The Aerial: The rags-to-riches BVI private island promising life-changing retreats

As rag to riches tales go, Britnie Turner’s is an impressive one. Today a very, very rich 32-year-old, just over 10 years ago the South Carolina native was living in her car and attempting to establish a career in the property industry. Now her housing company Aerial Development Group is thriving, she has commercial interests worldwide and her Aerial Recovery Group provides rapid support services to regions affected by natural disasters. This month she launched her latest endeavour: leisure visits to a private island in the Caribbean, where exclusive-use stays will cost $40,000 per night. The Aerial is a new all-inclusive destination in the British Virgin Islands that will offer what she bills as “a new never-before-seen kind of luxury – ‘Purpose Luxury’”.

In practice that means this won’t be another Caribbean island for hire that is solely dedicated to unfettered relaxation or under-the-radar hedonism. The Aerial’s intended clientele are “visionaries, leaders, entrepreneurs, creatives and families [who want to be] a force for good in the world”. The island’s programmes and amenities are intended to form “an incubator for positive transformation”. (An early endorsement of The Aerial’s approach came from Tony Robbins, who took his team there recently, and Britnie has presumably discussed business strategies, the secrets of success and hospitality tips with her acquaintance Richard Branson, resident on nearby Necker Island.)

Key to achieving this objective will be the series of Elevate Summits Turner will lead throughout the year, each limited to the island’s maximum occupancy of about 30 participants and all costing $9,987 per person. In the year to come, they will be Abundance (June 27 to July 1); Presence (July 24 to 28); Strength (September 24 to 28); Love (October 29 to November 2); and Dream (March 1 to 5).

While admittance costs mean every attendee will already be doing well for themselves, the Abundance Summit will see Britnie and her network tell participants how to generate immense wealth. Presence will provide guidance on living in and appreciating the moment; during Dream, guests will confront the “limiting beliefs” holding them back, replacing them with “limitless beliefs”. Notable too, at least from a European perspective, is that religious belief will be a celebrated part of The Aerial’s identity. Britnie credits her Christian faith as forming an integral part of her professional purpose and being fundamental to her success. A promotional video for the Elevate Summits states they will help clients to “reconnect to God”.

There may be less buy-in for that approach from some guests than others, but The Aerial’s offering otherwise is likely to be universally agreeable. Overlooking 14 other islands and the Francis Drake Channel, the 43-acre resort will comprise five residences – Unity House, Faith House, Serenity House and the Love + Grace villas – and will offer a portfolio of feel-good activities including nature hikes, yoga, water therapy, guided writing, immunity-boosting programmes, conventional spa treatments and extended wellness retreats. (Britnie herself has participated in professional bodybuilding tournaments so that emphasis on health and fitness isn’t at all surprising.)

Nutrition will be a key focus too. On-site gardens will provide much of the island’s produce, with the rest sourced from local suppliers. The culinary team ambitiously promises to deliver “the most delicious yet healing food on the planet”. An experienced nutritionist, various wellness consultants, spa therapists, water sports instructors and horticulturists will be among the specialist staff members on site. Like everything and everyone else on the island, their aim will be to help guests become the best possible versions of themselves. 

Costing $40,000 (£30,000) per night, all-inclusive stays on The Aerial for up to 30 guests are subject to a minimum three-night booking.

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