Six Senses Laamu Hosts First Annual Water/Wo/Men Event

Maldives Promotion House – Hollywood stars Daryl Hannah and Kate Bosworth, Jose Garcia, Melanie Laurent, supermodel Helena Christensen, British singer Beth Orton, Foo Fighters keyboard player Rami Jaffee, Bollywood Director Shekhar Kapur and German actress Michaela Merten united with the biggest names in water sports and marine conservation, brought together by Six Senses Resorts & Spas to raise funds for UNESCO Biosphere Reserve through the BLUE Marine Foundation.

Six Senses, the resort industry leader in sustainable development, in partnership with +H2O, hosted the first Six Senses Water/Wo/Men event between 30th September and 4th October at its Six Senses Laamu resort in the Maldives. +H20 is a platform for water awareness that brings together a community of athletes, conservationists, non-profits and corporations to create purposeful solutions that facilitate positive change on a local to global scale.

Proceeds from this event will be donated to three key marine charities, the Water Charity, Plant a Fish and Blue Marine Foundation. Blue Marine Foundation will place the proceeds from this event into the Baa Atoll Conservation Fund to manage the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve.

Water/Wo/Men, from iconic surfers Bethany Hamilton and Layne Beachley, Buzzy Kerbox , Tripoli Patterson, Terry Simms to windsurfers Jake Miller, Levi Siver, Keith Teboul and Pascal Bronnimann, kite surfers Mark Shinn and Alex Caizergues, free diver Anna von Boetticher and extreme wakeboarder Duncan Zuur offered water sports clinics to Six Senses Laamu guests throughout the week as well as impressing guests with an adrenalin pumping ‘water sports show’ surfing and wakeboarding over the famous ‘Yin Yang’ wave a short boat ride away.

Conservationists lead engaging dialogues, workshops and debates on the most pressing marine and drinking water issues facing our planet today, examples included ‘Giving the Oceans A Voice’ moderated by recognized biologist and oceanographer Dr. Callum Roberts and featuring National Geographic Explorer Jon Bowermaster and Fabien Cousteau, the aquatic filmmaker and Founder of Plant A Fish; ‘Marine Reserves: A Panacea For the Ocean?’ with Mitali Kakkar, Indian marine conservationist and featuring Carl Gustaf Lundin, Director of Global Marine Programme, International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Chris Gorell Barnes, Executive Producer of End of the Line; ‘Water as a Human Right/ Dr. Jacqueline Chan and Averill Strasser, co-founders of Water Charity.

“Global industrial growth, most of it very far away, has brought the Maldives to the frontline in the battle against rising sea levels. What happens to the Maldives and its 400,000 inhabitants may foretell the future of coastal regions around the globe. That is why events such as Watermen are so vital,” Chairman and Founder of Six Senses Sonu Shivdasani said.

“From this year forward, Six Senses Water/Wo/Men  will offer an innovative, meaningful opportunity to play in the Indian Ocean among living legends while taking part in a unique part to move our global community – in the words of Maldivian President Mohamed Nasheed and Time magazine Hero of the Environment – ‘from apathy to action.’”

Guests were entertained by impromptu performances by Beth Orton, Daryl Hannah and Rami Jaffee during the week at Chill bar and a memorable sunset beach jam involving Maldivian musicians on local drums at the finale ‘Barefoot Ball’ evening.  Nightly open-air screenings at Cinema Paradiso on the beach were accompanied with bowls of ice cream chosen from the 50 flavours on offer at the ice cream parlour, movies shown included ‘The End of the Line’ and a surprise screening of Soul Surfer introduced by Bethany Hamilton.

Chefs kept everyone sustained with ethically sourced gourmet food enjoyed with sustainable wines from Australia’s Margaret River region. Winemakers from this region hosted a gourmet wine tasting dinner on the beach whilst Fabien Cousteau, Daryl Hannah, Helena Christensen and Kate Bosworth enjoyed a Zero Carbon dinner at LEAF.

“It has been an honour to have been part of this extraordinary event sharing ideas with existing ocean advocates and through the screening of the End of the Line and the debates throughout the course of the week engaging a new and wider audience. We are delighted to be able to play a part in another important marine reserve project in the Indian Ocean through this unique partnership with Six Senses resorts & spas” Co founder Blue Marine Foundation, Chris Gorell Barnes said.

This timely gathering took place at the new Six Senses Laamu, the only resort in remote Laamu Atoll, 150 km north of the equator and famed for its ultrafine soft sand.  Laamu’s ninety-seven responsibly luxurious villas sit back on the beach nestled among the lush indigenous vegetation or over the clear turquoise lagoon. Each offers complete privacy along with Six Senses signature creature comforts. Using local, sustainable materials allowed Six Senses to make only the lightest footprint on this otherwise untouched paradise.

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