Best of the Maldives: Instagram Photoshoot – AaaVeee

AaaVeee - fashion 1

While every resort is now a coral-sand catwalk especially for the Instagram throngs of thongs, no resort has hosted a most extensive Instagram photoshoot than the eco-resort AaaVeee. It hosted a photoshoot for Destination Cover with not only a expansive group of 8 models (many photoshoots are a single person and maybe go up 3), but the quality of the posing, shooting and post was first rate. And a the number of shots shared on Instagram was unprecedented.

  1. Sana Lantana and Aleona Lynx [ABOVE]
  2. Erika Yar
    AaaVeee - fashion 2
  3. Ednyr Marie
    AaaVeee - fashion 3
  4. Olga Storozhuk
    AaaVeee - fashion 4
  5. Lily Marie
    AaaVeee - fashion 5
  6. Liliana Montoya
    AaaVeee - fashion 6
  7. Kaolina Wozniak
    AaaVeee - fashion 7

Best of the Maldives: Fashionable Sustainability – Soneva Jani

Part of making sustainable is to make it fashionable. Not a uniform that people have to wear in daily life, but a style with which they want to live their life willingly. Soneva has long been a trend-setter, not just in the most stylish resort features, but also in to pioneering approaches to eco-friendliness and raising environmental awareness. To bring flair and allure to the sustainability message, Soneva hosted international catwalk producer Jessica Minh Hanh for a photoshoot that illustrates the story of eco-resort life.

Soneva Jani - sustainable fashion 4

Soneva Jani - sustainable fashion

Soneva Jani - sustainable fashion 2

Soneva Jani - sustainable fashion 3

Shamrock Shades of Seafoam

Emma Lapin (Serbia) - Sun Island

St. Patricks Day today is the perfect opportunity to go green. Not just cutting your carbon footprint, but cutting a figure with the day’s traditional emerald attire. Here’s the Maldives Complete top twenty list of shamrock shades of seafoam…

1. Emma Lapin (Serbia) – Sun Island [ABOVE]
2. Annabella Barber (New Zealand) – Six Senses Laamu
Annabella Barber (New Zealand) – Six Senses Laamu
3. Milanka Salova (Russia) – Bandos
Milanka Salova (Russia) - Bandos
4. Malaika Arora Khan (India) – Jumeirah Vittaveli
Malaika Arora Khan (India) – Jumeirah Vittaveli
5. Melissa (Turkey) – Paradise Island
Melissa (Turkey) – Paradise Island
6. Caitlyn Howe (USA) – Gili Lankanfushi
Caitlyn Howe (USA) - Gili Lankanfushi
7. Fernanda Liz (Brazil) – Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru
Fernanda Liz (Brazil) - Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru
8. Viki Odintcova (Russia)
Viki Odintcova (Russia)
9. Aysel Manafova (Azerbaijani) – One & Only Reethi Rah
Aysel Manafova (Azerbaijani) - One & Only Reethi Rah
10. Yana Gracie (Russia) – Six Senses Laamu
Yana Gracie (Russia) - Six Senses Laamu
11. Olga Kurbatova (Russia) – Velaa
Olga Kurbatova (Russia) – Velaa
12. Natalia Siwiec (Poland) – Kurumba
Natalia Siwiec (Poland) – Kurumba
13. Aleona Lynx (Russia) – AaaVeee
Aleona Lynx (Russia) - AaaVeee
14. Natasa Mijatovic (Croatia) – Summer Island
Natasa Mijatovic (Croatia) – Summer Island
15. Karolina Wozniak (Poland) – AaaVeee
Karolina Wozniak (Poland) - AaaVeee
16. Vik Voynikova (Russia) – Maafushi
Vik Voynikova (Russia) – Maafushi
17. Janie Tienphosuwan(Thailand) – Anantara Dhigu
Janie Tienphosuwan(Thailand) – Anantara Dhigu
18. Gul Sara (Turkey) – One & Only Reethi Rah
Gul Sara (Turkey) – One & Only Reethi Rah
19. Berry Malinowska (Poland) – Sheraton Full Moon
Berry Malinowska (Poland) – Sheraton Full Moon
20. Elena Samsonova (Russia) – Paradise Island
Elena Samsonova (Russia) – Paradise Island

Best of the Maldives: Pageant – Paradise Island

Paradise Island - pageant

The holidays are filled with treats and at Paradise Island this week one fashion feast is the annual holiday pageant where one lucky sun-kissed guest will be crowned “Miss Paradise”….

