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One&Only Reethi Rah to host Maldives Travel Awards People’s Edition 2018 launching

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Maldives Travel Awards People’s Edition 2018 will be launched on June 20 at One&Only Reethi Rah resort, organiser Maldives Association of Travel Agents and Tour Operators (MATATO) has announced.

In a statement, MATATO said a cocktail reception for media and partners will be held at One&Only Reethi Rah.

An overwater villa at One&Only Reethi Rah. PHOTO/ ONE&ONLY

Set on one of the largest islands in North Male Atoll, the all-villa One&Only Reethi Rah resort offers an unparalleled array of luxurious options to create an unforgettable holiday. Sleek and spectacular, with unprecedented privacy, One&Only Reethi Rah inspires extraordinary journeys for the soul. From extensive outdoor adventure options, including snorkelling and diving in the exotic underwater world, to the mesmerising One&Only Spa, guests are spoilt for choice.

The resort offers 122 thatch-roofed villas and a wide range of culinary experiences, including the Botanica restaurant, which offers the ultimate in organic garden-to-fork cuisine, and Rabarbaro, which offers genuine Italian fare, as well as a superfoods breakfast menu.

Guests at One&Only Reethi Rah can also enjoy an array of spa experiences, including private sunrise yoga classes on a secluded sandbank, a ‘Twilight Spa Rendezvous’ massage experience under the stars, ‘foot rehab’ – a concept created by the resident yoga instructor and the Bastien Gonzalez therapist which combines yoga and foot massage, Barber+Blade – a men’s grooming and shaving studio and a Spa Courtyard featuring a vitality pool, outdoor sauna and steam room.

The resort has been crowned the Best Hotel in Asia and Africa at The ULTRAS 2017 awards, the Best Island Resort in the World at the Haute Grandeur Global Hotel and Spa Awards, and Leading Food and Beverage Resort, Leading Human Resources Management and Leading Family Resort awards at the 2017 Maldives Travel Awards, as well as one of the best hotels in the world by global luxury lifestyle guide Elite Traveler and by the Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards 2017.

One&Only Reethi Rah won three prestigious awards at Maldives Travel Awards 2017. PHOTO/ MATATO

The Maldives Travel Awards People’s Edition recognises successful pioneers and long-serving individuals in the travel industry of Maldives. Through this award, MATATO aims to recognise the professionals contributing to the growth of the industry, and acknowledge their talent, dedication and achievements.

This year MATATO will confer the award to five individuals, selected based on their contribution to the industry. Winners will be chosen by a panel of veterans, from sectors across the industry.

“… we believe that the recipients of this award will be a testament to the country, of the success of this industry,” MATATO said, in the statement.

Initiated in 2012 by MATATO, Maldives Travel Awards celebrate and honour the best tourism and hospitality products in the Maldives, while fostering relationships with suppliers and local travel agents. From 20 categories in 2012, the awards have now expanded into three editions totalling 55 categories.

Like last year, MATATO will host three editions: the People’s Edition, which recognises successful pioneers and long serving individuals in the tourism industry, a Guesthouse Edition, which celebrates the outstanding performance of the up and coming guesthouse sector, and the Gala Edition, which is exclusive for winners in the categories for resorts, airlines and liveaboards.

Nominations are being accepted for the Gala Edition.

MATATO will also combine the grand gala with the travel conference happening a day before, bringing an international audience of industry experts.

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Maldives celebrates arrival of 2024’s 1 millionth tourist

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Maldives on Thursday welcomed the one millionth tourist to visit this year.

The one millionth tourist is a Thai named Sutapa Amonwivat, who arrived from Singapore with her husband and two children. This is her second visit to Maldives.

Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC) and the Ministry of Tourism gave a warm welcome to Sutapa at the Velana International Airport (VIA) Thursday afternoon. She was welcomed at the VIA by tourism minister Ibrahim Faisal, MMPRC Managing Director Ibrahim Shiury and senior officials of various relevant agencies.

After welcoming her with traditional offerings, she was presented with various gifts by the ministry, MMPRC, customs, immigration, Maldives Association of Travel Agents and Tour Operators (MATATO) and Trans Maldivian Airways (TMA).

Maldives reached one million tourists in June, three weeks earlier than last year. The number of tourists reached one million on July 16, 2023.

Maldives expects to reach 2 million tourists this year.

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New air route connects Chongqing to Maldives

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Chongqing Airlines on Monday began its inaugural flights to Maldives.

The Chongqing-Male route, scheduled three times a week, is expected to strengthen the bonds between China and the Maldives, opening up exciting new opportunities for tourism and cultural exchange.

The inaugural flight was welcomed upon its arrival at Velana International Airport (VIA) in Maldives, where local officials and tourism representatives expressed their enthusiasm for this new development.

“We warmly welcome our friends from China to our beautiful islands. This new connection strengthens our bonds and opens up new opportunities for tourism,” the tourism ministry said on X.

Maldives currently welcomes four airlines from China, including China Eastern, Beijing Capital Airlines, Xiamen Airlines.

In January, Maldives government urged tourism stakeholders in both Maldives and China to ramp up efforts to restore China’s position as the primary source market for Maldives tourism, a status held before the onset of Covid-19.

China, being the largest source market for Maldives tourism before the pandemic, saw a resumption of tourist arrivals from January 2023 after a three-year hiatus due to the pandemic. In 2023, the Maldives welcomed 187,118 Chinese tourists, marking a significant recovery in numbers. This year, the Maldives has welcomed the most number of tourists from China, with over 107,940 or 11.5 percent of total arrivals by June 12. 

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CROSSROADS Maldives Introduces Weixin Pay at resorts for seamless guest experience

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CROSSROADS Maldives has introduced WeChat Pay, widely known as Weixin Pay in China, across its world-class resorts, SAii Lagoon Maldives, Curio Collection by Hilton, and Hard Rock Hotel Maldives. This payment option is made available to enhance the convenience and overall experience for guests from China, making their stay in the Maldives more enjoyable and hassle-free.

Understanding the needs of the diverse guests, CROSSROADS Maldives has integrated WeChat Pay into operations, allowing guests from China to easily and securely conduct transactions using a payment method familiar to them. The introduction of WeChat Pay is a testament to CROSSROADS Maldives’ dedication to enhancing guest satisfaction by offering exceptional experiences at every turn. What is also expected through this initiative is that the guests could benefit from better foreign exchange rates, translating to better savings on their expenditures during their stay.

The option is available for guests in-house conveniently at both resorts as well as across the Marina at CROSSROADS Maldives where a wider variety of unparalleled dining and retail experiences are available for all guests. The day visitors from China will also therefore equally benefit from this new introduction at the Maldives’ premier multi-island integrated leisure destination.

SAii Lagoon Maldives, Curio Collection by Hilton, is a vibrant tropical escape that offers unique and locally inspired experiences. The resort features spacious rooms and villas, a variety of dining options, and an array of recreational activities designed to cater to the desires of modern travellers. Guests can escape to the island’s SAiisational natural beauty, enjoy water sports, and indulge in spa treatments, all while relishing the personalised service that defines Hilton’s Curio Collection.

Hard Rock Hotel Maldives brings the iconic Hard Rock spirit to the tranquil shores of the Maldives. This family-friendly resort offers a perfect blend of relaxation and entertainment, featuring music-inspired experiences, live performances, and the brand’s signature amenities. With luxurious accommodations, diverse dining options, and a plethora of activities for all ages, Hard Rock Hotel Maldives ensures an unforgettable holiday experience for every guest.

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