Conrad Maldives Rangali Island Unveils Striking New Beach Villas

Reinforcing its position as a champion of smart luxury, the iconic Conrad Maldives Rangali Island has emerged from refurbishment as one of the Maldives’ most applauded resorts.  In a strategic move to continually attract guests, the resort has invested US 3.2 million in redeveloping its award-winning beach villas which are set to launch this October.

The redevelopment has seen a full renovation of 34 beach villas and bathrooms and this was followed by the development of the Maldives’ first authentic Chinese restaurant Ufaa heralded by celebrity chef Jereme Leung. This award-winning concept is a culinary journey through China, which takes inspiration from the picturesque island surroundings.  

Conrad Maldives Rangali Island general manager Lyle Lewis said the villa refurbishment is aimed at engaging with customers to ensure Conrad Maldives was top of mind when deciding where to stay.  

“We are one of the most recognised brands in the Maldives’ hospitality market and with the launch of the beach villas we aim to further cement the resort’s position as one of the leader’s in the market. Each beach villa has been completely refurbished to a luxurious haven of comfort and style, and features spacious living areas that are illuminated with natural light and offer private access to the palm fringed beach,” states Lewis.  

The beach villas nurture a sense of relaxation through distinctive features including floor-to-ceiling sliding glass doors leading directly to the beach, a skylight to provide a naturally illuminated space, and a new bathroom featuring the signature outdoor shower and bathing pavilion. The standout feature of the villa is the extension of the bedroom area which gives guests the option to create a second bedroom by simply closing the curtains to encircle the space. The second bedroom is ideal for young children, teens and parents craving a little bit of privacy.  

Beach Villa, Conrad Maldives Rangali Island
Beach Villa, Conrad Maldives Rangali Island

Celebrating its 20th anniversary of operations in the Maldives, the resort joined Hilton Worldwide in 1997 as Hilton Rangali Resort and Spa, and was rebranded to Conrad Maldives Rangali Island in 2007 as the flagship resort in the company’s luxury portfolio. The refurbishment of the beach villas follows the substantial works completed in 2014, which saw Conrad Maldives Rangali Island develop Ranfinolhu Island which houses 570 team members, and is arguably one of the leading team member accommodations in the country.    

The refurbishment is a precursor to the resort being announced as one of the top 10 resorts in the Indian Ocean as part of Condé Nast Traveler’s 2016 Reader’s Choice Awards, announced on 18 October 2016. Voted by people who love travel, the resort was one of the award winners selected from more than 300,000 survey takers who submitted millions of ratings and 75,000 comments. This wonderful accolade follows the resort’s award-winning year which has seen the resort receive the Maldives’ ‘Leading water villa resort’ and the Indian Ocean’s ‘Leading hotel’ at the 2016 World Travel Awards. Conrad Maldives Rangali Island is one of the world’s most recognised and celebrated resorts, and continues to demonstrate a commitment to industry, leadership and innovation.  

Conrad Maldives Rangali Island offers the popular Conrad Concierge mobile app, which gives global luxury travellers the ability to customise details of their hotel stay before, during, and after each visit via a smartphone or tablet. Whether it’s pre-selecting bath amenities or checking in while in-transit from the airport, guests can access a variety of features by using the app.  

Beach Villa, Conrad Maldives Rangali Island
Beach Villa, Conrad Maldives Rangali Island

Conrad Maldives Rangali Island also participates in Hilton HHonors®, the only guest loyalty programme where guests who book directly through www.conradhotels.com have access to benefits including the digital Conrad Concierge app and complimentary Wi-Fi at 26  Conrad hotels.

An evening spent at 135° East on Maafushivaru

135° East – They do sound like GPS or compass coordinates. But not in Maafushivaru, a magical island set in the southern tip of Ari Atoll in the Maldives as the coordinates refer to the name of its famous ‘Hibachi restaurant that opened in 2012. Sounds interesting enough?

Dining at 135° East, MaafushivaruDining at 135° East, Maafushivaru
Dining at 135° East, Maafushivaru

The art of teppanyaki hails from ancient Japan and has been around since centuries where using the Teppan (iron grill) was key to cook meats and vegetables. Soon it developed into a huge success and gained a remarkable popularity for its eclectic showcase of talents while producing delicious treats. The combination of sushi and teppanyaki was born and has then grown into one of the most popular cuisines enjoyed by many around the globe.

Food, Maafushivaru

To find that in the Maldives is even better, and Maafushivaru took the opportunity to serve the finest and freshest ingredients delicately created as you spectate. A talented chef skillfully captivates the audience as he flutters kitchen knives and forks, carving meats and vegetables combined with an elegant showmanship of the secret arts of Teppanyaki cookery. Minutes later
you’re served sizzling hot food served with condiments and the right amount of zest infused.

135° East, Teppanyaki and Sushi restaurant, Maafushivaru
135° East, Teppanyaki and Sushi restaurant, Maafushivaru

The restaurant is set on an overwater pavilion connected to a private jetty. Auburn flamed sunsets are frequent backdrops to complement your dining experience paying tribute to its unique name; 135° East.

Constance Moofushi And Constance Halaveli Gets Green Globe certification

Constance Moofushi and Constance Halaveli in the Maldives are amongst the six Constance properties announced by Green Globe with its inaugural certification. According to Green Globe, each of the properties in Constance’s Ultimate Hotels Collection and Unique Resorts Collection, across the three destinations, have made significant contributions to sustainable management in some of the worlds’ most beautifully delicate island ecosystems.

