Maldivian Underwater Playground

Dive into Crystal Clear Waters at Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives

All other diving experiences will pale in comparison to that of diving in the Maldives. ‘Dive’ is in the name for Maldives for a reason. The underwater playground is filled with adventure – tropical fish, coral and even a shipwreck just off the coast of Centara Grand Island Maldives can be explored.

Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives

Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives focuses on reducing their impact on the environment in every part of their operations. As part of Centara’s core values, sustainable initiatives include the marine environment. Through Green Fins Project, the world’s first and only set of environmental standards for scuba diving and snorkeling centres, Centara Grand Island Maldives is able to better facilitate diving experiences for guests while protecting the precious marine life and ecosystem.

Centara Grand Island Maldives has additional innovative initiatives such as a reef growing programme, which was designed to rehabilitate parts of the reef that have stopped growing and promote the growth of new coral.

Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives

Recently, Centara Grand Island Maldives and Best Dives Maldives Dive Centre were honored to be recognized as one of the Green Fins Top Ten Dive/Snorkel Centres, among other resorts from all over the world. This recognition further encourages the team at Centara Grand Island Maldives to continue to work hard to preserve the natural beauty that surrounds them.

The PADI certified Best Dives and Water Sport Centre at the resort provides services for everyone, a starter or a pro. Several other water sport activities such as catamaran, snorkeling and wind surfing lessons are available and are free-of-charge. Wake-boarding, kite surfing, banana boating and para-sailing are also offered.

Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives

Family-friendly Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives is located in the South Ari Atoll, about 25 minutes by seaplane from Male International Airport, or 15 minutes by speedboat from the domestic Maamigili Airport.
Surrounded by a glorious white sandy beach, it is the only resort in the Maldives designed in a colonial style, with whitewashed timber buildings and meandering boardwalks. Surrounded by palm-fringed beach and a shimmering lagoon allows for an escape on and off land. Just steps down from the terrace in a newly renovated Sunset Ocean Pool Villa, dive into the ocean or enjoy the 12-square-metre private plunge pool with views across the ocean. The Deluxe Family Water Villas offer an added level of comfort for families with a children’s sleeping area with bunk beds and entertainment equipment along with secured access to the terrace for safety of the little ones.

Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives

Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives

Receive a 20% discount when making diving arrangements at the time of booking. For more information please click here or contact [email protected].

Outrigger Konotta Maldives Resort Announces Wedding, Honeymoon and Romance Packages

The Outrigger Konotta Maldives Resort, which opened 1 August, has announced wedding, honeymoon, and romance packages to match the splendour of the resort’s romantic setting in the Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll in the south of the Maldives.

Outrigger Konotta Maldives Resort

For couples about to be married, a Deluxe Wedding Package at US$3200 (net), includes a six-course dinner with champagne, in-villa breakfast the morning after the wedding, a Navasana Spa treatment for couples and romantic turndown service. A US$2500 package is also available.

All weddings on the romantic coral-fringed island include a dedicated wedding coordinator, MC or priest, exclusive wedding venue, a ring and vow exchange ceremony, and a guarantee that no other wedding will be taking place on the island that day.

Outrigger Konotta Maldives Resort

In addition, all wedding couples will receive guaranteed early check-in, late check-out, a wedding cake, a palm arch or white-draped pavilion, a bottle of champagne, local Maldivian musician performance, and a symbolic wedding certificate*.

Honeymoon and anniversary couples have a choice of two value-added packages.

The Romancing Package (US$1430 net per couple) includes a bottle of sparkling wine, one in-villa breakfast, a candle-lit dinner on the beach, an in-villa Navasana Sweet Dream (30-minute bath and 60-minute body massage), a 60-minute body scrub or body wrap, a 60-minute facial treatment or 60-minute after-sun soother, plus 15% off a la carte spa treatments.

A Pampering Package (US$940 per couple) includes a bottle of sparking wine, an in-villa dinner, a bath ritual decoration with candles and rose petals, romantic bed decoration, a 60-minute aromatic massage and a 120-minute romantic spa ritual comprising 90 minutes of aromatic massage and 30 minutes floral milky bath.

