Necker Island – the jewel of the British Virgin Islands – stands as the epitome of luxury, exclusivity, and sustainability. As Sir Richard Branson’s private paradise, Necker Island has become synonymous with opulent getaways, extravagant events, destination weddings, and unforgettable honeymoons. With its unparalleled sense of privacy, bespoke service, and natural beauty, Grace Ormonde has named Necker Island as the number one private wedding destination for couples who want to give their guests a VIP experience.

Exclusivity and Privacy

When it comes to exclusivity and privacy, Necker Island is unmatched. The nearest international airport is on Tortola, where visitors can take a 30-minute boat ride to Necker Island. Virgin Gorda also has a smaller airport and is a short 10-minute boat ride away. Alternatively, guests can arrive via helicopter from Tortola, Virgin Gorda, St. Thomas, San Juan, and several other nearby islands. With only one wedding booking accepted at a time, the island is a guaranteed private sanctuary for couples and their guests to enjoy a wedding week or weekend without any interruptions.

For accommodations, Necker Island offers the Great House, which has 11 bedrooms, plus nine “Bali Houses” scattered around the island. This is enough to welcome 40 guests – plus six kids in the bunk room – for an intimate destination wedding. The Great House is a stunning creation inspired by Balinese architecture, with each of the bedrooms featuring a balcony and king-sized beds. Brides and grooms may reside in the Master Suite located on the upper level, with a private sundeck and outdoor hot tub to complement breathtaking views of the ocean and surrounding islands.

Separately, the Bali Houses are each set up to offer guests their own luxurious pocket of privacy and seclusion. Each house is as gorgeous as the next, with features including plunge pools, outdoor showers, private terraces, and ocean views.  

Private Island Weddings Surrounded by Natural Beauty

When Sir Richard Branson first saw Necker Island from a helicopter in 1976, his intention was to buy an island to impress his wife Joan, who was his girlfriend at the time. In 1982, he purchased the island to create his own home away from home – although he quickly realized “It’s simply too beautiful not to share,” and eventually opened the island to visitors.

Since then, Branson’s labor of love has become the ultimate private wedding destination, where couples can share in the stunning world of natural beauty he has curated. From pristine beaches to panoramic views of the Caribbean Sea, the island is as stunning a backdrop as one could imagine. Barefoot wedding ceremonies in the sand are a favorite among Necker Island couples; and it doesn’t get much more magical than a sunset wedding on the island, with the sky painted in vivid shades of orange and pink.

A Personalized and Bespoke Wedding Experience

Logistically, one of the greatest benefits of a private wedding destination is the flexibility it offers in terms of wedding dates and accommodations. While some hotels and resorts in the Caribbean shut down between late-July and mid-October for hurricane season, Necker Island is open year-round. Some months are rainier than others, but the island can accommodate weddings for any month a couple prefers.

Necker Island weddings are completely tailored to each couple’s preferences. Every detail – from choosing each event’s location, to crafting a customized gourmet wedding menu with world-class chefs – is carefully handled by a team of experts who are dedicated to executing the couple’s vision to perfection. Outside wedding vendor teams are welcome to be brought in, and some of the seasoned professionals who have planned events on Necker Island include JZ Events, Vicki Evans Events, and Hessney & Co.

The wedding guest capacity at Necker Island is 120 guests for a plated dinner, or 200 guests for a standing reception-style event. Although the island itself accommodates 40 guests and six children, boats are available to transport guests staying in other British Virgin Island locations like Virgin Gorda.

Should couples require rooms for more than 40 guests, the Necker Island team recommends looking into the Branson Beach Estate first, as it is also part of the Virgin Limited Edition Collection. The Branson Beach Estate can house up to 22 additional guests in its guest rooms, plus four or five more if they make use of the nurseries.

For couples planning to visit Necker Island for their honeymoon, the team recommends staying in the Master Suite in the Great House, Temple Master, or Bali Beach for the best honeymoon experience.

Necker Island Adventures

Along with being the ultimate private wedding destination, Necker Island caters to adventurous couples who want more than a traditional wedding experience. Between the land and sea, there’s a wealth of scenic spots to explore. Over the course of their wedding week, couples and their guests can snorkel the coral reefs, play tennis, take nature walks, practice yoga, charter a yacht for the day, or enjoy a morning of kite-surfing.

Of course, Necker Island is just as fitting for those who also want to indulge in some rest and relaxation. The island’s spas offer indulgent treatments to keep everyone feeling properly pampered before and after the wedding celebrations.

To complement the Necker Island way of life, the culinary team focuses on a beautiful variety of fresh, wholesome food that encourages a vibrant and healthy lifestyle. Guests can look forward to dishes made with healthier cooking techniques, along with a beautiful offering of plant-based options.

Since Necker also focuses on supporting the local economy, products are sourced from local farmers and fishermen; and fish is always sourced seasonally, sustainably, and in a way that protects the local waters. Couples may want to feature a sprawling, floating sushi display in one of the island’s pools during their welcome party – a lavish, yet thoughtful and nourishing way to refuel wedding guests after a day of traveling.

Sustainability and Social Responsibility

Beyond its pristine setting and luxurious amenities, Necker Island is committed to sustainability and social responsibility. Under Sir Richard Branson’s stewardship, the island has implemented multiple eco-friendly practices and initiatives to minimize its environmental impact.

In 2006, Necker Island began its transformation into the vibrant wildlife sanctuary it is today, starting with the slow introduction of 44 flamingoes to the island. Flamingoes were once native to the British Virgin Islands, but were hunted to extinction. Today, the flamingo population on Necker Island stands at 350 and is joined by 140 other species who call the island their home – one of them being Brutus, a 650-pound tortoise.

“I believe that the way we treat our world is a reflection of our humanity, our intelligence, our conscience and, ultimately, our very survival,” says Branson. “Animals cannot speak for themselves, so it is up to all of us to protect them and their habitats. This is why we’ve tried to make Necker a real wildlife haven.”

Other initiatives that have been implemented on the island include: the elimination of plastic straws and single-use plastic water bottles; a combination of wind turbines and 1,230 solar panels that enables the island to operate at 90% to 100% on renewable energy; offering “regenerative tourism” activities to guests in partnership with Unite BVI; and a Microgrid that supports the Necker Island goal of reaching net zero for fossil fuel consumption by 2030.

By its mission and identity alone, the island has become a beacon for eco-conscious, luxury travelers and couples who not only want to give their wedding guests the trip of a lifetime, but support a greater cause as well. Factor in its exquisite landscapes and personalized service, and Necker Island truly stands apart as a private wedding and honeymoon destination like no other.

Visit for more information.

>Written By: Lauren Malamala