LUX North Male Atoll lets your yacht stop over at its Overwater Retreat which is fitted out with its own private boat jetty. The most luxurious arrival since the now defunct helipads at Anantara and Maafushivaru.
Homes festooned with Christmas lights to herald Santa’s arrival around the world, but if you don’t want him disturbing your tropical holiday with his festive cheer, then the two little green and red light on the outside of LUX North Male Atoll’s villas are its “do not disturb” system. Just flip the switch inside that illuminates them. You can choose between a silent night or a bearing gifts ye traverse afar. Merry Christmas everyone.
Buffets are part of the fabric of Maldives resorts, but I’ve never come across an ice cream buffet like LUX North Male Atoll sundae counter at its ICI ice cream parlour. It took me back to perhaps my earliest memory of personalised, decadent taste treats – Putnam Pantry. Back in the 70s, we would make the half hour drive to “make your own sundae” and their ice cream smorgasbord which was the ultimate treat or birthday party. But, not surprisingly, LUX surpassed even the American penchant for excess with 18 flavours of ice cream, 6 sauces, 8 toppings and a range of other accessory treats.
Fusion is a fun way to blend diverse flavours and culinary traditions for exciting new tastes, but LUX North Male Atoll’s INTI restaurant is probably the most diverse combo we have come across – Japanese and Peruvian.
Before you think someone just threw a couple of darts at a map, it turns out that Japan and Peru have a longstanding cultural connection. Peru was the first Latin American country to have diplomatic relations with Japan in 1873. At the end of Peru’s War of the Pacific in 1884, the Chinese worker population had been greatly reduced and there was big demand for farming labour. Then when the First Sino-Japanese War ended in 1895, the Japanese economy was crippled and young farmers started looking overseas for opportunities. Rumours of gold, mild climate, rich soil and similar seafood cuisine added to the allure and influx.
LUX describes the establishment: “Savour octopus with black olive mayo, Tiradito breads and smoky guacamole – or take in a five-course fresh fish Cerviche tasting. Sip on an iced Peruvian beer, warm sake or Pisco sour as the smells and sounds of Peru and Japan stir the sensory feast.” We enjoyed a sumptuous meal which did meld the delicate traditions of Japanese sushi with bolder flavoured ingredients like the purple maki (see above).
The name “INTI” is the name of the Inca sun god. The décor of the dining area is a collection of suns – fusing the icon of sun god, “Land of the Rising Sun” and, of course, the Maldives’ own sun-infused splendour (where modern day sun worshippers flock).
One of our favourite activities in the Maldives is laying out a beach towel or dragging a lounger out of the palm canopy to the open beach to gaze up to the stars. But if you want even less sand on you and be that little bit close to the stars themselves, not to mention having a full 180 degree perspective, then LUX North Male Atoll’s villa rooftops are the apex of taking in the tropical astral lights of night time skies.
Happy Egg Day. Obviously, not Easter, but the national holiday to celebrate all things EGGY. I love me my breakfasts. Lori often remarks that I don’t just eat breakfast, I eat Breakfast #1, Breakfast #2, and then I top it all off with Breakfast Dessert. I also thorough savour the delicately rich flavour of truffle. So LUX North Male Atoll’s Truffle Egg Croissant was a treat for me.
Keeping plastic out of oceans has become quite the fashionable eco-initiative lately, but LUX North Male Atoll is helping the environment by putting plastic into the ocean. In a manner most fashionable…on the bodies of guests. The carry a line of swim suits (for both men and women) that are made from recycled plastic. The lady’s suits aren’t quite as daring as some string bikinis, but they are made out of string – 65% recycled fish net. The swim shorts cost $130 struck me as exceedingly stylish decorated with images of turtles, sharks and creatures the eco-friendliness is helping out.
LUX* North Male Atoll’s “LUX Café” features a non-electronic way to start your morning detox after a night of a few too many pina coladas – cold drip coffee. Cold drip is a technique where coffee is immersed in cold water and left to ‘brew’ over a number of hours. At LUX, water drips through for 6-8 hours to make one 1 litre (also 14 hours for 3 litre version). The result is a concentrated coffee where more of the flavour is preserved with a richer fuller body. It is especially good for preparing ice coffee – Lori’s favourite.
Where to begin with the LUX* North Male Atoll? Tour 2019 came back so many candidate “Best of the Maldives” features for LUX that it’s hard to choose. Maybe just start at the top. And I do mean tippy top. With a crowning distinction which plays to a long loved aspect of mine when resorts find a way to highlight this defining characteristic of the Maldives – vistas.
From the moment your flight approaches the Maldives archipelago, you are mesmerized by the expansive vista of blues spreading out beneath you across the ocean. Unfortunately, with a destination known for its diminutive elevation, most views of this aqua-coloured dreamscape are are obliquely cast across the surface. Just getting a bit of elevation can extend and enrich the panorama of blue pantones before you.
I’ve long had a “Vistas” as a “Best Of” category tag, and LNMA provided several to add to that collection. In fact, the vista is one of the central design tenets of the entire property. Every single villa is architected around an open rooftop deck with king-sized loungers for lying back to gaze with equal comfort and wonder at the waters below or the heavens above. They even have a name for this area – your “Sky Lounge”. You can have dinner served there (including an open-air BBQ), have a film under the stars projected there, or just sit and enjoy the 360 degree scenery.
But its not just your villa where you can enjoy the vertical perspective. The INTI restaurant is situated on a second floor with a completely open view of the pool and beyond. The Café LUX coffee shop sits upstairs looking over the ocean. Even the kids club offers a raised floor with a view.
LUX North Male Atoll just raised the bar on enjoying Maldives ‘ spectacular vistas.