Best of the Maldives: Message in a Bottle – Constance Moofushi

Constance Moofushi - message in a bottle

When people ask me what’s so great about the Maldives, one of my regular replies is…”You know those pictures of a plot of sand and a palm tree? Well, that’s the Maldives!” It is an iconic image of tropical paradise and isolation. And if there another image that is nearly as iconic and complementary, it would be a “message in a bottle” with an “S.O.S” message scrawled inside.

That’s why I love this little story from the Indian Times that came out this week about a guest couple at Constance Moofushi, “Message in a bottle travels from Maldives to Mahabs”…

“A message in a champagne bottle that was tossed into the sea by a Scottish couple on their honeymoon at Maldives eight months ago washed up near the coast of Mamallapuram on Friday. The bottle travelled over a thousand kilometres (about 700 nautical miles) from the Moofushi coastal resort in Maldives before it was picked up by a local tour operator on his evening walk at the Pattipulam beach along the east coast. The note inside the bottle which was plugged with a cork, was rolled up and tied with a string. It read, ‘Mr and Mrs Giles stayed at Moofushi on honeymoon. We went fishing and caught the biggest fish in the sea. So drank this champagne to celebrate! If found please contact us to let us know where out note went.’ The note was signed, Linsey Wright & Marc Giles, Linlithgow, Scotland. C Kothandabani, who found the bottle on Friday evening, phoned the couple the same evening. ‘They were delighted to hear from me. They have promised to come to India soon and meet me,’ said a delighted Kothandabani.”

S.O.S. (“Special Ocean Surprise”)

Above Ground Under Water Restaurant

Huravalhi - underwater restaurant

I’ve always wondered how they made those underwater restaurants (and spa and night clubs, etc) in the Maldives. Did they drop in components and then pump water out? As it happens, these subaquatic wonders are completely refabbed, shipped to the resort and lowered whole into their new lagoon home.

The new resort of Hurawalhi is the latest in the underwater pantheon. And some recent reports on their underwater restaurant is providing a behind the scenes look at this remarkable engineering. The supplier M.J, Murphy in New Zealand posted some “how do they do that” details on their site recently…

“Following the usual 10km route from Fitzroy’s factory to the port, the 410 tonne Underwater Restaurant was manoeuvred alongside the giant crane ship “The Fairlane”, using 3 trucks. Then on 11 Feb, the two giant 400 tonne cranes lifted the UWR onto the ship and readied for its 3 week trip to the Maldives…The acrylic is optically perfect, so diners will feel ‘immersed’ and surrounded by the ocean and the fish life. There will also be a large spectacular panoramic underwater acrylic window (190mm thick) in the end of the UWR which is expected to wow the lucky diners, with amazing long views along the sloping coral reef.”

Here’s hoping that everything goes down well at Huravalhi.

 

Huravalhi - underwater restaurant 2

Best of the Maldives: Fruit Art – Paradise Island

Paradise Island - melon flowers 2

Bed art, tub art, towel art, tree art. How about Fruit Art? The creations by chef Riju Kumar at Paradise Island are a carving cornucopia of Cucurbitaceae. He does both an exquisite array of floral geometric designs (see above) as well as renditions of animals and people. He uses a variety of fruits but mostly sticking to the melon family with watermelons and pumpkins.

With these inspired works, I have created a new category of “Maldives Fruit Art” in the Maldives Complete Pinterest collection. Usually on my boards, I try to show a range of resorts. But the prolific prodigy at Paradise has filled up the collection right from the get go.

Gourd-geous!

Paradise Island - carving

Paradise Island - pumpkin bird

Paradise Island - melon profile

Paradise Island - melon vase

Paradise Island - pineapple chicken

Paradise Island - swan melon

Paradise Island - melon fish

Paradise Island - flower melon

Paradise Island - Watermelon

Best of the Maldives: Topiary – LUX Maldives

LUX South Ari Atoll - topiary

International Book Day today is an apropos time for some more Dr Seuss style magic. This time hailing from LUX South Ari Atoll. They have composed their own living Whoville landscape on the resort…

The gardening team of LUX* South Ari Atoll worked on the Ironwood Trees of the island west point sandbank by shaping them into a Japanese Zen Garden ‘on the beach’. The idea is to have a space of silence where guests can relax and let the day go by, under the shades of the trees but without missing out on their time on the beach.“

For those less familiar with the Seuss oeuvre, I’ve featured one of the drawing from his classic “Cat in the Hat” below which not only shows the parallel inspiration, but also features Mr Cat delivering books suitable for today’s occasion. The illustration further down has some of LUX’s local residents modelling for the topiary tops.

Fah who for-aze!

 

Dr Suess trees

Dr Suess LUX Maldives

  LUX South Ari Atoll - topiary 2

Best of the Maldives: Green Eggs and Ham – Kurumba

Kurumba - green eggs and ham 2

I am an aficionado of all forms of egg benedict. I have had just every variation imaginable, but I have never had “Green Eggs and Ham”.  Today is the birthday of the legendary writer Dr. Suess who own trailblazing creativity and whimsy would be right at home at Kurumba.  Their regular menu item is a gourmet delicacy that Sam-I-am (no relation to Will) would be just as enthusiastic about.

I also find it a bit prophetic that the recalcitrant narrator has his epiphany sitting in some shallow water (see below). I too would like them in a boat.  Maybe he was at Kurumba too.

I *DO* like green eggs and ham, Sam I am. Pesto with ham.

Kurumba - green and ham I like them

Kurumba - green eggs and ham 1

Best of the Maldives: Water Park – Hideaway Beach

Hideaway Beach - water park 1

If you need a little help with your leaping, then I recommend a visit to Hideaway Beach’s new water park. In fact, it looks like one of the best places to leap in the entire Maldives. Water trampoline, water slide, water bounce cushion, water climbing walls…

Consisting of six inflatables such as a trampoline, slide, balance bar, linked by floating pontoons, this will be open daily and is free of charge to all of our guests (both little and grown up!).

It even includes the Inflatable Body Launcher I called for in “Haven’t Seen Yet in the Maldives – Part 6”.

Geronimo!

Hideaway Beach - water park 2

Hideaway Beach - water park 3