Leading Maldivian hotel brand Villa Hotels & Resorts has announced its transformation to Villa Resorts, debuting the refreshed brand at ILTM Cannes ahead of its official relaunch in April 2023.
Beyond a simplified name and new visual identity for the parent brand, each resort has been repositioned behind a unique Resort Concept, encompassing improved products, elevated service, innovative programming and brilliant communication to create real value for guests.
Since 1986, Villa Resorts has developed and successfully run more than 1,100 rooms distributed across its five private island resorts: 5* Sun Island, 5* Paradise Island, 5* Royal Island, 4* Holiday Island, and 3* Fun Island. Two brand new islands are also in development, expanding the group’s portfolio to seven properties.
Now, as the next generation of the family-owned and locally-run business takes the helm, Villa Resorts is making itself ready for the next generation of travellers.
Working in partnership with Luxury Branding, the leading luxury hospitality consultancy, Villa Resorts has undertaken a brand-led transformation of its entire company.
At the heart of the organisation, a new Vision, Purpose and Values serve as its guiding lights, ensuring that progress is rooted in a shared ideology.
As one of only a few brands in the Maldives that is owned, operated and wholly run by locals, Villa Resorts is driven by the personal vocation of returning its guests to a stronger place in their lives. This important purpose is accomplished through the natural beauty of the destination combined with the native warmth of its people.
The Villa Hotels & Resorts name has been simplified to Villa Resorts, with the new visual identity paying homage to the history and wonder of the islands.
At resort level, the ‘Villa’ prefix plays the role of parent brand and the suffix (e.g. Park, Nautica, Haven etc.) that follows represents the resort concept. The combined word marks provide a recognisable yet flexible framework for a growing a family of sub-brands.
Each of the resort sub-brands is invested with its own unique personality, reflected in bespoke typography, imagery, colour palettes and styles of communication. This approach allows each property to make the most of its distinct character and strengths while clearly belonging to the Villa family.
In April 2023, the Villa Resorts master brand will relaunch with a new website, designed and built by Journey, and the rebrand of two of its existing resorts. Paradise Island will transform into Villa Nautica, a maritime celebration of Quayside Life. Expressing refinement and exclusivity of taste, Villa Nautica’s polished environment brings to life a chic nautical experience through its modern, urban-style interiors. Complemented by exceptional scuba diving and other water sports, the resort embraces the seafarer lifestyle with a glamorous twist.
Simultaneously, Sun Island will transform into Villa Park, a lush and never-ending Lagoon Pleasureground teeming with experiences. Its refreshed design is anchored in bold colours that embrace the island’s vibrant jungle and azure lagoons. Recently named Maldives’ Leading Green Resort 2022 at the World Travel Awards, the team continues to spearhead sustainability efforts with new concepts such as ZERO – Villa Park’s hidden gem of a restaurant set amidst the palms, serving fresh produce grown in the island’s gardens.
Rooms, restaurants and public areas have been upgraded and refurbished with stunning interiors by London-based design studio, House Nine. Led by Jojo Barr, her team of trusted and skilled crafts and tradesmen have translated the new Resort Concepts for each island into beautiful and functioning physical environments.
F&B concepts have undergone comprehensive modernisation under the guidance and training of Food Concepts 360, led by Michelin-starred Irish chef Conrad Gallagher, who has collaborated with the Executive Chefs on each island to conceptualise and deliver refreshed dining experiences.
Sandstone, a label of award-winning South African wines and MCC exclusive to Villa Resorts, has been curated by world-renowned sommelier Kent Scheermeyer. The name, Sandstone, celebrates the merging of two countries and two landscapes, from the stone mountains of the Cape’s vineyards to the sandy shores of the Maldives. The Sandstone collection comprises two whites, a sauvignon blanc and chardonnay; two reds, a pinot noir and merlot; as well as a rosé. The collection also includes a Méthode Cap Classique and a rosé sparkling wine.
In collaboration with Cape Town coffee roastery, Deluxe Coffeeworks, Villa Resorts has developed its own coffee brand: Press & Pot. Villa Resorts ethically sources and imports its own green beans and roasts them on-site at Villa Nautica for distribution across all of the brand’s islands. On-site, Press & Pot coffee is served by expertly trained baristas, and sold through various retail channels for guests to enjoy at home.
In Q4 2023, Holiday Island will reopen as the group’s luxury flagship, Villa Haven, following a complete remodelling. Anchored in nature, this Humble Heaven transcends the boundaries between indoors and outdoors, with 68 sea-facing villas – all with private pools – creating an intimate and secluded island experience. The design is raw, resourceful and reserved, celebrating nature’s beautiful basics with extensive use of sustainable materials that showcase native Maldivian creativity.
At each resort, original and fresh local programming takes the form of exciting new signature experiences; distinct to each island and designed to activate the new Resort Concepts.
Service too has been an important focus, a process that commenced with a renewal of the brand’s vision, purpose and values. Villa Resorts is partnering with Forbes Travel Guide to translate this genuine ideology and service philosophy into world-class brand standards and quality assessments.
In late 2025, Royal Island will transform into Villa Village, a resort that celebrates authentic Maldivian culture.
Fun Island is scheduled to reopen in 2027, debuting a new luxury concept following a full renovation, and Villa Eden, a luxury eco resort, is being developed on the island of Maanenfushi.
Ibrahim Siyad Qasim, Group Managing Director, Villa Shipping and Trading Company, commented on the rebrand: “Today, we open a new chapter in the history of our proudly Maldivian resort company; a company that was founded by my father almost four decades ago. In 2019, with the guidance and support of our partner, Luxury Branding, we embarked on Project Blue Ocean, an ambitious top to bottom, inside to out transformation of our business. It represents a shift from competing towards creating, and signals my aspiration to lead our company to new levels of guest satisfaction and growth. I am honoured to be stewarding Villa Resorts through its next chapter of development and, together with my siblings, proud to introduce our company and welcome you into our family.”
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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