JA Manafaru Newsletter, December 2014

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Brand New Kandoo Kids Club at Holiday Inn Resort Kandooma Maldives

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A Perfect Paradise for your little ones…
On the 15th December 2014, Holiday Inn Resort Kandooma was celebrating the launch of its new magical nautical and nature theme Kids Club “Kandoo”, derived from the abundant Kandoo tree’s found at the Resort.

Kandoo Kids will boast over 500sqm of kids fun space, making it one of the biggest fun filled children entertainment zone’s in the Maldives comprising of an indoor air-conditioned fun zone and an outdoor splash pool (opening late January 2015). The combination of these activities will keep the kids artfully and actively entertained and engaged.

The air-conditioned indoor fun zone comprises of 2 fun filled activity levels. Ground level kid zone caters for 4 – 7 year olds and upstairs for 8 – 12 years old. Both levels are colorfully decorated and furnished to capture the children’s imagination and include a library, art & crafts specialty area and interactive gaming room on the upper level and ball pit and craft making on the lower level.

Complimented by our Kandoo Hosts, they will keep the kids stimulated and entertained with a host of various activities such as henna hand artwork, face painting, cake decorating and kids will be able to design their very own designer Kandoo Kids T-shirt. Kandoo Kids Club also features a crawl and napping area, for those needing that break from all the fun.

To cool off, kids can enjoy our very own designer “Splash Pool”, first of its type in the Maldives features low wading pool, waterslides, water cannons, spray wall and it wouldn’t be the same without the water tipping buckets to keep the kids actively entertained and cool.
Open from 8am – 8pm daily, Kandoo Kids Club will be free for children between the ages of 4 – 12. Baby-sitting service will be available on request.

Babymoon Holiday in Maldives

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Park Hyatt Maldives Hadahaa Introduces ‘Babymoon’ Package. Park Hyatt Maldives Hadahaa, one of the region’s most luxurious resorts, is offering parents-to-be the chance to relax and unwind ahead of their big arrival with a new ‘Babymoon’ package.

The six-day Babymoon offering has been specially designed to prepare, relax and reinvigorate expecting mothers, with pampering treatments taking place at the hotel’s luxurious Vindhun Spa

Hidden amongst lush Maldivian gardens in the heart of the resort’s private island, the Vindhun Spa is serviced by professional and experienced spa therapists who go to every effort to ensure they deliver an authentic and relaxing Maldivian experience for guests.

Treatments can take place in one of the spa’s five treatment villas, all boasting beautifully made thatched roofs, or can be enjoyed in the privacy of guests’ own villas.

Fathers-to-be can also enjoy bespoke spa treatments, or for those keen to stay active, they can head out to find some of the best dive sites in the world, go fishing, snorkelling, kayaking or just enjoy a good book on one of the island’s beautiful white sand beaches.

Park Hyatt Maldives Hadahaa’s new Babymoon package is available at £413.00 per couple for 6 days and includes a pregnancy massage, aqua yoga, head and shoulder massage, pregnancy Yoga and breathing, Abhyangyam massage, and a hydrating facial

For more info: Click Here

One&Only Reethi Rah introduces new Overwater Pool Villas - Maldives Luxury Resort

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One&Only Reethi Rah has unveiled their new Over Water Pool Villas.

Villas include covered veranda and a split-level deck and a private outdoor pool suspended over the turquoise lagoon . Netting suspended like hammocks from its edges are perfect for breezy sunbathing.

Each villa is 850 square feet, with the infinity pool at 325 sq ft. The villas are grouped together in a cluster of four, but lest you have any concerns about privacy, they are “configured in such a way that even guests in adjacent villas are completely unaware of one another”.

Safras Ahamed @ Blogger: Review of Male' City in a Different Angle - Male' ...

Loading Maldives Offers.... Safras Ahamed @ Blogger: Review of Male' City in a Different Angle - Male' ...: When it comes to online blogs, you usually see the general information such as what you can do & where to stay but not about other fa...

2 free nights, 10% discount, free transfer for two, complimentary upgrade to half-board - Maldives Luxury Resorts

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Stay minimum of 7 nights at Conrad Rangali Maldives’ and enjoy a 2 free nights, 10% discount, free transfer for two, complimentary upgrade to half-board for two. Book & pay before 18th Dec 2014. Travel period until 25 Dec 2014.

Surprise wife with Conrad Rangali Maldives’ honeymoon benefits - Maldives Luxury Resort

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Stay minimum of 8 nights stay and enjoy one fruit basket, one bottle of champagne in the villa upon arrival, One romantic 3-course menu candlelight dinner (excluding beverages) and USD 100 credit per couple per stay against the excursion of the guest’s choice.

Make your honeymoon a unforgettable with Conrad Rangali Maldives’ honeymoon benefits. - Maldives Luxury Resort

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Stay minimum of 4 nights stay and enjoy Fruit Basket, 1 bottle of Champagne in the villa upon arrival, One romantic 3-course menu candlelight dinner (excluding beverages).

Conrad Rangali Maldives Free Night Offer - Maldives Luxury Resort

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Travel before 25th Dec 2014 to Conrad Rangali Maldives’ and enjoy a 4 free nights for all the stay 14 nights and free meal plan upgrade to Half Board

Gasfinolhu, Maldives First Solar Powered Resort - Clean Energy

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Gasfinolhu Island Resort has on Tuesday begun functioning on electricity generated from solar power.

This is the first time that a resort in the Maldives is functioning completely on clean energy.

The resort, located in Kaafu atoll, has solar panels spanning 6,000 square metres. These panels generate 1.6 megavolts of electricity per day. 

Hussein ‘Champaa’ Afeef, a co-founder of the company that operates the resort said that the company always aims to ‘keep up with technological advancements’. 

“We have been working on switching to clean energy for two years now” Afeef said “The most noteworthy moment from the entire experctience was, switching off the generators and activating the panels”.

