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New Soneva Academy offers educational courses for children

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Soneva, the award-winning luxury resort operator, recently launched Soneva Academy, offering a series of educational courses for older children and teenagers aged 12+ at Soneva Fushi and Soneva Jani in the Maldives.

The courses cover a range of fascinating topics relevant to the Maldives and, after completing a course, participants receive a certificate in an awards ceremony.

Soneva Academy currently offers five courses at Soneva Fushi and two at Soneva Jani.

Marine Life of Maldives

Marine Life of the Maldives (Soneva Fushi and Soneva Jani) lets young Sonevians dive into the underwater world to learn about coral reefs and their importance as an ecosystem.

They will find out what goes on in and around reefs, how they are created, which marine animals call them home and the threats that currently face reefs the world over.

Part of the course includes learning the basics of conducting a scientific survey, focusing on the house reef, before getting in the water and carrying out a small survey themselves.

They will then analyse the survey findings, discuss the results and draw conclusions based on the data.

Night Sky in Maldives

The Night Sky in the Maldives (Soneva Fushi and Soneva Jani) is an out-of-this-world course, where participants discover what lies beyond the earth’s atmosphere.

Young learners observe the night sky, guided by the resort’s resident astronomer, to see how it changes depending on their location.

The astronomer will explain the sorts of celestial bodies they observe, discussing what they’re made of, and where they’re located in relation to the rest of the cosmos.

On the final night, all the participants will have a chance to look through the telescope to see these celestial bodies up close, learning about the evolution of astronomy over the ages.

The course will also cover well-known constellations, their origins and the incredible stories behind them.

Mosquitoes, Mosquito-Borne Diseases

Mosquitoes and Mosquito-Borne Diseases (Soneva Fushi) delves into one of the most dangerous animals on the planet: the mosquito.

The first day includes a screening of the Discovery Channel documentary ‘Mosquito’ in which Dr Bart Knols, Soneva’s Managing Director of Science and Conservation, features prominently alongside Bill Gates and other specialists in the field.

The documentary offers insights into mosquitoes and how they affect the world.

The course also takes a close look at how Soneva Fushi has been tackling the island’s mosquito population since early 2019 without a single drop of insecticide, as well as Soneva’s plans to roll-out this sustainable pest management practice across other Maldivian islands and resorts.

Zero Waste, Plastic Pollution in Maldives

Zero Waste and Plastic Pollution in the Maldives (Soneva Fushi) teaches young learners all about plastic and its use in our daily life – from what it is, to why we use it.

Participants will discover how to recognise various types of plastics and their negative impact, especially for small island nations like the Maldives.

They will learn about the collaborative action between government, businesses and the community to tackle plastic pollution and find out about the impact of waste in the Maldives and beyond.

They will also learn about practical actions towards a zero-waste lifestyle that they can implement at home, including how to make their own toothpaste and body scrub from waste materials.

Adventure of Corbin

The Adventure of the Corbin (Soneva Fushi) combines nautical history with reading the stars to navigate and survival tips for being deserted on a small Maldivian island.

Inspired by the Corbin, a French cargo vessel that sank in 1602, this fascinating course starts at Soneva Fushi, where young Sonevians will learn about the marine world and island life in the Maldives.

From there, they will be transferred to the uninhabited island of Innafushi, either by speedboat or Soneva in Aqua, where they will camp for two nights, snorkel the site of the wreck and re-live the real-life adventure of 17th century sailors.

Four of the courses (Marine Life of the Maldives; The Night Sky in the Maldives; Mosquitoes and Mosquito-Borne Diseases; Zero Waste, and Plastic Pollution in the Maldives) are split into three, two-hour modules across three days (priced at $150++ per day), with a complimentary, 20-minute exam at the end of the third day.

The Adventure of the Corbin is for three nights, three-and-a-half days, with a fully inclusive price of $1,500 ++ per child when travelling by speedboat, or $2,500 ++ per child when travelling on the Soneva in Aqua yacht.

