Hotel Jen Malé Maldives carries out a great Fire evacuation drill in the Maldives

Hotel Jen Malé Maldives carries out a great Fire evacuation drill in the Maldives in collaboration with Maldives National Defense Force Fire and Rescue department and Maldives Police Services.

Hotel Jen Malé Maldives carries out a great Fire evacuation drill in the Maldives in collaboration with Maldives National Defense Force Fire and Rescue department and Maldives Police Services.

Hotel Jen Malé Maldives carries out a great Fire evacuation drillMalé, Maldives March 2016: A member of the Shangri-La Hotel group, Hotel Jen Malé, Maldives prides itself in embracing safety and security at top priority at all times. And in ensuring this is always at its best, frequent drills are carried out by hotel Chief Security and Fire Life Safety Manager, Christopher Rodrigoe with hotel management team to ensure hotel staff are well-trained in handling emergencies and all safety and security related equipment are in excellent condition.

Hotel Jen Malé Maldives carries out a great Fire evacuation drillHotel Jen and Maldives National Defense Force (MNDF) with their Fire & rescue department jointly undertook a full evacuation drill at the hotel.

Hotel Jen Malé Maldives carries out a great Fire evacuation drillOn 19th March at 9.00am, Hotel Jen’s fire alarm went off ringing persistently and hotel’s Emergency Response Team (ERT) went into prompt action. Situation escalated and an evacuation was called out in the hotel’s public address (PA) system. Hotel fire wardens quickly stepped in and took over the evacuation process on hotel guests and staff who were led out of hotel emergency exits to the designated assembly point at Dharumavantha School effectively.

Hotel Jen Malé Maldives carries out a great Fire evacuation drillWhilst evacuation is in progress, fire trucks with sirens arrived and members of the MNDF Fire & Rescue department took over the situation at the hotel. The hotel vicinity was abuzz with activity as passersby started gathering curiously watching what was going on.

Hotel Jen Malé Maldives carries out a great Fire evacuation drillA “guest” was found trapped on the 6th floor of hotel and MNDF personnel quickly actioned a rescue operation! Within minutes the city’s tallest fire-elevator (30m) was deployed and the “guest” was safely lifted from the balcony and brought down to safety whereby medical personnel took over and quickly rushed the “guest” to the hospital in the standby ambulance.

Hotel Jen Malé Maldives carries out a great Fire evacuation drillWhilst at the assembly point, hotel Crisis Management Team was taking charge by roll-calling and ascertaining everyone from the hotel has been accounted for and no one was left behind. A quick assessment was carried to ensure those “injured” and “traumatized” were given appropriate assistance.

Hotel Jen Malé Maldives carries out a great Fire evacuation drillThe total evacuation drill took approximately one and half hour.

Hotel Jen Malé Maldives carries out a great Fire evacuation drillHotel Chief Security and Fire Life Safety Manager, Christopher Rodrigoe thanked Colonial Abdulla Zuhury commanding officer of Fire Department and Captain Nadheem Mohamed for their support in executing and evaluation this drill and also the media for their participation today. Christopher hoped with media involvement, the awareness and importance of safety drills and the role of MNDF in ensuring safety and security of the capital city can be shared to all.

A total of 40 MNDF personnel, 45 hotel staff & 5 hotel guests took part in this evacuation exercise.

About Hotel Jen

Hotel Jen is a diverse collection of hotels in the best locations across Asia Pacific, with a unique brand of style and service delivery designed to appeal to a ‘New Jeneration’ of travelers.

The brand is the brainchild of virtual persona Jen, a professional hotelier and all-time lover of life, travel and discovery.

To guests, Hotel Jen delivers quality, comfort, convenience and value with a twist. Jen cares about what really matters to guests – the important things done well; comfortable rooms and honest authentic service; respect, privacy and efficiency served without fuss or intrusion; cultural insights; interesting experiences; and fast, free WiFi everywhere, always.