Click here to view full Picture Gallery

LUX* Maldives wins as ‘Leading Family Resort’ at the 2014 Maldives Travel Awards

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After being awarded the Indian Ocean Leading All-Inclusive Resort at Maldives Travel Awards 2013, LUX* Maldives has scored again with yet another valuable award recognizing the significant efforts of the past year by gaining the title of Leading Family Resort Award at the 2014 Maldives Travel Awards.

Since December 2011, LUX* Maldives has worked tirelessly to be recognized as a leading resort in the Maldives and Maldives Travel Awards’ award ceremony held in Male firmly confirmed this achievement. The resort has been officially awarded for its ongoing innovation, high standards of guest service, understanding of family needs, unique concepts and a true belief in the motto of ‘helping people to celebrate life’. PLAY is the large and well equipped resort kids club for children below the age of 12 providing a daily program of activities including treasure hunts, yoga, pizza making and cake decorating. Teens enjoy a sophisticated program called STUDIO 17 including team sports, teen only excursions, guitar lessons and can even learn how to be a DJ for their own party. 
The 5 star PADI dive centre and well equipped water sports centre warmly welcomes families of all age groups providing a wide range of experiences in, on and under the water! At LUX* Maldives kids are sure to never be bored and with 7 restaurants everyone is sure to find something they like. After winning against some of the long established beach resorts of the Maldives, LUX* Maldives General Manager Shaun Dunhofen said “We are immensely proud to receive this wonderful award in this year’s Maldives Travel Awards. The Maldives has become a very popular destination for family holidays and our large beach front, wide selection of resort facilities and experiences, coupled with passionate team members, ensures our guests enjoy the best beach holiday possible”. 

Guests at LUX* Maldives are treated to unique experiences such as Café LUX* freshly ground coffee, hand roasted on the island. ScruCap, a special selection of South African wines, produced only for LUX* Resorts & Hotels. ICI, freshly made ice creams and sorbets in a kaleidoscope of delicious flavours, plus the simple fun of ‘Phone Home’, a retro British red telephone box with free calls anywhere in the world! Being one of the larger resorts in the Maldives, guests are provided with a great choice of dining options and activities, a rejuvenating LUX* ME Spa, water sports and dive centre plus regular snorkelling trips by traditional dhoni, to spot magnificent whale sharks, manta rays and endangered turtles that inhabit the warm waters of South Ari Atoll. 

As the Festive Season draws closer, LUX* Maldives is looking forward to celebrating this special time with its guests. The island experiences will showcase treasure hunts, beach games, interactive pop-up dining in true LUX* Style. The arrival of Santa is always highly anticipated, arriving last year by FLYBOARD, it’s an exciting time for the younger LUX* guests. 

The New Year’s Eve party will bring about lavish decorations, fairy lights, live cooking stations and pop-up bars with a colourful Carnival theme showcasing celebrations from around the world. With impromptu cinema screenings on the beach, mother and daughter LUX* ME Spa packages and an onsite Marine Biologist, LUX* Maldives presents a constant 

variety of activities that never fail to delight – both above and below the waterline!

Enjoy an Awesome Offer from Park Hyatt Maldives Hadahaa.

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Book Before Tuesday 25th November 2014 & Enjoy a Free Return Transfers for 2 people, 1 Free Romantic dinner for bookings of 7 nights & 20% early bird discount from Park Hyatt Maldives Hadahaa. Valid for stays from 30th Dec 14 to 10th Jan 15.

For Reservations Contact Now: +960-798-5454
Free Transfers, Free Dinner, 20% Discount

Number 1 all-inclusive resort in Asia goes to Kurumba Maldives

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Additionally Kurumba Maldives has been awarded as the top 3 all-inclusive resort in the world, progressing from number 8 in 2013, by the reviewers of the Travellers’ Choice Awards.

The travel website’s award winners were based on its members’ reviews and opinions of all-inclusive resorts around the world over a period from August 1, 2013, through to July 31, 2014.

Jason Kruse, General Manager of Kurumba Maldives commented: “This award is a source of great pride and inspiration to our team, and shows our dedication to creating the best possible environment for employees, so that we in turn can provide the highest level of service to our guests. Our all-inclusive packages offer great value for money and a diverse choice of food and beverage experiences. We are tremendously grateful of this acknowledgment from our guests.”

Festive Jubilations at Six Senses Laamu

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Six Senses Laamu is eager to welcome the Festive Season with a new swimming pool and restaurant along with the addition of private plunge pools to 21 of the resort’s villas. The Christmas and New Year celebrations, from December 23, 2014 to January 3, 2015, include tailor-made experiences and events for all ages. Six Senses is excited to welcome returning guests and first time visitors to the resort as the entire team pulls out all the stops to extend a rich celebration of festive activities.

Some of the holiday highlights include:

A lobster barbecue on a private sandbank for an unreal seafood experience in the middle of the Indian Ocean. The delicious menu includes local seafood, freshly caught reef fish and salads made with organic ingredients grown in in the resort’s own gardens.

DJ Vifak will be behind the turntables of the specially installed beach decks! He will be the host DJ at the Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve party, inviting all guests to dance to the hottest island sounds. Then on December 31, the New Year countdown will bid farewell to the old year and welcome a promising 2015.

Over this period Des Mitchell will be on the decks of Chill Bar and Sip Sip providing a soulful highlight to the evenings accompanied by the lyrical voice of his fellow performer Sara France.

Six Senses Spa experts have made a selection of wellness and fitness activities and added them to the extensive and comprehensive range of award-winning signature treatments. An array of classes from asanas and yin yoga, to power walking and beach body training, will be held daily at the yoga pavilion. The spa will also offer the latest aerial experiences trend. Reach new heights with Six Senses aerial yoga, aerial fitness, aerial pilates and aerial meditation sessions.