More courses will be added to Soneva Academy’s offering in the future, based on sustainability initiatives, as well as covering the many areas of expertise found at Soneva’s resorts.

Dr Bart Knols, Managing Director of Science & Conservation, is proud of these new experiences that are being added to Soneva’s unique array of guest offerings.

“Soneva Academy merges the world of luxury travel with that of scholarship and academic learning,” he says.

“It adds meaning to a holiday in the splendid environs of the Maldives and will hopefully contribute to developing a future generation that will harness and protect the beauty of our planet.”

Soneva is a pioneering family of hospitality properties, offering holistic encounters in luxurious and inspiring environments – from world class resorts to outstanding natural locations.

Soneva Fushi, Soneva Jani and Soneva in Aqua in the Maldives, and Soneva Kiri in Thailand rebuke the traditional concept of luxury and instead promise the luxury of time, purity, and solitude.

Every day, guests are encouraged to discover sandy feet, inspired minds, and full hearts. Combining luxury with a conscientious approach to sustainability and the environment, and proactively changing the nature of hospitality, it delivers intuitive service and meaningful experiences to its guests.

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Jumeirah Olhahali Island hosts heartwarming celebration for local community on Children’s Day

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In recognition of Children’s Day, Jumeirah Olhahali Island has hosted a group of 20 special guests from Southern Community Empowerment Association of Maldives (SCEAM) for a day of exploration and inspiring experiences on 11 May 2024.

SCEAM, an umbrella NGO dedicated to the empowerment and engagement of local communities, works across the Southernmost atolls of the Maldives to support in building resilience and fostering collective growth.

“We are delighted to collaborate with SCEAM and welcome these wonderful children to our blissful island,” said Mohamed Ashraf, General Manager of Jumeirah Olhahali Island. “With over 57% of members hailing from the Maldives, we believe in the importance of supporting neighbouring institutions and organisations while prioritising the well-being of our future successors. This event was a fantastic opportunity to create lasting memories and spread smiles on Children’s Day.”

The day commenced with a warm welcome ritual from the resort’s management team and the friendly members of its Kids Club. The children then participated in a hands-on cake decoration activity with the resort’s talented chefs, crafting delicious treats to share with their families. Following a delightful lunch at the poolside all-day dining restaurant, GLOW, the little guests engaged in a creative crafting session guided by artists from the island’s MURACA Art Studio. As the day unfolded, the children had the opportunity to explore the resort’s contemporary beachside villas and indulge in some splash fun in the private infinity pools. Concluding the visit, each child received a special gift and a certificate of participation to cherish as part of their Olhahali Island memory.

“We extend our heartfelt gratitude to Jumeirah Olhahali Island for organising this delightful event in celebration of Children’s Day,” said Shimla Ahmed, Co-Founder & President of SCEAM. “The experience brought immense joy and happiness to the children, and we are excited for future collaborations to continue spreading positivity and building a brighter future for our younger generation.”

With consistent educational programmes and regular outreach to nearby islands, Jumeirah Olhahali Island remains committed to supporting local initiatives and fostering meaningful connections with the community. The all-villa resort strives to make a positive impact and create timeless experiences for guests and residents alike.

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Hideaway Beach Resort & Spa to celebrate Egg-Citing Easter this April

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Hideaway Beach Resort & Spa, renowned for its unparalleled luxury and breathtaking natural beauty, invites guests to immerse themselves in an extraordinary Easter experience from March 28th to April 1st this year. Promising an array of activities and events designed to delight guests of all ages, ensuring a memorable holiday escape.

At the heart of this Easter celebration is the renowned French pastry chef, Thomas Alphonsine, who will grace the island with his culinary expertise. Chef Alphonsine will tantalise taste buds with his delectable pastries, offering guests the opportunity to savour the finest in French pastry artistry. Additionally, guests can participate in immersive pastry-making lessons led by Chef Alphonsine himself, providing a unique opportunity to learn from a master of the craft. Chef Alphonsine also serves as a consultant for Barry Callebaut, the world’s leading manufacturer of high-quality chocolate and cocoa products. Additionally, he is an expert judge for the prestigious international competition, the World Chocolate Masters, which crowns the finest chocolate chef worldwide.

