Meliá Hotels International announces Gran Meliá Maldives

Gran Meliá Maldives will be a resort located in Kalhudhiyafushi in Thaa, an atoll located 40 minutes from Ibrahim Nasir International Airport, as well as a short ride by speedboat or seaplane from the domestic airport at Kaadedhdhoo. Scheduled to launch October 2017, Gran Meliá Maldives will be amongst the very best of the luxurious international resorts, operated by brands such as Shangri-La, Park Hyatt and Jumeirah, as guests can experience one of the best fishing destinations in the Maldives.

Set amongst virgin coral reef, the Gran Meliá hotel will offer 95 private villas, including 100 rooms, as well as three restaurants, a bar and café, spa, leisure centre and several retail shops. The hotel will also be able to arrange and host exclusive private events and romantic dinners on a smaller nearby island. 66 per cent of Maldivian visitors are honeymooners or guests who wish to enjoy an idyllic beach holiday with exceptional diving.

During the contract signing, Maria Zarraluqui, Director of Expansion for Meliá Hotels International, commented, “Opening a Gran Meliá hotel in the Maldives has been a dream for us for a long time, but we were always waiting for the right project to come along. This hotel meets all our expectations. We are confident that our unique Gran Meliá brand will enhance the magic of these privileged islands, giving a new meaning to the concept of luxury.”

The Maldives consists of more than 1,192 islands in the Indian Ocean, formed of two rows of 26 atolls running from north to south. Both chains of atolls (the largest with an area of only 8 km2) are located approximately 700 km from Sri Lanka and 400 km south-west of India. Due to its unique features and exceptional beauty, the Maldives has become one of the most exclusive havens for tourism, mainly from Europe and Asia, which now generates over 25 per cent of the country’s GDP, followed by fishing which generates 60 per cent of foreign exchange receipts.

Meliá Hotels International

The Director of Expansion for Meliá Hotels International, Maria Zarraluqui, together with the Company’s Hotel Development team in the Middle East, once again attended the most important Hotel Investment Conference in the region, taking the opportunity to meet with the owners of the new hotels: Huravee International from the Maldives, ASICO from Kazakhstan, and Albwardi Investments, with whom Meliá has already successfully partnered in Dubai, before announcing all of the new agreements.

Meliá Hotels International currently operates two hotels in Dubai and Qatar, and has 10 additional hotels in the pipeline in the region, all due to open between 2017 and 2020. The properties will be managed under the Meliá Hotels & Resorts, ME by Meliá, INNSIDE by Meliá and Gran Meliá brands. The United Arab Emirates and Gulf Cooperation Council countries are becoming an increasingly strategic hub for eastern and western countries to do business, with Dubai International Airport ranked as the busiest airport in the world last year, underlining MHI’s efforts to link its strategy in Europe and Americas with the Asia-Pacific countries.

Whiteshell Island Hotel & Spa by Atoll Seven

For travelers who want to take in the sights and sounds of Maldives Islands, Whiteshell Island Hotel & Spa by Atoll Seven is the perfect choice. From here, guests can enjoy easy access to all that the lively city has to offer. Visitors to the hotel can take pleasure in touring the city’s top attractions: Cocoa Thila Dive Site, Guraidhoo Kandu South, Gulhi Kandu.

The facilities and services provided by Whiteshell Island Hotel & Spa by Atoll Seven ensure a pleasant stay for guests. To name a few of the hotel’s facilities, there are free Wi-Fi in all rooms, 24-hour security, daily housekeeping, 24-hour front desk, 24-hour room service.

Hotel accommodations have been carefully appointed to the highest degree of comfort and convenience. In some of the rooms, guests can find television LCD/plasma screen, internet access – wireless, internet access – wireless (complimentary), non smoking rooms, air conditioning. The hotel offers fantastic facilities, including private beach, skiing, diving, fishing, spa, to help you unwind after an action-packed day in the city. Discover an engaging blend of professional service and a wide array of features at Whiteshell Island Hotel & Spa by Atoll Seven.

