While most visitors to the Maldives come for the solar-powered heat therapy, Joali Being also offers the counterpoint treatment of cryotherapy:
- “An innovative extreme-cold therapy that boosts cellular activity to support weight management, with up to 800 calories burned in a single session. Performed in our cryo:one chamber.
If you can’t get the people to paradise, bring paradise to the people. COVID’s travel restrictions spurred the development and adoption of many innovations to bridge the new distances imposed between us. Soneva Fushi introduced the especially immersive (and high tech) virtual reality electronic escape:
- “Soneva Fushi, the original barefoot luxury resort in the Maldives, has an exclusive Virtual Reality (VR) experience to overcome restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This experience brings an enchanting insight into island life into viewers’ homes. A curated experience with discovery at its heart, the VR series shares Soneva’s SLOW LIFE ethos and champions the beautiful Maldives archipelago as a bucket-list destination.”
Happy Birthday Alan Turing. Recent events in technology have brought Mr. Turing’s name to global headlines more than ever both with the rise of ChatGPT and other striking artificial intelligence tools. Turing famously proposed the “Turing Test” which stated:
- A computer could be deemed ‘intelligent’ if a human being acting with it one on hand and an actual human on the other hand cannot determine which is the human and which is the machine.
I’ve come across more and more AI tools being released to the wild and thought that I would have another go at trying them out in the Maldives context. Instead of looking at what AI could do for guests, I wanted to explore what AI could do for the Maldives Complete website. I ran the site through 2 prominent offerings:
- DURABLE (website building) – Really just a website template with a bit of pre-populating done. Low wow factor.
- MICROSOFT DESIGNER – Like Durable, but more about the look-and-feel.
The collection above was from Microsoft. Frankly, it didn’t seem that “intelligent” at all. It essential just pulled prominently tagged content (eg. headers, titles) from the site and populated some of other templates, and then used some subject searching to find a bunch of relevant images to slap on it. That said, I have talked with some web designers who proposed revamping the Maldives Complete UX and they didn’t propose doing much different. Maybe the bar for the intelligence AI is lower than we think.
We love seeing sharks in the Maldives…this Neon Bull Shark art installation by Carla O’Brien was an especially bright sighting at the Ritz Carlton Maldives:
- “This large-scale light art installation is a lifesize depiction of a fully grown female Bull Shark, fabricated from a laser and hand-cut metal and LED Neon Flex, a revolutionary replacement for glass neon. The US-born artist, Carla, is best known for the NEON ANGEL WINGS, which went globally viral in 2016 when Katy Perry posted on social media, a photo of herself ‘wearing’ the Wings at the Burning Man festival in Nevada, the USA, in 2016.”
The piece is part of the resort’s 14 piece art collection of modern works in a variety of media.
Maldives spas offer all sorts of detox treatments, but Soneva Jani offers a digital detox button in all their villas. Just push this button on the wall and the wifi is switched off! Lest the kids think they can escape to the Kids Club to resume their device addiction, it too has a technology free zone in it.
Pretty much all resorts have wireless internet (aka “wifi”) these days, but wireless charging I haven’t seen until I came across Amilla Maldives’ bedside charger that I could just plop my phone onto after a long-haul trip depleting and get it charged up for my pending day of grammin’.
Ritz Carlton Maldives’ villas offer their own way of shading from the sun if you want to stay outdoors with his-and-hers sun hats in every room.
All the outdoor amenities in the Maldives are a true delight, but sometimes you do need a break from the tropical sun bearing down on you (especially for us anglo-complexioned). If you want to escape the brightness, but still like the idea of lounging in a hammock over the ocean, Cora Cora has installed them in their outdoor bathrooms. (top tip: the hammocks are also an excellent place to lay out wet swim suits and snorkeling gear to dry with less worry of a gust of wind blowing them into the sea which you have when setting them out on the deck).
Raffles has its own distinct font for its bath decorating to make its sudsy welcome even clearer (thanks Paola).
A spa treatment, especially in the Maldives, isn’t just about the targeted part of the body, but is also an immersive experience of relaxation and comfort. With massages, I do sort of appreciate a lovely location, but frankly when you are face down with your eyes closed, there is not much opportunity to enjoy them. So for massage treatments, the sensory luxury is all about touch – the feel of the plush table and of course the expert therapists.
Ritz Carlton Maldives’ spa simply exudes sensual softness in every details. You change into super silk soft robes. The face rest not only featured a spongy cushion, but also it was covered with an ultra soft chamois. The same chamois texture that covered the entire bed. And Dankaj, my masseur, provide a treatment that was fluid and tender while being firm enough to coax the tight muscles out of their tension (I find male masseurs to often be too mechanical and firm) with just the right pressure like the right amount of chili in a curry.