About Hotel Jen’s Chinese name

今旅

Today – Travel

Jen is a lover of life, fun, adventure and discovery, and wanted a Chinese name to reflect that. ‘Jin’ (today) is about the importance of living every day to its fullest, in the moment, and Lü (travel) represents the idea that life is about exploring new cultures, experiences and ways of being you.

Together, the characters inspire others to ‘travel today’, so why not be a little spontaneous? Jen can’t wait to host you.

Soneva Fushi implements Food wastage Audit

Joins hands with LightBlue Environmental Consulting to tackle fundamental problem affecting global hospitality industry

Soneva Fushi implements food wastage auditSoneva Fushi, the multi award-winning luxury resort in the Maldives, has recently joined hands with LightBlue Environmental Consulting to implement a food waste audit, to understand and address the problem of food wastage that affects the entire hospitality industry and to reinforce its position as global leader in sustainability.

The United Nations recently highlighted that food wastage was one of their most urgent priorities and countries all over the world are beginning to realise the true negative impact of food waste. The United States has announced plans to cut its food wastage by 50 percent by 2030; and while the European Union has set itself the same target, it hopes to do it by 2020. According to the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), “The impact of food waste is not just financial. The vast amount of food going to landfills makes a significant contribution to global warming.”

Soneva Fushi implements food wastage auditA detailed Food Waste Monitoring System was implemented by LightBlue across the Soneva Fushi operations for seven days, and included hands-on training as well as raising awareness among kitchen employees, stewards and service staff.

Employees sorted, weighed, defined and recorded waste for every shift (breakfast, lunch and dinner) to establish a food waste baseline (grams of food waste per cover) and understand where they could focus their efforts on.

The detailed audit helped answer crucial questions related to food waste: How much (in kilogrammes), where (in four categories: spoilage, preparation, buffet and customer plate waste), when, why, and what food is discarded. The assessment also reviewed how much it cost, and how much could be saved through the implementation of strategic recommendations along the food chain, mainly during purchasing, receiving, storage, prep, communication, buffet, and service.

“I think part of the benefit of a detailed audit like this is that it increases everyone’s mindfulness about what they are doing with food. This has really helped everybody throughout the food and beverage team and the organisation as a whole just to think about what they are doing,” Gordon Jackson, the Waste to Wealth Manager at Soneva Fushi.

“There was quite a dramatic reduction to the organic material being sent to out to composting site. So we are down by about 50 percent already,” Gordon said.

At the end of the comprehensive review, Soneva Fushi received the LightBlue “Certificate of Completion” marking its genuine effort in readdressing a problem that affects the entire hospitality industry.  Resort employees who showed true commitment received a personal Food Waste Champions Certificate of Achievement.

“It was a genuine pleasure working with the Soneva Fushi team. I’ve never experienced such dedication from employees to understand, implement and address the food waste issue, which was pivotal in the successful implementation of the audit. I feel that this is the result of a genuine commitment from Soneva to integrate sustainability in every aspect of its operation, and it shows once again that sounds environmental practices translate into substantial financial benefits,” said Benjamin Lephilibert, Managing Director of LightBlue Environmental Consulting.

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.

About Soneva Fushi:

In 1995, award-winning luxury resort Soneva Fushi set the standard for all desert island barefoot luxury hideaways in the Maldives. It has a pristine Biosphere UNESCO protected reef and is known for its legendary service.

Fifty-seven private villas with their own stretch of beach are hidden among dense foliage within touching distance of a pristine coral reef.  Intuitive service is provided by Mr./Ms. Friday butlers.

Highlights include the open-air Cinema Paradiso, counting Saturn’s rings in the high-tech Observatory, the home-made chocolate and ice cream rooms, five hundred wines to choose from and nine dining options.

If the experiences are magical, the philosophy is simple: No news, no shoes. No pretensions either.

About LightBlue Environmental Consulting:

Light Blue is a Bangkok-based boutique consulting firm offering expert auditing, advising and capacity building services to hotels willing to improve performance and minimize their social and environmental footprint.