Visiting Practitioner Benson Spiers will be available at Six Senses Spa throughout the festive period. Benson specializes in a variety of physical, emotional and spiritual therapies, such as tai chi, energy flow, fu shen massage and more. His sunset tai chi sessions are a must for fitness enthusiasts.

For younger guests, resort hosts have put together a series of fun activities and adventures. Pirates will be invading the shores of the island and they will take young guests aboard their boat for a snorkeling adventure. Fitness and spa activities will be available during this time, while a treasure hunt and a children’s disco party are not to be missed.

This is the season to share with family and friends and special excursions will be offered daily to ensure guests get the most out of their activity time with loved ones. Experience the Maldivian way of life on a nearby island or enjoy a true Robinson Crusoe escape on a secluded private island for a castaway picnic, Six Senses is ready to make all the arrangements. Sports activities and games will be organized, a few of which will include resort hosts.

Astronomer Parag Mahajani will also visit Six Senses Laamu during the Festive Season. He will set his telescope on the beach each evening and provide an introduction to the universe.

For more details please contact 00960 798 5454

Maldives participates at the World Travel Market 2014

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The Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC) together with 146 representatives from 54 companies are taking part in the World Travel Market 2014 held in London, UK from 3 – 6 November 2014.

A press conference was held on the first day of the fair, where the highlight of the conference was the recently launched Integrated Resort Project which was disseminated to the audience. The Maldives delegation will be meeting with the Top Travel Agents and Travel trade media to identify
opportunities to build strong ties between two countries and to identify strategies to increase the number of tourist arrivals from UK.

World Travel Market (WTM) is the leading global event for the travel industry and is a B2B event presenting a diverse range of destinations and industry professionals. Tourist boards, luxury operators, emerging destinations and technology specialists from a wide range of sectors and countries are among the 213 new exhibitors will be taking part in the World Travel Market 2014.

From January to September 2014, 66,602 tourist arrivals were recorded from UK. This is an increase of 3.7% compared to the same period of 2013. UK accounts for 7.4% market share and is the third largest market to Maldives.


Magical Season "Black & White Island Chic"

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Celebrate the Festive Season in the heart of the Indian Ocean. Kick off 2015 at Dusit Thani Maldives with memorable celebrations highlighting art, music, dance and cuisine – all under the singular "roof" of a star-studded sky. Experience al-fresco ballroom ballets, DJ night mixes and a lot more excitement on "Black & White Island Chic" themed New Year's Eve. Enjoy magical performances throughout the season ranging from traditional Thai Khim music, live interactive painting, fire dances to Maldivian acoustic musical events.

·  Sumptuous daily international buffet breakfast at Market Restaurant
·  A bottle of sparkling wine in the villa upon arrival
·  Complimentary group yoga sessions with Yoga Instructor
·  Festive Season home made sweets in the villa
·  Free flow of Moët & Chandon champagne between 1830 and 2000 hrs. at the Sala Bar Club
·  Complimentary high speed Wi-Fi access
·  Molton Brown bathroom amenities and selection of tea and coffee by Nespresso in villa
·  Nice or Naughty festive season sleeping T-shirts upon arrival

For Reservations Contact OV Holidays Maldives

Maldives Government to levy 'Green Tax' on tourists

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The Maldivian government has on Tuesday decided to introduce a ‘Green Tax’ which would be levied on tourists.

“Levying this tax is necessary given Maldives’ fragile environment” said Minister of Tourism Ahmed Adheeb “Revenue generated from the tax will go in to managing the waste from local resorts and other islands”.

The Minister further said that the government would discuss the logistics of levying the tax with businesses in the local tourism sector before introducing the tax. The amount to be levied is yet undecided.

Adheeb added that the government will propose a bill on the tax within this month with the hope of being able to implement it by 2015.

The Green Tax was accounted for in the estimated state budget for 2015. The government had also increased the Tourism Goods and Services Tax (T-GST) from eight to 12 percent. 


Browns Hotels and Resorts of Sri Lanka to develop Nasandhura Palace Hotel

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Browns Hotels and Resorts Ltd. of Sri Lanka, a fully owned subsidiary of Browns Investments PLC today announced that it had signed an agreement to develop a four-star hotel in the Maldives.

Browns Hotels and Resorts said it signed an agreement on Tuesday, October 21 with Alpha Kinam Holdings (Pvt.) Ltd. and NPH Investment Pvt. Ltd. to develop the property in Male’, Maldives.

The company plans to re-develop the Nasandhura Palace Hotel to a four-star hotel with approximately 150 rooms and 100 apartments.

It will invest US$ 9.5 million initially subject to statutory approvals and obtaining controlling interest.

Browns Investments said it has expanded its footprints in leisure sector by making a number of significant acquisitions and expects this investment, being the first overseas investment, to propel the company to even greater heights in leisure sector.

Renewal of Vows... Never Ending I Dos at Vivanta by Taj Maldives

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Celebrate your love amidst the unique colours of these classic Maldives wedding venues. Sand underfoot, the turquoise ocean beyond. A timeless moment, just the two of you. Promises re-made, smiles all around.

Guests can renew their vows on our white sandy beach or in a private gazebo overlooking the ocean.

> Fruit Platter and a Bottle of Wine in the villa on arrival
> Decorated Ceremonial Pavilion on the ocean with Wedding Music and a Flower Shower
> Wedding Cake
> Bottle of Champagne for the Toast
> Traditional Photo Album with 36 exposures of a professional photographer.
> Decorated Villa on the wedding night with Candles, Romantic Music and a Floral Bath.
> Sunset Cruise for the couple with canapés
> Special seafood dinner on the beach with a bottle of house wine
> Presentation of Wedding Certificate and Champagne Bottle Cork in a Special Box
> One 45 minute complimentary Couple Treatment at Jiva Spa, once during the stay
> Complimentary usage of Non-Motorized Water Sports
> Special Gift on departure

For reservations & for more info please contact 0094 77 003 9046
OV Holidays Maldives Luxury Resorts & Hotels

Carfax Education Group offers tutorials to young guests

Loading Maldives Offers.... The Soneva Group has joined forces with the Carfax Education Group, elite educational agency, to offer tutorials to young Soneva guests whilst on holiday to further ‘top up’ their education.

