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The Westin Maldives Miriandhoo Resort presents exclusive Marriott Bonvoy moment: Manta rays with US Paralympic gold medalist Gregory Burns



The Westin Maldives Miriandhoo Resort, situated in Baa Atoll, the first UNESCO Biosphere Reserve site in the Maldives, has announced an extraordinary opportunity for Marriott Bonvoy members to embark on an unparalleled adventure through the specially curated Marriott Bonvoy Moment. From September 14-18, 2023, lucky bidders will have the rare privilege of snorkelling with majestic manta rays in Hanifaru Bay, the world’s most concentrated area of manta rays, accompanied by the illustrious Paralympic swimmer and artist Gregory Burns. 

Gregory Burns, is a highly accomplished athlete and internationally renowned fine artist. Known for winning gold medals and setting world record in swimming at three Paralympic games, Gregory inspires many with his discipline and perseverance. For over three decades, he has painted professionally across 60 countries, and received the prestigious 2016 Sports Artist of the Year Award and a commission from the International Olympic Foundation to create paintings for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games. Polio, which Gregory contracted as a child, stimulated him to prioritise mobility and to express himself through sports and arts. 

The unparalleled Marriott Bonvoy Moments package includes a four-night stay in one of the wellness resort’s overwater villas with a private pool—promising an unforgettable and rejuvenating retreat for the guests from September 14 to 18, 2023 to experience and embrace Westin’s wellbeing pillars. Refreshing welcome drinks prepared at the Westin Fresh from the Juicery corner await upon arrival, and at Island Kitchen guests may savour well-balanced daily breakfast to boost their energy for the day.

Prior to the snorkelling trip with Gregory Burns on September 15, guests are invited to join the Move Well stretching session, an important element to increase flexibility which will help them to accomplish the range of motion required before swimming along with the champion as well as the gentle manta rays. As part of Westin Hotels & Resorts WestinWORKOUT Gear Lending program, guests may make use of the Recharge and Recovery kit by Hyperice, a wellness gear to soothe and recover tense muscles post snorkel, before refuelling their body and mind with restorative sleep in the award-winning Heavenly Bed. 

Upon day three, bid winners of the Marriott Bonvoy Moments will get in touch with their artistic flair while joining an underwater sketching session with Gregory and Maldivian artist Shameen Moosa. Art can be a different and fun way to calm and restore one’s mind and mood, to boost confidence and make people feel more engaged and resilient. For those who prefer to indulge their creative instincts on land, the Masterclass will be held at the Art Gallery. As the experience comes to an end, guests are treated to a remarkable sunset fishing trip to be part of the rich Maldivian tradition followed by a romantic barbecue by the beach. 

The General Manager of The Westin Maldives Miriandhoo Resort, Vijay Kumar, expressed his delight at this exclusive opportunity, remarking, “We are thrilled to present this unique experience to our valued Marriott Bonvoy members. The Maldives is renowned for its natural beauty, and we are honoured to partner with Gregory Burns, a true Paralympic athlete and artist, to bring The Westin brand pillars alive, presenting the Move Well, Play Well, Feel Well, Eat Well, and Sleep Well elements, and make this exciting event more extraordinary. We invite our guests to embark on this unique journey, and create cherished memories that will be treasured for years to come.” 

In anticipation of this exceptional collaboration, Gregory Burns shared his enthusiasm, stating, “I am thrilled to be part of this extraordinary moment with The Westin Maldives Miriandhoo Resort. Swimming with manta rays in Hanifaru Bay is a truly awe-inspiring experience, and I cannot wait to share this ‘once in a lifetime’ opportunity as we encounter these magnificent creatures, followed by a unique art experience in the beauty of the Indian Ocean.” 

Marriott Bonvoy members are invited to bid for a chance to be part of this extraordinary experience at The Westin Maldives Miriandhoo Resort by visiting the Marriott Bonvoy Moments site at


Join Ifuru Island Maldives’ exhilarating ice, bubbles challenge



Are You Ready? The Ice & Bubbles Challenge awaits your arrival at Ifuru Island.

Are you ready for the ultimate chill thrill of indulgence and adventure? Then put on your explorer hat and jet off to Ifuru Island for the Ice & Bubbles Challenge! Imagine: you’ll be basking in the breathtaking Maldives scenery while putting your might to the test with a 6-minute polar plunge, clutching a flute of bubbly like a boss. Once you conquer the challenge, you’ll savour the delicious bubbly and feel like a true champion!

Picture yourself lounging poolside, surrounded by swaying palm trees, white sandy beaches, and crystal-clear waters, while also pushing your endurance to the limit. And as a badge of honour, guests are gifted with a trendy Ice Bath and Bubbles Challenge t-shirt to flaunt their fearless spirit. The current record for the Ice & Bubbles Challenge is a brave 22 minutes, and we’re daring you to beat it!

Cold-water immersion can speed up your muscle recovery, reduce inflammation, and give you a boost of energy. Plus, you’ll feel like a true hero after conquering the challenge and basking under the warm Maldivian sun.

So, what are you waiting for? Rally your friends and come join us on Ifuru Island Maldives for an unforgettable adventure that’s sure to create magical memories that will last a lifetime!

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Six Senses launches Mermaid Courses in Maldives



Six Senses Laamu and Six Senses Kanuhura in the Maldives are making waves with the launch of an enchanting underwater experience – PADI Mermaid courses.

