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Fifty years of Furanafushi: a story of authentic Maldivian hospitality with Sheraton Maldives

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Once a secluded, undiscovered, and rather uninhabited destination in the Indian Ocean, the Maldives has since grown into a hub of world-class hospitality, home to authentic displays of culture and some of the industry’s most innovative eco-conscious solutions. 

As Furanafushi Island, where Sheraton Maldives Full Moon Resort & Spa is located, celebrates 50 years, we’re paying tribute to the dramatic transformation of the country’s tourism landscape and the ways in which it continues to support both the preservation of the natural elements and the growth of the local community. 

The milestone occasion is a reminder of the hospitality industry’s potential to redefine how consumers travel, stay, and experience throughout their journeys. Sheraton Maldives Full Moon Resort & Spa is marking the Island’s Golden Jubilee by looking back at where it all began, using key learnings to lay the groundwork for the next 50 years of Furanafushi. 

Reflecting on the Evolution of the Island

The Maldivian archipelago was first introduced to the world as a travel hotspot in the early 1970s, at which point it had almost no tourism infrastructure and hardly any investment into it as a destination. Today, the Maldives, which is comprised of almost 1,200 tiny, pristine islands, has become synonymous with barefoot luxury, secluded retreats, and breathtaking scenery.

Furanafushi itself holds a storied history, initially serving as a picnic destination for residents of Malé before being transformed into a resort. It later became known as Australia Island and was widely marketed under the tagline, ‘Found! A Lost Paradise’. 

In December 1973, the island welcomed the 56-key Sheraton Maldives, originally named Furana, as the fifth resort in the entire Maldivian archipelago. Underscoring the destination’s early commitment to enhancing the stay experience, clocks were regularly kept an hour early in Furana to give guests more time than they expected.

In April 1976, the island resort moved under the management of Wayne Reid, one of Australia’s best-known sports administrators, in a five-year lease that served as a catalyst for an influx of investment and expansion. 

The early days of Furanafushi and Sheraton Maldives Resort & Spa are a testament to the growth of the island and its ongoing influence on the appeal of the Maldives as a bucket list travel destination. As the resort evolves with the industry, it maintains its heritage and remains dedicated to preserving both its own history and the history of its surroundings.

Recognising Our Role

As a leader in local, regional, and global hospitality, Sheraton Maldives Full Moon Resort & Spa has a responsibility to support the community it operates in, positively impacting island life and consciously developing solutions that preserve the island’s natural elements. 

To foster meaningful connections within the local community, we consistently extend invitations to schools, providing students with valuable insights into the dynamic world of the hospitality industry. This initiative not only aligns with their career aspirations but also serves as a platform to introduce them to our commitment to sustainability. During the beautiful celebration of Ramadan, we extend invitations to organizations such as the Fiyavathi Orphanage in Hulhumale, fostering a sense of community and shared joy. 

In an effort to protect the resort’s natural surroundings and the island it calls home, we have also implemented several sustainable initiatives. Our famous Adopt A Coral program, encouraging our guests to get involved in the art of coral preservation. Over 6,000 coral fragments from 15 different coral species rescued from Gulhi Falhu, have been given a second chance to thrive and have been transplanted on coral pyramids at the resort. The resort is also committed to reducing plastic waste via its innovative water bottling plant initiative. The hotel’s water bottling facility uses cutting-edge reverse osmosis technology to purify seawater, eliminating the need for water transportation from the mainland.

For the last 50 years, Furanafushi has been a home to Maldivian residents and wildlife, and has also served as a temporary sanctuary for visitors from around the world who choose to find rest on its pristine shores. At Sheraton Maldives Full Moon Resort & Spa, we remain committed to fostering that historic sense of peace and belonging as we evolve our offerings to meet the changing needs of the surrounding community and the diversifying expectations of guests.

