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Intl researchers in Maldives develop new way of growing islands, coastlines



Researchers at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and in the Maldives have come up with a solution to help coastal communities threatened by climate change: submersible objects carefully placed to promote the growth of beaches and islands.

The Growing Islands project is the work of MIT’s Self-Assembly Lab and Maldivian organisation Invena, who came together to explore how design could stop coastal erosion and sea-level rise — two problems associated with increasing global temperatures.

MIT’s Self-Assembly Lab typically produces objects that build themselves, such as inflatables with multiple final forms. These structures respond differently depending on the amount of air pressure inside, thanks to the intricate geometries 3D printed in their interior.

The Self-Assembly Lab has been eager to see if these computational design approaches could work on a more macro level.

MIT designs self-growing sandbars, islands and beaches

“For a long time I’ve thought, ‘isn’t there a way that we could utilise some of the energy that’s just naturally around us in disasters — you know earthquakes, tornadoes, landslides, tsunamis — and do something productive’,” Self-Assembly Lab head Skylar Tibbits said.

“Couldn’t we use that to design and build rather than destroy?”

From that initial impetus the team came to focus on wave energy. Invited to the Maldives by Invena, they noted that sandbars, shaped by waves, grow rapidly and follow a predictable pattern.

They thought that if they could analyse this pattern and replicate it, they might be able to strategically control the sandbar growth. In effect, they would make self-growing sandbars, islands and beaches.

Tests to continue over coming years

After experimenting with variously shaped submerged objects and wave patterns in a tank in their lab, the group took their work into the field in February, sinking several three-by-three-metre structures off the Maldivian coast.

The structures are large bladders, sewn out of canvas and biodegradable material and filled with sand. The researchers say they are low-cost, easy to deploy, adaptable and work with nature rather than fighting against it.

The group will continue to observe the results and run more field tests over the coming years.

While the title of the project is Growing Islands, the objects actually have three distinct potential uses: the first is to construct all-new islands. The second and third Tibbits says are probably more immediately relevant: supporting existing islands and beaches.

About 40 per cent of the world’s population is thought to live in coastal areas, which are threatened by erosion, rising lea levels and storm activity heightened by climate change.

Growing islands “more elegant solution” to artificial reefs

One of the current antidotes to this is the building of artificial reefs, which works on similar principles as the Growing Islands project but employs less precision and more man-made materials.

Tibbits also says the Self-Assembly Lab’s proposal is many times better than dredging, where sand is dug out from one section of the ocean and moved to another.

This is the current process for building artificial islands, but it is energy intensive, can negatively impact marine ecosystems and requires frequent attention to stop deposits washing away.

“We want to let structures grow and emerge and build themselves by using wave energy or natural materials, found materials and simple forces in the environment,” Tibbits said.

“We think it’s a more elegant solution or a more sustainable approach to building than manmade fixed infrastructure.”

Several artificial island projects are currently in development around the world, including what is set to be one of the world’s largest in Hong Kong and a network of nine joined together into a tech hub outside of Copenhagen.

Architecture firm BIG also recently unveiled a concept for a floating city that could help populations threatened by extreme weather events and rising sea levels.


Discover ultimate privacy at Nika Maldives



Imagine a place where the world fades away, leaving you with nothing but the gentle sound of waves and the soft touch of sand beneath your feet. A place where privacy is not just a promise, but a guarantee. Welcome to Nika island Resort & Spa, Maldives, the only resort that offers private beaches for an unparalleled experience of seclusion and tranquility.

At Nika, your very own private beach awaits. Picture yourself enjoying a personalised BBQ under the stars or designing your own destination dining experience, tailored to your every desire. Whether it’s a romantic dinner for two or a family feast, the possibilities are endless.

John Miller, a recent guest at Nika, shares his unforgettable experience: “Staying at Nika’s private beach villa was the ultimate privacy I’ve ever experienced. Born in London, I’ve never known such seclusion in my entire life. The resort is lush with vegetation, and the fauna and flora are simply amazing. It’s a hidden gem in the middle of the Indian Ocean. The local stories and the museum displays are fascinating.”

But the allure of Nika doesn’t end there. The resort’s dive centre offers exceptional dive courses, taking you to spectacular dive sites that reveal the breathtaking underwater world. Whether you’re a seasoned diver or a beginner, the wonders beneath the surface will leave you in awe.

After a day of exploration, indulge in the Lotus Spa at Nika. Offering a range of excellent massages, from traditional local techniques to various modern varieties, the spa promises to rejuvenate your body and soul.

Nika is a small resort, yet it is brimming with entertainment and activities. From water sports to cultural experiences, there’s something for everyone. It’s a sanctuary where you can ground yourself, reconnect with nature, and discover a level of privacy that is truly extraordinary.

Escape to Nika and hide away at your secret beach. Here, the ultimate privacy and relaxation await.