Double Beach Pool Villa Exterior, Outrigger Konotta Maldives Resort
Two Bedroom Beach Pool Villas, Outrigger Konotta Maldives Resort

“The Outrigger Konotta Maldives Resort is made for romance,” says the resort’s General Manager, Mr Pascal Billon. “Whether on the beach or over the water, all of our magnificently spacious villas have private pools. Couples can also take a speedboat to a choice of remote private islands for the ultimate romantic experience.”

Further information: [email protected] Tel: +960 684 7771.

* The wedding ceremony is symbolic and not legally recognised.

Two all-time aquatic experiences with Manta Rays and The Golden Wall At Anantara Kihavah

Encounters with Manta Rays and Anantara Kihavah Villas‘ house reef ‘The Golden Wall’ are two lifetime experiences snorkellers of every ability shouldn’t miss out on. The manta ray is one of the most mysterious and largest fish in the ocean with wingspans of up to 5 metres or more and Anantara Kihavah Villas offers your best opportunity to encounter these amazing creatures in their natural annual migration to The Maldives.

Manta Ray and snorkeller at Hanifaru Bay, Anantara Kihavah Villa
Manta Ray and snorkeller at Hanifaru Bay, Anantara Kihavah Villas
Manta Rays and snorkelling at Hanifaru Bay, Anantara Kihavah Villa
Manta Rays and snorkelling at Hanifaru Bay, Anantara Kihavah Villas

“This year’s migration to Hanifaru Bay in Baa Atoll is particularly exciting,” says Joseph Lassus, Anantara Kihavah Villas resident Marine Biologist. “According to reports from the Manta Trust research team based in Baa Atoll, when the mantas arrived in May this year, there were more sightings of pregnant mantas than in the last 10 years. We are noticing this as well with the mothers getting bigger as the season progresses. With a pregnancy term of 12 – 13 months, this means that next year we can expect to see a lot of baby mantas in Hanifaru Bay. Already on a recent snorkeling trip we came across a newborn pup, which is really quite rare to see, roughly measuring 1.2 metres from wing-tip to wing-tip.”

Manta Ray pair and snorkeller at Hanifaru Bay, Anantara Kihavah Villa
Manta Ray pair and snorkeller at Hanifaru Bay, Anantara Kihavah Villas
Manta Rays at Hanifaru Bay, Anantara Kihavah Villa
Manta Rays at Hanifaru Bay, Anantara Kihavah Villas

Curious, friendly and, unlike stingrays or eagle rays, mantas do not have stingers. They feed on a variety of plankton, which accounts for their large, gaping mouths. Hanifaru Bay is situated in Baa Atoll, a UNESCO marine protected biosphere covering an area of 303 hectares. From May to November each year, huge amounts of krill and plankton here attract all kinds of marine life, making it the world’s largest natural manta ray feeding destination.

The Golden Wall House Reef , Anantara Kihavah Villa
The Golden Wall House Reef , Anantara Kihavah Villas

Being the best place to spot manta rays in the Maldives, access to Hanifaru Bay is regulated by park rangers, who have close contact with Elements water sports centre at Anantara Kihavah Villas, giving our guides information on sightings before they head out on the 20 minute boat ride to the protected area. With no previous snorkelling experience required, tours depart 3-4 times a week from Anantara Kihavah Villas. Our tour guides scout the spots where mantas frequent, usually in Hanifaru Bay or in nearby currents where plankton and krill swim. Once in the water, snorkellers are then treated to an amazing underwater ballet whereby giant mantas glide and somersault in mesmerizing patterns. The mantas often swim within centimetres of snorkellers, always managing to avoid contact at the last second. On any given day visitors to Hanifaru Bay can see anywhere from a couple of mantas to more than a forty depending on plankton levels. Getting this close to these majestic creatures is truly an experience of a lifetime.

