Review: Val Jones
The iconic Maldivian islands have been one of our ‘must-do’ destinations for what seems like an age. We visited three islands and resorts on our Maldives island-hopping trip, and the Adarran Select Meedhupparu was our first. To get to the island we had to take a seaplane flight. The plane soon filled up with passengers plus luggage so it got quite cosy and we were lucky to get a great front row seat. The pilots boarded soon afterwards – in flip flops! (we thought ok, this is how the Maldivians roll!), however, their laid-back footwear was soon kicked off and our top-notch pilots flew with bare feet. As the flight progressed, we took in the views of the beautiful islands; there are no less than 1200 islands, with 200 being inhabited and 100 of those holiday resorts. The pilots pointed out highlights and the co-pilot even took a few photos for us from the cockpit. The landing was very smooth and our welcome party awaited.
With our feet back on solid ground, cool flannels and ice cold bottled water was handed out prior to the short journey by golf buggy to the hub of the resort. At check-in we were seated in the large bar area, offered a drink and snack. Transport, if needed on the island, was by golf buggy and by the end of our stay we almost forgot about the ‘real-world’ existence of cars… and shoes.
FACILITIES AND WATERSPORTS
Adarran Select Meedhupparu is located on the Raa Atoll, 136 km from Male and a seaplane journey of just 45 minutes. Due to the remote location of the island, you feel as though you are on the only island in existence, with the turquoise water of the Indian Ocean surrounding us, it was easy to understand how Robinson Crusoe might have felt. Beach Villas and the more exclusive Water Villas are on offer, and if chilling on a sunbed all day with a good book is not your idea of heaven, don’t worry there is more to this island than just its’ beauty. You will never be bored with tons of excursions and activities available. The certified dive school is situated on the beach front, offering dives for all abilities, along with a multitude of water sports, including windsurfing, jet ski, sailing, and wakeboarding. If you want to keep your feet on dry land there is a fitness centre, pool, table tennis, tennis court, badminton, beach volley, board games, and a library.
The Chavana Spa has such a peaceful atmosphere with polite, courteous staff, three treatment rooms, and an extensive spa menu. The sauna and steam room are available for guests to just pop in and use at no charge.
THE ACCOMMODATION – BEACH VILLA
Our Beach Villa was gorgeous; the large bed was extra comfy, where bedside downlights and reading lights complimented this area and overall bathed in a colour scheme of turquoise blue and sunshine yellow. There was air con and large ceiling fan were very welcome – and a must with the humidity and the blackout curtains aided a good nights’ sleep. The bathroom suited the tropical climate with indoor and outdoor showers, dual sinks and a lovely variety of plants winding their way up and along the external wall. We knew straight away as we stepped through the patio doors onto our private beach terrace that this was going to be the perfect go-to area for the duration of our stay.
As we ventured out to sunbathe, the garden attendant was immediately at our side and offered to move the sunbeds to the edge of the clear turquoise waters, onto the pure white sand, (no apologies for making it sounds idyllic, it just was!), and there’s no need for sun brollies when you had your very own palm tree! The level of genuine and friendly guest service was fantastic.
DINING AND DRINKING
We enjoyed the various bars and entertainment and were spoilt for choice. The Halaboli pool bar is a sunken bar serving the L-shaped infinity pool which faces out towards the Indian Ocean and features sunbeds scattered with plush luxury cushions with a helpful assistant on hand to provide replacement pool towels. We loved the informal atmosphere of the Sunrise beach bar, the bar itself is shaped like a boat, a scattering of tables greeting us, with a friendly barman to make the experience complete, we were lucky to have enjoyed a spectacular sunset at its’ counterpart the Sunset bar which was equally amazing. The Sunset bar features a live saxophone player on an evening. There is also a disco and live entertainment is also on offer in the main bars. Café Mass (Asian cuisine) sits on the beachside and offers an Ala Carte menu option where candlelight and crisp white table cloths create an air of romance, and the background music of the saxophone player at the Sunset bar next door.
Food in the main restaurant is to a high standard with lots of choices and outstanding service, we liked the fact that we had the same table each meal time, with the same waiter, who immediately took our drinks order and ensured we had everything we needed, in fact, there was always a member of the team to guide us through our choices the resort felt like a real close-knit team as all staff local to the island.
Before we departed, Mr. Ernest, the General Manager, gave us a tour around the island where we viewed the water villas and private restaurant serving the villas; an exclusive area with a private beach. We were also lucky enough to have a sneak peek at the mock villas for the Adaaran Select group’s new 5* Island Heritage, Aarah which opened in February 2019. It will hard to beat our fantastic stay at Meedhupparu, and is one we would love to repeat on our return visit to the beautiful Maldives.
For further details on the Maldives, visit www.visitmaldives.com.
Manchester Airport T2 Aspire Lounge prices start from £21.99 per adult.
t: +44 (0)161 694 7220
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