Conrad Maldives Rangali Island launches exclusive “Money-Can’t-Buy” stay package with Hilton HHonors Access

With the launch of Hilton HHonors Access in Asia Pacific, Conrad Maldives Rangali Island is proud to unveil “A Maldives Island Adventure”, an exciting new experience that is available for redemption using Hilton HHonors Points at HHonors.com/auctions from May 3, 2016.

Hilton HHonors Access is a global campaign set to inspire travellers to get out, see the world, and take part in exclusive experiences by joining its award-winning loyalty programme, Hilton HHonors. It features unique money-can’t-buy hotel packages and experiences spanning sports, music and culture, ranging from attending a Sumo tournament in Tokyo, to attending a Yamakasa event in Fukuoka, to taking part in a beer tour in Sydney via the HHonors Auction Platform. Hilton HHonors members who live in or are traveling to Asia Pacific can redeem Hilton HHonors Points for the following experience packages between May 3 and 20, 2016.

Hilton HHonors unites the Hilton portfolio of brands to drive value for members, Team Members, owners, operators and partners alike. Free to join by visiting HHonors.com and easy to use, it is the world’s premier guest loyalty programme.

As an additional incentive to join, all Hilton HHonors members who book directly with Conrad Maldives Rangali Island will save time and money and gain instant access to the benefits they care about most including free nights, complimentary Wi-Fi and Digital Concierge, Conrad’s forward thinking Concierge app.

Hilton Hhonors members can redeem points at the Hilton Hhonors Access site for the ultimate Conrad Maldives Rangali Island experience which includes:

  • A four night stay in the resort’s luxurious Sunset Water Villa
  • A traditional Maldivian fishing experience with the executive chef who will cook the days catch and serve it at a private dinner on the beach
  • A private afternoon of wine and cheese matching and tasting with the resorts sommelier and Cheese Master
  • A noodle and Dim Sum making class with Chinese celebrity chef Jereme Leung’s trained chefs at Ufaa followed by lunch
  • A luxury sunset cruise across the Indian Ocean

Hilton HHonors starting bids will start from 150,000*.

*Prizes are valid now until 20 December 2016 and are subject to the resort’s availability. Blackout dates also apply from 1 May to 30 June and 29 September to 10 October 2016.

Michael McCalman, New Executive Chef at Shangri-La’s Villingili Resort & Spa, Maldives

With 22 years of professional experience in the industry, including positions at independent restaurants and five star hotels, McCalman’s arrival is highly anticipated. He has held four positions within the Shangri-La brand previously, notably as Executive Chef for the opening of Shangri-La Futian in Shenzhen, China, and was instrumental in its culinary success.

Having worked as a professional Chef in Australia, Hong Kong, China, Malaysia, Azerbaijan, Thailand, The Maldives and the UK, McCalman’s global experience indicates his passion for discovering and working with new cuisines, and using local produce in his culinary creations. His new role at Villingili will allow him to engage this passion and bring his own mark.

Tree House Villa, Shangri-La’s Villingili Resort & Spa
Tree House Villa, Shangri-La’s Villingili Resort & Spa

Chef McCalman will be responsible for the hotel’s overall culinary direction and production. He will handle food costs, manage guest advocacy and maintain employee commitment. Chef McCalman will also oversee the menus and execution for the private jet terminal at Gan Airport, situated on the neighbouring island. His remit covers the restaurants Javvu, offering world cuisine in scenic settings, Dr Ali, for a memorable culinary journey through the East, and Fashala, featuring fresh seafood and local produce with a Mediterranean influence. He will also be managing the operations for in-villa dining and Dine by Design, offering bespoke gastronomic experience at unique locations around the island.

Commenting on Chef Michael’s appointment, General Manager, Allwyn Drego said: “We are delighted to welcome Chef Michael to Villingili to continue his journey with Shangri-La. His wealth of experience along with his intricate understanding of the culinary operations at five-star luxury hotels will benefit the resort and enhance its gastronomic offerings. We look forward to new culinary creations, making island dining even more memorable for our guests.”

