Best of the Maldives: A La Carte Stations – Club Med Finolhu Villas

Club Med Finolhu - a la carte station 1

When I visited Morocco, I enjoyed a night in a Bedouin tent under the desert stars, but I must say that the highlight was the bustling, buzzing Marrakesh market square at night. An acre-sized tapestry of tiny market stalls all cooking up some specific delicacy concocted from the colour full piles of spices we saw touring the souks earlier that day. Club Med Finolhu Villas has the posh version of Jemaa el Fna with a collection of gourmet stations to cook you a variety of dishes for your meal.

You get to see the food like a buffet (instead of depending on menu descriptions), but freshly prepared to order like a la carte. We’ve all had our freshly prepared eggs and noodles dishes, but these were filet beef and sautéed fish dishes with delicate sauces. The approach was particularly helpful for people with weak English. But one of the biggest benefits was reduction of food waste. The on-demand cuisine meant that only food people were going to eat was prepared instead of large mounds of buffet offerings which (by definition) never get fully consumed (see the explanatory sign at the resort restaurant below).

Club Med Finolhu - food waste

Best of the Maldives: Snorkel Floats – Club Med Finolhu Villas

Club Med Finolhu  - snorkel float

With the Christmas shopping season formally launched, the biggest shopping day of the year, “Black Friday”, is upon us. I’m a big snorkelling aficionado, so any gear to help me peer into the aquatic world is always a hit with me. One of the most coveted items I’ve seen is the “Splash and Play” snorkel float by Bestway in Club Med Finolhu’s “The Boutique”.   I’ve seen a few resorts offer them for use by guests, but I haven’t seen any you can buy until now.  Just perfect for even lazier underwater gazing while soaking up the sun’s rays. Now if I can just get Santa to bring me an airplane ticket to the Maldives…

Best of the Maldives: Resort Shuttle – Club Med

Club Med Kani and Finolhu Villas - shuttle

All the resorts will offer transfer from the airport to their hotels. And some hotels offer trips to sister resorts. But Club Med provides a regular, scheduled boat shuttle between its Club Med Kani and Club Med Finolhu Villas properties (departing about every 90 minutes from 8:00 am to 11:00 pm on about a 10 minute journey).

The courtesy gives guests the best of both worlds between two quite different properties. All the expansive facilities of the Kani are available free of charge to all Finolhu guests as a courtesy. Kani guests can also get guest passes to visit Finolhu.

Maldives Tour 2016 – Day 12: Club Med Finolhu Villas

Club Med Finolhu - tour

Forget all your preconceived notions about hyper-ebullient, non-stop entertainment and buzz of activity at Club Med resorts. Their Finolhu Villas marquee property in the Maldives couldn’t be more contrary to that persona.

Instead of a whirlwind of activities, Finolhu Villas was tranquil and peaceful. There is no animation team pumping up the volume every night or leading the children in a pool frolic. In fact, no children under 12 years old are even allowed on the island, and only adults (over 18) are allowed in the water villas.

Instead of value priced villas typical of many Club Med resorts, Finolhu Villas is masterfully designed with artistically undulating curves (no not *that* kind of curves) most prominent in its distinctive roofs, but echoed as a motif throughout the resort. The resort features an array of modernist styling including its striking glass floor in its over water bar, and the grounds are meticulously landscaped like some tropical stately home.

Actually, “Villas” are a misnomer. They should be called “Finolhu Suites”. All of them have living areas for lounging completely segregated on the opposite side of the bathroom characteristic of a suite. In fact, both rooms have their own large screen plasma television. I guess that is good if you can’t agree on what to watch, but if that kind of argument is happening on your honeymoon, you might want to invest in some relationship counseling. 😉

Finolhu Villas is more than an upgrade from Club Med Kani. It is a whole new luxury concept.