  • “’Miss Paradise’ is one of the evening events included in our Christmas and New Year program. The participants/pageants are from the in-house guests and panel of judges are also selected from the house. It is a short event conducted at the Main Bar floor with a small runway selecting and announcing the winners.”

Most Christmas pageants I’ve ever been to involve toddlers dressed up as shepherds and sheep falling over each other while they mumble out contrived verses.

Paradise Island - pageant 2

Best of the Maldives: Instagram Selfies – Finolhu

Finolhu - Cara Delevigne party 1

Ultimate Maldives Beach Party (#MaldivesBeachParty) thrown by Cara and Poppy Delavigne at the newly launched Finolhu resort. Have we hit peak Instagram in the Maldives?

The Daily Mail headline says it all “Caradise Island: The Delevingne sisters and 160 pals have been given an entire Maldives resort for a week as long as they post selfies to their Instagram fans”…

  • “As a model who can open doors anywhere, Cara Delevingne is probably used to fabulous freebies. But an entire holiday island in the Maldives is exceptional, even by her standards. Cara, 24, along with model sister Poppy, 30, will take over Finolhu Baa Atoll for a week from next Saturday – and they’ve invited up to 160 celebrity friends. Of course, the mother of all freebies doesn’t come without strings attached. And the sisters have promised to blitz social media with endless selfies, bringing a fortune in free advertising, thanks to Cara’s 35 million Instagram followers.”

35 million followers is nearly DOUBLE the next most popular Instagrammer to visit the Maldives (Huda Kattan who visited Huvafenfushi and Shanri-La Villingili has 16 million).

Finolhu - party

Finolhu - Poppy Delevigne

Best of the Maldives: Swimsuit Fashion – W Retreat

I’m tempted to dub this piece “Most Fashionable Resort” as everything it does is distinguished by sophisticated styling. But in my effort to keep “Best of the Maldives” post as specific as possible, I’ll settle for “Best Swimwear”. W Retreat has already been highlighted for its distinctively fashionable uniforms. And now it adds a line of house swimwear partnering with designers “We Are Handsome”…

“We are really excited to be involved in this project and to have the opportunity to collaborate with a brand which shares the same passions for design and fashion,” said Jeremy Somers, Managing and Creative Director, We Are Handsome. “We took our inspiration for the collection from the energy which ebbs and flows through the resorts when the sun sets, the stars come out and nature starts to glow. The bespoke design conveys this energy, as well as the vibrant and playful personalities of the retreats and their island destinations, whilst evoking their bold sophistication and glamour.”

We Are Handsome?…Most definitely!

W Retreat - We Are Handsome swimwear

Sunny Sand Blast

Amanda Bisk (Australia) – Four Seasons Landaa Giaavaru

Play in the Sand Day” today. And the Maldives certain offers plenty of sand and playmates. The iridescent blue waters and incandescent white sand provide a dazzling backdrop to any photoshoot making the seaside beach the most popular venue on the island for a few snaps. So there’s a bit of a bumper crop of photos at hand for beguiling beauties cavorting on the Maldives beaches. Here is a fashionista 50 playing with sand…