Shangri la villingili resort and spa
Aerial View of Shangri-La’s Villingili Resort & Spa

Hong Kong-based Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts currently owns and/or manages over 95 hotels under the Shangri-La brand with a room inventory of over 39,000. Shangri-La hotels are five-star deluxe properties featuring extensive luxury facilities and services. Shangri-La hotels are located in Australia, Canada, mainland China, Fiji, France, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Maldives, Mongolia, Mauritius, Myanmar, Philippines, Qatar, Singapore, Sultanate of Oman, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom. The group has a substantial development pipeline with upcoming projects in Mainland China, Cambodia, Hong Kong, India, Myanmar, Philippines, Saudi Arabia and Sri Lanka. For more information and reservations, please contact a travel professional or access the website at www.shangri-la.com.

Anantara Kihavah Maldives Villas Invites Guests To Paint In Paradise With Renowned Resident Artist

The world’s globetrotters are invited to explore their creativity amidst the Maldivian paradise of Baa Atoll and create a masterpiece to take home. In collaboration with internationally acclaimed visual artist, Julie Simpson, Anantara Kihavah Maldives Villas welcomes guests to tap into their inner talents and express the beauty of its magnificent surrounds in a personal masterpiece.

Guests can indulge in artistic revelry on this private island in Baa Atoll, surrounded by dazzling blue ocean. Julie will be offering classes six days a week, both at the resort’s poolside Manzaru restaurant and also private In-Villa tutorials. Guests of all ages will benefit from the expertise of the artist-in-residence and receive guidance on creating their work. All materials will be provided and each piece can be brought home as a spectacular holiday souvenir.

Anantara Kihavah Maldives Villas
Anantara Kihavah Maldives Villas

Looking out to the ocean, the poolside setting at Manzaru creates an ideal open air studio and Julie encourages visitors to drop by for painting demonstrations or an informal chat. Julie will paint during the evenings to “demystify the artistic process” and guests can also buy her work to adorn their walls at home, a splendid way to relive memories of their Maldivian escape.

Hailing from Australia, Julie has brought her expertise to destinations such as Russia, Morocco, Italy and France. Known internationally for her abstract sand, sea and sky artworks she will draw from the emotion and colour of the environment’s beautiful natural canvas to create a mural for the resort’s children’s club. In her first visit to the Maldives she expects the Maldivian blues surrounding Anantara Kihavah to inspire new work.

“I draw extraordinary inspiration from the environment surrounding me,” Julie commented. “I love helping others to express their passion through art, and Anantara’s island is an amazing backdrop to unlock hidden talents. Immersed in serenity with nature literally painting the horizon in a flowing colourscape – what setting could be more perfect?”

Anantara Kihavah Maldives Villas
Anantara Kihavah Maldives Villas

Along with this unique artistic experience, guests can enjoy snorkelling in UNESCO World Biosphere reefs, delighting in an underwater dining event at Sea.Fire.Salt.Sky or soothing sun-kissed skin with a massage with island-sourced essences in the resort’s luxurious sanctuary.

Julie will be in residence at Anantara Kihavah Villas until 27 May 2016 and offering her insights to guests of all ages. Adult classes cost USD 95++ per two-hour session whilst classes for children (4 – 11 years) can be reserved for USD 55++. Classes will run from 10.00 am to 5.00 pm six days a week.

World Earth Day Expo at Hotel Jen Malé Maldives

Hotel Jen Malé Maldives in conjunction with World Earth Day 2016 hosted an Art Exhibition in keeping with its history of endorsement and engagement with issues of the environment, support for the arts and community involvement where community outreach and participation is a key part of our practice. The exhibition was guest curated by Ms. M.Uma, who is an aspiring and emerging marine coral painter from India.

World Earth Day Expo, Hotel Jen Malé Maldives
World Earth Day Expo, Hotel Jen Malé Maldives

The exhibition took place in Lime Restaurant of Hotel Jen on 22nd April 2016 from 8.00am till 11.00pm. Hotel Jen Malé Maldives has been always supportive and encourages its associates to participate in corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities with the broad goal, simply, of contributing to the well-being of the local communities and society besides maximizing our positive impact on the social and environmental systems in which we operate. And to raise awareness on the environmental problems we are facing today.

