The best resorts in the Maldives

An exotic island destination with pristine coastlines and ring-shaped atolls, the Maldives is an ideal holiday choice for travelers. This guide explores some of the best resorts in the Maldives.

Aerial view of Herathera island, Addu atoll. Image credit: mbbirdy/iStock
Aerial view of Herathera island, Maldives. Image credit: mbbirdy/iStock

With 26 atolls and more than 1,000 islands, the Maldives conveys a taste of luxury at a leisurely pace. Exclusive spas, white sandy beaches, lifestyle experiences, clear waters, diverse cuisines, and five-star resorts in the Maldives are just some of the things on offer. Check out some of the best resorts in the Maldives.

Six Senses Laamu – a luxury Maldives resort

Offering a mix of over-water and on-land villas made from sustainable materials, Six Senses Laamu is the only resort in the Laamu Atoll, accessible by boat and plane from Malé. Laamu Atoll is an administrative division in the south of the Maldives and is surrounded by barrier reefs and islands.

The resort itself boasts plenty of highlights. The villas offer private beach access or are placed on stilts directly above the water with a viewing platform. Most villas come fitted with amenities such as flat-screen televisions, Bose entertainment systems, iPod docking stations, in-room Wi-Fi, and personal bars. The family villa comes with additional features such as a Nespresso machine and a bottle of prosecco.

The resort’s spa sits on the beach and offers four couple’s treatment pavilions and nests, and an Ayurvedic treatment pavilion. The therapists use an array of natural products combined with award-winning treatments and regional wellness specialties. The selection of therapies offered include Ayurvedic treatments, facials, and massages. Personalized wellness programs are available for guests with specific preferences.

The resort offers diverse dining options for guests. Leaf is the resort’s signature restaurant, offering inventive dishes with ingredients sourced from local fishermen and farmers. Zen, another restaurant on-site, has a live kitchen station with Japanese fusion food. Sip Sip is a sunken bar that offers poolside seating for all-day dining options like pizzas, burgers, pasta, and salads. Built on several levels over the water, Chill Bar offers different food and drink options, including organic salads, Vietnamese appetizers, stonebaked pizzas, cocktails, and spirits.

At Six Senses Laamu, guests have plenty of experiences to choose from. The waterfront setting makes it easy to spot dolphins and other local marine life along the sandy shores. A professional dive team at the resort offers lessons and diving information in multiple languages. 

The view from the water villa at Laamu Six Senses. Image credit: Laamu Six Senses
The view from the water villa at Laamu Six Senses. Image credit: Laamu Six Senses

For early birds, morning dives make a good choice, getting you out for a dive and back to the resort in time for breakfast. You can also opt for a night dive to explore how life on the reef changes.

There’s also a wide range of water sport activities to suit all interests and skill levels. Surfers will enjoy seclusion in the water, with the biggest swells between June and September. Water skiing and wakeboarding are other activities offered. Beginners and experienced windsurfers may enjoy trying out the resort’s lagoon.

Six Senses Laamu can also organize excursions with locals or exploration trips for guests. This includes island hopping to Hithadhoo Island, giving guests an opportunity to see how locals live. For those seeking a more authentic experience, a local home visit can be arranged. Some of the popular stops include visits to the local school, a mosque, a few grocery stores, and the community office.

Six Senses Laamu is suited to all age groups including children who have plenty of activities like ball games, climbing ropes, treasure hunts, ping-pong, puzzles, board games, and painting available to them. For those mixing business with pleasure, meeting rooms and events are optional choices at the resort.

One&Only Reethi Rah – An award-winning resort in the North Malé Atoll

North Malé Atoll is the main atoll of the Maldives and includes 50 islands, including Malé, the capital. Set amid a raft of white sands and lagoons, One&Only Reethi Rah is one of the best resorts in Maldives. Every aspect of the resort is carefully crafted to create an attractive holiday atmosphere for guests to enjoy.