From early November 2014 to the beginning of February 2015, 5 - 15 year old children at Soneva Fushi will be able to attend either group or personalised one-to-one tutorials with Carfax tutors. All multilingual Carfax tutors have themselves graduated from the top public schools and universities of the UK including Oxford or Cambridge Universities and offer classes in English in all main subjects including English, French, Spanish, Latin, Maths and Sciences. Ideally placed to support their young clients, they bring together a wealth of personal experience in terms of educational achievement, and an extensive understanding of the British, American and Swiss education systems. The ultimate aim is to offer lessons at both Soneva Fushi and in the long term Soneva Kiri during all main International school holidays, starting this August 2014 at Soneva Fushi. This enables parents to enjoy guilt-free holidays with the whole family, knowing that their child’s school, college or university education is not suffering whilst away in the Maldives or Thailand.

“This collaboration with Carfax is in keeping with Soneva’s ever evolving dedication to suit the needs of our younger guests”, explained the Soneva Group’s CEO and Chairman Sonu Shivdasani. “When children have finished their tutorials, they can join their friends in Carfax is a UK based International group of companies with a network of offices across the world. Carfax specializes in providing guidance and support to individuals and institutions who seek to access the best educational opportunities available in Britain, Switzerland, UAE and the USA. The group also offers a wide range of other related services.

Bi-weekly group classes will be offered on a complimentary basis and one-to-ones will be charged at an introductory rate of $150 USD. Bookings can be made in advance via reservations-fushi@soneva.com. The Den for the more light-hearted part of their holiday. We want their learning to be fun too.”

Photo Gallery of Island Cottage Sheraton Maldives Full Moon

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Designed for those wanting extra space and privacy, our thatched-roof Beachfront and Island Cottages offer a comfortable island experience. Each cottage features vaulted ceilings for an even greater sense of space as well as a daybed and private balcony ideal for lounging. Individually controlled air-conditioning and a ceiling fan will allow the space to remain cool and comfortable.

A Sony 40-inch LCD flat screen TV with a choice of local and international channels, and a CD player is provided for your convenience. Each cottage is equipped with electronic safe, tea and coffee making facilities, in-room mini bar with a selection of beverages and snacks, as well as High Speed Internet Access (for a fee).

A king-size signature Sheraton Sweet Sleeper® bed complements the tranquil setting. The bathroom boasts an open-air shower that still maintains privacy while a separate bathtub is perfect for soaking with Shine for Sheraton™ bath amenities.

Beachfront Cottages feature an uninterrupted ocean view and direct access to the beach, while Island Cottages are steps away from our lagoon and offer refreshing views of our lush tropical gardens. 

Ayada Maldives Voted the Leading Luxury Resort in the Indian Ocean

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Ayada Maldives wins two significant awards at the September 2014 World Travel Awards ceremony, being awarded the ‘Indian Ocean’s Leading Luxury Resort’ and the ‘Indian Ocean’s Leading Villa Resort & Spa’.

“As a relatively new luxury resort the whole team of Ayada Maldives is extremely proud to have been voted the best, not only in the Maldives, but best of all resorts in the Indian Ocean,” said general manager Zafer Agacan.  “We’re aware of the extremely high standards set in the region and would like to thank the World Travel Awards for the acknowledgement that we belong in that circle of the very best.  This reflects the hard work done by the team here and their dedication to achieving only the very best”.

Ayada Maldives is an exclusive private island resort offering an unrivalled luxurious retreat and a genuine Maldivian experience.  Set in the relatively unexplored Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll in the south of the country – just a few kilometres from the equator –  the island offers 112 spacious villas and suites, all with private pools, butler and thoughtful five-star detailing.  Traditional thatched-roof water-villas stand on stilts over the resort’s peaceful lagoon, while beach villas offer absolute privacy as they nestle amid tropical greenery alongside powder-soft palm-lined white beaches.  Food lovers can explore the seven restaurants, while those seeking complete relaxation will find their haven in the large spa set in beautiful tropical landscaped gardens which boasts a Turkish Hammam as well as a Vichy Shower and eight private treatment villas.

The resort is noted for its gardens and tropical greenery and is ringed by a vibrant coral reef where dolphins are frequent visitors.  The active can explore the area on a host of excursions that include visits to the equator, local villages and fishing trips, while at the resortthey can play tennis or badminton, take up watersports, learn yoga, Pilates or Zumba or simply hit the 24-hour gym.  Outstanding divingand snorkeling opportunities surround the island on reefs that have barely been visited by humans while some of the country’s best surfing breaks are just a quick speedboat journey away.  Weddings take place in the golden hour just before sunset either in the air conditioned wedding chapel set in a tree-lined lawn, or outdoors on the beach under a pagoda of flowing gauze and flowers.

Source: http://maldives.net.mv/11782/ayada-maldives-voted-the-leading-luxury-resort-in-the-indian-ocean/

Maldives wins Indian Ocean’s leading destination award

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Maldives has successfully defended its title as Indian Ocean’s Leading Destination and Indian Ocean’s Leading Beach Destination as World Travel Awards winners in Indian Ocean are revealed.

To secure the leading destination awards number of resorts, hotels and tourist companies from Maldives won number of awards in various categories.