Ms. M.Uma’s is also a PADI certified open water Scuba Diver with a great passion for Marine life, Her canvas paintings are inspired by her observation of these spectacular and intricate life forms during her dive and is a culmination of her creative output over the past years that has cemented her reputation as a well-known leading artist of underwater life forms in the Maldives.

World Earth Day Expo, Hotel Jen Malé Maldives
World Earth Day Expo, Hotel Jen Malé Maldives

She has conducted several Art Exhibitions in the Maldives over the past years in Shangri-la, Maldives in 2012 in conjunction with World Earth day and 2013 in Jumeirah Maldives also in 2013 and 2014 an Art Exhibition in conjunction with Environment day was held at Taj Vivanta, Maldives which depicted her passion for Marine coral and underwater life.

World Earth Day Expo, Hotel Jen Malé Maldives
World Earth Day Expo, Hotel Jen Malé Maldives

The Art was playfully arranged throughout the Lime Restaurant at Hotel Jen Malé Maldives, as a fully integrated part of the Lime restaurant buffet area, where these works can be discovered by the guests through a series of chance encounters.

Hotel Jen Malé Maldives also had a special Earth day buffet at a special price for locals, expatriates and Hotel in house guests starting from morning breakfast with a spread of the widest selections of local delights such as Mas huni and Roti, to breadbasket with pastries and a cheese platter to cuisines such as Asian, Western and a salad bar and live stations. A Special Set Lunch which consisted of the semi buffet salad bar paired with the all-time favorite Thali meal that offered a choice of either Indian or Maldivian flavors were featured for Lunch and as for dinner it was an International buffet in which live action stations were prominently featured in the buffet with an incredible spread that definitely has something for everyone.

World Earth Day Expo, Hotel Jen Malé Maldives
World Earth Day Expo, Hotel Jen Malé Maldives

The exhibition on Marine corals was presented to educate people and actively engage the audience on local environmental issues as well as create awareness and ignite conversation on marine environment fragility.

The very first Earth Day was celebrated on April 22, 1970. This day was created by American Senator, Gaylord Nelson, to make people aware of the importance of keeping our planet healthy and clean. On that day, people made promises to help the environment and make positive changes in their community.

World Earth Day Expo, Hotel Jen Malé Maldives
World Earth Day Expo, Hotel Jen Malé Maldives

Since then many countries, inspired by the collective effort, have since started marking the World Earth day and Shangri-La and its properties are one of them who raise awareness and contribute in conducting initiative awareness program every year with interesting happenings & activities for their guests and staffs.

Etihad Launches May Maldives Madness

Etihad Holidays promises guests 3 nights in the Maldives for AED 1 per night as part of the campaign

Etihad Holidays, the leisure holiday division of Etihad Airways, has launched a new campaign promising guests a three – night stay at a luxurious Maldives resort for just 1AED per night.

As part of the ‘May Maldives Madness’ campaign, guests who pay for four nights at the exclusive five-star Maldives island resort of Anantara Veli will be able to add three additional days to their holiday for just one dirham per night.

Guests will be able to enjoy the tropical island in a serene adults-only setting. The resort features over water bungalows, an infinity edge pool, fitness centre, yoga pavilion and wellness retreat. A host of dining options are available including Japanese, Thai, seafood and grilled cuisines – all in a tranquil lagoon setting.  Guests can also take advantage of the multitude of watersports on offer including diving, surfing, sailing and deep-sea fishing.

The offer is available for bookings made from 22 April – 2 May 2016 with travel dates between 22 April – 31 August 2016. The package costs 9,599 AED, and includes seven nights at the five-star resort and return economy flight tickets by Etihad Airways from Abu Dhabi. Guests will also enjoy complimentary breakfast and speedboat transfers.

Mohammed Al Bulooki, Etihad Airways’ Vice President – UAE Commercial, said: “Etihad Holidays is committed to delivering exceptional experiences to guests.  Our partnership with Anantara Veli enables us to offer our guests a holiday in an exclusive resort in one of the world’s most stunning travel destinations at an affordable price.

“Etihad Holidays is dedicated to constantly developing innovative partnerships that will allow us to continue to bring exciting new products and services to all of our guests”

The “May Maldives Madness” campaign has been launched in conjunction with Etihad Holidays’ Summer Sale, which offers guests more than 30 special deals on holiday packages worldwide.

