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Six Senses Laamu: championing sustainable tourism, protecting paradise



Encompassing almost 2,000 islands in the heart of the Indian Ocean, Maldives is famous for its clear blue skies, turquoise waters and powder soft white sand beaches. With an abundance of dive sites featuring a unique underwater beauty to explore, the country has also become known as one of the world’s best scuba diving destinations.

This tranquil natural beauty of the Maldives still remains unmatched anywhere else in the world. More than a million tourists from around the world come to the Maldives every year to savour this in-explicably impeccable beauty. While several islands remain untouched, many play host to luxurious holiday resorts and palatial accommodations.

With tourism growing rapidly, there is an urgent need to preserve the Maldives’ delicate environment and ecosystem — the top selling point of a country with no other natural resources to depend on. A lot is being done to adopt and maintain a sustainable tourism approach. Resorts are also taking it upon themselves to find new ways to use renewable sources for energy and to cut down on their carbon footprint.

But there is one in particular that has perfected sustainable tourism like no other in the Maldives. Six Senses Laamu, the only resort in the relatively unexplored Laamu atoll, takes sustainable tourism to a whole new level, with environment-friendly practices and conservation efforts deeply embedded in every aspect of the resort — from design, build and service experience.

The 97 award-winning accommodations are a combination of on-land and overwater villas constructed from sustainable materials. Weathered timber jetties lead to the overwater havens secluded by high wooden enclosures. Lush forest surrounds the stylish beach villas in utmost privacy. They all offer the ultimate island lifestyle, with one or two bedrooms, private leisure and dining decks, and many well-thought out features for guest comfort.

An Ocean Beach Villa at Six Senses Laamu. PHOTO/ SIX SENSES

Sea breezes drift amongst the rustic wood under high palm-thatched roofs at the villas and dining venues as well. Many of the mouthwatering dishes prepared by chefs from East and West are created using produce grown on the island. Leaf is a wonderful dining experience perched above the organic garden, while Zen offers Japanese style dining for just 12 guests. International cuisine is featured at the two-level overwater Longitude alongside the one-of-a kind glass wine cellar. Sip Sip at poolside offers a casual dining alternative with beach classics throughout the day whereas Chill Bar, open all day and night, features an authentic Vietnamese menu for lunch and a varied international menu for lunch and dinner.

True to the Six Senses’ philosophy of marrying sustainable practices with uncompromising high-end facilities, Six Senses Laamu has taken standard-setting steps and initiatives to preserve the natural environment.

“Sustainability is definitely one of our pillars, and here at this location we are committed to doing all possible to try and maintain and improve on our sustainability and marine conservation efforts,” General Manager Marteyne van Well says.

Bicycles with custom name tags at Six Senses Laamu. PHOTO/ MALDIVES INSIDER

The sustainability efforts began well before the construction of the resort and continues to this day, with buildings designed to minimise the damage to the island and lagoon. Branches were cut in a controlled way, old plant matter was left to decompose, and only fallen flowers were used for decoration.

From early stages in the design, energy conservation was given a top priority. All villas have been designed to take advantage of passive cooling, while overhanging roofs create shade for the windows, reducing the need for air-conditioning. Where air-conditioning is required, only low energy consuming units are used.

A Family Villa with Pool at Six Senses Laamu. PHOTO/ SIX SENSES

To further reduce the power demand, Six Senses Laamu has installed heat and pressure recovery systems in the production of hot water and freshwater. Through the heat recovery (cogeneration) system installed in the generators, heat is prevented from escaping and being wasted during power generation. Instead, it heats the cooling agent of the generator, gets passed onto a heat exchanger attached to the generator’s radiator and is transferred to the cold freshwater from the desalination plant via stainless steel plates. To reduce energy consumption in producing freshwater from reverse osmosis, an innovative energy recovery system (ERI) has also been installed in the desalination plant; it uses the brine’s energy to pressurise seawater to the same pressure as the brine.

