Soneva organises second Soneva Surf Pro competition in Noonu atoll

Soneva has hosted its second Soneva Surf Pro 2018 competition.

The follow-up event to the first competition was held on October 6 at the Bodu Olhu break, off Lhohi island in the northern Noonu atoll. This was Noonu atoll’s first ever surfing competition, with over 30 participants from different islands taking part in the Under 18, Over 18 and Bodyboard divisions.

Included in the judging panel were Maldivian pro surfers Kuda Issey and Azlee Naseem. The prizes for the competition, ranging from eco-friendly surfboards, leashes, fins, rash guards, wax and sunscreen, were provided by Soneva Surf’s eco partners.

The location of the second competition is fitting, as the Noonu atoll has historical relevance to the Maldives’ surfing scene, being the birthplace of modern surfing in the country. The island of Kudafari was also the first island in the Maldives to have surfboards.

The first Soneva Surf Pro 2018 competition took place on September 1 in the Baa atoll.

Surfing competitions are opportunities to bring together communities, make surfing more accessible and to drive sustainable surfing practices. Soneva hopes the surfing competitions will generate positive and healthy competition within local surfing communities to raise the surfing standards even further across the country.

Soneva Surf is part of the Soneva Ocean Stewards programme, which believes that people will protect what they love. If local Maldivians spend more time in the ocean, they will ultimately become the protectors of the ocean that is the lifeblood of their homeland.

Soneva’s surfing programme aims to tap into the growing interest in the Maldives as a surfing destination. Soneva Surf is offered at both of Soneva’s Maldives properties, Soneva Fushi in the Baa atoll and Soneva Jani in the Noonu atoll. Soneva in Aqua also offers a surfing charter within both atolls.

So far, Soneva has discovered 13 and 11 surfing spots in the Baa atoll and Noonu atoll, respectively; and hopes to uncover many more. Each of these locations are relatively unknown, meaning they are less travelled, uncrowded and secret. Surfing in the Baa atoll and Noonu atoll is more suited to intermediate to advanced surfers, but beginners will also find surfing spots that cater to their needs.

Soneva’s secret surfing spots will only be revealed to resort guests who choose the surfing package in order to keep them uncrowded and pristine for future guests.

Soneva 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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