Best of the Maldives: Widest Beds – Jumeirah Dhevanafushi

Jumeirah Dhevanafushi beds


Of course, another way for the whole family to relax is a bit of cuddle therapy. But, as my wife and I learned when we had young kids, as sweet as it is when the little ones jump onto the bed in the morning for a start-the-day hug, it does call for a bigger bed. And in the Maldives, there are no bigger beds than Jumeirah Dhevanafushi’s Ocean Revive and Island Revive beds. At 3 metres wide (2 metres long) they are the biggest I have come across anywhere. A UK ‘super-King’ is only 2 metres wide (and 1.83 metres long). In fact, the biggest commercially sold bed in the world is the ‘California King’ which is only 2.13 metres wide.

Thanks again Adrian.

Best of the Maldives: Bean Bags–Velassaru / Baros

Velssaru bean bags


If you don’t want to sit on a gigantic beach towel, then Velassaru has the biggest beach beanbags I have ever come across…”Fatboys”. Bean bags are becoming more an more popular in the Maldives as a cozy seating. We saw them at Kurumba and Kandooma. But ‘Fatboys’ are the Cadillac, or should I say ‘Hummers’ of the genre.

According to a Daily Mail feature, the Fat Boys are also at nearby sister Universal resort of Baros as well…

“With a flourish, Jihad threw open the door to our villa and our children-squeezed past us, ignoring the emperor-sized bed, the teak decor, flatscreen TV, iPod charger and the Moet et Chandon on ice, and instead headed straight for the dazzling beach beyond the veranda. 'Mummy! Daddy!' they cried, 'they've got a fat boy here!' Amanda and I glanced at each other in horror; were we now about to face an outraged and indignant parent? Fortunately, the 'fat boy' turned out to be a Fatboy, a giant waterproof cushion, a sort of amphibious beanbag equally at home on the beach or in the water, and from then on it became the most heavily used piece of kit on the island.”

Best of the Maldives: Midnight Dip – W Retreat

W Retreat pool stars

If stars are more your thing than the moon, then follow them over to W Retreat for a midnight dip in their constellation pools. Both their main pool and their individual villa pools feature star lights along the bottom creating their own little galaxies. The main pool is one of the larger ones in the Maldives at 50 square meters. And the villa pools are also combined with Jacuzzis.

It is legend that when Dom Perignon discovered champagne, he remarked ‘I am drinking stars!’ (In fact, there is even a book on the history of champagne with this quote as its title). With a glass of champagne, you are surrounded by stars below, above and inside.

Best of the Maldives – Bubble Loungers: One & Only Kanuhura

Kanuhura pool jacuzzi


Perhaps the most relaxing times in our decade and a half of visiting the Maldives were lounging by the pool. Kanuhura has turned that relaxation into an art.

First of all they boast one of the largest pools in the Maldives. A contortionate, curvaceous beast like some sort of voluptuous gymnast. As pleasant on the eye as the soothing to the skin.

Then they add a unique in its own right…a bank of Jacuzzi loungers (see photo above). Not a separate jacuzzi, but a air jets right in the pool. And not some little space where you sit on some bench-like contraption trying not to inadvertently play footsie with some other guest who happened drop in. Your own, full-length, individual, head-propping, leg-stretching lounger. In the pool.

To top it all off, they have simply the most elaborate pool-side service I have come across anywhere. More on that in a future piece, but just hint of it…’sun glass polishing service’.


Best of the Maldives – Tub-Pool Combo: Naladhu

Naladhu pool tub combo

Forget your underwater spas, restaurants, bedrooms and night clubs. I’m on my honeymoon and I don’t want to be looking at a bunch of Brown Spotted Groupers. I want to look at my gorgeous bride. And that includes my underwater viewing fun. Here in one of Naladhu’s private villas, they have combined the outdoor pool with the outdoor bathtub. Relaxing in a soothing tub while watching my gorgeous bride taking a dip in her ‘skimpiest’ of suits. Now that’s a treat.

Best of the Maldives – Lagoon Lounging: Anantara Dhigu

Anantara Dhigu hammock

For people who really want to get away from it all. For people for whom going to some exotic island in the middle of the Indian Ocean is not remote enough. For people who want to go their own little haven of solitude in the middle of the ocean off the exotic island in the middle of the ocean.

A hammock in the middle of the ocean.


This view in the photo above is not from some island, but from the middle of the ocean (in a kayak) looking back at Anantara Dhigu. It is over 100 yards off shore (though the depth here at a lazy-butt-cooling high tide is about 4 feet).

Best of the Maldives: Spa Romance – Kuramathi

Kuramathi spa for couples

The Royal couple of WIlliam and Katherine are now married and the honeymoon beckons. No word yet on the destination, but the Maldives are one of the world’s top honeymoon destinations. With everywhere being such romantically tropical paradise, how does one choose the most quintessentially romantic spot. There are lots of criteria to consider, but if the ultimate chill-out after the manic wedding build-up is called for, then I know of no more romantic spa treatment than
Kuramathi’s couple’s massage.

The couples massage experience is a fairly standard offering across the Maldives. Throw two tables in a room instead of just one and, voila, a treat you share ‘together’ rather than queing up after each other or retiring to separate quarters.

But Kuramathi have gone that creative step further. After your resplendent couple’s massage, the two of you are taken to another treatment room where a gigantic bathtub is filled with a bubbles, sprinkled with flower petals and accompanied by not only glasses of sparkling wine, but also a chocolate fountain with tropical fruits. The couple are then given the key to the room so they can lock the door from the inside and they can enjoy a further hour at the spa in sumptuous privacy.

Friends of ours recently returned from their honeymoon, which we had helped them to research, and told us all about their magical afternoon at the spa. Genius.

Best of the Maldives: Chinese Therapy – Adaaran Club Rannalhi

Club Rannalhi chinese therapy


Looking for am apropos hangover cure from your Chinese New Year celebrations? Well, you might want to stop by the ‘Traditional Chinese Therapy Centre’ at Club Rannalhi.

Liu Yaping offers a range of treatments which are mostly variations of acupressure massage such as “Tui Na” and “Chinese cupping”. Most treatments run about $60 for an hour session

Disclaimer – I am not a fan the many disastrous environmental effects of many traditional Chinese therapies that call for ingredients of rare species like tigers, rhinos and most relevant in the Maldives is manta gills. Most holistic therapies are harmless placebos which provide comfort. But when a billion people with increasing amounts of money start wanting these obscure ingredients, the side effects for the planet can be tragic. Fortunately, Club Rannalhi’s therapy centre does not offer any of these ingredients based on endangered species in its treatment offerings.

While other resorts have spas offering Chinese treatments (eg. Shangri-La Villingili, Olhuveli, Soneva Fushi, Meedhupparu), the Rannali centre is the only one who specialises in just this area.