  1. Amanda Ware (Australia) – W Retreat
    Amanda Ware (Australia) - W Retreat
  2. Liz Hurley (United Kingdom) – Huvafenfushi
    Liz Hurley (United Kingdom) – Huvafenfushi
  3. Valentina Pahde (Germany) – Sun Siyam Irufushi
    Valentina Pahde (Germany) - Sun Siyam Irufushi
  4. Victoria Magrath (United Kingdom) – Conrad Rangali
    Victoria Magrath (United Kingdom) – Conrad Rangali
  5. Sonali Raut (India) – Soneva Fushi
    Sonali Raut (India) – Soneva Fushi
  6. Sarah Stephens (Australia) – Coco Palm Dhuni Kholhu
    Sarah Stephens (Australia) – Coco Palm Dhoni Kholhu
  7. Patrycja Anna (USA) – Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru
    Patrycja Anna (USA) – Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru
  8. Lily Marie (USA) – AaaVeee
    Lily Marie (USA) - AaaVeee
  9. Tatjana (Russia) – Fulhadhoo
    Tatjana (Russia) – Fulhadhoo
  10. Esha Gupta (India) – Gili Lankanfushi
    Esha Gupta (India) – Gili Lankanfushi
  11. Natalie Morris (USA) – Velassaru
    Natalie Morris (USA) – Velassaru
  12. Nikol Skorik (China) – Anantara Veli
    Nikol Skorik (China) – Anantara Veli
  13. Uliana Berdysheva (Russia) – Sun Island
    Uliana Berdysheva (Russia) – Sun Island
  14. Tiffany Watson (United Kingdom) – LUX Maldives
    Tiffany Watson (United Kingdom) – LUX Maldives
  15. Yanela Brooks (Cuba) – Cheval Blanc Randheli
    Yanela Brooks (Cuba) – Cheval Blanc Randheli
  16. Jenia Shtefan (Russia) – Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru
    Jenia Shtefan (Russia) – One & Only Reethi Rah
  17. Marcela Scaldaferri (Brazil) – Jumeirah Dhevanafushi
    Marcela Scaldaferri (Brazil) – Jumeirah Dhevanafushi
  18. Renee Somerfield (Australia) – Six Senses Laamu
    Renee Somerfield (Australia) – Six Senses Laamu
  19. Olga Scheglovaov (Bosnia) – Ranveli
    Olga Scheglovaov (Bosnia) – Ranveli
  20. Olga Storozhuk (Ukraine) – AaaVeee
    Olga Storozhuk (Ukraine) - AaaVeee
  21. Katarina Kojadinovic (Bosnia) – Coco Prive Kuda Hithi
    Katarina Kojadinovic (Bosnia) – Coco Prive Kuda Hithi
  22. Nastena (Russia) – Olhuveli
    Nastena (Russia) – Olhuveli
  23. Hailey Baldwin (USA) – Six Senses Laamu
    Hailey Baldwin (USA) – Six Senses Laamu

  24. Lee Ann Liebenberg (South Africa) – Anantara Veli
    Lee Ann Liebenberg (South Africa) – Anantara Veli
  25. Egherta Hysa (Ukraine) – Maafushi
    Egherta Hysa (Ukraine) – Maafushi
  26. Perrie Edwards (United Kingdom) – The Residence
    Perrie Edwards (United Kingdom) – The Residence
  27. Lorena Rae (Germany) – Palm Beach
    Lorena Rae (Germany) – Palm Beach
  28. Olya Batishcheva (Russia) – Eriyadu
    Olya Batishcheva (Russia) – Eriyadu
  29. Eem Nizam (Maldives) – Vilu Reef
    Eem Nizam (Maldives) – Vilu Reef
  30. Tatyana Vysotskaya (Russia) – Sun Siyam Irufushi
    Tatyana Vysotskaya (Russia) – Sun Siyam Irufuhi
  31. Natalie Anderson (United Kingdom) – Huvafenfushi
    Natalie Anderson (United Kingdom) – Huvafenfushi
  32. Sarah Ashcroft (United Kingdom) – Banyan Tree Vabbinfaru
    Sarah Ashcroft (United Kingdom) – Banyan Tree Vabbinfaru
  33. Dasha Kononovich (Russia) – Ayada
    Dasha Kononovich (Russia) – Ayada
  34. K Katerinochka (Russia) – Sun Island
    K Katerinochka (Russia) – Sun Island
  35. Precious Angellyn Sanchez (Philippines) – Gili Lankanfushi
    Precious Angellyn Sanchez (Philippines) – Gili Lankanfushi
  36. Melanie Kyle Oldenburg (Australia) – Olhuveli
    Melanie Kyle Oldenburg (Australia) – Olhuveli
  37. Viktoria (Germany) – Jumeirah Vittaveli
    Viktoria (Germany) – Jumeirah Vittaveli
  38. Solveig Mork (Denmark) – Paradise Island
    Solveig Mork (Denmark) – Paradise Island
  39. Jessica Goicoechea (Spain) – Kuramathi
    Jessica Goicoechea (Spain) – Kuramathi

