If the idea of an intimate, remote and luxurious island appeals to you then you absolutely must visit the Maldives. Trouble is… the Maldives is much bigger than you think as there are 26 atolls which span around 300 square kilometres. It’s one of the world’s most geographically dispersed countries but also the smallest Asian country with less than 450,000 residents. I can’t tell you where to visit but I can share our experience of Huvafen Fushi.
Paradise on earth
We flew to Male from Bangkok, which was a 4 and a half hour flight. Whilst it wasn’t anywhere near as long as flying directly from London, it was a fairly decent length of time and we were itching to get to the resort. I obviously knew that we were getting a speedboat to the island but what I wasn’t expecting was that the boat was right outside the airport! In just 35 minutes, we had arrived.
We were greeted by the General Manager Jean-Christophe and our thakuru (personal butler) for the week, Nine Two, and whisked off in a golf cart to our *amazing* Ocean Bungalow with pool. Not only were we blown away by how beautiful, spacious and fabulous the room was – we were also delighted with the bottle of Bollinger on ice.
When I walked in to the bathroom, my jaw dropped. How stunning is this view? I absolutely indulged in a bath every day we were there! And hoped that no one would swim past…
What makes Huvafen Fushi special?
This was our first time in the Maldives, so I don’t really have anything to compare it to but for me it was that it exceeded my expectations. The setting was even more beautiful than we were expecting. Our room was more fabulous than we imagined. The food was definitely much better than we were anticipating, and the staff really did everything they could to ensure our stay was unforgettable.
Our ocean bungalow
Huvafen Fushi has a variety of rooms to suit different budgets but we knew that if we were going to the Maldives, there was only one room we wanted to stay in – an ocean bungalow. It was everything we hoped it would be – luxurious, spacious and fitted with all the mod cons, such as a remote next to the bed that controlled the lighting.
The patio had a plunge pool, and sun loungers with private access to the lagoon. Despite the lagoon being literally at our doorstep, I only accessed it from our room twice!
The reason we didn’t swim that much by our room was because there were so many amazing places to relax and swim. This spot was our favourite. Basically our own private island on an island!
You can walk around the entire island in about 15 minutes. Although you don’t have to walk at all if you don’t want to! We were given a mobile to call Nine Two, our thakuru, who would pick us up in the golf cart and drop us off wherever we wanted – the gym, swimming pool or one of the restaurants.
There is a luxury spa with an underwater treatment room, an over-water gym, two bars, four restaurants, an infinity pool and a flotation pool. And of course, there were activities such as free yoga in the morning, free water sports such as snorkelling or kayaking and paid activities such as jet skis, fishing, paragliding and excursions.
We opted for the dolphin cruise and were whisked off on a yacht with a few other couples on a Saturday evening to travel close to Male to see dolphins. It was amazing! We saw loads of dolphins and they loved the attention – jumping and even doing spins. We were also served champagne and canapes, which made the experience just that little bit more special.
Dining at Huvafen Fushi
We did our research and booked our stay through luxury travel agents Elegant Resorts because they had a great offer of complimentary full board. This entitled us to lunch at Forno and dinner at Celsius and a discount at Raw (only open at lunch) and Feeling Koi (only open at dinner).
Forno is situated on the beach, under trees and there is a pizza oven where they make their pizzas from scratch. Celsius has both indoor and outdoor seating and is located next to Forno. Celsius is also where breakfast is served in the morning. The food was really good! Being foodies, we were pleasantly surprised by the quality and choice of dishes on offer. There was only one main dish we were disappointed with during our entire stay, which we did feed back to the chef.
Although we were on full board, we ate four times at Feeling Koi, which is their modern Japanese restaurant headed up by chef Jameel Ahmed who trained at Nobu. It was exceptional. If you go, you must try the oxtail gyoza! AMAZING.
Oh and look below you to spot the neighbours. (Don’t worry, they don’t bite).
We were so sad to leave Huvafen Fushi (who wouldn’t be?) but this lovely gesture made it a little bit easier…
I highly recommend the Maldives for a totally blissful and relaxing holiday. If you choose to stay at Huvafen Fushi, you won’t be disappointed.