Six Senses Laamu is also actively looking for ways to reduce the waste generated and to dispose of it properly. The resort works with suppliers to reduce packaging; purchases are made in bulk to avoid unnecessary packaging. To reduce the use of plastic bags as much as possible, bins that can be washed or jute bags are used. While no bottled water is imported by the resort, both guests and hosts are provided with re-usable glass water bottles that are bottled on the island. The resort also re-uses several materials, including office paper, kitchen oil, candle wax and waste wood.

Glass being recycled at the Earth Lab in Six Senses Laamu. PHOTO/ MALDIVES INSIDER

Six Senses Laamu has created its own Earth Lab, which serves as a central waste management and recycling hub. Here, waste is separated into paper, plastic, metal, glass, organic waste and toxic waste. A compactor reduces the space required to store the waste before it is sent for recycling and proper handling, while a machine is used for crushing glass into ‘glass sand’, which is mixed with cement to make plant pots and light covers, and garden waste, which is re-used in the garden, pathways and for composting.

Plant pots made using recycled glass at Six Senses Laamu. PHOTO/ MALDIVES INSIDER

A composting site has been built at the Earth Lab where food waste from the kitchen and restaurants is composted together with garden waste, which is shredded using a chipping machine. To make composting as effective and odourless as possible, waste is separated in the kitchen where all the food, except meat and seafood, is collected for composting. Meat and seafood is excluded as these items decompose slower as well as to avoid attracting rodents. The composting soil generated from this activity is re-used in landscaping and gardening.

Six Senses Laamu also features an organic garden where 40 different herbs, vegetables, salad leaves and micro-herbs are grown. Items grown here are used to prepare dishes served at the Leaf restaurant, while Executive Chef Martin Davies and his culinary team have also teamed up with the gardeners to create a daily-changing menu, entirely based on fresh and organic ingredients, served by the pool at Sip Sip. The menu features a different starter, salad, pizza and dessert every day for guests to choose from.

The organic herb garden at Six Senses Laamu. PHOTO/ MALDIVES INSIDER

The Leaf restaurant at Six Senses Laamu. PHOTO/ SIX SENSES

On the marine conservation front too, Six Senses Laamu has set an example. In addition to becoming the first resort in the Maldives to establish and implement codes of conduct for dolphin watching and turtle interaction, the resort enforces a strict no-take stance on the purchase of endangered or vulnerable fish from local fishermen. Reef check, fish watch, shark watch, barnacle studies and biodiversity surveys are conducted all year round, with data submitted to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), Maldives Marine Research Centre and the Olive Ridley Project.

“We make substantial financial contributions to Blue Marine and Manta Trust. We have six marine biologists in that setup; two resident, and two each from Blue Marine and Manta Trust. We also have interns in sustainability and a Sustainability Manager,” Marteyne explains.

“There are many resorts doing several good things, but maybe not with this kind of manpower behind an effort.”

A protected turtle nest at Six Senses Laamu. PHOTO/ MALDIVES INSIDER

Six Senses Laamu also demonstrates operational sustainability through the practice of local sensitivity and support of local communities. The resort engages the talent of locals, with over 50 percent of its staff comprising of Maldivians, especially those from the vicinity of the resort. Additionally, fresh produce such as local fish, fruit and vegetables, and services (eg. for construction or repair work) are from the surrounding area, benefiting the local economy and communities.

Throughout the year, various contributions are made to local sustainability projects. These activities utilise the resort’s human and financial resources, and are primarily funded through Six Senses Laamu Sustainability Fund, which collects 0.5 percent of revenues to be exclusively used for the support of social and environmental projects and initiatives in the Maldives. As such, the resort provides marine education to youth in all 13 schools in the Laamu atoll, and has laid the foundation with an aim to be the first plastic-free atoll in the Maldives by 2020.

Six Senses Laamu team is pictured during a visit to a nearby island as part of its CSR initiatives. PHOTO/ SIX SENSES

“Over time, we will continue to grow and make marine conservation one of the key pillars of the resort, especially in how we share it with our staff and guests, and how we contribute to the local community,” Marteyne says.

