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Universal’s newest resort Faarufushi Maldives to open in December 2018

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Faarufushi Maldives, the latest addition to the portfolio of leading local resort operator Universal Resorts, is set to open in December.

Offering a combination of all the things travellers want from a luxury Maldivian resort, the brand new resort is set on the private island of Faarufushi in a remote part in the northern Raa atoll, and is just a scenic 50-minute journey by seaplane or a flight via Ifuru Domestic Airport from the main Velana International Airport.

The island of Faarufushi in Raa atoll. PHOTO/ UNIVERSAL

Faarufushi will welcome guests from December 15, 2018 with 80 spacious villas that offer a striking realisation of contemporary design amidst a naturally stunning seascape.

Ten Beach Bungalows and 27 Beach Retreats with Pool are cocooned around the island in addition to 39 sleek Ocean Retreats with Pool stilted over the azure lagoon of Faarufushi. The three Ocean Suite with Pool and the Island Residence with Pool offer the ultimate sanctuary with an expansive infinity pool overlooking at its very own stretch of the Indian Ocean.

A Beach Retreat with Pool at Faarufushi Maldives. PHOTO/ UNIVERSAL

A Beach Bungalow at Faarufushi Maldives. PHOTO/ UNIVERSAL

An Ocean Retreat with Pool at Faarufushi Maldives. PHOTO/ UNIVERSAL

Indulgent dining choices will be offered in a modern and most unpretentious environment with a full view of the horizon whilst focusing on the highest quality of ingredients in three restaurants and two bars.

Iru is the all-day dining restaurant located next to Sangu Bar, overlooking the infinity pool of the resort, presenting unlimited views of the sea. The crescent shaped overwater signature restaurant, Eclipse offers an immersive gourmet experience and a non-obstructed panoramic view. At the reef’s edge is Boli, with seating open to the sky, offering a guaranteed sunset view throughout the year, complemented with the finest wines, carefully crafted cocktails and music. Athiri is a casual beachside gathering bringing several island facilities together, including water sports and gym overlooking the beach and ocean. Athiri’s centre piece is the collection of dining options serving tapas, teppanyaki and more, under one roof.

A 3D rendering of the all-day dining restaurant at Faarufushi. PHOTO/ UNIVERSAL

A 3D rendering of the Boli Bar and Eclipse Restaurant at Faarufushi Maldives. PHOTO/ UNIVERSAL

Nika Spa blends in with the blissful vegetation of the island with six treatment rooms, each representing a tree canopy and a garden compound with a hydro pool surrounded by outdoor salas and relaxation pavilions.

A 3D rendering of the spa at Faarufushi Maldives. PHOTO/ UNIVERSAL

The Faarufushi reef has magnificent overhangs and swim throughs, which will allow guests to discover the abundant marine life that lies within its very own lively reef. This spectacular reef will definitely be the ideal experience for divers and snorkelers alike.

“There’s much to see in the Raa atoll. On shore, at sea and underwater. Exploring and discovering dolphins, visiting other islands, sailing into the sunset is only a small part of the comprehensive programme,” Universal Resorts said, in a statement.

“Nearly every experience at the resort is infused with an element of sea view and a design that blends in with nature. Preserving the natural vegetation and beauty of the resort has been meticulously thought through during the design and conception of the resort by the owners and developers, Faarufushi Management Pvt. Ltd.”

Faarufushi is an island owned and developed by Faarufushi Investment Pvt Ltd and managed by Universal Resorts Management Pvt Ltd.

Universal Resorts operates the largest resort collection in the country, including iconic properties such as Kurumba Maldives, Velassaru Maldives, Kuramathi Maldives, Baros Maldives, Kandolhu Maldives, Dhigali Maldives, Maafushivaru, and Milaidhoo Island Maldives.

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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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