Based on resources, needs and objectives, our hand-picked specialists deliver tailor-made solutions to cut operational expenses, increase employees’ efficiency and loyalty, as well as to improve the reputation of hotels operating more responsibly.

Light Blue’s methodology has been recognised as aligned with the United Nations’ Food Loss and Waste draft standard.

Earth Hour celebrated at Jumeirah Vittaveli

The special occasion was marked at the resort with an atmospheric performance.

Jumeirah Vittaveli joined in the global celebrations of Earth Hour with an atmospheric singing bowl concert performed by Winnie Rode.

Guest resident Winnie Rode is a recognised sound therapist who is currently staying at Jumeirah Vittaveli for the resort’s annual Talise Wellness Month. Until March 24, 2016, guests at the resort can join Winnie in daily group meditation sessions or experience his unique singing bowl sound massage in a private treatment.

During Earth Hour, all lights at the resort’s restaurants and public areas were switched off and candles illuminated the night. Winnie Rode began his atmospheric singing bowl concert, mesmerising colleagues and guests.

With the soft and echoing sounds of his bronze singing bowls and the low chants interspersing the vibrations coming from the bowls, Winnie delivered a relaxing and tranquil performance.

Earth Hour is a global movement by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) that focusses on climate change awareness and protecting the environment. The first Earth Hour was celebrated in Sydney, Australia, in 2007 and it has since spanned the globe each year.

About Jumeirah Vittaveli:

A 20-minute boat ride from Malé International Airport brings you to Jumeirah Vittaveli. Whether for an intimate escape or an indulgent family retreat, Jumeirah Vittaveli offers unmatched diversity, subtle luxury and personalised exploration. Impeccable choice and seamless service shape the character of this resort paradise, where every detail has been meticulously crafted to inspire journeys of discovery and enjoyment. Whether beach-side or over-water, all villas feature stunning interiors with private pools and access to the sandy shores or glistening waters. An inspirational Spa, a well-equipped overwater gymnasium, a children’s club and 5 star PADI dive centre mean guests are always able to try something new.

About Jumeirah Group:

Jumeirah Group, the global luxury hotel company and a member of Dubai Holding, operates a world-class portfolio of hotels and resorts including the flagship Burj Al Arab Jumeirah. Jumeirah Hotels & Resorts manages properties in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, UAE, and Kuwait in the Middle East; Baku, Bodrum, Frankfurt, Istanbul, London and Mallorca (Spain) in Europe; the Maldives and Shanghai in Asia. Jumeirah Group also runs the luxury serviced residences brand Jumeirah LivingTM with properties in London and Dubai; the new contemporary lifestyle hotel brand VenuTM; the wellness brand TaliseTM; Jumeirah Restaurant Group DubaiTM; Wild Wadi WaterparkTM; The Emirates Academy of Hospitality ManagementTM; and Jumeirah SiriusTM, its global loyalty programme. Future openings include luxury and lifestyle hotels in China, India, Indonesia, Jordan, Malaysia, Mauritius, Oman, Russia and the UAE. www.jumeirah.com

New Incentives and Special Events Venue Inaugurates at Holiday Inn Resort® Kandooma Maldives

Holiday Inn @Kandooma Maldives Special events venueMALE – Hosting an event in a marvelous place like the Maldives irrespective of size, type, and occasion will never be the same as Holiday Inn Resort® Kandooma Maldives inaugurates its new incentives and special events facility, the Kandooma Marquee.

This Maldives resort, which is only a 40-minute speedboat drive from the nation’s Ibrahim Nasir International Airport has launched the brand new incentives and events venue with its maiden affair organized by the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in the Maldives.

The event which tackles about safety awareness topic was attended by the resort’s Chinese holidaymakers, embassy staff, and H.E Mr. Liu Qiang, Charge D’affaires, Embassy of the People’s Republic of China.

