 along South Mermaid Bay have been carefully designed to reflect the Polynesian lifestyle and traditions, with luxurious furnishings, deluxe amenities including a private plunge pool, and windows as big as doors that let guests indulge in the sun, the breeze, and lagoon views. The villa’s timbered walls and native gardens are surrounded by exquisite scenery. The resort has been designed around clean, renewable energy sources, to protect this island paradise for generations to come.
30 One-Bedroom Villas
The interior of each 1,033-sq.-ft. (96-sq.-m) villa has been designed to enhance the serenity of the surroundings, with the feeling of the indoors and outdoors merged together. Pass beneath a covered porch and stroll the boardwalk that leads to the front door. Enter into a cozy sitting room in tasteful shades of ecru and taupe, furnished with soft and comfortable chairs and sofas. To the side is a media room to listen to music and watch movies on the TV/VOD. WiFi & Blue-tooth is accessible throughout the villa and its exterior sun decks. A walkthrough dressing area adjoins the spacious bedroom, where a king-size bed invites you to relax and gaze through a large window at the lagoon, visible through a screen of pandanus, miki miki, and coconut trees. The adjoining bathroom features an outdoor bathtub, set behind a wooden screen. Outdoors, the villa’s private, 603-sq.-ft. (56-sq.-m) terraced deck adorned with chaise lounges, leads to a 107-sq.-ft. (10-sq.-m) plunge pool. To the side, is a shaded table and chairs. Just beyond the natural boundary of the villa is private access to the white-sand beach.
4 Two-Bedroom Villas
All the appointments of a one-bedroom villa—plus many built-in extras—in any of the four, 1,808-sq.-ft. (168-sq.-m) two-bedroom villas. Inside, a large, airy living room combines all the features of the one-bedroom villa’s sitting and media rooms. The living room also provides a private dining area with seating for six, a kitchen for the resort’s Chef to use for private functions for villa guests, and a wide entryway onto a large, two-tiered deck. In these villas, the second bedroom is situated directly above the first. The downstairs bedroom features a private dressing area. Upstairs, as you gaze out over the lagoon, you’ll experience a sensation of floating above this opulent tropical vista. This bedroom also features its own dressing area, bathroom, and outdoor bathtub. Outside, the villa’s 1,658-sq.-ft. (154-sq.-m) private yard has a larger deck area and 140-sq.-ft. (13-sq.-m) plunge pool.
1 Three-Bedroom Villa
The 2,648-sq.-ft. (246-sq.-m) three-bedroom villa provides an opportunity for friends or a larger family to stay together. This villa has all the features of the two-bedroom villa but on an even larger scale, the dining area will accommodate up to 8 people. The third bedroom is separated from the main villa by an above-ground walkway, and includes its own dressing room, bathroom, and outdoor bathtub. The furnishings are upgraded in the private outdoor space, which includes an expanded deck and a 236 -sq.- ft. (22- sq.- m) pool.
Restaurants & Bars
The award-winning cuisine of Guy Martin of the Michelin two star restaurant Le Grand Véfour in Paris is featured in The Brando’s dining venues and in-room dining.
• The Beachcomber Café offers an exceptional lagoon and ocean views for savoring breakfast, lunch, and dinner to in this casually elegant, indoor/outdoor venue. The menu features a variety of Polynesian-inspired dishes alongside classic French-style cuisine.
• “Les Mutinés” is the fine dining restaurant featuring elegant décor in beautiful tones of tropical light and sand and a moat that surrounds the restaurant provides the sensation of floating on a lagoon. The intimate restaurant also includes a world-class wine cellar in a carefully climate-controlled glass enclosure. A menu with the same regard for flavor and quality that has made Le Grand Véfour one of the most respected dining established in Paris is showcased.
• Te Manu Bar, located on the first floor, this open-air bar presents spectacular views of the lagoon, distant motus and sunsets. In addition to the main lounge, there are several private tree-level seating areas that can be reached on walkways through the palm canopy.
