Mohamed Shafraz Hafiz for Maldives Promotion House – A group of young men flood the stage and take their positions. There are around twenty of them. A majority of them carry with them traditional Dhivehi goatskin drums. A flourish, a sharp tap, and a song is breathed into life. It’s sleepy at first but gains momentum like a rolling boulder. The song grows louder, faster, and the crowd sways because they can’t help it.
The beat works itself into their blood. Old voices on young faces sing the bodu beru songs and by the time the crescendo arrives, frenzy inducing, the crowd is ensnared completely. A few of them leap into the space in front of the stage to express their exultation through dance. By the time their hearts slow down it’s time for the next song. This is a typical night for Harubee, Maldives’s premier bodu beru band.
Bodu beru, literally meaning “big drum”, is one of the oldest surviving aspects of Dhivehi culture. It is a form of song based on a beat hammered out on a goatskin drum of traditional design. The tempo almost invariably starts slow and builds up into a crescendo, which is sustained for a while before reaching an abrupt end.
Though they’ve earned the right to it, Harubee shuns their status as a super-band, instead choosing to celebrate their roots and the fans that make them who they are. This warmth translates into the performance as well as the energy that comes from their passion.
Not a single member of Harubee performs full-time. They all work full-time elsewhere and come together as a band only for the passion of bodu beru. Harubee’s philosophy is that performing full-time will make the music feel like a job.
Shihan (Puchu), one of the four main members of Harubee alongside Mamdhooh (Manday), Naushad (Naube), and Shamhan (Joray), explains that the four of them first came together as a band at the end of the 90’s quite circumstantially, when one of them beat a dabiya (a tin pitcher), and the others joined in with song. They soon found themselves performing free at parties purely for the love of bodu beru.
The group officially came to be known as Harubee for their performance at the 2006 Dubai Shopping Festival. Since then, Harubee has gone onto perform at tourism expos, various major events at resorts, and have appeared on National Geographic Channel and the BBC in addition to performing alongside major local artists at live events. Harubee’s first mainstream success came when they won the MNBC Bodu Beru Challenge 2010. Since then Harubee has been performing without respite. This is no small accomplishment, considering that all members work full time, and the line up always depends on who can get time off work for a performance.
Harubee cannot be talked about without mentioning the cultural relevance of the group. The art of bodu beru is one of the most representative facets of Dhivehi culture. Many of the songs circulating around the bodu beru scene are so old that their origins are lost entirely. Harubee represents a revitalising, and more importantly, a rebranding of everything bodu beru stands for. As a bodu beru group of young people who charge their performances with a new energy that somehow falls runs parallel to the timelessness of the tradition, Harubee brings a progressiveness to the art that has not only been absent but hadn’t even been conceived of before. Bodu beru is cool again precisely because it’s not the way you remember it.
The band chooses to emphasise the continuity in this progression from tradition. Harubee humbly names Hamdun Hameed as the group’s major influence. As the founding members’ school principal and prolific torchbearer of bodu beru, Hamdun heavily involved the group in Ameer Ahmed School’s bodu beru activities, coming to teach the boys who would become Harubee most of what they know.
Modernised or traditional, bodu beru is a live art, and Harubee is a live act. The group is currently recording an album, pushing the progression further with their new songs. A major challenge will be to translate their unique personality into recorded form. Unused to the restraint and the set structure of the studio environment, Harubee has to overcome these constraints and find the best way to pack their brand of improvisation and spontaneity into an aural experience.
First an explosion onto the scene, then establishing their place, now recording an album. What could possibly be next for this group of young men, who don’t practise, who don’t plan their show, yet still project an electrifying presence? “To never stop,” says Shihan. Harubee intends to overcome the fickle nature of seasonal trends. They intend to make bodu beru bigger than it already is, and to push it further than it has ever gone.
Hideaway Beach Resort unveils fitness centre upgrade with dedicated yoga space; introduces badminton
Hideaway Beach Resort & Spa, renowned for its commitment to providing unparalleled luxury and experiences, has announced its latest enhancements in health and wellness offerings, solidifying its position as a premier destination for those with an active lifestyle seeking a holistic and rejuvenating getaway.
The jewel in the crown of these updates is the comprehensive upgrade to the resort’s Fitness Center. Meticulously designed to cater to the diverse wellness needs of guests, the gym now boasts state-of-the-art equipment and an extension that includes a dedicated yoga space; known as the Wellness Studio. This addition provides an idyllic setting for guests to embark on their wellness journey, offering a serene atmosphere for yoga and meditation practices. The resort has also recently added Indoor Badminton courts to their offerings list so guests can sweat it out in the courts.
Hideaway guests are inspired to cleanse, restore, and energise their body and mind. To enable guests to work out on their own schedule, the Fitness Center is open 24 hours. With a variety of state-of-the-art exercise equipment including free weights, Stairmasters, stationary bicycles, treadmills, and more, guests are spoilt for choice. Additionally, thanks to the well thought out entertainment systems such as cable TV and Audio music systems, guests can keep current with worldwide news and sports or go full blast with their favourite tunes at play.
The new building also houses showers and changing facilities, so you can complete your cooldown routine at the gym without having to return to your villa. The facilities are available for all guests (children under 12 to be accompanied by an adult) to use free of charge, and our team members are on hand to help out and provide introductions to any equipment you may be unfamiliar with.
Hideaway Beach Resort & Spa enhances its fitness offerings with the introduction of diverse group classes like Zumba, Tabatha, and Step Aerobics at their new Wellness Studio. These additions, led by a highly experienced Gym & Wellness Instructor, promise an engaging and comprehensive fitness experience for guests.