Holiday Inn @Kandooma Maldives Special events venueFeaturing 200 square meter of movable events space, the Kandooma Marquee can host up to 180 guests comfortably. Local and international business companies looking to hold intimate incentives and special events or brainstorm sessions in a unique and isolated spot can take advantage of the resort’s state-of-the-art facilities, a large area for group or team building activities, multilingual speaking staff, resident doctor and nurse, and a specialized team professionally handling incentives and special events and group requests from planning to event execution.

Incentives and special events planners, and organizers will have the opportunity to enjoy tastefully appointed decor, high-speed wireless Internet access, and advanced audiovisual equipment.

When it comes to stimulating productivity, the Holiday Inn Resort® Kandooma Maldives features a variety of inspiring event menus to help ensure gatherings are extraordinary and delightful. Whether planning a sit-down lunch and dinner, or a simple coffee break, the resort’s professional culinary team is dedicated to bringing visions to life based on the client’s budget.

After an active day of events, professionals can wind down in the resort’s ideal accommodations available in five categories – Garden or Beach View Villa, Beach House, Family Beach House, Overwater Villa, and the oversized Overwater Pavilion. Featuring well-appointed bedding, flat-screen television with premium cable channels, room service, mini-bar, spacious work desks and high-speed Internet access, guest villas allow visitors to stay be as relaxed or productive as they desire.

Also present during the inauguration was Mr. Joseph Della Gatta, General Manager of Holiday Inn Resort® Kandooma Maldives. “The Kandooma Marquee, a new addition to the resort, is our response to the increasing demand of incentives and special events and group requests we are receiving across different parts of the world”, said Joseph.

“With the brand’s commitment to provide memorable events through our seamless assistance from planning to event implementation, we are here to ensure that we help incentives and special events planners make their event a success”, Joseph added.

About Holiday Inn Resort® Kandooma Maldives

Ladled with cool, contemporary Island design, Holiday Inn Resort® Kandooma Maldives brings a modern vibe to the Maldives. Slip into island life from the moment you arrive at Holiday Inn Resort® Kandooma Maldives, with world-class South Male Atoll diving and surfing on your doorstep. Learn to sail on a catamaran trip around the region’s sandbanks or take it easy with alcohol-free cocktails on a sunset cruise. Top off a perfect day with breathtaking sunsets on the deck at The Kitchen restaurant.

About InterContinental Hotels Group

IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group) [LON:IHG, NYSE:IHG (ADRs)] is a global organisation with a broad portfolio of nine hotel brands, including InterContinental® Hotels & Resorts, Hotel Indigo®, Crowne Plaza® Hotels & Resorts, Holiday Inn® Hotels & Resorts, Holiday Inn Express®, Staybridge Suites®, Candlewood Suites®, EVEN™ Hotels and HUALUXE® Hotels and Resorts.

IHG manages IHG® Rewards Club, the world’s first and largest hotel loyalty programme with nearly 79 million members worldwide. The programme was relaunched in July 2013, offering enhanced benefits for members including free internet across all hotels, globally.

IHG franchises, leases, manages or owns over 4,700 hotels and 688,000 guest rooms in nearly 100 countries and territories, with more than 1,100 hotels in its development pipeline.

InterContinental Hotels Group PLC is the Group’s holding company and is incorporated in Great Britain and registered in England and Wales.

Meet W Maldives Marine Insider Who Protects The House Reef By Killing The Starfish

W-Maldives house reefWith its central location in the Maldives’ North Ari atoll, W Retreat & Spa – Maldives is surrounded by some of the best dive sites in the world. All the big fish such as mantas, whale and hammerhead sharks are to be found in the immediate vicinity plus those smaller marine animals such as frogfish or ghost pipefish.