  • Indian Ocean’s Leading Destination – Maldives
  • Indian Ocean’s Leading Beach Destination – Maldives
  • Indian Ocean’s Leading Tourist Board – Maldives Tourism Promotion Board
  • Indian Ocean’s Leading Airport – Ibrahim Nasir International Airport, Maldives
  • Indian Ocean’s Leading Beach Resort – LUX* Maldives
  • Indian Ocean’s Leading Boutique Hotel Brand – Coco Collection
  • Indian Ocean’s Leading Conference Hotel – Paradise Island Resort & Spa, Maldives
  • Indian Ocean’s Leading Family Resort – The Sun Siyam Iru Fushi Maldives
  • Indian Ocean’s Leading Hotel – Conrad Maldives Rangali Island
  • Indian Ocean’s Leading Leisure Hotel – Hulhule Island Hotel, Maldives
  • Indian Ocean’s Leading Luxury Resort – Ayada Maldives
  • Indian Ocean’s Leading Luxury Water Villa – Ocean Suites at Paradise Island Resort & Spa, Maldives
  • Indian Ocean’s Leading New Resort – Cheval Blanc Randheli, Maldives
  • Indian Ocean’s Leading Private Island Resort – Coco Privé Kuda Hithi Island, Maldives
  • Indian Ocean’s Leading Seaplane Operator – Trans Maldivian Airways
  • Indian Ocean’s Leading Travel Agency – Get Into Maldives Travels
  • Indian Ocean’s Leading Travel Agency – Get Into Maldives Travels
  • Indian Ocean’s Leading Luxury Tour Operator - OV Holidays
  • Indian Ocean’s Most Romantic Resort – Baros Maldives
  • Maldives’ Leading Boutique Resort – Baros Maldives
  • Maldives’ Leading Family Resort – Anantara Dhigu Resort Maldives
  • Maldives’ Leading Green Resort – Park Hyatt Maldives Hadahaa
  • Maldives’ Leading Leisure Hotel Brand – Villa Hotels
  • Maldives’ Leading Luxury Resort – Jumeirah Dhevanafushi
  • Maldives’ Leading Luxury Tour Operator – Get Into Maldives Travels
  • Maldives’ Leading Resort – One&Only Maldives at Reethi Rah
  • Maldives’ Leading Spa Resort – The Sun Siyam Iru Fushi Maldives
  • Maldives’ Leading Spa Resort Brand – Six Senses Resorts & Spas
  • Maldives’ Leading Travel Agency – Vermillion International Maldives
  • Maldives’ Leading Villa – Ocean Sanctuary Sunset @ Jumeirah Dhevanafushi
  • Maldives’ Leading Water Villa Resort – Conrad Maldives Rangali Island

Trans Maldivian Airways New Update - Maldives Sea Plane

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Please be informed about some changes regarding hand baggage regulations with Trans Maldivian Airways,  We have been informed that many passengers are reluctant to leave their hand baggage with the sea plane crew and have it stored in the baggage compartment. In response to this, TMA has slightly amended their hand baggage policy as follows, effective from 01st September 2014:
Passengers are now allowed to take 01 piece hand baggage in the aircraft, without storing in the baggage compartment (Maximum 5KG, Length 33CM, Width 20CM and Height 28CM). Hand baggage which will not fit underneath the seat must be loaded in the baggage compartment.
In the event where the passenger requests the hand baggage to be stored in the baggage compartment, Crew will accept the hand baggage and store in the hand baggage compartment.
However, please be advised that the Captain still reserves the right to store all hand baggage in the baggage compartment if he considers this necessary for safety reasons.

For more info please visit : http://www.transmaldivian.com/

World’s Most Expensive Coffee Made From Elephant Dung?

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World News - Anantara Resorts, one of the world’s most expensive resort chains, has debuted some of the world’s costliest coffee at its Maldives Resorts properties. Just one thing though: The coffee beans are harvested from elephant dung.

The coffee is also offered at Anantara’s Golden Triangle property in Thailand.

The coffee beans, called Black Ivory and priced at $1,100 per kilogram, are digested by an elephant before you drink it.

There are only 50 kilograms, or about 110 pounds, currently for sale.

According to the resort, Black Ivory coffee beans are “naturally refined” by Thai elephants. Research indicates that during digestion, the enzymes of the elephant break down coffee protein, according to the resort. Protein is one of the factors responsible for bitterness in coffee: less protein, less bitterness.

The coffee is ground by hand and brewed table side in a four-minute process. The fragrance is said to be floral and chocolate and the taste “milk chocolate, nutty, earthy with hints of spice and red berries.”

Thai Arabica beans are picked from an altitude of 1500 meters (about 5000 feet) and fed to the elephants. “Once deposited by the elephants, the individual beans are handpicked by mahouts (elephant trainer and care giver) and their wives and sun dried.”

Refinement of the coffee takes place at the Golden Triangle Asian Elephant Foundation, an elephant conservation program. According to the resort, 8 percent of sales will fund an elephant veterinarian specialist to provide free care to the animals. Additional funds will be used to provide medicine and a new laboratory.

Black Ivory isn’t the first coffee in the world to come out of animal dung. Civet coffee, priced at several hundred dollars per pound, is harvested from the civet cats’ of Southeast Asia’s excrement.


More about Anantara Maldives

A Taste of Maldives’ Cheval Blanc: Hublot’s Randheli Oceanographic 4000

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Hublot pays tribute to the elegant Cheval Blanc Randheli, a luxury Maison in the Maldives, with the Hublot Randhelo Oceanographic 4000. This special diver’s watch is available only at Cheval Blanc Randheli and withstands a pressure at the extreme depth of 4000 meters.

In order to be described as a “montre de plongée” (diver’s watch), resistant to the pressure exerted at the record depth of 4,000 metres, the watch had to meet the exacting specifications of the international standards of Swiss Watchmaking (NIHS).

