Raffles Maldives Meradhoo fully debuts with 16-villa ‘Overwater Island Experience’
Raffles Hotels & Resorts has opened the overwater villas at Raffles Maldives Meradhoo, completing the resort’s offering.
Set on the southern tip of the Maldives in the remote and pristine Gaafu Alif Atoll, Raffles Maldives Meradhoo’s Beach Island Experience opened in May. A palm tree-peppered private island, it comprises 21 beach villas and residences, a sublime spa, beachside restaurants and a world-class dive centre with an on-site marine biologist.
Just moments away by boat, Raffles Maldives Meradhoo’s Overwater Island Experience — a unique experience, offering complete intimacy, unreachable by foot — completes the resort.
Officially opened on September 22, Raffles Maldives Meradhoo’s Overwater Island Experience completes the resort. With its vast overwater villas and residences, sophisticated Nikkei restaurant Yuzu and sunset-facing Yapa pool bar, it will provide unparalleled luxury to those who dream of a life spent on the water.
Together these two private islands offer two distinct experiences, bound together by Raffles’ legendary service.
All the facilities of the resort – and the very best of the Maldives – will be at their full disposal. A unique offering, a Marine Butler is available to every guest and will happily lead snorkelling tours of the resort’s two remarkable and endlessly fascinating house reefs.
Gaafu Alifu atoll is one of the world’s largest and deepest atolls and the clear, blissfully warm waters immediately surrounding the Raffles resort teem with a kaleidoscope of colourful fish. Guests are encouraged to keep an eye out for Apollo, one of the 20 resident hawksbill and green turtles that regularly swim by to say hello.
“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 breathtaking coral reefs, we create a place where guests can enjoy the best of both worlds in a destination known for its stunning surroundings,” Oliver Larcher, General Manager of Raffles Maldives Meradhoo, was quoted in a statement, as saying.
On the beach island, the overwater Raffles Spa combines Eastern practices with age-old local influences and offers highly personalised facials by Biologique Recherche; rejuvenating body treatments from Aromatherapy Associates; and signature manicure and pedicure services by Margaret Dabbs London.
An expansive gym caters to all fitness levels; yoga sessions are held on an ocean-facing deck; a jogging route winds its way along gardens abloom with hibiscus and bougainvillea; visiting practitioners will lead practice sessions in tai chi, mindfulness and more.
Relaxed feet-in-the-sand dining is encouraged here, too. The Firepit is an outdoor barbecue restaurant where hearty seafood and meat specialties such as spicy lobster with green papaya and tender beef tenderloin are flame-grilled over the charcoal fire. The tables and chairs carved from the sand are set directly on the shore for uninterrupted views of the starlit skyline.
Starting with healthy smoothies and freshly baked pastries, breakfast is a highlight at the all-day international restaurant Thari.
Paying homage to its namesake at Raffles Singapore, guests can enjoy the signature Maldives Sling at the Long Bar which features a special concoction of gin, grapefruit, coconut, cinnamon and clove that mirrors the Maldivian evening sunset.
The overwater island makes the most of its seascape setting at pool bar, Yapa, where world-class mixologists create signature cocktails inspired by the spirits from South America and Japan. Guests can enjoy a Pisco sour and delicious tacos whilst watching the evening sunset over the Indian Ocean.
At adjacent fine-dining restaurant Yuzu, Peruvian chef Anibal Torres serves authentic Nikkei cuisine with a refreshing blend of Japanese and Peruvian influences using sustainable seafood from a locally sourced market. Bespoke dining experiences include a sunrise breakfast on a private sandbank or an exclusive Champagne and sashimi by the cruise deck with the company of playful dolphins.
Wherever guests spend the night, they will reside in some of the largest villas in the Maldives – each featuring a large marble bathtub, private pool and outdoor shower. Surrounded by lush foliage, the beach villas offer a sunrise or sunset view whilst the overwater villas overlook the dazzlingly turquoise water.
“Accor is bringing to the resort our expertise in delivering unparalleled luxury experiences renowned in our Raffles brand. The Raffles collection now includes 14 distinguished properties in leading addresses across 12 countries and we are thrilled to welcome guests at the first Raffles in the Maldives,” Patrick Basset, Chief Operating Officer, Accor Upper Southeast & Northeast Asia and the Maldives, said.
On both islands, the luxurious two-bedroom residences provide an exclusive retreat for families and friends, whilst the Raffles Royal Residence offers the perfect setting for a very special celebration. Opening on the beach island next year, this three-bedroom hideaway is the ultimate Indian Ocean luxury that features an infinity pool, endless space and a retractable roof on its upper level so guests can enjoy the beautiful night sky under the stars.
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.
Raffles Maldives Meradhoo boasts 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 Resort, Fairmont Maldives Sirru Fen Fushi, Mӧvenpick Resort Kuredhivaru Maldives and Raffles Maldives Meradhoo, as well as the recently-opened Pullman Maldives Maamutaa.