Staying Ahead of the Hospitality Curve

Around the world, the hospitality sector has recognized an ever-growing need to align with global consciousness around environmental responsibility. Next-gen travelers are increasingly mindful of the environmental impact of their travel choices, inspiring hotels and resorts to adopt sustainable practices that mitigate their carbon footprint and promote ecological rehabilitation. 

Sheraton Maldives Full Moon Resort & Spa remains ahead of the hospitality curve in terms of sustainability initiatives, leveraging its synergetic relationship with the natural surroundings to educate guests and elevate its eco-conscious offerings. The resort embraces modern technology to contribute to its efforts, including using AI-powered cameras to identify areas of food waste disposal, innovative Air Conditioning Systems that automatically adapt room temperatures to reduce energy consumption, and gardens that produce vegetables and herbs, as well as watermelon and cucumber crops.

As the bridge between technology and sustainability strengthens, we continue to drive forward-thinking solutions that will pioneer green tourism around the world, with plans to implement a biogas plant to transform food waste into gas for kitchen stoves and a vibrant chicken farm to produce organic eggs and meat on-site. 

By using technology to advance sustainability, Sheraton Maldives is shaping a world where environmental awareness is naturally integrated into our daily lives, championing the preservation of the natural island as we look forward to its brighter, greener future.

A Look at the Next 50 Years

Throughout its 50 years, Furanafushi has seen pioneers, people, and policies shape its attraction on the global stage, its position among neighboring islands, and its impact on the local community. In the next 50 years, the same will remain – and it is up to us to actively participate in the protection, preservation, and promotion of the island.

To honor the history of Furanafushi, and to highlight the culture of the residents, Sheraton Maldives Full Moon Resort & Spa stands as a beacon of authentic Maldivian hospitality, inviting guests and residents alike to join its journey of tropical transformation as it seeks to maintain its original beauty while cultivating new ways of discovering true paradise. 

Celebration

Jumeirah Maldives Olhahali Island Unveils Enchanting Easter Celebration for Families

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This Easter, journey to a paradise of sun-kissed beaches and turquoise waters at Jumeirah Maldives Olhahali Island. From March 28th to April 1st, 2024, the luxurious all-villa resort promises an unforgettable Easter adventure for families, blending timeless elegance with cherished moments.

Culinary Delights and Festive Fun:

  • Embark on a culinary odyssey with interactive workshops, crafting Indian dishes, cocktails, or mocktails.
  • Indulge in a sun-kissed sandbank picnic or a romantic sunset wine tasting.
  • Experience a magical sunset cruise followed by a delectable seafood mezze dinner on Good Friday.
  • Easter Sunday unfolds with a lavish breakfast, a poolside party with a live DJ, and a beachfront cocktail party with a gala dinner featuring international cuisines and a dedicated kids’ buffet.
  • Savor sweet Easter treats at the resort’s Café Lounge and Gelateria.

Unforgettable Easter Package:

  • Start your day with a floating breakfast in your private pool, followed by a picturesque picnic on a nearby sandbank.
  • Enjoy an afternoon sunset wine tasting and conclude with a private BBQ dinner on the beach under the Maldivian night sky.

Tailored Activities for Young Explorers:

  • Little ones can participate in Easter egg decoration classes, Easter Olympics, and art workshops.
  • Learn about marine life with the resident Marine Biologist or enjoy an al fresco cinema featuring classic Easter films.
  • Explore the underwater world through the windows of a semi-submarine.

Wellness and Rejuvenation:

  • The Talise Spa offers unique experiences, from splash Zumba to family massage sessions.
  • Mothers and daughters can create their own exfoliating scrub and enjoy a Balinese massage.
  • Discover the magic of Easter at Jumeirah Maldives Olhahali Island and book your elegant escape with the Jumeirah Escapes offer.
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Celebration

Sun Siyam Vilu Reef Celebrates Eid with Enchanting Festivities

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Sun Siyam Vilu Reef, a captivating tropical hideaway, invites guests to celebrate Eid al-Fitr in style from April 10th to 12th. Immerse yourself in a vibrant program filled with delectable feasts, engaging activities, and cultural experiences.