  40. Rochelle Humes (United Kingdom) – Atmosphere Kanifushi
    Rochelle Humes (United Kingdom) – Atmosphere Kanifushi
  41. Lela Ceterova (Czech) – Constance Halaveli
    Lela Ceterova (Czech) – Constance Halaveli
  42. Dasha Batukhtina (Russia) – Baros
    Dasha Batukhtina (Russia) – Baros
  43. Frederica Lena (Italy) – Alimatha
    Frederica Lena (Italy) – Alimatha
  44. Malin Richardson (Sweden) – Park Hyatt Hadaha
    Malin Richardson (Sweden) – Park Hyatt Hadaha
  45. Mercedes Maya (Spain) – Gangehi
    Mercedes Maya (Spain) – Gangehi
  46. Alana Blanchard (USA) – Maalifhusi
    Alana Blanchard (USA) – Maalifhusi
  47. Elena Passeri (Italy) – Madoogali
    Elena Passeri (Italy) – Madoogali
  48. Marloes Horst (Netherlands) – Coco Palm Dhuni Kolhu
    Marloes Horst (Netherlands) – Coco Palm Dhona Khuni
  49. Aleona Lynx (Russia) – AaaVeee
    Aleona Lynx (Russia) - AaaVeee
  50. Eva Marti (Slovakia) – Kihaad
    Eva Marti (Slovakia) – Kihaad

Back in Action

Back Float - Unidentified

All the stars from around the world have donned their most sparkling swimwear and have dived into the placid water in this little corner of paradise. Not the Olympic Swimming competition at the Rio Games, but the languid Maldives-style “backstroke”. Gold medallion super supine suppleness…

  1. Annabella Barber (New Zealand) – Six Senses Laamu
    Annabella Barber (New Zealand) – Six Senses Laamu
  2. Anjali Lavania (India) – Gili Lankanfushi
    Anjali Lavania (India) – Gili Lankanfushi
  3. Alexandra Lavrinenko (Russia) – Sun Siyam Irufushi
    Alexandra Lavrinenko (Russia) – Sun Siyam Irufushi
  4. Maria Andy Tettamanti (USA) – W Retreat
    Maria Andy Tettamanti  (USA) – W Retreat
  5. Rosie Londoner (United Kingdom) – Huvafenfushi
    Rosie Londoner (United Kingdom) – Huvafenfushi
  6. Karina Irby (Australia) – Adaaran Hudhuranfushi
    Karina Irby (Australia) – Adaaran Hudhuranfushi
  7. Luciana Fistarol (Brazil) – Vadoo
    Luciana Fistarol (Brazil) - Vadoo

  8. Emelie Natasha (Swedish) – Sheraton Full Moon
    Emelie Natasha (Swedish) – Sheraton Full Moon
  9. Irina Dubcova (Russia) – Lily Beach
    Irina Dubcova (Russia) – Lily Beach
  10. Ala Cascaval (Moldova) – Hulhumale
    Ala Cascaval (Moldova) – Hulhumale
  11. Raudha Aathif (Maldives) – Shangri-La Villingili
    Raudha Aathif (Maldives) – Shangri-La Villingili
  12. Tanja Sieder (Germany) – Velassaru
    Tanja Sieder (Germany) – Velassaru
  13. Chelsea Yamase (USA) – Shangri-La Vilingili
    Chelsea Yamase (USA) – Shangri-La Vilingili
  14. Margaret MacPherson (Australia) – Club Med Finolhu Villas
    Margaret MacPherson (Australia) – Club Med Finolhu Villas
  15. Christine Teigen (USA) – Anantara Dhigu
    Christine Teigen (USA) – Anantara Dhigu
  16. Marcela Ito (Brazil) – Six Senses Laamu
    Marcela Ito (Brazil) – Six Senses Laamu
  17. Iryn Shynkarenko (Ukraine) – Veligandu
    Iryn Shynkarenko (Ukraine) – Veligandu
  18. Raphaelle Chaudet (France) – Medhufushi
    Raphaelle Chaudet (France) – Medhufushi
  19. Yasmin Sewell (United Kingdom) – Huvafenfushi
    Yasmin Sewell (United Kingdom) – Huvafenfushi