But the festivities don’t end with gourmet delights. Guests can groove to the rhythm of live music performances set against the backdrop of the resort’s pristine beaches, adding a touch of enchantment to every moment. Moreover, families can join in the excitement of Easter Egg hunts and a plethora of activities with the beloved Easter Bunny, promising joy, and laughter for all.

The Easter celebration at Hideaway is a truly inclusive experience, with activities tailored for both children and adults. From March 28th to April 1st, children can revel in specially curated activities designed to spark imagination and create lasting memories. Activities such as Egg Painting, Face Painting, a Chocolate Masterclass with Chef Alphonsine, and a Fun Fair, to name a few. Meanwhile, adults can indulge in their own array of Easter-themed activities from March 29th to April 1st, ensuring there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

Nestled amidst the serene beauty of the island, the Spa offers the perfect setting for a rejuvenating Easter retreat. Whether guests seek relaxation, adventure, or simply a moment of tranquillity, this exquisite large island resort promises an unparalleled escape from the ordinary.

For more information about the programme, please visit here. Contact the resort’s reservations team here.

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Reconnect with nature in ‘Greener Easter’ celebrations at Nova Maldives

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Nova Maldives is inviting visitors to be a part of a purposeful Easter programme, running from 29th to 31st March 2024. The soulful island resort situated in the South Ari Atoll is offering a weekend filled with activities to remind us of the profound connection between humanity and the Earth and to celebrate our communion with Mother Nature. The laidback, all-natural island offers the opportunity for ultimate rejuvenation, surrounded by nature and marine life in a serene and remote slide of paradise.

In a special chance to immerse themselves in wholesome activities designed to nurture life from the ground up, guests will be invited to participate in the meaningful Coconut Tree Planting Ceremony, reforesting the island’s sandbanks with even greener shores, leaving greenery and memories that will flourish for years to come. Choose between plant-based cooking classes that let you explore the diverse flavours of Maldivian cuisine and a festive chocolate egg crafting workshop with organic and fair trade chocolate, led by the resort’s skilled pastry chef, to indulge in the joy of creating confectionery delights.

On Easter Sunday morning, guests will wake up to an environmentally conscious and vegan Easter Egg Hunt, exploring hidden parts of Nova’s Island. For a serene experience, visitors can try a unique seaweed body wrap treatment at the ocean-side Eskape Spa, allowing the nutrients and essence of the sea to reduce fatigue and replenish energy.

An Oceanic Delights seafood feast with sustainably sourced seafood, served at Wink Beach on Good Friday, will allow guests to explore the freshest grilled dishes under Maldivian starry skies, set against the peaceful lagoon. From delightful brunch spreads and an Earthy Dinner at Soul Kitchen on Easter Sunday, guests are provided with culinary experiences inspired by the Earth, curated with natural ingredients and many vegan options. Nova’s gastronomic offering extends to refined High Tea sessions, featuring dainty coconut-flavoured delicacies and bite-sized chocolate treats.

Ending the weekend on a high note, travellers can raise a toast to the first breeze of Spring during the Green & Glam Cocktail Party at Solis Pool, with the finest spirits, and handcrafted cocktails and alcohol-free mocktails.

Nova is a laidback place with soul that sparks joy and is designed for the real connection – catered to adults and couples with love for wildlife and wellness, promising a haven of absolute serenity, surreal marine life and once-in-a-lifetime experiences. Expect nothing short of sheer bliss in this natural island destination where the call of nature beckons and where all the joy and solace so often lost to the hustle of life can be rediscovered.

Easter flash sale with 50% off along with a complimentary 30-minute spa session for two and a sunset cruise for two now available. To book a “Greener Easter” getaway and rekindle your sense of wonder, visit the resort’s website here.

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