General Manager at Constance Halaveli Dominik Kuenstle, Executive Assistant Manager at Constance Moofushi Jacques Varet with Business Development Manager at Green Globe Irina Ignat
General Manager at Constance Halaveli Dominik Kuenstle, Executive Assistant Manager at Constance Moofushi Jacques Varet with Business Development Manager at Green Globe Irina Ignat

“We are delighted that our six hotels in the Indian Ocean – Mauritius, Seychelles and Maldives – are now Green Globe certified,” said Jean Jacques Vallet, Chief Executive Officer of Constance Hotels and Resorts.

Green Globe

“We are taking every step to ensure that we preserve the environment wherever possible in all the destinations that we operate. We are conscious of global environmental issues and acknowledge our responsibility towards the environment. While the well-being of our guests is our priority, all Constance Hotels and Resorts commit themselves in their operations to meet and exceed applicable environmental legislation, standards and best practices,” added CEO Jean Jacques Vallet.

Turtle nesting protection to rehabilitating new coral gardens as well as tree planting are amongst the green activities these resorts have undertaken. The resorts organize their own programmes and support initiatives of local environmental groups and international scientists.

The environmental footprint of each property is of primary concern. The issue of waste management and recycling of PET and aluminum are strictly monitored and responsibly addressed. Potable water is also a major issue faced by the hotels with new innovations including replacement of golf course grass by a new variety that can be irrigated with seawater.

Green Globe CEO Guido Bauer noted the excellent performance of each of the Constance properties and said, “Scoring in the eighty percent range for a first year of certification is a commendable achievement and can only be won by strict diligence and commitment to sustainability principles and practices.

Aerial, Constance Halaveli
Constance Halaveli

“For six of the Constance properties to be certified to this level across the islands of Mauritius, Seychelles and Maldives also demonstrates the dedication and cooperation between management and staff to bring about a service quality that not only supports the local environment and communities, but also provides the very best in hospitality for all their valued guests,” added CEO Guido Bauer.

Green Globe ranks hotel and resort performance as a percentage against Green Globe’s International Standard for Sustainable Tourism. Comprising of more than 300 performance indicators, this Standard was developed over 15 years ago and today underpins all sustainable tourism certification globally. In their first year of certification Constance Hotels and Resorts’ properties scored as follows:

Constance Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius 80%; Constance Belle Mare Plage, Mauritius 85%; Constance Lemuria, Seychelles 82%; Constance Ephelia, Seychelles 87%; Constance Moofushi, Maldives 84%; and Constance Halaveli, Maldives 84%.

Apple Woo new Director of Sales & Marketing of Outrigger Konotta

A Singaporean national, Ms Apple Woo has be appointed as the Director of Sales and Marketing of Outrigger Konotta Maldives Resort. Woo joined Outrigger on the first of February and will be based in the Outrigger Asia Pacific office in Phuket, Thailand. She will directly report to Pascal Billon, the General Manager and on key marketing and sales initiatives to Mark Simmons Vice President of Sales and Marketing of Outrigger Asia Pacific.

Woo was Director of Global Sales for Southeast Asia and Hong Kong for five years with the Jumeirah Group. Previously she held senior positions in sales and business development with Madinat Jumeirah Resort Dubai. She also worked with Mandarin Oriental Singapore in operations and sales positions for 10 years.

Speaking on the appointment of the Mandarin fluent Woo, the Vice President of sales and marketing Mark Simmons said: “Apple brings a great depth and range of sales experience in premier resorts and hotels,” “She is well versed in the needs and expectations of high-end leisure markets from Asia Pacific, Europe, North America, and the Middle East. This will be a great asset as Outrigger Resorts pursues its aspiration of becoming the premier global beach resort brand.”

The Outrigger Konotta Maldives Resort is designed and developed to offer a complete sense of privacy and intimate luxury with 27 beachfront one and two-bedroom pool villas and 21 overwater pool villas. Four additional beachfront pool villas and an overwater presidential villa are also planned.

The resort will be supported by a full range of facilities and services, including new and innovative dining concepts, a marine education center, a Navasana Spa, and retail outlets.

Outrigger Konotta Maldives Resort is scheduled to open in the third quarter of 2015.

Dusit Thani Maldives Launches Maldives’ First Official Free-Diving Centre

Dusit Thani Maldives takes pride in launching the first official and internationally approved free-diving centre in the Maldives, an incredible addition to the selection of water sports available at the resort.

Free-diving is a form of underwater diving that relies on the diver’s ability to hold his or her breath until resurfacing without the use of scuba gear. Besides experiencing the tranquility of underwater kingdom, there are various health and fitness benefits attributed to this unique diving activity.

Dusit Thani Maldives’ free-dive centre has joined

Aerial view, Dusit Thani Maldives
Aerial view, Dusit Thani Maldives

forces with Apnea Total, a globally renowned free-diving organisation. The Apnea Total Free-diving Education System and Standards are followed at the centre and guests will be provided Apnea Total certifications that are recognized worldwide.

Resort guests will train under the supervision of highly experienced free-dive instructors who have themselves worked and trained under record-holding free-divers. Additionally, the centre boasts world-class CRESSI equipment and the rental cost of these is included in the course price.

Free-Diving Centre, Dusit Thani Maldives
Free-Diving Centre, Dusit Thani Maldives

The center offers all levels of Apnea Total courses: Free-Diver Basic, Advanced Free-Diver, and Free-Diving Master, each lasting 2 days, 3 days and up to 5 weeks respectively. The Basic course will equip guests to dive safely and comfortably down to 20 meters on a single breath and the Advanced course equips guests to dive down to 40 metres below sea level.

According to Thanos Lionsatos, Director of Sales and Marketing, “Free-diving is a phenomenal watersport to offer guests at the resort, especially when we are blessed with such stunning marine biodiversity due to being located within the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. This new initiative is a reflection of our continued pursuit of expanding our portfolio of guest services at Dusit Thani Maldives.”