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Unwind and Explore: Hilton Maldives Amingiri Resort & Spa Invites Families to a Rejuvenating Summer Escape



Hilton Maldives Amingiri Resort & Spa, an all-pool villa haven nestled amidst the breathtaking natural seascapes of the Indian Ocean, invites families to embrace the joy of relaxation and the spirit of adventure this summer with a slew of experiences designed to inspire playful discoveries and foster tranquil reconnections with the mind and body.

Fun for All Ages

Budding adventurers and creative little spirits alike can discover new adventures at Krakengiri Kids’ Club, one of the largest kids’ clubs in the Maldives. Led by a multilingual team of certified childcare professionals, young guests can engage in an exciting array of daily activities that combine learning and play.

Upstairs, Re:Fuel, a rooftop lounge for teens, hosts engaging milkshake-making workshops and fun family movie nights under the starry Maldivian sky.

In June, the resort offers a Holiday Camp for teens, who can personalize their wellness experiences as follows:

  • Pick up new sports such as tennis, pickleball, and badminton on the multi-purpose court with the hotel’s resident Sports Animator
  • Work out with a personal trainer at the fitness center
  • Try aerial yoga for beginners, yoga for better sleep, breathwork, and meditation with the resident yoga practitioner
  • Enjoy a restorative massage in the overwater treatment villas of Amingiri Spa.

The experience is available at USD 150++ per person for a combination of any two 30-minute sessions.

Restful Retreats

Amingiri Spa introduces Water Connect, a private in-villa pool experience guided by a certified water shiatsu specialist. The gentle movements and targeted massage techniques melt away tension and create a deeply relaxing sensation akin to being cocooned in the womb. The serene escape is available between 4:00 pm to 5:30 pm at USD 150++ for 30 minutes.

Starting in June, guests can indulge in a brand-new Sleep Wellness menu designed to ease the mind and body into a state of deep and rejuvenating slumber. Guests can choose to unwind with a calming signature massage on the spa’s Skye Deck, bask in the timeless glow of an evening hammam ritual in the modern hammam room, or embrace tranquility with an in-villa session incorporating guided meditation, yoga, and breathwork.

Exclusive Offer

Guests who stay a minimum of four nights enjoy the added value of a half board meal plan and complimentary shared roundtrip speedboat transfers with Maldivian Bliss. This offer is available for stays through to December 20, 2024.

From May through to September 30, 2024, children stay and dine free: parents staying with two young children ages 11 years and below in an Overwater Suite with Pool and any of the Two-Bedroom Beach and Overwater Villas will also enjoy the half board meal plan and complimentary shared roundtrip speedboat transfers when booking Maldivian Bliss. Hilton Honors members enjoy full points for their stay. Terms and conditions apply.

Hilton Maldives Amingiri Resort & Spa is part of Hilton Honors®, the award-winning guest-loyalty program for Hilton’s 22 distinct hotel brands. Members who book directly on the hotel’s website will have access to instant benefits, including a flexible payment slider that allows members to choose nearly any combination of points and money to book a stay, an exclusive member discount, free standard Wi-Fi and the Hilton Honors app.

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Maldives Madridistas: Patina Maldives, Fari Islands Nets Exclusive Football Camp Partnership with the Real Madrid Foundation



Younger guests at Patina Maldives, Fari Islands can embrace new patterns of play this summer at an exclusive, Maldives-first Real Madrid Foundation football camp. From 4 July – 12 August, a youth coach will lead a comprehensive Real Madrid Foundation programme of daily soccer sessions for ages 5-9yrs, 10-14yrs, and 15-17yrs. The coach will be joined by an elite player ambassador from UEFA’s all-time no. 1 ranked football club toward the end of the programme.

This summer’s inaugural Patina Maldives x Real Madrid CF Foundation football camp is the first edition in an ongoing partnership, with additional future football camp dates to be confirmed. Led by a licensed Real Madrid Foundation coach, sessions will focus on developing each participant both individually and as part of the group, in order to ‘Play The Real Way’ – the training methodology that combines play, as well as sports values.

Sessions will take place on a new, purpose-built 6 a side astroturf pitch located near the Fari Marina Village at Patina Maldives.

All participants will receive an official camp football camp shirt, shorts, socks, drawstring bag, sweatbands, and cap; while those completing a minimum of four days’ coaching will also be presented with a Real Madrid Foundation participation certificate.

Real Madrid Foundation football clinics at Patina Maldives, Fari Islands are priced at USD195++ per child per session for guests of the resort. Bookings are also open to guests from neighbouring resorts, from USD250++ per child per session.

Rates at Patina Maldives, Fari Islands start from USD2,054 (approx. GBP1,620) per night based on two adults sharing a One Bedroom Pool Villa including daily breakfast, complimentary Guest Benefits, tax, and service. Terms and conditions apply.

For more information and reservations, please visit or contact For more information on Pathways, please see here.

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