Morgan Dobson Marine BiologistIn the retreat’s commitment to craft unique and authentic experiences, W Retreat & Spa – Maldives offers a myriad of specially designed water activities through DOWN UNDER & WAVE, its diving and watersports centre. These activities immerse guests in the vibrancy of experiences of the natural environment and cultural heritage of the Maldives. One of the key people playing a vital role in this is Morgan Dobson, the retreat’s W MARINE INSIDER who has been based on the Fesdu island for 18 months. Growing up in Cyprus and with a diploma in Marine Biology and a degree in Environmental Studies, Morgan leads all conservation initiatives such as coral rehabilitation and educational outreach programs to preserve a healthy ecological environment at W Retreat & Spa – Maldives. He is also a certified diving instructor and takes care of the diving and snorkelling trips to local reefs and around the Ari Atoll, where the best dive sites are located. Maaya Thila, Fishhead, Malhos Thila, Himendhoo Thila – to name just a few. A tilla is a smaller sand formation that rises up like a small hill in the water and never reaches its surface. Tillas are often as deep as 8 meters to the top of the reef.

W Maldives reefW Retreat & Spa – Maldives is renowned for its underwater offerings – dive sites enhanced by tillas and farus – coral walls in large circles, which rise up from anywhere between 40-20 meters to just below the surface of the ocean. A unique diving spot in Fesdu is Hoholla Faru. This faru has a number of shallow caves big enough to swim into. The ceiling and walls are very honeycombed, allowing fish to swim in and out at their leisure. The ceiling, a living mural, is covered by coral encrusted clam shells. Just a stone’s throw from Fesdu is Gaathafushi desert island. It is totally intact and wild – a tropical fantasy in the middle of the Indian Ocean.

W-Maldives crown of thorns starfishFollowing a recent invasion of crown-of-thorns starfish on the retreat’s house reef, which started in September 2015, W MARINE INSIDER and his team have been dedicated to stopping it ever since. The starfish consume the corals by climbing onto them, thrusting out their stomachs, and bathing the coral in digestive enzymes, which liquefy it for ingestion. Adult crown-of-thorns starfish, ranging in size from 9 to 18 inches (3-6 cm) in diameter and with up to 21 arms, can eat nearly a square foot of coral each in a day.

W-Maldives crown of thorns starfish 2“We currently have teams entering the water and injecting the starfish with vinegar to kill them. We have also extended this procedure to other nearby reefs as this seems to be the area where they arrive from. So far more than 25,000 starfish have been killed. Also, the starfish behavior has changed as they are now hiding on the house reef during the day and come out to feed at night, which is why we have to dive in the dark to kill them.

W-Maldives crown of thorns starfish 4If the current trends continue, the Fesdu’s spectacular reef may be severely damaged within a few years from now. Stopping the starfish infestation is a priority for us at the moment as this can save the stunning reef flora and fauna”, Morgan concluded.

W Maldives whalesharkFor bookings and more information on W Retreat & Spa – Maldives, please explore http://www.wretreatmaldives.com/

Maldives Travel Talk 2016 in Malaysia

The Maldives Travel Talk was organised by the MMPRC in collaboration with the High Commission of Maldives in Malaysia to promote Maldives travel and tourism amongst the local community in Malaysia. The Talk was also aimed at introducing tourists to Maldivian culture and history. The event presented by Horizon Holidays and hosted by MindSpace Events was held Tuesday 15th March at the MBS Community Center in Mont Kiara, Kuala Lumpur.

The night’s proceedings included an informal talk conducted by the Ambassador His Excellency Mohamed Fahmy Hassan, followed by a short video presentation on Maldives travel, tourism and culture. The floor was opened up for a short Q&A session whereby interested travellers could ask and have their questions answered on planning a trip to the Maldives.

Attendees also enjoyed two beautifully and uniquely choreographed cultural dance performances by the Nottingham Maldivian Society and the students of KDU University. The night’s entertainment also included a variety of Dhivehi songs. Maldivian delicacies were served to the invited guests at the end of the Travel Talk as an added exposure to our culture.

The event was attended by Malaysian nationals, foreign nationals residing in Malaysia and Maldivian students.

Sail Away on your Sense of Freedom at Six Senses Laamu

There can be no better way to enjoy the turquoise lagoon and deep-blue ocean waters of the Maldives than cruising on a private yacht. And now Six Senses Laamu makes this a reality with the latest addition to its experiences offerings –  a day on the Sense of Freedom.

