Salil Panigrahi, founder and Managing Director of Atmosphere Hotels & Resorts, has been conferred the Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Award, the highest honour conferred on overseas Indians.
Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Awards are conferred by the Indian president as part of the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas Convention on Non-Resident Indians, Persons of Indian Origin or an organisation/institution established and run by the Non-Resident Indians or Persons of Indian Origin in recognition of their outstanding achievements both in India and abroad.
The 16th edition of the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas Convention was held virtually on Saturday. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the convention.
The 2021 Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Awards were conferred by Indian President Ram Nath Kovind at the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas Convention in the valedictory session of the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas celebrations.
A jury-cum-awards committee, with Indian Vice-President Venkaiah Naidu as the Chairman and External Affairs Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar as the Vice-Chair and other distinguished members from various walks of life considered the nominations for the Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Awards 2021 and unanimously selected the awardees.
Salil was recognised with the Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Award in the field of tourism.
A Chartered Accountant from India, Salil started his career about 25 years back at Oberoi Hotels & Resorts in the finance department. His forte lies at the intersection of two very diverse skills – an intuitive understanding of numbers (thanks to his CA background) and a passion for visual design.
Salil believes his life revolves around his passion for people, their needs and aspirations. As an entrepreneur, he also understands that it is not only about delivering guest experiences but also meeting the expectations of shareholders, colleagues and partners.
After his stint at Oberoi, Salil worked at Six Senses Group, founded by Indian-British hotelier Sonu Shivdasani. He led the Finance Department there but was also responsible for several different functions including project management for resort construction and launch.
In early 2003, Salil partnered with investors from the Maldives to form EoN Resorts, a company that engaged in resort development and consultancy for luxury resorts in the Indian Ocean holiday destination.
At EoN, Salil spearheaded the development and launch of several iconic resorts including OZEN Reserve Bolifushi, Constance Halaveli, Six Senses Laamu, among several others.
In 2012, Salil wanted to embark on his next phase and launched with his Maldivian partners a brand called Atmosphere, to partially own but primarily take on management contracts of resorts within the Indian Ocean.
Atmosphere Hotels & Resorts offers guest-centric resort experiences through unique resort plans, offering guests a range of all-encompassing experiences, with varieties of dining options as well as a number of complimentary amenities and activities that ensure a relaxed, hassle-free holiday experience at each resort, all the while staying true to the brand’s core philosophy: ‘The Joy of Giving’.
Atmosphere Hotels & Resorts’ first property, Atmosphere Kanifushi, opened its doors in December 2013. The group opened its second property, OBLU by Atmosphere at Helengeli in November 2015; followed by OZEN Life Maadhoo in July 2016; OBLU Select at Sangeli in July 2018; and VARU by Atmosphere in October 2019.
In 2020, Atmosphere launched The OZEN Collection, an award-winning, uber-lux hospitality brand.
OZEN resorts offer ultimate privacy blended with signature luxury aesthetics, for blissfully immersive holidays in pristine, Indian Ocean locations.
OZEN Maadhoo, the first resort under the brand, opened in July 2016. OZEN’s success story continues in the Maldives with the addition of OZEN Reserve Bolifushi, which opened in December.
OZEN Life Tangalle takes the brand to the south coast of Sri Lanka and is scheduled to be launched in 2023.
Award-winning Grand Park Kodhipparu Maldives launches indulgence winter offer
Grand Park Kodhipparu Maldives recently announced scooping up the title of “Best Boutique Resort in Maldives” for the second consecutive year, awarded by the Travel Trade Maldives which comes as no surprise as it is one of the best destinations to experience the unreal sunsets you will ever see while projecting extravagant character and easy-going exotica.
What’s really shaking things up this holiday season at this cozy luxury boutique island resort is that you will be spoiled for choice with one beach for every day. That is right – home to four beautiful beaches, Wai, Veli, Dhigu, and Divehi, all with their unique character – letting you sunbathe, snorkel, windsurf, and cycle overwater around the island to your heart’s content. Touching down at Kodhipparu, adventure seekers can revel in countless opportunities for wild coral reef dives, parasailing up the sky for a bird’s-eye view of the lagoon, or even simply zen out to sunrise and sunset with the resident yogi.
To celebrate the win, and to rev up the appetite with seaside excursions, the resort announced the launch of the exclusive “Kodhipparu Indulgence” offer with an unparalleled dining experience and a consequential gourmet coma that is fully worth every penny you’ve spent on your extravagant holiday.
Set your seaside expedition dreams to a reality, with attractive offerings from the resort-owned marine sports centre as well as the luxury overwater spa, that will have you wanting to extend your holiday. What’s more, you get to enjoy complimentary roundtrip speedboat transfers saving you quite a few pennies on your vacation.
The little explorers with big dreams are welcome to stay and dine free of charge sharing the room with the parents, whether it is by spending their time decorating some yummy cupcakes or catching a kiddies movie under the stars with popcorn.
If you are looking for a romantic touch, with an ample amount of floating rose petals in your pool, or a swoon-worthy proposal set up at a secret corner of the island out of bounds to others or even a candle-lit dinner on the secluded beaches with you and your beau, all you have to do is message your lifestyle host to work the magic and make it happen for you. With the Kodhipparu dedicated lifestyle host service, everything is just a message away.
As is all good things, this offer is only for a limited time period, so make use of this exclusive indulgence package at Grand Park Kodhipparu comes with an amazing 35% discount on all villa categories.
Simply head over to https://www.parkhotelgroup.com/north-male-atoll/grand-park-kodhipparu-maldives/offers/winter-getaway/ to book your holiday with a flair of fun, freedom, and serenity that is promised to make you keep coming back for more!