Social Media Holi-Day

Anatara Dhigu - Bar Rafaeli social media

Social Media Day today celebrates the surge of sharing and micro-blogging that has exploded on the web in the past couple of years. When I launched Maldives Complete nearly a decade ago, the inclusion of a “Blog” on this travel site was somewhat of a novelty. For the first few years, now resort really has any blog on their website. Blogging tended to be more the domain of technologists and political pundits. Now any girl (yes, the social media elite is dominate entirely by young women) with a trust fund and a well turned ankle is a “lifestyle blogger”.

I’m still about the interesting analysis (even if it is illustrated with some local colour). My fashion database now includes over 700 Maldives-loving fashionistas of which of 200 are classified as “bloggers”.

I’ve also gathered up their social media credential across a range of the top platforms including the following (with the top Maldives visitors by each)…

  • Instagram: Victoria Beckham (United Kingdom) – 8,990,000 Followers (One & Only Reethi Rah)
  • Facebook: Deepika Padukone (India) – 27,667,000 Followers (Taj Exotica)
  • Twitter: Paris Hilton (USA) – 13,600,000 Followers (Velaa)
  • YouTube: Tanya Burr (United Kingdom) – 531000 Views (LUX South Ari Atoll)

I’ve created a basic “Maldives Complete Digital Index” based on the numbers of Followers, etc. each individual has. Ties in Index points broken by total points (which adds things like Wikipedia, IMDB, website)…

A few observations…

  • English matters – The big English speaking countries – UK, USA, India – dominate 16 of the top 20
  • Looks matter – “Models” are the biggest category with 9 of the top 20. Despite commanding nearly a third of all fashion/travel material posted, only 2 actually Bloggers made it into the Social Media top twenty.
  • Sports Illustrated matters – Anantara Dhigu/Veli and Banyan Tree Vabbinfaru together boasted 5 of not just the top 20, but the top 10! Both on the high-heels of the Sports Illustrated photoshoots taken place there. Aside from those, no other resort had more than one entry.
1. Bar Refaeli (Israel) – Anantara Dhigu [ABOVE]
2. Tanya Burr (United Kingdom) – LUX South Ari Atoll
Lux South Ari Ari - Tanya Burr social media
3. Tyra Banks (USA) – Banyan Tree Vabbinfaru
Banyan Tree Vabbinfaru - Tyra Banks social media
4. Christine Teigen (USA) – Anantara Dhigu
Anantara Dhigu - Christine Teigen social media

5. Brooklyn Decker (USA) – Anantara Veli
Anantara Dhigu - Brooklyn Decker social media
6. Priyanka Chopra (India) –Nika
Nika - Priyanka Chopra social media
7. Irina Shayk (Russia) – Anantara Kihavah Villas
Anantara Kihavah Villas - Irina Shayk social media
8. Yeng Constantino (Philippines) – Angsana Velavaru
Angsana Velavaru - Yeng Constantino social media
9. Heidi Klum (Germany) – Banyan Tree Vabbinfaru
Banyan Tree Vabbinfaru - Heidu Klum social media
10. Dita Van Teese (United Kingdom) – Conrad Rangali
Conrad Rangali - Dita Van Teese social media

11. Bipasha Basu (India) – Four Seasons Kuda Huraa
Four Seasons Kudaa Huraa - Bipasha Basu social media
12. Sonakshi Sinha (India) – Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru
Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru - Sonakshi Sinha social media

