Best of the Maldives: Gingerbread House – Kandima

Kandima - gingerbread house 1

Today is the 11th “Day of Christmas” according to the “12 Days of Christmas” tradition which runs from Christmas day to Epiphany Sunday (tomorrow). The Eleventh Day of Christmas today is famously brought 11 Pipers Piping. I think Kandima needed at least that many to do all the icing piping on their Gingerbread spectacle (not to mention the goodies inside).

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Best of the Maldives: Blues – Kandima

Kandima - blue patterns 2

It’s not surprising that an island like Kandima that invests so heavily in the arts, also exudes its own striking aesthetic vibe. And the cornerstone of the Maldives colour palette is blue. The moment you walk into reception, you are struck by the dazzling blue reception desk. A cavalcade of azures that hit you the minute you get into Maldivian airspace. Kandima has splashed this tapestry of cerulean shades across its décor from rugs inside to tiled tables outside and a range of accessories and touches throughout. It’s not just the default colour, but the dominant one. Even less prominent spaces, like the fitness centre (photo below) are carefully decorated with blue hues.

Kandima - blue patterns 1

Kandima - blue gym

Best of the Maldives: Artist-in-Residence – Kandima

Kandima - artist in residence 1

Aima Musko and I got way back. When I had just started Maldives Complete and she had just started her career in art. She’s helped me with the website (doing the new logo this past year) and I guess you could say that I helped her as her first customer. I knew that she had been a part of the featured artist series at Kandima, but I hadn’t realised that she had stayed on as an artist-in-residence at the resort until we visited there in July. She caught me up on all the latest and greatest in her artistic exploits as well as her exciting plans for the future. And here in a Maldives Complete exclusive, she is sharing a bit of her creative life on the island of Kandima…

  • Which atoll are you from?
    G.Dh. Fiyoari (Huvadhoo Atoll) but have always lived in Malè
      
  • What art training have you had?
  • Visual Arts in High School at Mahindra United World College of India and Foundation in Visual Communications at The One Academy in Malaysia.
      
  • What is your big frustration as an artist?
  • Other than getting easily frustrated as a perfectionist, being limited and restricted as to what can be exhibited here.
      
  • What was the first painting you ever sold (tell us your side of the story)?
  • While working at Transparency Maldives in 2011, I was asked to be the artist on a video that was celebrating women and had to make a painting for it. The video “Salhi Anhenun” (Cool Women) was uploaded to YouTube and after a few days I was contacted by the production team saying that they had someone interested in purchasing my painting. I met Bruce at a Cafe in Malè and since that day, I’m so happy to know that my painting has been hanging in his house all the way in UK for the past 7 years!
      
  • What artists have influenced you?
  • With Social Media like Instagram, I’m following various artists from all over the world with different mediums and techniques and have been continuously influenced by their styles. However I would say visiting the Art Exhibitions in Malè when I was younger and seeing the works of Artists from Maldives (Afu, Ika and Eagan to name a few) really left a lasting impression on me. Having creative friends and drawing together in school, working in different creative fields.. I’m constantly inspired and influenced.
      
  • What is the biggest misconception about art that you face?
    That good art is how realistic you can draw. Also that if you are an artist, you will be good in every aspect of art and the mediums.
      
  • If you could buy one piece of art in the world (money is no object, it could be millions), which one would it be?
    A painting by Ika of a Blue lady holding a cigarette that I saw in a house I visited with a friend about a decade ago. It just always stuck with me and I would love to own it for the impact it had on me. The second would be “The Kiss” by Gustavo Klimt. Smile
      

You can check out her personal online gallery here.

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Best of the Maldives: Biggest Pirate Ship – Kandima

Kandima - pirate kids play ship

Talk Like A Pirate Day! Maybe one of the best celebrations on the calendar of esoteric days. The remote tropical patches of sand that are the Maldives are something out of a Robert Lewis Stevenson novel. And there is no bigger pirate treasure for active apprentice pirates than Kandima’s towering galleon at its “Kandiland” kids club.  The clipper ship complex comes complete with sun-screen netting, water cannons as well as a rabbit warren of climbing walls and slides.

Shiver me timbers!

Kandima - pirate kids play ship 2

Best of the Maldives: Tomato Festival – Kandima

Kandima - tomato festival 1

Kandima has hosted a festival of another sort this summer. A first blush (yes, intended), it might seem like one of those foodie festivals that are spreading across middle-class England, but really is far more traditional (and raucous) than that…

  • “Kandima Maldives hosts the first ever Tomato Festival ‘La Tomatina’ in the island nation. The event took place last week on Friday, 31st August 2018 on the resort grounds. In total over 300 people attended the event, which lasted for almost four hours. ‘La Tomatina’ was home to the famous tomato fight, tug of war, mini football, water bucket relay, climb the coconut tree and many other fun-packed beach games. During the event the house DJ entertained the crowd with his party mixes while the barmen were offering free Latino-themed snacks and drinks to everybody. The resort chefs had to lay the tomatoes in the sun for three days prior to the event, which made them ripe and safe to fight with. Fire brigade was also on site and willing to offer their hoses with running water to remove the squashed tomatoes from the participants’ bodies…The festival of tomatoes was held for the first time in 1945 in the Valencian town of Buñol, in the East of Spain 30 kilometres (19 miles) from the Mediterranean, in which participants would throw tomatoes and get involved in a tomato fight purely for entertainment purposes.”

You say “tomato…I say ‘incoming!’.”

Kandima - tomato festival 2