Colourful coral on The Golden Wall, Anantara Kihavah Villa
Colourful coral on The Golden Wall, Anantara Kihavah Villas

At Anantara Kihavah Villas itself, the house reef has become known by the local divers as ‘The Golden Wall’. Joseph explains, “The beauty of this dive site results from the incredible amount of sedentary life forms inhabiting the wall, completely covering its steep surface, edges and overhangs. This provides an immense variety of habitat to many local species of fish, lobsters, sea stars etc. The area is clearly dominated by widespread colonies of soft corals, these being of many different species displaying a huge range of colours, such as the orange, magenta or mauve spiky soft corals and cauliflower soft corals. To have this quite literally on our doorstep means an amazing dive no matter what the conditions are. Among all the bright colours displayed, the particular presence of yellow and golden coloured variations make it clear to any diver why this reef is best called The Golden Wall and a “must dive” reef when in the Maldives.”

Colourful coral on The Golden Wall, Anantara Kihavah Villa
Colourful coral on The Golden Wall, Anantara Kihavah Villas

Anantara Kihavah Villas provides a stylish haven just 35 minutes by seaplane from Malé. The Ocean Discovery Package for two persons is bookable on Anantara.com and includes five nights’ accommodation in a Beach Pool Villa or Over Water Pool Villa, daily buffet breakfast, and both guests enjoy a Dolphin Discovery excursion, a Turtle Quest or Manta Ray Snorkelling excursion, a choice of one Scuba Dive or one Scuba review course, a 30 minute Seabob water sport experience and a local island visit.

The Golden Wall, Anantara Kihavah Villa
The Golden Wall, Anantara Kihavah Villas

Arena Beach Maldives

Arena Beach Maldives is located in Maafushi island in South Malé Atoll (Kaafu Atoll) Maldives. Arena Beach is conveniently situated right across the beachfront giving guests a spectacular view of the northern seashore and blue lagoons of the island.

Arena Beach Maldives offers deluxe and superior room standards. All rooms are equipped with 24-hour complimentary tea/coffee and water, in-room safe, mini bar and wireless broadband internet. The hotel also provides laundry service.

Arena Beach Maldives also provides a wide variety of daily excursions and day trips.  These excursions include scuba diving, snorkelling, night fishing, sand bank picnics, dolphin cruise, manta watching, whale shark watching, picnic island trips and day trips to resorts.

The Spice Route Challenge 2015 Finale Indian Cuisine Cooking Challenge for Non-Indians

Hotel Jen Malé, Maldives will host the finale of the Spice Route Challenge 2015; a cooking competition of Indian Cuisine by Non-Indians at Azur Restaurant at the rooftop. The finalists who excelled at the semifinal round on 29 August 2015 are four aspiring Maldivians; Miss Aminath Abdul Rasheed, Miss Aminath Maeysha, Miss Aishath Shifa and Mr. Mohamad Ashrag.

Hotel Jen Malé, Maldives

Hotel Jen General Manager, Ms Vathsala said “the finalists spend the last week at Hotel Jen familiarizing and working with their respective appointed buddy-chef of the hotel. They worked along and featured their dishes daily in the recently held one-week long BollyFOOD festival at Lime which showcased cuisines of various regions of India.” And for their efforts, Hotel Jen will honor the Most Popular People’s Chef Title. This title is the choice of the people, our BollyFOOD daily diners at Lime, who cast their votes for their most favorite dish and chef-finalist.

Hotel Jen General Manager, Ms Vathsala said “the finalists spend the last week at Hotel Jen familiarizing and working with their respective appointed buddy-chef of the hotel. They worked along and featured their dishes daily in the recently held one-week long BollyFOOD festival at Lime which showcased cuisines of various regions of India.” And for their efforts, Hotel Jen will honor the Most Popular People’s Chef Title. This title is the choice of the people, our BollyFOOD daily diners at Lime, who cast their votes for their most favorite dish and chef-finalist.

Hotel Jen Malé, Maldives

The finale today happening on the highest dining peak in the Maldives, at Hotel Jen’s Azur Restaurant will starts from 4.30pm with arrival of guests and competition proper from 5.00pm to 6.00pm. Judging and Prize Ceremony will take place between 6.15pm to 7.00pm at Lime Restaurant followed by celebratory refreshment.