“Four Seasons Resort Maldives Apprenticeship Programme is an outstanding vocational training scheme for young and dynamic Maldivians looking to enter the hospitality industry. I would love Six Senses to be that same educator, but in sustainability and marine conservation, so that we can create the next generation of Maldivians who are able to contribute to their communities and to their environment in making it more sustainable.”

A place with inspiring equatorial sunrises above the translucent lagoon and romantic sunsets that dissolve into the evening sea, Six Senses Laamu offers the best of a Maldivian holiday experience. With simple, yet exciting additions such as free homemade ice-creams and personalised bicycles, this palm-fringed island paradise has perfected the concept of “barefoot luxury”, giving you a sense of stepping into a different kind of reality. But what makes Six Senses Laamu truly stand out is its deep-rooted commitment to sustainability that is interwoven with every aspect of the resort — an example where hosts and guests come together to protect the island paradise for generations to come.


Bollywood actress Sunny Leone enjoys holiday in Maldives at Brennia Kottefaru



Bollywood sensation Sunny Leone has been making the most of her well-deserved break by soaking up the sun and enjoying the pristine beaches of the Maldives. The actress, known for her love of travel and self-care, recently shared a montage video on her Instagram from her vacation in the island country.

In the video, Sunny Leone can be seen donning a stylish black and white swimsuit, complemented by a beautiful flower crown. The scenic backdrop of the Maldives serves as the perfect setting for the actress to unwind and bask in the natural beauty surrounding her. Captioning the video, she expressed her delight, saying, “It’s SOOO good,” and tagged her team members.

Sunny Leone’s trip to the Maldives comes as a well-deserved respite after her appearance at the prestigious Cannes Film Festival. The talented actress attended the festival alongside the cast and crew of her film “Kennedy,” directed by renowned filmmaker Anurag Kashyap. The movie, which features Rahul Bhat alongside Sunny Leone, was selected to be screened at the Midnight Screening Section of the 76th edition of the Cannes Film Festival, gaining recognition for its unique storytelling and captivating performances.

Known for her glamorous and versatile roles in Bollywood, Sunny Leone has been a prominent figure in the Indian film industry for years. Her journey from being a former adult film star to a successful actress has inspired many, and her talent and dedication have garnered her a loyal fan base.

Sunny Leone’s choice to spend her vacation in the Maldives is no surprise, as the tropical paradise has become a favored destination among celebrities and travel enthusiasts alike. With its crystal-clear waters, white sandy beaches, and luxurious resorts, the Maldives offers the perfect backdrop for relaxation and rejuvenation.

As Sunny Leone continues to explore the stunning landscapes of the Maldives, her fans eagerly await her next venture on the big screen. With her impeccable style, charisma, and acting prowess, the actress has undoubtedly left an indelible mark on the world of Bollywood and continues to captivate audiences with her talent and beauty.

Whether it’s gracing the red carpet at Cannes or enjoying a blissful holiday in the Maldives, Sunny Leone proves time and again that she knows how to live life to the fullest. Her dedication to her craft and her ability to find balance between work and leisure serve as an inspiration to many aspiring artists and fans around the world.

Sunny Leone’s love affair with the Maldives is no secret. The actress has been drawn to the idyllic archipelago time and again, finding solace in its turquoise waters and serene atmosphere. With each visit, Sunny Leone discovers new corners of this paradise, indulging in the luxurious resorts, engaging in thrilling water sports, and immersing herself in the rich marine life through scuba diving and snorkeling. Her admiration for the Maldives is evident in the way she captures its beauty in her photographs and videos, sharing glimpses of her unforgettable experiences with her fans. It’s clear that the Maldives holds a special place in Sunny Leone’s heart, and she continues to be captivated by its unparalleled charm, making it her go-to destination for moments of tranquility and sheer bliss.