Guests can enjoy this beautiful yacht all to themselves for a cruise around the atoll, a picnic on a deserted island, snorkeling at Blue Lagoon, a visit to the sandbank for sunset cocktails or just enjoy the yacht with all its luxury amenities. This is truly an out of the ordinary experience equally suitable for those wanting a romantic escape or a family getaway.

A day on the Sense of Freedom at Six Senses Laamu
A day on the Sense of Freedom at Six Senses Laamu

Sense of Freedom is a 37-foot (12.80 meter) Riviera 37 Flybridge; a luxury yacht with a large cockpit and two cabins able to accommodate six guests plus crew. The cabins include a master bedroom, an adjacent cabin with bunk beds and bathroom facilities inclusive of a shower. It also features a living room area and a small galley. The big fly bridge is designed to offer a view from the top, for those who wish to feel the ocean breeze while cruising.

The resort’s experienced captain and his crew invite guests to embark on an extraordinary adventure that starts in the late morning and finishes well past sunset with a dinner on the beach. As for dinner, the menu is subject to guests’ catch. The crew will provide poles and line and will show the traditional Maldivian way of fishing.

Approaching the deserted island, guests can jump off the yacht and snorkel around the colorful reef or simply enjoy its sandy beach. A picnic will be prepared on the island with their menu of choice, along with a bottle of Champagne and fresh coconuts. For those who wish to sit back and relax under the shade of the coconut trees, sun-loungers are provided.

Snorkeling around the deserted island
Snorkeling around the deserted island

In the late afternoon the Sense of Freedom will make its way back to the resort, making one last stop on the private sandbank just before the sun sets. Bartenders wait with special signature sunset cocktails. The evening ends with a private barbecue on the beach, where chefs will cook the catch of the day! In the unlikely event that guests were unable to catch a fish, they can count on the chefs to ensure that a freshly caught reef fish is available.

The package includes:

– A day trip on the Sense of Freedom
– Snorkeling and fishing equipment
– Picnic on a deserted island, with Champagne, fresh coconuts and a fresh fruit basket
– Sunset cocktails on the private sandbank
– Private beach barbecue dinner

The price for two guests on the Sense of Freedom for a day is USD 2,800 and is subject to 10 percent service charge and 12 percent GST. This experience can be customized. For more information please contact [email protected]

ITB 2016 officially inaugurated at Messe Berlin, Berlin, Germany

The biggest travel trade fair of the world, ITB 2016 has been officially inaugurated today, 9th March 2016 at the Maldivian stand. The honors of the ribbon cutting at the Maldives’ stand were performed by the Minister of Tourism Honorable Mr.Moosa Zameer and Secretary General of UNWTO Mr.Taleb Rifai. This year, the exhibition celebrates its 50th anniversary and Maldives is the official partner country of the fair. At the inaugural ceremony, the ribbon cutting at Maldives stand was the first activity in the running order, which was followed by ITB Convention at the Berlin City Cube.

ITB 2016 OpeningTo rejoice and appreciate the Maldivian tourism industry and its prominence to the country, Maldives will be hosting a special evening dedicated to the industry stakeholders, trade partners and exhibiting companies at Berlin tonight. This special event “Maldivian Night” is one of the most favorite activities of the tourism industry and will be attended by more than 600 individuals. Hosted at the Wasserwerk, Hohenzollerndamm, a historic dining lounging hall in Bundesallee, Berlin. A number of industry invitees, trade partners, media representatives and government representatives from Maldives will be attending this special Maldivian Evening.

To start off the evening with, the invitees will be welcomed with special drinks after the registration at the entrance, which will be accompanied by live and calm band music. After seating the guests, the Minister of Tourism HE Moosa Zameer will address a welcome note and a promotional video of the destination will be released. Maldivian performances will then take place, for the guests to enjoy before the buffet dinner. Cultural performances and ‘Boduberu’ will accompany the guests during dinner. After a raffle draw amongst the guests and awarding special prizes to the winners, the Maldivian Evening will then be concluded with live DJ.