The Spice Route Challenge is part of a bigger program called “The Taste of India” which is a month long festival organized by the High Commission of India in Maldives in conjunction to Golden Jubilee Friendship Celebration between Maldives and India; with collaboration with Hotel Jen Malé, Maldives for second year running and new partner, the Faculty of Hospitality and Tourism Studies of Maldives National University. This festival comprises of a series of activities from August 2015 including Spice Route Challenge, Kitchen Khiladi, Cultural Events and the BollyFOOD festival hosted by Hotel Jen from 7th to 11th September 2015.

Hotel Jen Malé, Maldives

Ms Vathsala concluded saying her special thanks and appreciation to the partners High Commission of India and the Faculty of Hospitality and Tourism Studies and also the sponsors including Ooredoo, State Bank of India, NBCC, Salsa Royal, Residency Resorts, Taj Exotica, Maldivian, Mohan Mutha, Agora, Coco Cola, Nisran Pvt Ltd, TVM and Maldives Gas who kindly provided the gas cylinders for the finale and the priceless efforts of all local media throughout this month long festival.

Soneva Fushi’s Chef Sobah Wins ‘Best Chef in the Maldives’ Award

He competes against 450 chefs from across the Maldives to scoop top accolades in multiple categories

Chef Sobah, Soneva Fushi’s Chef de Cuisine at Mihiree Mithaa restaurant, has taken top honours at an International Culinary Event by winning the ‘Best Chef in the Maldives’ Award.

The talented Chef also scooped numerous other awards at the event, including the Best Chef in the Maldives (Maldivian category); Best Chef (International category); Hot cooking Lamb Gold Medal; Hot Cooking Beef Gold Medal; and Hot Cooking Seafood Bronze Medal; among others. The annual Food & Hospitality Asia Maldives (FHAM) – International Culinary Challenge & Exhibition was held in August 2015 and attracted more than 450 Chefs from across the Maldives.

Chef Sobah, who has worked at Soneva Fushi since 2011, currently cooks at Mihiree Mithaa, Soneva Fushi’s open air beachfront restaurant that offers guests a wide selection of buffet dining options. Soon, Chef Sobah will head the new dining outlet at Soneva Fushi, aptly named ‘Sobah’s’; a fine-dining Maldivian restaurant set to open in the next few months.

Chef Sobah with Laurie Burr, Soneva Fushi's GM
Chef Sobah with Laurie Burr, Soneva Fushi’s GM

Built on the uninhabited island of Mendhoo, just 15 minutes by boat from Soneva Fushi, Sobah’s will serve traditional Maldivian cuisine with modern twists using traditional cooking methods. Sobah’s beach restaurant will seat 18 for dinner and will be open six days per week, subject to a minimum number of eight diners and weather conditions.

Chef Sobah learnt to cook at the Faculty of Hospitality in the Maldives. He specializes in preparing Maldivian, Sri Lankan, Vietnamese and Thai food using skills he learnt while living and working in those countries. He is famed for his Maldivian cuisine, which uses healthy, natural and fresh ingredients to produce clean flavours.

Soneva Fushi inspires the imagination with 57 spacious, multi-bedroom luxury beachfront villas that are hidden among dense foliage for ultimate privacy. Intuitive service is provided by Mr./Ms. Friday personal butlers who know what you want before you want it. For more information about Soneva visit www.soneva.com

Yoga Master Kat Harding launches SUP yoga at Four Seasons Kuda Huraa

The yogis at Four Seasons Resort Maldives at Kuda Huraa will be enjoying a few lessons themselves this summer. Kat Harding – Australia’s first qualified Stand Up Paddleboard (SUP) yoga instructor – is coming island-side to train Kuda Huraa’s mat masters in the art of paddleboard-based poses. Kat will also be available for exclusive guest sessions from August 3 to 9, 2015, the week of the annual Four Seasons Maldives Surfing Champions Trophy: a WSL specialty event between six world champion surfers. Doyenne of SUP yoga and all-round yoga guru, Kat Harding is set to unite – and elevate – Kuda Huraa’s surf and Spa offering, expanding the opportunity for guests to strengthen their connection, both within their core and with the ocean.