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ELE | NA launches OceanFlow Therapy to honour World Ocean Day



ELE | NA has unveiled OceanFlow therapy, a remarkable and awe-inspiring inward expedition that submerges individuals in the comforting embrace of ocean water. On the occasion of World Ocean Day, an invitation was extended to guests, urging them to embark on a life-altering encounter designed to nurture their mind, body, and soul. Exclusively available at OZEN RESERVE BOLIFUSHI and OZEN LIFE MAADHOO, this pioneering therapy presents a captivating and unmatched chance to rediscover oneself, all the while enveloped in the serene cadence of the ocean’s gentle waves.

OceanFlow therapy is a captivating fusion of various therapeutic modalities, including Watsu, Water Dance, Ayurveda, Shiatsu, Craniosacral, Manual Therapy, Osteopathy, Physiotherapy, and Trigger Point Therapy. These carefully curated elements enhance the holistic Aquatic Bodywork, bringing forth refined techniques and unlocking its full therapeutic potential.

One of the remarkable benefits of OceanFlow therapy is the high magnesium content found in saltwater. As our guests immerse themselves in the ocean or simply bask in its proximity, their muscles and nerves are regulated, blood sugar levels are moderated, and sleep quality is improved. The result is a profound sense of rejuvenation, complemented by the soothing rhythm of the waves, which harmonize their circadian rhythm.

“Vitamin Sea” is not just a playful ocean pun; it highlights the essential role of saltwater as a nutrient for our body’s largest organ – our skin! Abundant in minerals such as magnesium, zinc, iron, and potassium, saltwater boasts remarkable healing properties. It aids in reducing inflammation, safeguarding the skin, and promoting the healing of scrapes, cuts, and sores. Furthermore, saltwater enhances the flow of lymph fluid, potentially reducing the appearance of cellulite.

OceanFlow therapy is particularly effective in addressing a wide range of conditions, including stress symptoms, limited mobility, arthritis, rheumatism, back pain, chronic ailments, headaches, migraines, insomnia, post-operative rehabilitation, accidents, trauma, fear of water, and even during pregnancy. Each session, lasting for one hour, provides a dedicated space for healing and rejuvenation, followed by a further 45 minutes for quiet integration.

The therapeutic benefits of OceanFlow extend to pain management, sleep management, and stress management. By immersing themselves in this holistic approach, our guests can alleviate physical discomfort, improve their sleep patterns, and effectively manage stress levels. OceanFlow therapy facilitates a profound connection with our guests’ inner self while harnessing the therapeutic potential of saltwater and gentle manipulation.

ELE | NA is an acronym for Elements of Nature, which refers to the five elemental forces of nature – Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal, and Water, helps in healing as these energies flow all around and within every individual.

Offering bespoke wellness journeys under the “Wellness Your Way” program, itineraries are designed specifically for the guests’ individual needs, highlighting holistic treatments, alternative health therapies, and gourmet plant-based cuisine throughout the all-inclusive

At ELE | NA, guests embark on a holistic journey of wellness, healing, and relaxation,
feeling rejuvenated and refreshed as a result of life-changing experiences, where local
healing traditions are combined with international beauty and spa treatments to provide a
one-of-a-kind experience.

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Kandooma’s sustainability efforts recognised at annual ‘Journey to Tomorrow’ Impact Awards



Mark Eletr, General Manager of Holiday Inn Resort Kandooma Maldives, has been recognised for efforts in sustainability at the annual InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) Impact Awards, Southeast Asia & Korea.

One of just 14 accolades presented on the night, Mark and his team were recognised in front of their colleagues and peers at a glittering awards ceremony held at the InterContinental Landmark, Hanoi, in Vietnam.

On collecting the award on stage, a thrilled Mark Eletr said,

“To receive an award amongst all of you in this forum, with talented people doing great things it’s an honour. It’s a reward for the whole team, for their creativity and all these great ideas they come up with. And also for our owners who support what we want to do in this very important regard. We operate, particularly in the Maldives, in a very unique and fragile environment, and I’d like to say that as a nation, we are getting it right, but there is a long road ahead, and with what we are doing, hopefully, that sets the standard and encourages others to follow.”

