Wednesday, October 19, 2011

HOTEL CHECK MALDIVES, part 1, One&Only Reethi Rah

It is the one and only REETHI RAH - so loved that guests often try to book holidays years in advance.

Arriving at Male to check out both old and new resorts in the Maldives, our first stop was this wonderful resort, so loved by our top luxury clients. We did not even have to identify ourselves to the Reethi Rah team waiting in arrivals, they simply whisked us away to the waiting yacht. Easily the most special vessel in the harbour! High gloss mahogany and cream leather interiors, Espa products, cold towels, drinks and the attentive crew makes for a very comfortable 70 minute ride to the island. There is a sunbathing deck should the weather permit, although it is overcast and drizzling when we arrived, but still very warm.

A huge entourage awaits on the jetty for a welcome to paradise, including the Resort Manager: Warm greetings are exchanged between staff and arrivals: Happy Anniversary! Welcome back! Welcome to Reethi Rah! ‐ all very personal and sincere. A great first impression, despite the jet lag, and we have not even set foot on the island!

Embarking on a site inspection with Stephen, the Sales Executive, the sun appears by magic! We visit the dive centre, children’s club, spa, dining outlets, boutique, and finally when we arrive at our Beach Villa I am blown away…. The design is stunning ‐ high ceilings, dark Balinese woods, the sense of space and privacy is overwhelming. Outside there is dining space, sunloungers, a hammock and your own section of the beach. Totally secluded from neighbouring units; villas are at least 12 metres part.

We have had many clients deliberating about spending the extra on a villa with pool. You will not feel too deprived if you opt for just the beach villa. The feeling of the sand on your feet, proximity to the ocean and the total privacy is so special. The villa interior decoration is the same for all categories, with the overwater and additional bedroom options alternatively depending on the guest requirement.

The food is outstanding. We dined at Reethi, the main restaurant and experienced the Maldivian Buffet (weekly, Saturdays presently) which was varied, beautifully presented and of excellent quality. There is also the atmospheric Fanditha, for Middle Eastern influenced cuisine and Tapasake for Japanese which is exceptional quality, easily comparable to the finest London Japenese restaurants, although expensive.

Breakfast at Reethi, buffet or a la carte is an extravaganza, and the service all around the resort is impeccable. The GM and Resort Manager were ever present and approachable.

There is entertainment 6 nights per week with a resident band in the bar, traditional Bodu Beru dancing on Saturdays performed by some of the Maldivian resort staff. A truly fabulous top luxury resort. Dress up and be outgoing, or stay low key in your own piece of paradise at your villa.

For more relaxation - the spa provides natural healing therapies, Vitality Pools, Crystal Steam rooms, sauna, Lifestyle Showers, fitness centre and beauty salon. There are also 2 swimming pools, simulated grass tennis courts, motorized and non-motorized water sports, dive centre.

Dive Sites:

One can snorkel off the beach - but diving is the way to see the real underwater magic. From shallow reef dives to deep‐sea wrecks and shark dives, the Reethi Rah Dive Centre offers 29 different dives appealing to a variety of skill levels and areas of interest.

How to get to Reethi Rah:

70 minutes by luxury yacht from Male' International Airport

Final comment:

We simply loved it!


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