“SUP Yoga is an amazing experience where you are able to synchronise the movements of your body with the ocean,” explains Kat. “Its appeal is in its natural rawness, floating gracefully and using your own strength to balance as you move and flow with the water underneath you.”

Kat Harding, SUP Yoga, Four Seasons Resort Maldives at Kuda Huraa
SUP Yoga, Four Seasons Resort Maldives at Kuda Huraa

While yoga’s origins date back thousands of years – and is practised to unite mind, body and spirit through breath – SUP Yoga is a relatively new hybrid, uniting yoga traditions with surfing and wellbeing through the paddleboard. It’s a discipline that engages the whole body, building strength, flexibility and focus while imparting an incredible sense of joy and freedom.

Kat hails from Noosa, Australia – home of Kuda Huraa’s surf partners, Tropicsurf – continuing the surf pedigree and easy laid-back vibe that the Resort has become synonymous with. Kat’s own yoga journey began as a teen with a Christmas gift of a yoga DVD. Her love of movement flourished, inspiring her to travel and experiment with various yoga disciplines; train as a yoga teacher with Laxmi Yoga (Sally Parkes) in London and Spain; and go on to qualify as Australia’s first SUP yoga instructor. Trained in vinyasa, hatha, dynamic, yin and prana flow yoga, she combines her passions for yoga, surfing, healthy living and nature on the paddleboard. She’s also an ebook co-author, blogger, Fire and Shine luminary, Wanderlust Festival presenter and hosts Australia’s only luxury SUP yoga retreats.

Kat Harding, SUP Yoga, Four Seasons Resort Maldives at Kuda Huraa
SUP Yoga, Four Seasons Resort Maldives at Kuda Huraa

“It’s a real honour to have Kat on board to help us launch SUP Yoga,” concludes Sanju Upadhyay, Manager of The Island Spa. “As a discipline it incorporates the best of Kuda Huraa – ocean-inspired activities, yoga and healthy outdoor living – while our warm, shallow lagoon makes the ideal practice ground. Our yogis and guests are in for a real treat.”

To be one of the first to experience SUP Yoga at Kuda Huraa, contact Four Seasons Resort Maldives at Kuda Huraa on tel: (960) 66 44 888, fax: (960) 66 44 800 or email [email protected], or book online.http://www.fourseasons.com/maldiveskh

Outrigger Konotta Maldives Resort Now Open

The spectacularly spacious Outrigger Konotta Maldives Resort opened its doors and welcomed its first guests on August 1st.

The first guests, a family from Dubai, arrived after a 30-minute luxury speedboat transfer from Kaadedhdhoo Airport in the Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll in the south of the Maldives.

Outrigger Konotta Maldives Resort's first guests
First guests arrive and cut the ribbon to the sound of Maldivian drums, Outrigger Konotta Maldives Resort

The guests were welcomed ashore at the resort’s jetty by Darren Edmonstone the Outrigger Managing Director for Asia Pacific and the resort’s General Manager, Pascal Billon.

After a traditional Maldivian welcome ceremony with drums and dancing, the father of the family cut the ribbon to open a new chapter in Outrigger Resorts’ expansion, which has seen the company open premier-class beachfront properties in Mauritius, Phuket and Fiji, as well as the Maldives, in the last three years.

Aerial, Outrigger Konotta Maldives Resort
Aerial, Outrigger Konotta Maldives Resort

“Outrigger hosts and supporting contractors in the Maldives have done a terrific job in the run up to our opening today,” said Mr Edmonstone. “I’m confident our large and wonderfully well appointed Beach and Ocean Pool Villas will become a major talking point in the Maldivian tourism scene.”

The 53 key all-villa property comprises 24 Beach Pool Villas (211 sqm), seven Two-Bedroom Pool Villas (282 sqm), 21 Ocean Pool Villas (225 sqm), and the Presidential Villa (600 sqm).

