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Raffles Hotels debuts in Maldives with opening of Raffles Maldives Meradhoo

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Raffles Hotels & Resorts has announced the opening of Raffles Maldives Meradhoo resort.

The 21-villa beach island experience in the rare Maldivian oasis of Gaafu Alifu Atoll is AccorHotels’ fourth property in the Maldives and the first under the Raffles brand.

The main island opened opened on May 9, featuring Beach Villas and Beach Residences that offer private pools, generous living spaces and lavish marble bathroom with a sunken bathtub and outdoor shower. The Raffles Royal Residence and a secluded collection of Overwater Villas and Residences, which lies adjacent to one of the vibrant house reefs in the Maldives, is set to launch during the last quarter of 2019.

A hidden gem with unparalleled views of the Indian Ocean, the resort is the perfect overwater escape, offering two distinct experiences for those seeking a private get-away or simply to enjoy the natural pristine water surroundings.

In each of the terraces, guests can marvel at the marine life below through the glass flooring panels. There is an extraordinary display of natural beauty with white, powdery sand that frames sparkling clear waters. Two magnificent reefs provide a thriving habitat for the marine life including baby sharks, turtles and a myriad of tropical fish. For those that want to learn more about the underwater realm, the hotel’s resident marine biologist and team of marine butlers are on hand to personalise guest experiences that bring unique and beautiful insights of the underwater world. At night, the moon and stars reflect on the mirror-like ocean, creating an extraordinary spectacle.

“Boasting 1200 islands, Maldives is home to the best beaches in the world and now, with the opening of Raffles Maldives Meradhoo, is also home to the best of luxury hospitality. We look forward to offering guests the most natural beauty set within an incredible resort that offers the finest luxury hotel experience and unrivalled service in the destination,” Patrick Basset, Accor’s Chief Operating Officer for Upper Southeast and Northeast Asia and the Maldives, was quoted in a statement, as saying.

Guests can relish a range of rich gastronomic delights served at the Thari all-day diner, Yuzu, Peruvian and Japanese fusion restaurant and The Firepit, where various flame-grilled chef specialty dishes are served under the stars. Private destination dining options abound, from caviar breakfasts on a sandbank, most thrillingly reached by jet ski, to sunset cruises where the champagne flows freely. A selection of tapas and freshly-prepared sashimi, original cocktail concoctions, inspired by the national drinks of South America and Japan, can be experienced at the overwater Yapa Sunset Bar or simply explore a list of the world’s most prestigious Champagnes and wines at the popular Long Bar.

Set over the water, the award-winning Raffles Spa offers a private escape opening doors to discovery with authentic treatment expressions. Experience the Raffles Spa sensory journey with luxury facials by Biologique Recherche, a transformative body treatment using the purest extracts and essential oils by Aromatherapy Associates or indulge in first class manicure and pedicure concept from Magaret Dabbs London. Recharge with an invigorating workout at the overwater fitness centre, a soothing seaside yoga session or choose from a selection of water sport activities to balance the physical and mental wellbeing.

 

 

Located at the southern end of the Maldives archipelago, near the equator on the Gaafu Alifu Atoll, the resort is accessible by a 55-minute domestic flight from Velana International Airport followed by 15-minute speedboat ride from Kaadedhdhoo Airport.

“For couples looking for an unforgettable romantic hideaway, our exceptionally spacious villas and the discreet expertise of the Raffles butler service redefines the resort experience. From intimate dining with our private chef service to snorkelling and diving in the world’s most breath-taking coral reefs, we create a place where guests can enjoy the best of both worlds in a destination known for its stunning surroundings,” Olivier Larcher, General Manager of Raffles Maldives Meradhoo, said.

 

AccorHotels took over the management of the existing resort on the island of Meradhoo from Dubai-based hospitality group Jumeirah in 2017, with plans to reposition the luxury resort under the iconic Raffles Hotels & Resorts brand.

Once completed, Raffles Maldives Meradhoo will boast 21 island villas and 16 ocean villas with private pools, three restaurants, a scenic cocktail bar and an array of facilities and activities to relax, rejuvenate and reinvigorate the body, mind and spirit. These facilities include an award winning luxury spa, overwater fitness centre, yoga programmes, water sports, private dining options, 24-hour butler and private chef service, along with snorkelling and diving at its finest. The resort’s PADI-certified dive centre offers adventures through the wonders of some of most breath-taking coral reefs in the world.

A newcomer to the Maldives booming tourism industry, AccorHotels is on a major expansion drive with four existing properties and one under development in the island nation. The French multinational hotel group runs Mercure Maldives Kooddoo ResortFairmont Maldives Sirru Fen Fushi, Mӧvenpick Resort Kuredhivaru Maldives and Raffles Maldives Meradhoo, as well as the upcoming Pullman Maldives Maamutaa.

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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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