Best of the Maldives: Towel Animals – LUX South Ari Atoll

LUX South Ari Atoll - towl animals 1

LUX South Ari Atoll has a different pageant of bathing cuties. I’ve seen a few towel art creatures at resorts, but LUX has produced an entire menagerie of them…

“The towel art done by Shareef and Ali. Started as a way to entertain children on the island and to surprise them with little towel toys upon their return to the villas. Based on our guests’ feedback, we came to know that those towel toys started to replace the children’s comfort toys (that in most case got left behind at home) making their time on the island more enjoyable. Shareef has been working in housekeeping since more than 13 years, 3 of which at LUX*. Towel art is now part of his daily routine, it takes an average of 15 minutes for him to create a little elephant, turtle or even a whale shark. He also takes persona responsibility in teaching this trick of the trade to the guests wanting to learn. Shareef did not learn how to make these great towel sculptures anywhere, he tries over and over again until he gets the perfect shape – it’s pure ‘learning by doing’.”

The line above pictured above includes…

  • Rear row – penguin, swans, flower, elephant
  • Front row – snake, lion, donkey, elephant seating, turtle

LUX’s creativity has inspired me to add a new board to the Maldives Complete Pinterest for “Maldives Towel Art”.

LUX South Ari Atoll - towel animals 2

LUX South Ari Atoll - towell lily

15 Romantic Suds

Atmosphere Kanifushi - tub

Happy Valentines Day sweethearts everywhere.  But especially in that global hotbed of romantic paradise, the Maldives

Get your clothes off for a hot and steamy, sensual delight, with a touch of perfume, bubbly, and flower petals. Yes, a romantic bubble bath. Here’s a not-so-dirty dozen of the best in the Maldives…

I’ve also added a “Maldives Tub Art” board to the Maldives Complete Pinterest so I can add more sexy suds as I find them.

I©Maldives
 

1. Atmosphere Kanifushi [above]

2. Cheval Blanc Randheli
Cheval Blanc Randeli tub

3. Vakarufalhi
Vakarufalhi - tub

4. Coco Bodu Hithi (thanks Paola)
Coco Bodu Hithi - tub

5. One & Only Reethi Rah
One & Only Reethi Rah - tub

6. Centara Ras Fushi
Centara Ras Fushi - tub

7. Kuramathi
Kuramathi - tub

8. Anantara Kihavah
Anantara Kihavah Villas - tub

9. Amilla Fushi
Amilla Fushi - tub

10.  Centara Grand
Centara Grand - tub

11. Loama Maamagili
Loama Maamagili - tub

12. Sun Siyam Irufushi
Sun Siyam Irufushi - tub

13. Hideaway Beach
Hideaway Beach - tub

14. Zitahli Kudafunafaru
Zitahli Kudafunafaru - tub decor

15. Four Seasons Kuda Huraa
image

Best of the Maldives: Watermelon Carving – Komandoo

Komandoo - Watermelon carving

Happy Year of the Monkey! Chinese will be celebrating all the new year all around the world with feasts and parties. And exquisite decorations and artistry like Komandoo’s carved watermelon. Particularly appropriate with its lucky red hue. Red is considered the most auspicious of colours as children are given New Year’s gift in red envelopes, the streets are decorated with red lanterns, and diamond-shaped paper cut-outs are done with red paper.

It turns out there are also a bunch things the Chinese won’t be doing, that are considered bad luck at this time, like taking medicine (first day), eating porridge, washing hair and using sharp objects.

The Chinese celebrate with all sorts of traditions from the well-known fireworks and dragon dances, to less familiar reunion dinners and new year paintings. To fit it all in, they have 16 days of celebrations. And some will slip away for a few days holiday. And the favourite destination in the world for the Chinese is the Maldives according to a recent survey – “Maldives tops list of Chinese tourists’ favorite island spots”. Another “Best in the World” for the Maldives…”Best in the World for Chinese Tourists”.

恭喜发财 / 恭喜發財

Best of the Maldives: Elevated Decor – Velaa

Velaa - elevated decor

No, not “Elevator Décor” (though coincidentally, Velaa does feature the only elevator in the Maldives resorts). After 60+ Maldives resorts, I haven’t seen it all (not by a long stretch), but I’ve seen a lot. And so my obsession is ferreting out the different and unique touches that these properties put on their various patches of paradise.