Guests can explore more of these fantastic deals with Etihad Holidays by visiting www.etihadholidays.com or by calling 800 2324. Highly trained travel consultants will also be available at the Arabian Travel Market in Dubai from 25-28 April to answer any questions.  The Etihad Airways stand will be located at ME2310.

Maafushi Village

Maafushi Village is a guest house newly built in 2015 featuring 7 cozy deluxe rooms. Located in the inhabited island named K. Maafushi in the Maldives, its just 3 minutes’ walk to the famous bikini beach. Maafushi Village is not a guest house that only provides an affordable place to stay but also gives you memories and experiences like no other! Maafushi Village crews are always there to welcome and provide personalized service to the staying guest.

Maafushi Village features 7 cozy Deluxe Rooms with ensuite bathrooms comes with all necessary accessories. 5 Deluxe Rooms (16sqm / 170sqf): These Rooms are simple stylish decorated which has an open-plan feel. They are spacious and private, making them ideal for couples and families with one child. These Rooms offers Double and Twin beds according to the preference. 2 Family Rooms (20sqm / 216 sqf): These elegant accommodation has same features as the Deluxe Room but are extremely spacious making them ideal for 3 person or families with children. These Rooms also offers Double and Twin beds according to the preference.

“Village Restaurant” is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner with flexible dining suit guests’ preferences. Menu at Village Restaurant is light and appetizing with a range of local, Sri Lankan, Indian and intercontinental dishes served all day, from morning to late evening. Village Restaurant also hold themed nights each week, including Maldivian night, barbeque night and Indian night. Themed nights will be hold based on demand of in-house guest. In Room Dining is available from 7am till 11pm. Maafushi Village’s all day Guest Services will assist all the Activities and Excursions.

The Fusion of Romance and Gastronomy

People always say that the best way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. At Kuramathi, we strongly believe that there is no better way to rekindle romance than with the old fashioned way of sharing a sumptuous meal together. There is indeed a magical feeling evoked, when you dine with your loved one at a surreal location, away from the clicking of cutlery, whispering conversations and for a change of scene to quiet the mind. And it is for these reasons, we offer Private Dining Experiences at 3 distinct venues that would promise a ‘memory stamp’ when you flick through the sweet memories of your holiday.

Kuramathi Island Resort
Kuramathi Island Resort

Designed for the ardent love birds, the Private Dining Experiences at Kuramathi are suitable even for the nitpickiest eater. A 5 course meal is offered, with a variety of mouth-watering dishes from tasty entrées to delectable main courses one could indulge in. The Lobster Dinner is set at the expanse of beach beside the Infinity Pool, with the tables adorned with tropical flowers. A lagoon lobster is the highlight here and you could choose to indulge it with rice or baked potatoes. The Romance Dinner shares similar features to the Lobster Dinner as it is also located on the beach, but in Athiri which lies at the heart of the island. Unbeatable panoramic views would become your backdrop as you share a gorgeous meal comprising of fresh seafood to succulent meats along with sparkling wine served by your personal waiter. Serenade Dinner, the favourite of the three dinners is a well-picked choice by our guests, since you enjoy the fare under a gazebo all to yourself, surrounded by the sights and sounds of the Indian Ocean. It would be hard to reach a decision, with the alluring enchantment each experience provides.

Lobster Dinner, Siam Garden, Kuramathi Island Resort
Lobster Dinner, Siam Garden, Kuramathi Island Resort

The Private Dining Experiences can be booked prior to your arrival or during your stay at the resort. So for those wanting to mark your anniversary, or a special occasion we are more than happy to make it a reality.

Beach Dinner, Kuramathi Island Resort
Beach Dinner, Kuramathi Island Resort

When was the last time you escaped reality with your partner to engage in the simple beauties of the world? Here at Kuramathi, we make it possible!

Crystal Sands Beach Hotel

Crystal Sands have been a long term dream of symphony Maldives to extend services to hospitality industry. Crystal Sands have been in the restaurant business for more than 20 years.Crystal Sands aim to provide preeminent consistent services from all group of restaurants.