The resort offers four types of accommodation options. You can choose from beach villas, water villas, the Grand Residence, and the Grand Sunset Residence. The beach villas are nestled within 12 beaches, offering extra space and privacy and sheltered within dense vegetation. The interiors are elegant and glamorous with decadent finishes.

Every villa comes equipped with a selection of teas and espresso, daily fresh fruit, laundry for children under the age of two, bottled mineral water, a garment pressing service on arrival, and a beach tote.

Exclusive features for the Grand Sunset residence include 457 square meters of a secluded beachfront, private road and gated access, two private swimming pools, a bottle of Champagne, full kitchen with outdoor dining, wine cellar, private on-call chef, personal bikes and two luxury private 4-seater buggies.

An overwater villa at One&Only Reethi Rah. Image credit: One&Only Reethi Rah
An overwater villa at One&Only Reethi Rah. Image credit: One&Only Reethi Rah

Offering an array of amenities, the resort’s spa is a worthwhile choice for guests looking to relax by the oceanfront. The Thai massage and warm oil treatments from expert therapists will give you a glimpse into both modern and old-world philosophies.

One&Only Reethi Rah offers six food and beverage options. Tapasake features modern Japanese cuisine with the finest sushi and sashimi on offer. Chef recommendations include the ponzu-style Chilean sea bass and the Australian chargrilled Wagyu ribeye. Reethi, another resort restaurant, fuses Asian, French and Italian cuisines to create a unique twist for food lovers. One&Only Reethi Rah’s Fanditha restaurant specializes in Middle Eastern cuisine.

Plenty of activities give guests the chance to explore the diversity of the island. The certified dive center provides unforgettable underwater experiences. A trendy beach club offers entertainment and activities for all age groups, including a climbing wall, Art Studio, and indoor golf simulator. Unique to the resort, the KidsOnly and OneTribe options are crafted for kids aged between four and 11, which is a complimentary service for resort guests.

For the fitness buffs, the Fitness Centre features world-class workout equipment, along with meditation and yoga classes at the Chi Pavilion. A floodlit tennis court and synthetic football field allow guests to experience the pleasures of their favorite sports while on holiday.

Huvafen Fushi – Appealing facilities for luxury travelers

Huvafen Fushi, situated in the North Malé Atoll near Malé, is just 30 minutes from the Malé International Airport via speedboat. 

When it comes to accommodation, guests have many choices. There’s the beach bungalow, the deluxe beach bungalow, the lagoon bungalow, the ocean bungalow, the two-bedroom ocean pavilion, and the two-bedroom beach pavilion, all of which come with their own pool.

Enjoy your own private pool or go out and explore the surrounding waters. Image credit: FilippoBacci/iStock
Enjoy your own private pool or go out and explore the surrounding waters. Image credit: FilippoBacci/iStock

Guests have their pick of amenities, from butler services to espresso machines to private bars to freshwater pools. Guests in the two-bedroom pavilions enjoy added amenities, including a kitchen, outdoor barbecue, outdoor jacuzzi, and a Kohler Body Jett Shower. Most rooms have direct lagoon or beach access and private sundecks with loungers.

Guests have several dining options within the resort. Celsius offers breakfast, lunch, and dinner with curries, oysters, and steaks on offer throughout the day. Forno features contemporary Napolitano cuisine with wood-fired pizzas and handmade pasta. Vinum is the first underground wine cellar in the Maldives, with degustation menus and wine flights to choose from. Feeling Koi offers Japanese flavors with a Latin twist. UMBar is a great place to unwind with a shisha and jazz music, along with a selection of snacks and cocktails.

Huvafen Fushi has a raft of spa treatments, along with offering the world’s first-ever underwater spa. The spa contains two underwater treatment rooms for couples with reef views and soothing designs, four single treatment rooms over water, two couple’s treatment rooms over water and a relaxation area with cold and hot water therapies.

A signature spa offering is a massage style from international massage expert Beata Aleksandrowicz. This massage combines trigger-point techniques, deep tissue, and touch therapy together. Other treatments include an assortment of facials, hair repair, and sun repair therapies.

