JLF Soneva Fushi has revealed the list of speakers for the 2023 edition, bringing with it an inspirational line-up of critically acclaimed authors, celebrated thinkers and cultural leaders to the Maldives, from May 12 to 21, 2023. A partnership between award-winning hospitality brand Soneva and Teamwork Arts, producer of the iconic Jaipur Literature Festival, JLF Soneva Fushi will once again host a one-of-a-kind celebration of the arts, culture and performance on the sands of Soneva Fushi in the Maldives’ Baa Atoll.
With 20 world-renowned authors now confirmed, the JLF Soneva Fushi 2023 programme is set to cover a fascinating spectrum of topics: from nation-building to the natural world, fiction and filmmaking to hard-hitting journalism, astronomy to geopolitics, mental health to poetry and scientific discovery to memoir. The star-studded 2023 line-up includes Booker Prize winning author Howard Jacobson; Booker Prize recipient, novelist and playwright Damon Galgut; professor of astronomy and physics at Yale University, Priyamvada Natarajan; filmmaker and actor Shekhar Kapur; chief foreign correspondent for The Sunday Times, Christina Lamb; award-winning historian and staff writer at The Atlantic, Anne Applebaum; poet and philanthropist William Sieghart; classicist Mary Beard; Booker and Whitbread Prize winner DBC Pierre; CEO and Co-Founder of Soneva, Sonu Shivdasani OBE; Co-Founder and Co-Director of the Jaipur Literature Festival and author of 21 books, Namita Gokhale; Polish member of the European Parliament, Radosław (Radek) Sikorski; author-columnist and former Indian Ambassador to the United States, Navtej Sarna; British historian and best-selling author Peter Frankopan; poet and filmmaker Muzaffar Ali; novelist and travel writer Pico Iyer; author and skincare expert Sharad P. Paul; Managing Director of Teamwork Arts, Sanjoy K. Roy; historian and Festival Co-Director William Dalrymple; and member of the Economic Advisory Council to the Indian Prime Minister, Sanjeev Sanyal.
Held across ten days and two weekends, JLF Soneva Fushi’s festival programme illuminates South Asia’s vibrant literary legacy and invites guests to take part in stimulating panels and workshops, book and poetry readings, and so much more. Each weekend is dedicated to keynote addresses, gala dinners on the sand, live music performances and film screenings at the outdoor Cinema Paradiso, with specially curated menus prepared by Soneva Fushi’s award-winning chefs. Weekdays at JLF Soneva Fushi will focus on close-knit sessions, author discussions and a range of engaging workshops to spark creativity and curiosity. Further fuelling inspiration through the mind, body and soul, every morning will start with yoga and meditation, dance workshops, guided snorkelling with Soneva Fushi’s resident Ocean Guardians, and glassblowing at Soneva Art & Glass, the Maldives’ first hot glass studio.
Guests can join the joyful barefoot celebration and explore endless possibilities at every turn with Soneva’s exclusive Festival offer. Starting from USD 6,500 for a three-night stay at Soneva Fushi, the offer includes full access to the entire festival programme, luxurious private villa accommodation, daily full board dining and round–trip domestic transfers for two guests. Bookings made before February 28, 2023, will also receive an additional 10 per cent reduction on the package rate.
“A truly bespoke experience, JLF Soneva Fushi’s remarkable programme is an opportunity to reconnect with the pure joy of literature and the arts”, said Sonu Shivdasani OBE, CEO and Co-Founder of Soneva. “The exceptional setting of our barefoot island in the Maldives, coupled with our contributors and guests staying with us for at least a weekend makes JLF Soneva Fushi unlike any other literature festival. It’s this greater, intimate access to authors, deeper understanding, new friendships and stronger bonds that make this barefoot festival so unique. I cannot wait to welcome a line-up of outstanding international authors to our shores once again.”
Sanjoy K. Roy, Managing Director of Teamwork Arts, producer of the iconic Jaipur Literature Festival, said, “JLF Soneva Fushi is food for the mind, body and soul. An exceptional gathering of collective wisdom and expertise from across the world, set in the most idyllic setting of the Baa Atoll, with delectable fare, exhilarating conversations and spectacular vistas.”
Soneva Fushi can be easily reached through Velana International Airport in the capital Malé, or Maafaru International Airport in the Noonu Atoll. Every stay at Soneva Fushi also lets guests indulge in Soneva’s signature experiences and award-winning services – from Barefoot Guardians on hand 24/7 to anticipate every request and transformative wellness treatments at Soneva Soul, to access to the renowned chocolate, ice cream and cheese parlours, and an exciting programme of children’s activities at The Den, one of the largest children’s zones in the region.
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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