Hideaway is not just a retreat; it’s an oasis for sports enthusiasts. In addition to the Fitness Center upgrade, the resort has expanded its array of indoor and outdoor sports facilities. The resort’s Sports Complex also includes 2 tennis courts, 1 padel court, 1 half-basketball court, 1 beach volleyball area, 1 Golf Center which has 2 golf simulators and 1 putting green, the new Badminton Center which has 2 badminton courts, 1 soccer field, and professional assistance for various sports with the help of our Sports Master and some Pro Coaches for select sports at the resort.
Staying fit whilst holidaying at Hideaway doesn’t have to be restricted to the gym. You can jog around the beautiful, scenic island or ride the bicycles that you will be provided with at your villa.
Speaking about this new addition, Christophe Adam, the General Manager of Hideaway Beach Resort & Spa, said: “Wellness and fitness travel have come a long way in recent years. Diverse guests now want a variety of benefits from their vacations and they’re looking for programmes and services that are designed to meet their short-term health needs. At Hideaway, we recognise the importance of relaxation and enjoyment. So, we are here to help our valued guests to reconnect to themselves and to prove fitness can be part of a great holiday! We are really excited by the opportunity to create a truly wellness experiences with a wide of sports activities that are seamlessly integrated into a guest’s holiday in the Maldives”.
Hideaway invites guests to immerse themselves in a world of luxury, wellness, and unparalleled hospitality. With these new offerings, the resort continues to set new standards for the ultimate retreat, where guests can rejuvenate their minds, bodies, and spirits.
Umair Badheeu sets new, national freediving record at AIDA Philippines National Championship
Maldivian freediver Umair Badheeu has achieved a new national record with a dive to a depth of 62 meters in the bi-fin category. His accomplishment was made possible with the support of Kaimoo Resorts and Hotels, a key sponsor and advocate for Umair’s pursuit of excellence in freediving.
Competing among 14 international participants, Umair’s performance not only secured a new national record but also surpassed his previous bi-fin category record of 60 meters by a margin of two meters.
Reflecting on the challenges of transitioning from his training in Egypt to competing in the Philippines, Umair said: “Adapting to reduced buoyancy due to warmer waters and encountering jellyfish were part of the new environment.”
This marks the third national record Umair has achieved. He previously set two national records of 62 and 64 meters in the free immersion category of free diving at the Andrea Zuccari World Cup held in Sharm El Sheikh in Egypt in October. Free immersion freediving is a discipline that requires divers to descend and ascend pulling a rope.
Umair’s switch from training in free immersion in Egypt to the bi-fin category for this tournament demonstrated his adaptability: “It felt like shifting gears, utilising distinct techniques, and returning to a more familiar discipline. This dive marks a confident depth for me, focusing not just on depth but also on refining dive times for a more enjoyable experience,” he remarked.
“Kaimoo’s support has been instrumental, offering me the freedom to train. This support has allowed me to focus on honing my skills and achieving new heights in my freediving,” Umair added.
“Umair’s third record-breaking dive this year is a testament to his exceptional skill and determination. Kaimoo is thrilled to continue supporting Umair’s journey in the world of freediving. His achievements inspire us, and we congratulate him on this impressive feat, looking for-ward to his continued success,” said Mohamed Manih Ahmed, Kaimoo’s Managing Director.
With this record-breaking achievement, Umair now looks forward to a period of rest before gearing up for the upcoming freediving season.
Kaimoo Resorts and Hotels is a leading tourism company in the Maldives that manages five properties across the country. In addition to Embudu Village and Summer Island Maldives, Kaimoo also operates Equator Village in Addu Atoll, and the Mookai Hotel and Mookai Suites in Male’.
Kuramathi Maldives and Rasdhoo Divers dive into adventure with speciality courses
Kuramathi Maldives, in collaboration with Rasdhoo Divers, is elevating the underwater experience by offering a captivating range of Dive Speciality Courses, tailored for both novices and seasoned divers alike. These courses go beyond the ordinary, immersing participants in topics such as Perfect Buoyancy, Wave, Tides and Currents, Turtle Ecology, Manta Ecology, Marine Ecology, Deep Diver Speciality, and Enriched Air Nitrox Speciality.
Perfect Buoyancy: Master the art of achieving and maintaining perfect buoyancy underwater, ensuring a seamless and enjoyable diving experience.
Wave, Tides, and Currents: Dive enthusiasts can now confidently navigate ocean dynamics, enhancing their skills in diverse underwater conditions.
Turtle Ecology: Gain insights into the captivating world of sea turtles, understanding their behavior, and contributing to their conservation.
Manta Ecology: Delve into the mysterious realm of majestic mantas, exploring their habitat, behavior, and the crucial role they play in marine ecosystems.
Marine Ecology: Discover the delicate balance of marine ecosystems and learn how divers can contribute to their preservation through responsible and sustainable practices.
Deep Diver Speciality: Embark on a thrilling adventure below 18 meters, gaining advanced skills for deep-sea exploration and mastering safe diving techniques and pressure management.
Enriched Air Nitrox Speciality: Unlock the secrets of the deep with Nitrox, ensuring safer and longer dives. Enhance your dive planning, elevate safety, and indulge in extended reef adventures.
These Dive Speciality Courses at Kuramathi Maldives are designed not only to enhance participants’ diving skills but also to instill a sense of environmental awareness and responsibility. As custodians of the pristine underwater environment, Kuramathi Maldives is committed to nurturing a community of conscientious divers dedicated to appreciating and protecting delicate marine ecosystems.
Led by certified dive instructors from Rasdhoo Divers Kuramathi, these courses provide a safe and enjoyable learning experience. Whether you are a beginner eager to explore the underwater wonders or an experienced diver looking to expand your knowledge, Kuramathi Maldives invites you to embark on a journey of discovery beneath the azure waves.
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