We spent two weeks at the Residence and really enjoyed every minute. The trip is long, no way around that but we felt it was well worth ir when we arrived. The Residence handled everything from the moment we landed in Male until we departed again and everything was seemless and well handled.
Once we arrived at the resort again everything was very easy and painless. As we settled in we enjoyed several excursions - scuba diving, sunset dolphin cruise, visiting a native village and deep sea fishing at dawn.We enjoyed everything with the sunset dolphin cruise being our favorite as we saw dozens of dolphins that swam along with our boat and the team on board were lovely helping us take photos and get the most of the experience.
The main thing we need to say is that the staff was exceptional - every single person was absolutely lovely and welcoming and helpful. They take pride in everything they do and it shows. We had to switch rooms as our overwater bungalow wasn't available for the first couple of says so we had two butlers - Shamin and Francis - they were both wonderfu handling all our reservations, telling us what was going on each day and basically taking care of anything we needed. Armeez took care of our room and was terrific. When he learned of my husband's sweet tooth he brought him extra ookies every day and reminded us to stay hydrated in the heat - he was wonderful and we miss seeing him every day. The Diamond Bhatta at the Sunset Grille took excellent care of us as did Shyiaz who handled our private candle dinner en suite and made it perfect for us. Jojo and Selestri at the spa worked wonders and maybe our favorite of all was Lawrence who often picked us up and brought us back from our dinners. That being said every person in every restaurant - all the gardeners and really to a person the staff here is exceptional. It was lovely to begin your day with a bike ride to the dining room accompanied by a chorus of "good mornings" from everyone we passed.
Details big and small are thought of and we had an excepional time.
If we had one complaint it was the food - it was not up to par with the rest of the resort - breakfast was fine - and the beach bar food was also good but dinners left a lot to be desired. Fish in particular was overcooked in every iteration. I hope they upgrade the food as it was really the only thing that dampened our memories.
As for prices - I will say two things - these are remote islands - everything must be brought in so expect to pay - as you would in Hawaii, or Bora Bora or any other remote place. The complaining about this is irritating as it is no more expensive than any other similar place we have been. You can shop at duty free if you like and bring a couple of bottles if you want but we were put off by how many commented on the prices. The other thing I'd say is about tipping. If you can afford to come here - you can afford to tip the hard working people here. They go above and beyond and work very hard and I was embarrassed to see people walk away without tipping. By the way - the workers don't set the prices or earn what those prices might reflect so think about that when you go.
We thank everyone at the Residence Maldives for a wonderful stay and commend you on a job well done. We travel quite a lot and we have never had better service any where.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Residence Maldives is a world away from reality. This private island resort is anchored in one of the planet’s widest and deepest atolls, its sugary white sands lapped by sapphire blue waters, its pristine reefs the exclusive playground of its privileged guests. All 94 luxury villas lie on the beach or over the water, their traditional Maldivian architecture enhanced by anything from dedicated butlers to private pools. Dining is an international affair overlooking the Indian Ocean, The Spa by Clarins the only one you’ll find in the entire Maldives archipelago ... ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- The Residence Maldives Falhumaafushi