It’s seal was tested by Hublot in a Roxer tank, submerged and pressurized to the equivalent of 5,000 metres. To ensure the watertightness of the watch and to resist this extreme pressure, the synthetic sapphire crystal is 6.5 thick. This is thicker than normal, but is reasonable for this level of resistance. The caseback is screw-down made of grade 2 titanium, an extremely strong stainless material.

Its case is made of titanium, which makes the Oceanographic 4000 light on the wrist. From the brightness standpoint, the time and elapsed time measured by the flange must be legible from a distance of 25 centimeters in the dark. To meet this requirement, the dial, the flange and the hands of the Oceanographic 4000 have been optimized to have a larger surface area treated with SuperLuminova™, a luminescent material emitting a yellow color

The watch’s reading method has been made as safe as possible through the use of an internal rotating flange that is unidirectional and rack-driven, with a dive time indicator.

For more information visit www.hublot.com

Velaa Resort is a Czech billionaire's gift of love to Maldives

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He has visited the Maldives 38 times. He had travelled to many other well known locations long before he found Maldives. However, the 43 year old Czech Republic Billionnaire Jiri Smejc's heart was won by the beautiful Maldives and the heart-felt hospitality of the Maldivians.

He made Maldives his stop-over destination during his business trips and the holiday destination with his family. Smejc and his wife gifted their love to the Maldives.

His heart filled up with the quality services Maldives provided him when he stayed in the Maldives for weeks every year. The butlers in his attendance, the room attendants and the waiters who served him at the restaurants became his friends. He found friends he could trust in the Maldives within a short period of time.

Through all the things that he appreciated, he had one problem: the lack of a place to enjoy absolutely private moments in peace. The beginning of the thought to create the phenomenal resort - Velaa Private Island - now developed in Noonu atoll was the solution to his problem. To portray in a unique way, the beauty of the country that stole his heart became the aim of this billionaire.

"This resort has never been a business project. This is work done to make a dream come true," said Smejc, the owner of the most extravagant resort in the Maldives who had begun the development project four years ago.

The uniqueness of Velaa, which finally opened in last December, is proof of the love Smejc bestowed upon the Maldives; which is why all the services and the facilities at the resort is concentrated on "private moments". Velaa represents the taste of tourists. To make a place for people to come and enjoy with no restrictions and complete freedom was the greatest gift Smejc had presented the Maldives with.

"The owner wanted to create a vacation home or a place people can come to spend their vacations, which had everything that lacked in other places. The whole concept of the island is based on this. The owner personally wanted to develop a luxury resort with perfect services. The Velaa resort you see today is that dream made into a reality," said Mohamed Nihaj, a close friend of Smej and who oversaw the development of the resort from day one.

Velaa is also a life-size gift from Smejc to all the Maldivian people who had served him sincerely and kind-heartedly. Those Maldivians who had served him earlier to his satisfaction are now staff members of Velaa. He has extraordinary trust on them. While he has many billion-dollar investments worldwide, he had left his MVR5 billion investment's steering wheel completely upon the hands of his friends. Every member of staff at Velaa is a special friend of his.

Staff comments that though he is the owner of the resort, Smejc is a kind and 'a cool boss'; he plays and jokes with the staff and talks to staff politely, kindly and in a friendly manner. Although he is the owner of the most extravagant Maldives Resort, he does not have a bossy attitude. You can only see his kind heartedness and gentle manners.

"He talks closely, like a friend with all his staff, with no regard for levels or posts. He pays special attention to make time to spend with them when he is here. He does not have a room made better than the normal guest rooms here just because he is the owner. He leads a simple life," Nihaj, who also serves as the resident manager of the resort, said.

Though his life is portrayed very "carefree and cool" here, he is a billionaire behind many serious business operations and investments. He has shares galore at various banks, insurance companies and media. Investing in a small country such as the Maldives is not a big deal for him. His goal is not profit either.

Velaa, owned by Smejc and his wife Radka, is the symbol of the love they had found in the Maldives. It is an invaluable gift given by the couple to the nation that brings cool breezes to the heart. For all the tourists that visit the Maldives and the 40 years of Maldivian tourism Industry, this symbol of love by Smejc is more than enough.

Source: Ahmed Naif, Haveeru Online

Rated Most Beautiful Restaurant in the World as Conrad Maldives Rangali Island

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Ithaa Undersea Restaurant at Conrad Maldives Rangali Island has been awarded the ‘Most Beautiful Restaurant In the World’ by the New York Daily News.  Ithaa was selected as the “most beautiful dining destination on the planet” for its “stunning, unparalleled views”.  Guests dine under a ceiling made of transparent acrylic that offers panoramic 180-degree views where schools of rainbow-coloured, tropical fish and sharks glide overhead as guests tuck into dishes such as caviar, duck agnolotti and Maldivian lobster carpaccio.

While compiling the list, editors looked at “restaurants that had won awards and accolades for their design, the clout of the designer, location, and the destination’s overall reputation, be it from reputed sources like the Michelin guide or press reviews”.

Chef Ayyoub Salameh, who created the outstanding menu at Ithaa, was delighted at the recognition his signature restaurant has received, saying, “I think of my food in musical terms: I want diners to be able to hear the music of the food.  I hope it brings a smile to their face.  Ithaa is a very romantic place and I hope the food we’ve created create a talking point between the two diners at the table.  Don’t be shy: although I may not be there at the table, I’m speaking to the diners through the food.  If they can feel that, then I think the meal has been a success.”

Gorgeous gourmet eateries: The world's 10 most beautiful restaurants

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The world’s most beautiful restaurant is located five meters below the sea in the Maldives and offers panoramic views of the marine underworld.

According to a ranking compiled by food blog The Daily Meal, the Ithaa Undersea Restaurant at the luxury Conrad Maldives Rangali Island resort is the most beautiful dining destination on the planet, not for cascading crystal chandeliers, gold-gilded decor or high end art, but for the stunning, unparalleled view.
Guests dine under a vaulted ceiling made of transparent acrylic that offers panoramic 180-degree views of the ocean and marine life.