• The Bob’s Bar, a casual setting on the beach for conversation and making friends, is named in memory of Marlon Brando’s factotum (assistant) on film sets. At the end of the day, Brando and Bob would wind up at the bar for long talks. Eventually the bar at Marlon Brando’s lodge, Tetiaroa Village, became known as Bob’s Bar. The Brando’s Bob’s Bar has retained the original bar from the lodge Brando built. We have kept the name in honor of Bob and all others who have worked, and continue to work, anonymously to bring Brando’s visions to life.
• As a guest of The Brando, you can dine at any time. In-Room dining is available 24 hours a day, to enjoy a meal in the privacy of the guest’s villa—either indoors, on their private deck, poolside, or on the beach.
Varua Polynesian Spa Is a natural haven of serenity nestled on the shores of a soothing pond in the heart of Motu Onetahi. Within this setting the finest holistic treatments are offered inspired by ancient Polynesian traditions coupled with modern techniques. The spa includes steam baths, a tea lounge and a relaxation room, a yoga shelter and a spa suite for couples.
• The Fitness Center at The Brando offers an air-conditioned area with cardio and strength training equipment and is accessible 24 hours a day.
• The Tennis Court is open 24h hours a day with the equipment for use and a personal trainer if needed.
Corporate & Celebration Events
Special Celebrations at The Brando will be arranged by our concierge for any special event as honeymoons, weddings, anniversaries, and birthdays.
Extra Notable Features
• Concierge & Library are installed in a one-story building, the Concierge helps guests plan activities at The Brando. Upstairs, in the Library, guests can read books about French Polynesia, attend lectures and demonstrations about Polynesian culture, history, and lifestyle.
• The main Infinity Pool of the resort is located on the beach. Around it, guests can relax on one of the deck chairs under the shade of an umbrella and enjoy the companionship of other guests.
• The Lounge is the quietest and more relaxed environment to read, watch TV, surf the Internet, and enjoy snacks and refreshments.
• EcoStation is a research station with a laboratory where scientists from around the world conduct field research relating to preserving and protecting Tetiaroa and its plant and animal life and helping preserve and protect tropical islands everywhere. The on-site research scientists will be delighted to talk to guests about their research and the birds and marine life found on the atoll.
• Organic Garden & Orchard is made for the Brando’s Chef who select fresh organically grown fruits and vegetables on Tetiaroa and prepare for guests in the dining venues. The honey is deliciously made by Tetiaroa Bees and is used in our cocktails but also in our delicate desserts.
• Luxury Pearl Shop presents the exclusive Tahitian Black Pearl jewelry by Hinerava, a local designer known for her “island chic” appeal.
• Resort Boutique offers everything from toiletry essentials to mementos. Among the items available are cosmetics, creams and suntan oils that are coral and lagoon-friendly, apparel and footwear, artwork, books and music, postcards and stamps, and snacks.
• The Meeting Room at The Brando offers a meeting room equipped with the latest presentation equipment.
• The Lagoon School is the place where the younger generation can gather to relax and enjoy games.
Hotel & Restaurants Awards
• Finalist in the Earth Changer Category of the National Geographic Legacy Awards
• 1.618 Sustainable Luxury Award—Sustainable Luxury Guide 2013
Since 2010, the 1.618 Sustainable Luxury Award has been rewarding a luxury brand for its commitment and innovation towards sustainable development. On the occasion of the launching of their Sustainable Luxury web guide, Coup de Coeur of the Jury was given to The Brando, which is in the process of becoming a carbon-neutral and LEED Certified luxury hotel.
• SEP Silver Turtle Award
In order to encourage responsible waste management, SEP—who is in charge of collecting and processing waste for Tahiti and surrounding French Polynesian islands—has instituted awards in several categories. SEP has recognized The Brando’s “efforts and good practice in selective waste management during the construction phase” with the following awards in the Hotels category:
“Silver Turtle Award” (2012, 2011)
“Bronze Turtle Award” (2010)
• “Global First Award” HotelsWorld First Awards (2013)
Pacific Beachcomber’s President and CEO, Richard Bailey, received the “Global First Award” from
HotelsWorld First Awards in Sydney, Australia, recognizing his contributions and pioneering efforts in establishing and developing hospitality and tourism in the French Polynesia market, including The Brando.
Number of employees