Official Press Conference & Opening Gala Ceremony of ITB 2016 takes place in Berlin, Germany

The official press conference of ITB 2016 was held this afternoon, by ITB Berlin at Funkturm Lounge in Messe Berlin, the fair venue. The Minister of Tourism Honorable Moosa Zameer was present in the official panel along with the ITB officials and organizers to riposte any queries by the press about ITB and Maldives being this year’s partner country. Seniors of MMPRC and MOT also participated in this official press conference as Maldivian government officials.

ITB Berlin 2016Maldives will officially start off the biggest event of the Visit Maldives Year 2016 on 8th March night at the Opening Gala Ceremony of the world’s largest travel trade fair, ITB Berlin 2016. With a total of more than 2,500 invitees attending this special ceremony which marks the 50th anniversary of ITB Berlin, Maldives celebrates being the partner host country of the exhibition. The Maldivian Tourism Minister, Honorable Moosa Zameer will be leading the Maldivian delegation, including ministers, senior government representatives, and industry stakeholders together with MMPRC and Ministry of Tourism.

The Gala will feature a special play by 57 talented performers, artists and musicians from Maldives that will be the main event of this special ceremony. The musical dance will focus on the traditions of Maldives, and how development aroused in the small islands of Maldives.

A musician will blow a conch shell, thus resembling the start of the performance. The play will be distributed into different traditional and folk Maldivian dances, of which each will have a narration; the general facts about Maldives and the portrayed tradition, activity or custom will be covered likewise in the narration. These dances and performance arts will focus on showing the pride that the nation withholds to have such a diverse existence.

ITB Berlin 2016The central point of this whole musical of the opening ceremony is on a ‘Dhoni’ (a Maldivian built traditional boat) and its transformation through the years of how it has evolved into the present. An image of a ‘Dhoni’ is also used in the main logo of the ITB Berlin 50th edition, to resemble Maldives being the partner host country, and to add a traditional Maldivian touch to the branding.

An exquisite dinner hosted by Maldives, after the opening ceremony will feature different varieties of Maldivian mouthwatering dishes to serve the taste buds of all the opening gala invitees. ITB has been the most prominent fair for the tourism industry for decades, and expects exceptional success this year as well.

Anantara Kihavah entices with Award-Winning Gourmet Dining 6 Metres Below at the World’s Best Underwater Hotel Restaurant

With 79 grandiose one bedroom pool villas and expansive residences unravelling over two, three and four bedrooms, the best underwater restaurant on earth and a 3:1 staff-guest ratio, Anantara Kihavah Villas in the Baa Atoll UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve is one of the Maldives most resplendent resorts. For the ultimate adventures above and below the water, guests staying here go from their luxurious Overwater Pool Villa with glass-bottomed bathtubs to an underwater restaurant, aptly named SEA, for award-winning gourmet dining and degustation dinners.

Anantara Kihavah Villas Wins World Travel Award 2015 for Best Underwater Hotel Restaurant WorldwideThe mirrored interior reflects the surrounding Indian Ocean marine life as you dine on European cuisine and indulge in paired wine suggestions from the resident Wine Guru. Voted by World Travel Awards 2015 as the World’s Best Underwater Hotel Restaurant, SEA doubles as a restaurant and the world’s only underwater wine cellar, with coveted 360 labels in its collection.

Anantara Kihavah Villas_ Sea restaurant table for two“This incredible restaurant offers the unreal experience of dining under water—no diving gear necessary,” explains General Manager Jean-Marc Ma-Poon. “We’re very honoured and proud to have been acknowledged by World Travel Awards as the World’s Best Underwater Hotel Restaurant. Our underwater dining adventure is right in the heart of Baa Atoll and the only one in the world on the edge of a natural reef. With more than 100 species of marine life swimming around, no matter what the time of day it is, guests can be sure of great views, with delicious cuisine and an enviable wine selection as well!”

an underwater restaurant, aptly named SEASEA serves lunch and dinner, as well as breakfast on request, while taking in the 360-degree view of the Indian Ocean’s mesmerizing marine life around you. Four-course degustation menus are served under the winning combination of Senior Wine Guru Nilesh Bootun’s expertise of varietals and vines, and the culinary ‘Haute & Nouvelle Cuisine’ experience of the resort’s new Executive Chef, Lamberto Valdez.