Festivities Kick Off with Culinary Delights and Beachside Fun

The celebrations begin on April 10th with a sumptuous Eid lunch at Aqua restaurant, followed by the lively Eid Rhythm Beach Party at Positive Beach. Live stations offering mocktails, popcorn, cotton candy, and engaging activities like color runs, balloon dances, and sandcastle building competitions, promise an unforgettable experience for all ages. The day concludes with an authentic Thali-style dinner at the Traditional Cultural Village.

Lively Activities and Cultural Immersions

April 11th offers exciting pool soccer for children with a live DJ, creating a vibrant atmosphere for families. In the evening, the Eid celebrations Management Cocktail at Nautilus Beach features oriental-flavored canapés, adding a touch of sophistication to the festivities.

Culminating with Kites, Culture, and Gala Dinner

The celebrations reach their peak on April 12th with the colorful Eid Kites Challenge, followed by a traditional Maldivian showcase. Indulge in a Maldivian-style Eid Gala dinner at Aqua restaurant, culminating with captivating traditional entertainment and dance performances showcasing the rich cultural heritage of the Maldives.

Relaxation and Adventure Await

Throughout the Eid celebrations, pamper yourself with a specially curated Eid Pamper package at the resort’s spa. Water sports enthusiasts can also enjoy a 15% discount on selected activities, adding an extra layer of excitement to your stay.

Join Sun Siyam Vilu Reef for an unforgettable Eid experience, where breathtaking beauty meets cultural immersion and lasting memories are created.

To find out more or to book your stay, visit offers page on the website  or follow the resort  on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.

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Celebration

Patina Maldives Announces Unforgettable Easter Celebration

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As Easter approaches, Patina Maldives invites families to experience a tropical spring celebration unlike any other. From beachfront feasts to captivating egg hunts and immersive wellness experiences, the resort offers a thoughtfully curated program designed to create lasting memories.

Culinary Delights Await

Embark on a culinary journey like never before at Patina Maldives. On March 27th, indulge in the “Aegean Odyssey” at Helios, featuring the diverse flavors of Aegean cuisine. Fresh seafood, aromatic herbs, and exquisite dishes from Greece and neighboring regions promise to tantalize your taste buds.

Unwind at the Beachside Bash

For an island celebration, join the Fari Beach Club party on March 28th. Savor meticulously crafted cocktails, enticing canapés, and live entertainment for the perfect seaside soiree.

Festivities Galore at the Fari Marina Easter Festival

On March 30th, join the vibrant Fari Marina Easter Festival. Savor delectable treats at live cooking stations, groove to DJ beats, and explore artisanal treasures from local vendors. A dedicated kids’ corner ensures fun for the whole family.

Uncover Easter Eggs on a Tropical Adventure

The highlight of the Easter weekend is the Island Egg Hunt at Helios on March 31st. Guided by the Easter Bunny and the dedicated Footprints team, embark on a tropical adventure to discover hidden Easter eggs and sweet surprises.

Beyond the Celebrations

Patina Maldives offers a diverse range of activities throughout the Easter period. Hone your tennis skills with the Lux Tennis Star Event featuring Nicolas Almagro, unleash your creativity at sketching workshops with artist Tony Jaggas, or participate in family-friendly activities like laser cutting and decorating Easter ornaments.

Seek Wellness and Rejuvenation

For those seeking relaxation, Patina Maldives welcomes visiting practitioner Junko Fujita, offering the unique and rejuvenating experience of Watsu – a combination of massage, stretches, and meditation while floating in warm water.

Create Lasting Memories this Easter

This Easter, escape to Patina Maldives and create lasting memories with your loved ones. For more information and reservations, visit https://patinahotels.com/maldives-fari-islands/easter-celebrations or contact reservations.maldives@patinahotels.com.

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