The underwater spa is a stand-out feature of the resort, while the rustic thatched roofs and luxurious interiors create a sense of modern luxury with high-tech amenities to match.

Cheval Blanc Randheli – An exclusively-designed resort

Cheval Blanc Randheli, in Noonu Atoll, is 40 minutes via seaplane from Malé International Airport. Sitting just north of Malé, Noonu Atoll contains 71 islands, of which only 13 are inhabited. Featuring an exclusive design by the famous Jean-Michel Gathy, Cheval Blanc Randheli is one of the best resorts in the Maldives.

Cheval Blanc Randheli has its own private island, containing a four-bedroom villa with modern indoor and outdoor spaces, a 25-meter pool, a private spa, and a wide array of services. A dedicated 24/7 team offers tailored activities for the villa’s guests.

The resort contains 45 villas with artistic décor under thatched roofs. Accommodation includes overwater villas, lagoon villas, lagoon garden villas, beach garden villas and island villas featuring a hammock, swimming pool, loungers, and a daybed. All villas feature infinity pools, spacious living rooms, decks, and grand bathrooms and are ideal for couples seeking a romantic honeymoon resort in the Maldives with stunning ocean views and plenty of relaxation.

Lounge in a deckchair at Randheli Noonu Atoll,one of the best resorts in the Maldives. Image credit: AtanasBozhikovNasko/iStock
Lounge in a deckchair at Randheli Noonu Atoll. Image credit: AtanasBozhikovNasko/iStock

As one of the best resorts in the Maldives, it offers five restaurants and four bars for guests to satisfy their culinary cravings. Deelani is a Mediterranean restaurant inspired by Italian fare with selections of homemade pizzas, beef carpaccio, gnocchi, and black cod. The bar features a menu of Mediterranean-inspired cocktails.

Le 1947 has a French influence with a tasting menu that includes wild turbot and chanterelle mushrooms. The White Bar sits alongside the pool and serves up all-day cocktails, along with an assortment of refreshments and pastries. For your Japanese and Asian fix, don’t forget to try Diptyque, offering its signature rock shrimp tempura.

A glass-enclosed wine museum and cigar lounge offer something extra to guests with rare vintages from different regions of the world. The cigar lounge has a carefully curated menu to give guests a taste of some of the finest.

The Guerlain Spa is the only one in the Maldives, giving guests the opportunity to rejuvenate and unwind in style. The spa offers everything from full-day immersions to single rituals, along with Maldivian sun-inspired wellness experiences. There are four single treatment villas, two Orchidée Villas, outdoor relaxation spaces, and yoga pavilions. A traditional steam room and cold plunge are also available. An assortment of Guerlain treatments, exclusively available in the Maldives, makes the spa experience unforgettable. A spa boutique is also available, featuring products from Guerlain and the Leonor Greyl haircare line.

Guests of the resort have dedicated butlers to help with planning, unpacking, ironing, and bookings. Most villas offer bicycles and complimentary laundry facilities.

Fitness lovers will enjoy the yoga and meditation therapies, along with exercise classes in the gym. For those who prefer a little outdoor exercise, tennis courts and boot camp workouts (on another island) are also on offer. Other activities include water sports and golf simulator games. The five-star PADI-certified Dive Center offers dolphin cruises, deserted island adventures, sunset cruises, local island tours, sunset and night fishing, big game fishing, snorkeling, and diving options for all skill levels. Beginners can take snorkeling lessons with experienced professionals.

Families will also enjoy the amenities available at this resort. A large kids’ club, the Le Carrousel Kids Club, offers outdoor and indoor activities like a games room, water slides, table football, astronomy sessions, aquatic hikes, and treasure hunts. This is sure to keep the younger ones occupied while the adults enjoy their own rest and relaxation time in the resort.

Fast-track your exit from Malé International Airport by booking a professional Blacklane airport transfer service to help you start your holiday with peace of mind.