Abdulla Wisam: A journey of excellence and growth in the Maldivian hospitality industry
In the heart of the stunning Maldives, where luxury resorts and crystal-clear waters come together to create a paradise on Earth, there are individuals who work tirelessly behind the scenes to ensure that every guest’s experience is nothing short of exceptional. One such individual is Abdulla Wisam, whose remarkable journey in the hospitality industry is a testament to his dedication, passion, and unwavering commitment to providing the best possible service to guests.
Abdulla Wisam’s journey in the hospitality industry began right after completing his schooling. In 2003, he embarked on his professional career by joining Dhoveli Beach Resort & Spa, where he gained his first taste of the world of hospitality. It was here that he discovered his passion for creating memorable guest experiences and building relationships with visitors from around the world.
After his initial foray into the industry, Wisam’s career path continued to evolve. His dedication and hard work caught the attention of industry leaders, leading him to take on roles of increasing responsibility. His time at Meeru Island Resort saw him as an Outlet Cashier and Night Auditor, roles that allowed him to develop a deep understanding of the operational aspects of a resort.
Wisam’s determination and eagerness to learn led him to the iconic Four Seasons Resort Maldives at Landaa Giraavaru, where he started as a Recreation Attendant. Over time, he showcased his exceptional skills in guest relations and management, and he was promoted to the position of Front Office Supervisor. His journey with Four Seasons served as a stepping stone for what was to come next.
In 2014, Wisam joined the W Maldives, a resort known for its luxurious offerings and unparalleled guest experiences. Starting as a Welcome Team Leader, he quickly rose through the ranks due to his impeccable guest service skills and innate leadership abilities. His promotion to Guest Experience Manager was a testament to his ability to not only meet but exceed guest expectations. He was then transferred to The St. Regis Maldives as the Assistant Front Office Manager with the pre-opening team.
As his career trajectory continued its upward trajectory, Wisam took on the role of Front Office Manager at prestigious resorts such as Milaidhoo Island, Raffles Maldives, and The Standard Maldives. These roles allowed him to refine his management style, hone his problem-solving skills, and contribute to the overall success of each resort.
Wisam’s journey eventually led him to COMO Cocoa Island, a resort renowned for its unparalleled luxury and exquisite attention to detail. Joining as the Front Office Manager, he embraced the challenges and responsibilities that came with the position. His dedication, combined with his innate ability to create genuine connections with guests, led to his promotion as the Director of Rooms.
Wisam’s journey in the Maldivian hospitality industry is a remarkable tale of perseverance, growth, and a genuine passion for creating exceptional guest experiences. His diverse roles, spanning from recreation to guest experience management, have equipped him with a holistic understanding of the industry. His commitment to continuous improvement and dedication to delivering top-tier service have not only benefited the resorts he’s been a part of but have also contributed to elevating the reputation of Maldives as a premier luxury travel destination.
As Wisam continues to shape the guest experience landscape at COMO Cocoa Island, one can only imagine the heights he will reach and the impact he will make on the ever-evolving hospitality industry of the Maldives. His journey stands as an inspiration to aspiring hoteliers and a testament to the boundless opportunities that await those who are truly passionate about their craft.
A remarkable tale of wanderlust: Naito Takashi’s 103rd journey to the Maldives
The azure waters of the Maldives have long been a magnet for travelers seeking paradise on Earth. Among these wanderers, one name stands out – Naito Takashi, a Japanese tourist whose boundless enthusiasm for the Maldives has led him to visit this tropical haven a staggering 103 times. His unwavering love for this island nation, coupled with its mesmerizing beauty, has turned his visits into a remarkable testament to the allure of the Maldives.
For the past 24 years, Naito Takashi has visited Maldives between three to five times annually, embarking on a journey that has spanned more than two decades. His tale is one of dedication, passion, and a deep-rooted connection with the captivating landscapes that the Maldives offers. Each visit is not just a vacation; it’s a renewal of his profound relationship with the natural wonders that have captured his heart.
Naito Takashi’s 103rd arrival to the Maldives was met with a warm and heartfelt welcome from none other than the Tourism Minister himself, Dr. Abdulla Mausoom. This gesture symbolizes the deep appreciation the Maldivian people have for their loyal and devoted visitors. The ceremony held aboard the M/V Blue of the Fun Azul Fleet was a fitting tribute to a traveler who has become an honorary ambassador of the Maldives.
The M/V Blue, Fun Azul Fleet, holds special significance for Naito Takashi. As an avid diver, he has found his perfect companion in this cruise boat specialized in diving charters. The vessel offers schedules tailored to explore the best dive spots around the Maldives’ islands, making it an ideal partner for a diving enthusiast like Naito Takashi. The crystal-clear waters of the Maldives have witnessed countless underwater escapades orchestrated by this intrepid traveler.
The Maldives’ Ministry of Tourism has lauded Naito Takashi’s enduring passion for the nation’s beauty. Their tweet acknowledging his multiple visits serves as a testament to his unique and cherished relationship with the country. He has witnessed the ever-changing landscape of the Maldives, from its pristine beaches to its vibrant marine life, and has undoubtedly contributed to the thriving tourism industry.
Naito Takashi’s story also reflects the profound impact that travel can have on an individual’s life. His unwavering commitment to exploring the Maldives has not only enriched his own experiences but has also brought attention to the natural wonders of Maldives. It stands as a reminder that the act of traveling is not just about ticking off destinations from a bucket list; it’s about forming connections, fostering appreciation, and creating lasting memories.
As Naito Takashi continues his journey through the Maldives, his story resonates as an inspiration to fellow travelers and a tribute to the unyielding allure of this island paradise. His 103rd visit is not just a numerical milestone; it’s a celebration of an extraordinary bond between a traveler and a destination, a bond that has grown stronger with each passing year and promises to endure for years to come.
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