Holiday Inn Resort Kandooma Maldives works across many different areas in the sustainability space, from providing filtered water in reusable glass bottles to the sandbar and island clean-ups and investing in solar energy. The resort is also an eager participant in studies to measure the effectiveness of alternative renewable energy sources such as waves. Reef regeneration projects, creating an island farm and working with the natural island environment to create regenerative spaces all contribute positively to the resort’s overall goals.

“Coinciding with World Environment Day, this accolade encourages us to continue to grow in this space and to search out collaborations with organisations such as our recently announced and formalised partnership with Parley Maldives.”

“We measure most of our activities; I think this act helps drive us harder towards our goals. We share the information in an easy-to-understand format with our guests to amplify the message wider, touching and shaping opinions of guests experiencing the Maldives,” says Mark.

Two years ago (February 2021), IHG Hotels & Resorts launched ‘Journey to Tomorrow’, a series of ambitious new commitments to make a positive difference for people, communities and the planet over the next decade. Guided by IHG’s purpose to provide True Hospitality for Good, hotels and resorts work with those who stay, work and partner with them to help shape the future of responsible travel.

Journey to Tomorrow sets out five clear ambitions, building on the progress and achievements made against IHG’s 2018-2020 targets:

  1. Champion a diverse culture where everyone can thrive  – with 400,000 colleagues worldwide, we can create a future where all experience equality, inclusion and fairness.
  2. Improve the lives of 30 million people in our communities around the planet – with hotels spanning 100 countries; we’re proud to be at the heart of our communities and recognise how our global reach presents opportunities to shape a positive future.
  3. Reduce our energy use and carbon emissions in line with climate science  – we know the hotel sector accounts for 1% of global carbon emissions, and we’ve set science-based targets to maximise the use of renewable energy, reduce emissions of existing hotels and to target new builds to operate at very low or zero emissions by 2030.
  4. Pioneer, the transformation to a minimal waste hospitality industry  – with only 9% of plastic currently being recycled and around one-third of food produced being wasted across the globe, we’re passionate about providing our guests with a more sustainable stay. We’ll also form partnerships to create circular solutions for major hotel items that work for the greater good.
  5. Conserve water and help secure water access in those areas at greatest risk  – demand for water often exceeds supply in many parts of the world, with the UN predicting an increase of 20-30% by 2050. So, it’s never been more critical for us to find ways to reduce our usage and work with others towards sustainable solutions that create water access for all.

Each of the ambitions and commitments in IHG’s Journey to Tomorrow plan is rooted in understanding what is most important to colleagues, guests, hotel owners and investors when it comes to operating thoughtfully and growing sustainably. Our plan also contributes to the universal framework of the UN Sustainable Development Goals, which aims to provide a blueprint for a better, more sustainable future for us all by 2030.

Located in the South Male atoll just 40 mins from the airport by boat, Holiday Inn Resort Kandooma Maldives is a beautiful island paradise. White sandy beaches, swaying coconut palms and turquoise waters form the backdrop for various leisure pursuits and some of the best diving in the Maldives. Guests can choose from Garden and Beach Villas, two-storey Beach Houses and the popular Overwater Villas for their stay. Families are well catered for with a choice of 2- and 3-bed villas and the Kandoo Kids’ Club and its full activities programme. Six food and beverage outlets ensure healthy appetites are satisfied and the flavours of the Maldives are explored. For guests who desire the ultimate in relaxation, sun loungers and hammocks are located around the island. The Kandooma Spa by COMO Shambhala offers the ultimate tranquillity and escape for body and mind. Visit

“Each and every one of us has a part to play. Working collaboratively to find new sustainable solutions, sharing ideas with colleagues, friends and guests, and supporting our local communities, I believe together we can shape the future of responsible travel.” said Mark Eletr, General Manager, Holiday Inn Resort Kandooma Maldives.

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