The turquoise waters off the Outrigger Konotta Maldives Resort feature a well-formed reef with abundant coral diversity and a great variety of marine life including turtles and eagle rays and regular sightings of dolphins.

On day two of opening, the Outrigger welcomed guests from China, Korea and the USA.

Double Beach Pool Villa Exterior, Outrigger Konotta Maldives Resort
Two Bedroom Beach Pool Villas, Outrigger Konotta Maldives Resort

“We have very special dining, water sports and excursion options ready for all our guests, no matter where they come from,” said Mr Billon. “The Outrigger on Konotta Island is shaping up to be a perfect holiday destination for a wide variety of international guests who are seeking an iconic Maldives holiday.”

Special limited period opening rates for the Outrigger Konotta Maldives Resort are available on outriggermaldives.com for stays up to October 31, 2015. Or Email: [email protected] Tel: +960 684 7771

Canopus Retreat Thulusdhoo

Conveniently located, Canopus Retreat Thulusdhoo is a great base from which to explore this vibrant city. The city center is merely 28.2 km away and the airport can be reached within 30 minutes. With its convenient location, the hotel offers easy access to the city’s must-see destinations.

Offering hotel guests superior services and a broad range of amenities, Canopus Retreat Thulusdhoo is committed to ensuring that your stay is as comfortable as possible. To name a few of the hotel’s facilities, there are 24-hour room service, free Wi-Fi in all rooms, convenience store, daily housekeeping, fax machine.

The hotel features 5 beautifully appointed guest rooms, many of which include television LCD/plasma screen, internet access – wireless (complimentary), non-smoking rooms, air conditioning, wake-up service. The hotel offers wonderful recreational facilities such as canoe, watersports equipment rentals, snorkeling, surfing lessons, private beach to make your stay truly unforgettable. Whatever your reason for visiting the Maldives, the Canopus Retreat Thulusdhoo is the perfect venue for an exhilarating and exciting break away.

Veli Spa At Kurumba Maldives Introduces New Outdoor Spa Treatments

Veli Spa at Kurumba Maldives is delighted to announce the introduction of the new ‘Raalhu Outdoor Treatments’ (raalhu meaning wave in the local language Dhivehi).

Raalhu Outdoor Treatments, Veli Spa, Kurumba Maldives
Raalhu Outdoor Treatments, Veli Spa, Kurumba Maldives

An Oasis of calm, the new invigorating spa treatments will take place in an open air dedicated gazebo, located in the quiet western side of the paradise island, perfect for enchanting sunsets.

Raalhu Outdoor Treatments, Veli Spa, Kurumba Maldives
Veli Spa products, Kurumba Maldives

The treatments available at Raalhu include full Body Massages, Scrubs and Massages, Foot Treatments and our destination spa journey Spa under the Stars.

Raalhu Outdoor Treatments, Veli Spa, Kurumba Maldives
Raalhu Outdoor Treatments, Veli Spa, Kurumba Maldives

The scrubs are particularly unique as guests can take a refreshing dip in the beautiful turquoise sea at Kurumba after a gentle sand and coconut scrub treatment.

Raalhu Outdoor Treatments, Veli Spa, Kurumba Maldives
Raalhu Outdoor Treatments, Veli Spa, Kurumba Maldives

The coconut oil used at Veli Spa is 100% organic and pure. It is produced within the island, as part of our Corporate Social responsibility – CSR – program for sustainable tourism.

Raalhu Outdoor Treatments, Veli Spa, Kurumba Maldives
Raalhu Outdoor Treatments, Veli Spa, Kurumba Maldives

Aishath Zulfishan “Xubba”, Veli Spa Manager commented: “our team is always seeking to offer its guests inspiring and diverse activities, with a choice of enriching experiences that allow a renewed appreciation of life. Our guests are unique and special. This is their Maldivian journey and it is complete by having a magical treatment surrounded by clear blue skies, the sound of the ocean and white sand beneath their feet.”

Enjoy new adventures at Kurumba’s Veli Spa with the new Raalhu Outdoor Treatments and escape the everyday life.

Veli Spa Entrance, Kurumba Maldives
Veli Spa, Kurumba Maldives