Imbibing with the Finest

Where else can you tour the vineyards of the world six metres underwater? For the second consecutive year, Anantara Kihavah Villa’s acclaimed underwater restaurant SEA received the prestigious three star accolade from World of Fine Wines Magazine. In the publication’s World’s Best Wine Lists, over 4,000 restaurants from around the globe were considered for the awards, with just 896 restaurants bestowed a one, two, or three-star accolade, and only 300 wine lists making it into the top three-star category.

an underwater restaurant, aptly named SEAThe wine awards have quickly become some of the most prestigious awards within the restaurant community. According to World Sommelier Champion Gerard Basset, the awards are the pinnacle for a restaurant wine list: “These exciting new global awards are rapidly becoming as coveted as Michelin Stars.” The esteemed panel of senior judges this year included some of the world’s greatest experts, including Alder Yarrow, Elin McCoy, Ch’ng Poh Tiong, Andrew Jefford, Andreas Larsson, Francis Percival, Tom Stevenson and The World of Fine Wine Editor Neil Beckett.

The World of Fine Wines publication comments, “Few restaurants in the world can claim to offer its guests a view as distractingly gorgeous as that offered by Sea Underwater Wine Cellar and Restaurant. In such a setting, the food and wine needs to be special if it’s to be anything more than a supporting player. But a glance at the fine international cuisine and extensive collection of bottles suggests a remarkable gastronomic as well as visual spectacle—a spectacle where Michel Picard Puligny-Montrachet 2010 is matched with Atlantic salmon mi-cuit, crisp potatoes galette, snow peas tendrils, and an orange and miso reduction.”

Anantara Kihavah’s Senior Wine Guru, Nilesh Bootun, takes great pride and pleasure sharing his passion for wines says, “Our Wine List enables oenophiles to embark in a journey with amazing adventures from Old World to New World by discovering some prestigious selection among 360 labels, handpicked from 20 renowned wine producing countries including the new horizons such as India, China, Thailand and Turkey. Personal taste always varies from each individual but the preference of enjoying young wines (ready to drink) to vintage treasures (at their peak) would be definitely possible with the 90 year of wine history (from 1924 to 2014) having a selection from each decade.”

Dreaming Over the Ocean

Also voted by World Travel Awards 2015 as the Leaving Villa Resort in the Maldives, poised over a lagoon with sweeping ocean views are 40 Overwater Pool Villas, arranged in a grand circular formation and interlinked by an overwater bicycle pathway. A tall arched doorway reveals vaulted ceilings and dark hardwood floors, leading to the main bedroom where each villas opens up onto a wraparound deck, and it’s there that Anantara Kihavah Villas epitomises Maldivian luxury. Furnished with a queen-size daybed that swings from the ceiling, hammocks that hang over the lagoon and a ladder that drops you straight into the water, this is where your dreams take a holiday.

The piece de resistance, however, is found in the bathroom. Fronted by floor-to-ceiling sliding glass doors with step-through access to an oversized plunge pool, it features a glass shower with intricately engraved doors and sweeping Indian Ocean views, an outdoor rainforest shower, his and hers vanities, a cream chaise lounge and a glass-bottomed bathtub that peers down into the sparkling turquoise waters; a quick glance down and you can see tropical fish, a turtle, or even a spotted eagle-rays sweep along the bottom of your tub.

Anantara Kihavah Villas offers exceptional food and wine pairing while staying in the award-winning stylish resort haven of private pool villas, just 35 minutes by seaplane with Maldivian Airways from Male. For more information on Anantara Kihavah Villas and special offers visit http://kihavah-maldives.anantara.com/special-packages.aspx