Soneva signs up with Women on Boards to promote gender equality, women entrepreneurship

Soneva has announced a partnership with local NGO Women on Boards (WOB) to work together on achieving gender equality and diversity in the workplace.

An agreement was signed early last month by Ranvir Bhandari, Managing Director of Operations at Soneva, and Fathimath Shafeega, Founder and President of WOB.

The partnership is aimed at promoting women entrepreneurship and providing support through a special programme, named ‘Women Tap into Tourism’. It will include vocational training, social and entertainment programmes, junior host programmes and special programmes for disadvantaged women.

“We express our sincere thanks to Soneva Fushi and Soneva Jani for the excellent opportunity for partnership,” WOB said, in a statement.

“We also congratulate and praise Soneva Fushi and Soneva Jani for being innovators in the field of responsible tourism, and for taking their social responsibilities and impact on environment very seriously.”

In a separate announcement, Soneva also hailed the partnership as the first of its kind in the tourism and hospitality industry of the Maldives.

Soneva, a world-leading luxury resort operator, runs two resorts in the Maldives, Soneva Fushi and Soneva Jani.

Established in 1995, Soneva Fushi is the original Soneva. The No News, No Shoes blueprint for all desert island barefoot luxury hideaways is located within the Baa Atoll UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in the Maldives. Soneva Fushi inspires the imagination with 65 spacious beachfront villas, ranging in size from one to nine bedrooms, hidden amongst dense foliage.

The iconic resort has bagged several international awards for eco-friendly tourism and green initiatives, including the 2017 Green Hotelier Award for the Asia Pacific region and the Sustainable Hotel Award by the Hotel Investment Conference Asia Pacific (HICAP) as well as a spot in the Gold List compiled by Condé Nast Traveler China as the Best Hotel in the Maldives and amongst the best resorts in the world in the Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards 2017.

Opened in December 2016, Soneva Jani is Soneva’s newest property and its second resort in the Maldives.

Soneva Jani encompasses a collection of 24 overwater villas and one island villa set in a 5.6 kilometre private lagoon located in the northern Noonu atoll. The resort spans five islands surrounded by pure white beaches, covered in rich tropical vegetation, offering the ultimate in privacy and luxury.

Each of the resort’s multilevel water villas has its own private pool and a retractable roof that allows guests to sleep beneath the stars. Many villas also have slides that transport guests directly from the top level into the lagoon below. Other hotel highlights include a spa, an observatory — home to the largest telescope in the Indian Ocean — and an outdoor cinema.

Since its opening, Soneva Jani has created a lot of buzz amongst luxury travellers with its exciting features such as the retractable roofs and the water slides. It has been named the Best Over-the-Top Luxury hotel of the year by Jetsetter.com, the best new resort in the world by CNN, and the Leading Luxury Hotel/Resort in South Asia and Leading Luxury Hotel/Resort in Maldives.

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