13. Sonam Kapoor (India) – Jumeirah Vittaveli
Jumeirah Vittaveli - Sonam Kapoor social media
14. Victoria Beckham (United Kingdom) – One & Only Reethi Rah
One and Only Reethi Rah - Victoria Beckham social media
15. Zoe Sugg (United Kingdom) – Ranveli
Ranveli - Zoe Sugg social media
16. Nicole Scherzinger (USA) – Sun Siyam Irufushi
Sun Siyam Irufushi - Nicole Scherzinger social media
17. Deepika Padukone (India) – Taj Exotica
Taj Exotica - Deepika Padukone social media
18. Paris Hilton (USA) – Velaa
Velaa - Paris Hilton social media

19. Charlotte Crosby (United Kingdom) – Zitahli Kudafunafaru
Zitahli Kudafunafaru - Charlotte Crosby social media

20. Cheryl Fernandez-Versini (United Kingdom)
Cheryl Fernandez-Versini Maldives social media










Bar Refaeli


Club Med Finolhu Villas






Tanya Burr

United Kingdom

LUX South Ari Atoll






Tyra Banks


Banyan Tree Vabbinfaru






Brooklyn Decker


Anantara Dhigu






Priyanka Chopra








Christine Teigen


Anantara Dhigu






Irina Shayk


Anantara Kihavah Villas






Yeng Constantino


Angsana Velavaru






Heidi Klum


Banyan Tree Vabbinfaru






Dita Van Teese

United Kingdom

Conrad Rangali






Bipasha Basu


Four Seasons Kuda Huraa






Sonakshi Sinha


Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru






Sonam Kapoor


Jumeirah Vittaveli






Victoria Beckham

United Kingdom

One & Only Reethi Rah






Zoe Sugg

United Kingdom







Nicole Scherzinger


Sun Siyam Irufushi






Deepika Padukone


Taj Exotica






Paris Hilton








Charlotte Crosby

United Kingdom

Zitahli Kudafunafaru






Cheryl Fernandez-Versini

United Kingdom






Sea Sixteen

Dhigurah - Ekaterina Vladi underwater

In the Maldives, the main event has always been underwater. Even if you didn’t put a toe into the sea, its glassy clarity meant that most of it is easy to gaze into from above like some mammoth aquarium. A long time divers paradise, but even more distinguished as probably the best diving in the world. But you don’t even need fins and mask to enjoy the varied and colourful beauty found floating effortlessly beneath the surface.

1. Ekaterina Vladi (Russia) – Dhigurah [ABOVE]
2. Nicole Warne (Australia) – Amilla Fushi
Amilla Fushi - Nicole Warne
3. Catherine Clark (USA) – Four Seasons Kuda Huraa
Four Seasons Kuda Huraa - Catheirne Clark
4. Eliza Landgren (Australia) – Adaaran Hudahuranfushi
Adaaran Hudhuranfushi - Eliza Landgren
5. Emma Skinner (United Kingdom) – Chaaya Island Dhonveli
Cinnamon Dhonveli - Emma Skinner underwater
6. Karina Irby (Australia) – Adaaran Hudhuranfushi
Adaaran Hudhuranfushi - Karina Irby underwater
7. Nastya Leskova (Russia) – Coco Bodu Hithi
Coco Bodu Hithi - Nastya Leskova underwater
8. Madeleine Schneider-Weiffenbach (Germany) – Six Senses Laamu
Six Senses Laamu - Madeleine Schneider-Weiffenbach underwater
9. Michelle Proctor (Hong Kong) – Centara Ras Fushi
Centara Ras Fushi - Michelle Proctor underwater
10. Silvi Bodi (Germany) – Kandooma
Kandooma - Silvi Bodi underwater
11. Belinda Young (Taiwan) – Conrad Rangali
Conrad Rangali - Belinda Young underwater
12. Rocky Barnes (USA) – Palm Beach
Palm Beach - Rocky Barnes underwater
13. Lauren Hill (USA) – Four Seasons Kuda Huraa
Four Seasons Kuda Huraa - Lauren Hill underwater
14. Viki Maldives (Russia) – Anantara Dhigu
Anantara Dhigu - Vik Voynikova underwater
15. Mika Moeller (Germany) – Ellaidhoo
Cinnamon Ellaidhoo - Mika Moeller underwater
16. Preeyanuch Parnabindu (Thailand) – Safari Island
Huvafenfushi - Rosie Thomas underwater