Schools of rainbow-colored, tropical fish and sharks glide overhead as guests tuck into dishes like duck agnolotti and Maldivian lobster carpaccio, and the restaurant is illuminated by blue-green hues of the sea above.

For the list, editors looked at restaurants that had won awards and accolades for their design, the clout of the designer, location, and the destination’s overall reputation, be it from reputed sources like the Michelin guide or press reviews.

Taking the second spot is The Four Seasons Restaurant in New York, designed by celebrated architects Philip Johnson and Mies van der Rohe. The Grill was called “the city’s greatest dining room” by New York Magazine and is also known as America’s “most powerful lunchroom.”
Walnut-paneled walls and soaring, two story windows characterize the Grill, while The Pool Room is described as more airy and romantic.

And in the No. 3 spot is Le Louis XV-Alain Ducasse in Monte Carlo, a sumptuously decorated restaurant in the style of Versailles splendor.
Here are the top 10 most beautiful restaurants in the world, according to

The Daily Meal:
1. Ithaa Undersea Restaurant, Conrad Maldives Rangali Island, Maldives
2. The Four Seasons, New York, U.S.A.
3. Le Louis XV, Monte Carlo, Monaco
4. La Maison 1888, Da Nang, Vietnam
5. Tori Tori, Polanco, Mexico
6. Taj Lake Palace, Udaipur, India
7. L’Opera, Paris, France
8. Maiden’s Tower, Istanbul, Turkey
9. Hakkasan, Beverly Hills, U.S.A.
10. Mugaritz, Rentería, Spain

The Underwater Festival Returns to LUX* Maldives, 16-20 APRIL 2014

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LUX* Maldives is proud to announce the third edition of the ‘Underwater Festival’, taking place on the island from 16 to 20 April 2014. Co-sponsoring the event, the leading diving company Euro-Divers presents an array of activities ranging from scuba diving to few of the most beautiful dive sites in the word, freediving with the whale sharks, under-the-stars evening screenings with the resident marine biologist as well as free diving and apnea courses. Following a successful week of apnea courses held at the resort last November 2013, Austrian world champion freediver Christian Redl returns to LUX* Maldives to host freediving courses during the Underwater Festival.

‘I am truly excited to return to LUX* Maldives and work with the Euro-Divers team for the Underwater Festival’ says Christian Redl ‘I am always keen to promote freediving around the world and the Maldives are the perfect settings for this event.’

Christian Redl currently holds several freediving world records ranging from two distance world records under ice: 100 meters with fins and 150 meters aided by a scooter as well as a dive through a 101m long cave in Mexico.

Operating several diving centers worldwide, Euro-Divers is one the leading diving operators in the Maldives and now offers PADI freediving course throughout their diving centers in the country. Jean-Jacques Mayol, son of freediving legend Jacques Mayol, as well as English world champion freediver Sara Campbell are among the freedivers that have been working with the team of Euro-Divers in the past to further enhance the professionalism of the course.

During the Underwater Festival Euro-divers team will also present a selection of new freediving equipment recently launched by Aqua Lung. The range of equipment will be available during the courses for all the participants and will then become an official part of the daily freediving courses offered at the resort. ‘The Maldives are renowned for their incredible underwater scenery and the dive sites around LUX* Maldives are listed among the best in the country’ says Kai Hromadko, Regional Operations Manager of Euro-Divers Maldives ‘the Festival gives us the opportunity to showcase this hidden beauty both scuba diving and freediving. It is a pleasure to welcome back Christian Redl to our team and we look forward to a great week of underwater fun!’

LUX* Maldives is an active supporter of the researches conducted to develop the South Ari Marine Protected Area and operates a Marine Biology Center to enhance guests’ awareness on marine life and year-round presence of whale sharks along the back reef of the resort.

Dive into an inspired celebration with a surreal underwater wedding at Anantara Kihavah Villas

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Couples dreaming of a fantasy wedding in a truly unique kind of paradise can descend into the Indian Ocean’s dazzling depths for a surreal underwater ceremony at Anantara Kihavah Villas in the breathtaking Maldives, as part of the resort’s Dive Wedding package.

In this adventurous ceremony, couples are surrounded by mesmerising marine life as they sign their wedding certificate.  The rings exchanged underwater are presented in a shell that offers a wonderful keepsake, and every precious moment is captured by an experienced underwater photographer from Elements Kihavah, the resort’s diving school and water sports centre.

After the underwater ceremony, newlyweds are also spoiled on dry land, beginning with hair styling and make-up for the bride by a professional beautician in preparation for a special evening celebration.  Dining by Design on the beach, couples savour a sumptuous lobster and seafood barbecue, served with a bottle of wine, as a butler tends to every need.  Anantara’s signature Slumber Guru experience offers an evening of blissfully intimate in-villa rituals, including a sensual bath and massage to soothing music, as well as host of relaxing bedtime gifts.  Waking up in paradise, an indulgent start to married life is enjoyed with an in-villa champagne breakfast.  While by taking part in the resort’s coral adoption programme, the couple can return in the future, perhaps to celebrate an anniversary, to see how their corals have blossomed over time.

Extending the possibilities, Anantara Kihavah Villas’ additional wedding packages include ceremonies on a postcard perfect beach, in the exclusive underwater restaurant and wine cellar ‘Sea’, and aboard a luxury yacht, for an Inspired Celebration that offers a unique journey of romantic discovery.

Anantara Hotels, Resorts & Spas’ Inspired Celebrations concept invites couples to create their own love story from start to finish, beginning with the perfect surprise proposal and dream wedding, to the honeymoon of a lifetime and unforgettable anniversaries.

Escape to W Retreat & Spa Maldives, the best gateway to declare your love.

