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July 08, 2014

A High-Tech Way to Dive Deep at Laucala Island

By Sasha Levine | Destinations

A High-Tech Way to Dive Deep at Laucala Island
Courtesy of Tony Wu

Exploration and technology have always gone hand in hand, advancements in one catalyzing breakthroughs in the other. But rarely does the layperson, early adopter or otherwise, get to take the latest piece of high-tech equipment for a spin.

Laucala Island, however—a private island resort in Fiji—just became the first hotel to give guests access to a Hawkes Ocean Technologies DeepFlight Super Falcon (deepflight.com), a two-person submarine that takes deep-diving to the next level.

“The DeepFlight Super Falcon is a fundamentally new type of manned underwater vehicle that is a combination of submarine and high-performance aircraft,” explains Laucala Island general manager Andrew Thomson. “Its proprietary, patented winged design enables unprecedented speed, range and agility, transforming the two-dimensional elevator experience of conventional submersible designs into an exhilarating underwater flight.” (It is also, he adds, the only submarine designed to “do barrel rolls with dolphins.”)

From within the two-seater (trips, from $2,000 per hour), which is manned by a trained pilot, guests have 360-degree views of all the marine life that thrives around the resort’s clear South Pacific waters, including colorful reefs, sharks, tropical fish (coral trout, angelfish, octopus) and more. The Great White Wall, one of Fiji’s most legendary dive sites, lies just 40 minutes away. Rooms start at $4,200; 679/888-0077; laucala.com.

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