Now, guests aged six and above can embark on a magical journey guided by certified PADI scuba dive instructors. Aspiring mermaids and mermen will be equipped with a monofin, a type of swim fin that mimics the movements of dolphins, and colorful fabric tail, mirroring the hues of the ocean. Catering to various ages, interests, and skill levels, both resorts offer a range of courses from discovery to advanced. A professional photographer is available on request to capture personal fairytale-moments.

“We’re thrilled to introduce this fun new experience to our range of underwater offerings,” says Judith Scheibelberger, PADI trainer and resident mermaid expert at Six Senses Laamu, an IHG Hotels & Resorts property. “Our mermaid courses are not only a source of fun and excitement for kids but also invite adults to tap into their imagination and reconnect with their inner child. Beyond the entertainment aspect and capturing Instagram-worthy memories, participants will also gain valuable underwater skills and learn about the awe-inspiring secrets of the sea.”

Mermaid courses join a plethora of underwater experiences available to guests at both Maldivian Six Senses resorts, including snorkeling with turtles, vibrant coral reef explorations, and exhilarating diving adventures. The resorts boasts state-of-the-art dive centers that provide comprehensive services and expert guidance.

For young adventurers, both resorts also offer the PADI Seal Team programme, catering to junior divers aged eight and above. This program allows aspiring divers to explore the underwater world safely, through the five ‘AquaMissions,’ where participants can delve down to four meters, or the introductory PADI Bubblemaker experience, tailored for children aged eight to nine, allowing them to dive down to two meters.

“These experiences not only offer a glimpse into the mesmerising underwater world but also provide an opportunity for young divers to develop their confidence and diving skills while exploring the diversity of Maldivian reefs,” says Anne Hospital, Dive Manager of both resorts.

The brand’s Grow With Six Senses programme offers all of the dimensions of wellness, providing kids with opportunities to reconnect with nature and engage with their surroundings. Through immersive experiences in local culture, wellness, sustainability and social interactions, children spark their curiosity and gain valuable life skills. At the heart of this programme are the dedicated kid’s clubs known as ‘The Den’, which serve as hubs for exploration and discovery.

At Six Senses Laamu and Six Senses Kanuhura, one standout offering is the Mermaid course, which invites children on an underwater adventure amidst stunning turquoise panoramas. On land, the activities are equally diverse, ranging from enlightening garden tours to innovative waste-to-wealth workshops and interactive junior cooking classes. These experiences are designed to provide children with valuable life skills through hands-on play, ensuring a comprehensive and enriching journey for young guests at the resorts.

Prices for the PADI Mermaid Courses start from USD 150 for a 45-minute discovery session. For bookings and further information, please visit or contact

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Encounter of majesty: Whale Shark sighting at Vilamendhoo Island Resort



Measuring an impressive 6.5 meters, a majestic whale shark was recently spotted gliding gracefully through the enthralling house reef of Vilamendhoo Island Resort & Spa, just beyond the main jetty. This awe-inspiring sight captivated guests, who were fortunate enough to snorkel alongside this magnificent creature. As the whale shark meandered through the crystal-clear waters, guests paused their activities, enchanted by the rare opportunity to witness such a spectacular marine spectacle.

Whale sharks, the gentle giants of the ocean, are renowned for their majestic presence in the azure waters of South Ari Atoll where, Vilamendhoo is located. These magnificent creatures frequent the abundant house reefs of this tropical paradise, creating a mesmerizing spectacle for visitors. Alongside them, graceful manta rays glide effortlessly through the crystal-clear waters, while vibrant coral gardens teem with life beneath the surface. Each encounter with these marine wonders offers a glimpse into the rich biodiversity surrounding the island, captivating the hearts of all who venture into its depths, adding to the allure of this tropical paradise.

“The sighting of the whale shark has evoked an overwhelming wave of positivity among our guests, who have shared their sheer delight at the rare opportunity to encounter such a magnificent creature during their stay. For many, this unexpected marvel has transformed their holiday experience at Vilamendhoo into an unforgettable journey, solidifying our resort’s standing as a premier destination for ocean enthusiasts and nature lovers,” elucidated Mohamed Zahir, General Manager of Vilamendhoo.

Located on a pristine island measuring 900 meters long by 250 meters wide, Vilamendhoo Island Resort & Spa follows the cherished ‘One Island, One Resort’ concept for which the Maldives is renowned. Surrounded by a spectacular house reef teeming with marine life, guests are invited to explore the underwater wonders just a short swim away from the expansive sandy beaches.

Whether it’s diving into the depths of the ocean or snorkeling amidst vibrant coral gardens, Vilamendhoo offers the quintessential island adventure. The resort’s 184 rooms, each adorned in natural island style, provide the perfect sanctuary for relaxation after days filled with oceanic exploration.

To reach this tropical haven, guests embark on a scenic seaplane transfer from Velana International Airport, enjoying a breathtaking 25-minute flight over the mesmerizing atolls of the Maldives.

In conclusion, the sighting of a whale shark at Vilamendhoo serves as a testament to the unparalleled beauty and biodiversity of the Maldives’ marine environment. As travelers seek meaningful encounters with nature, Vilamendhoo stands ready to welcome them into a world where every moment is filled with wonder and awe.

Discover paradise at Vilamendhoo Island Resort & Spa in the Maldives. With its pristine beaches, azure waters, and luxurious accommodations, Vilamendhoo offers the perfect retreat for relaxation and oceanic exploration. Nestled in the South Ari Atoll, this resort follows the cherished ‘One Island, One Resort’ concept, providing guests with a true tropical escape. Experience the magic of the Maldives with a scenic 25-minute seaplane transfer from Velana International Airport, and indulge in 184 rooms adorned in natural island style.

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