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Abandon the expected and experience the newly W underwater wedding. Get ready to celebrate your love fifteen meters under beautiful blue waters surrounded by thousands of colorful exotic fish and breathtaking corals. Mathew Chunky, the Retreat’s W Insider says “This is a once in a lifetime experience. The house-reef is absolutely magnificent and you can often see turtles, eagle rays and sharks swimming around.” You can also say “I do“ on white sands overlooking the sparkling Indian Ocean. Celebrate with a romantic outdoor reception, lit by vibrant lanterns, and toast your big day with a signature cocktail or two. 

Go to Gaathafushi, W Maldives’ own private island for your honeymoon. Indulge in exquisite serenity while exploring the surrounding lagoon or hanging out on the signature W Bed under a thatched roof with a glass of Champagne. Indulge in fine cuisine by Executive Chef, Severin Huerlimann, while catching amazing sunset views. 

Connect with your inner peace and go along with the pace of island life. Experience one of the 78 Retreats, either on the beachside or overwater giving you access to endless Indian Ocean views. Succumb to an inviting concept of dazzling blue waters, spectacular reefs and pristine sands infused with style and soul. Flirt with adventure over the water with adrenaline filled water sports activities, or discover the best dives spots with DOWNUNDER, PADI certified team of dive masters. 

Let your fabulous dreams come true with the ultimate Whatever/Whenever services. Sit back and relax we will take care of the rest. 

For more information on W Retreat & Spa Maldives https://www.alphamaldives.com/resort/w-retreat-spa_25_home_0.html

Soneva Fushi invites shark savers to freedive and swim with sharks in their sanctuary

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Regional Director of Shark Savers and leader of the ”I’m FINished with Fins” campaign, Jonn Lu was invited to sustainable luxury resort in the Maldives, Soneva Fushi to freedive with sharks in the UNESCO Biosphere protected Baa Atoll.

A hobby scuba diving instructor and freediver, Jonn Lu jumped at the chance to launch Soneva Fushi’s new freediving experience. As the first resort in the Indian Ocean to offer freediving to resort guests, Soneva Fushi has enlisted the expertise of Danish-Japanese Freediving Instructor and athlete, Ken Kiriyama, who is also the Danish National Team freediver, to guide and share the magical experience of exploring the underwater world in one held breath.

Jonn Lu said: ”It was a privilege to be in the Maldives to swim in an ocean that provides sharks with protection against shark fishing. Freediving is a very unique way to experience the ocean with the lowest possible environmental impact; all that’s required is a swimsuit and and a mask, and sometimes perhaps a pair of fins. This is by far the purest way to be in the ocean with marine life, without being encumbered by heavy scuba diving accoutrements. In a similar way, this is how our ancestors experienced the ocean for thousands of years.”

Soneva Fushi owners, Sonu and Eva Shivdasani have actively campaigned for many years to champion the conservation agenda for the Maldivian shark population. The Maldivian government commendably introduced a ban on shark fishing in all its waters in 2010. The ban is a great step forward for shark conservation and prevents fishermen from hunting sharks in up to 12 nautical miles (22 kilometres) off the atoll coasts. Soneva Fushi is the newest corporate supporter of the “FINished with FINS” campaign and Sonu and Eva say that they are proud to be invited to play the role of Corporate Campaign Ambassadors for the Maldives. In their role, they will endeavor to recruit other corporates to join the campaign, and to assist in plans to help thwart illegal catchment of sharks by poachers in Maldivian waters.

Soneva Fushi has reintroduced Freediving Course for the peak season (till April/May 2014); one centered upon the foundations of breath, awareness, relaxation, safety and knowledge. Some people freedive for fun and to observe marine life, and others for the meditative and introspective nature of the sport. There are also those who want to improve their aquatic skills, depth and time, or to experience a break-through.

How about a romantic getaway aboard in a luxury submarine?

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If you have a bottomless bank account and a love that goes deeper than the ocean, a British travel outfit has created a package that allows lovers to make their own tsunami waves in a romantic getaway aboard a luxury submarine.

OK, so it's not yellow. But for adventurous couples who may have already inducted themselves into the Mile High Club at 35 000 feet, Oliver's Travels has adapted a leisure submarine with luxury furnishings and "sound-proof living accommodations” as part of their Mile Low Club.

The underwater marine hotel called "Lovers Deep" can be moored near the coral reef off the coast of St. Lucia or near a sunken battleship in the Red Sea.

But love at the bottom of the ocean doesn't come cheap. You'll need to cough up $292 800 per night for a stay on the submarine vessel.

For the tidy sum of an average, middle-class suburban home, guests get a captain, a private chef and butler, speedboat transfers and optional add-ons that include helicopter transfers, beach landing, two-person shower, and champagne-soaked breakfast.

For good measure, the agency will throw in a rose petal scattering service.

Guests who book the submarine accommodations as part of their honeymoon package in 2014 are also being offered a free lovers' dinner menu that includes oysters, caviar and chocolate fondant with essence of pomegranate.

Lovers Deep is the latest in a new travel trend rising to the surface. In response to the banality of skyscraping properties, more and more hoteliers are plumbing the depths of the ocean for new and innovative lodging experiences.

The Manta Resort, for instance, offers a striking underwater room off the coast of Tanzania that includes a suite built four meters below the surface of the Indian Ocean, backlit by underwater spotlights.

Perhaps one of the best existing examples is the Ithaa Undersea Restaurant at the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island hotel, which consistently makes it onto travel bucket lists and most-exclusive lists.

Set five metres below the surface, the fine dining restaurant features 180-degree views of the coral gardens.

And the blueprints for a futuristic-looking luxury Maldives Resort reveal plans to build a spaceship-like edifice seven metres above water on five pillars. The lower deck, meanwhile, will be built up to 30 metres below the surface.

Source: http://travel.iafrica.com/bulletinboard/903285.html