Overall, Velaa sports one of the most distinctive design and décor in the Maldives. I’ve actually got several “Best of the Maldives” pieces lined up about various aspects of their flairs and flourishes. But as a contrast to yesterday’s downward looking post, I thought I would do something a bit more uplifting, quite literally.

This height-motif is not your grandmother’s commemorative plate collection on a shelf. It starts with their bright array of chandelier lighting fixtures (definitely a post on these latter though on was shown in my post on their use of bamboo). But what really caught my eye were the various floral pieces on top of armoires and other elevated surfaces (see photos).

Luxury is all about going beyond the expected. Even the most prestigious hotels can have a sort of Spartan, hollow feel to them. So many places just focus on ticking the boxes of the essentials. They might do it with fine quality, but they often don’t go beyond getting that blank space covered or engineering some minimalist vibe so that the nothingness is justified as some sort of trendy hipness. Velaa has packed its spaces with visual delights. It not only imparts a more elegant feel to the place, but it also makes it seem more warm and inviting.

Good things are looking up at Velaa.

Velaa - elevated decore 2

Best of the Maldives: Sand Floor Art – Angsana Velavaru

Angsana Velavaru - sand floor art 1

Nothing is built on stone; all is built on sand, but we must build as if the sand were stone.” – Jorge Luis Borges

One of the most distinctive aspects to the “no shoes, no news” experience of the Maldives is the pervasive warm, soft white sand. My favourite resorts are the ones who use sand floors in all the public spaces – restaurants, lounges. It’s like you never ever leave the beach during your holiday day or night.

Sound isn’t the only creative medium for the floor in the Maldives. Angsana Velavaru takes the distinctive sand floor to the next level with its own artistry. Sort of like a 2D sand sculpture (or ‘painting’). It reminds me of Jain rice drawing. Sort of a performance art in its impermanence.

(thanks again Paola)

Angsana Velavaru - sand floor art 2

Best of the Maldives: Photographic Gallery – Huvafenfushi

Huvafenfushi - gallery 1

A sense-ational week this week – Smell, Taste, Touch. So how about something for the eyes. If you want something as entrancing as a cabernet’s bouquet, as exquisite as artful nectar, and as soothing as a warm bath, the Huvafenfushi’s newly launched art gallery offers an indulgence of visual delights. The exhibition features both iconic shots of the Maldives, but also a collection of dazzling destination portraits from around the world…

“Per Aquum gallery on the Maldivian island of Huaven Fushi has become the first photography gallery in the world to only be accessible by speedboat or seaplane. Each visitor to the exclusive gallery is greeted at one of the private jettys with a cocktail and are then guided through exclusive prints, only available on the island. Photographer Paul Reiffer had been shooting for the island owners when he saw an opportunity to create a unique exhibition. The 35 year-old said: ‘We’ve done it in part because it’s quirky. If you look at it from a commercial view it’s a stupid idea but we wanted to do something a bit different and it completely works.”

This post has prompted me to add a “Photography” tag for all posts literally focused on the fine art of the camera.

Huvafenfushi - galler 2

Best of the Maldives: Recycled Christmas Tree – Anantara Dhigu / Veli

Anantara - coconut Christmas tree

O Christmas Tree! O Christmas Tree!
Thy candles shine so brightly!
From base to summit, gay and bright,
There’s only splendor for the sight.
O Christmas Tree! O Christmas Tree!

One more sleep until Santa pays his visit to the good girls and boys. The girls and boys at Anantara (Dhigu and Veli) have been so good this year, they made their Christmas tree from discarded coconut husks. It shines in the day from the bright whit paint as well as at night with the constellation of fairy lights. One & Only Reethi Rah also has its own coconut Christmas tree (see below), Anantara has not just one, but three trees.

Furthermore, Anantara has gone a step further with another tree made out of old Evian bottles (see below)!

The three coconut trees on Dhigu are 2.5 meters, 3.4 metres and 5.0 metres high, with the tallest one made from 800 coconuts. The other two trees take up around 400 coconuts between them. The bottle tree is 6 meters high and is made from 720 bottles.

O Tannebaum! You’re Green not only in the summertime

Anantara - coconut Christmas tree 2

Anantara - recycled bottle Christmas tree

One and Only Reethi Rah coconut Christmas tree