Around the World: The Maldives

The Beach and Arrival Dock at Como Maalifushi
This is the third time that we have visited the Maldives and it remains a firm favorite for our family. It combines the elements that many look for in a luxurious getaway with it's pristine beaches, fabulous food, absolute relaxation, friendly service and fantastic underwater life. If diving, snorkeling, surfing or anything beach related are hobbies, you will be in heaven. The island softly removes any traces of stress and leaves you immersed in a relaxing island rhythm. There is much to do and yet nothing at all if that is your preference.

The Maldives was the perfect beginning for our around the world journey. We were exhausted from the packing and moving this past month and I could not imagine a more relaxing place to begin. I lay here with my feet up on an outdoor bed writing this post while our little one naps. It is dreamy.

Many think of the Maldives for romantic vacations and honeymoons. While it does offer this, it is also AMAZING for families and is growing in popularity. I personally know of many families in London with young children that would be afraid to fly a long distance to get here. However, it is so worth it and I know they would be glad they made it. Trust me, we know first hand as our two year old was NOT easy on the flight. It is also by no means an inexpensive holiday, but you can understand why when you are here. From the facilities to the food and the service, it makes sense.

Spending time at our Beach Villa at Como Maalifushi
For our stay at Como Maalifushi, we checked into beach villa number 112. As a young family, the beach villas are perfect. There is plenty of vegetation surrounding the villa making it completely private. It offers a king size bed for us, a sofa bed for James, and we were provided with a cot for Julia. The bathrooms are massive with both indoor and outdoor showers. Who doesn't love bathing in the sunshine or under the stars? In the evenings after we put the kids to sleep, we often sat outside on our outdoor bed with a glass of wine to answer emails and spend time together in peace. It was divine.

Beach Club at One & Only complete with DJ and attentive service
In the past we have stayed at One & Only Reethi Rah and Niyama. All three of these resorts are fantastic for families with friendly staff, kids clubs, and excellent accommodations. I would recommend all three but would suggest different ones for different clients as they do vary in style, in price point and in what they offer.  

There are many luxury resort options in the Maldives and finding the perfect one requires a lot of research or better yet, help from a travel agency. Working with a travel agent that is
Our Beach Villa at Niyama
knowledgable about the Maldives will help in matching you with the right resort. Whether looking for barefoot luxury or a more glamorous feel, traveling as a couple or as a family, there are many options including brands you will have likely never heard about. A travel agent can help you navigate this and also assist in obtaining the best deals and added VIP treatment. Without question you will want an offer that includes at least half board since you will be eating on the island and the food is very expensive.

One of my favorite aspects of Como Maalifushi was the laid back feel and family friendly vibe. It was an easy and effortless place to hang out for a week. The staff were all friendly and very helpful with the kids. The fact that Como Resorts has it's own Foundation and cares about giving back spoke to us. I do not know too many other resorts in the Maldives that offer an excursion to visit the local community in which all proceeds are donated to local council. This was something unique and meaningful for us that we will never forget.

Visiting a nearby island's school arranged by Como
We truly appreciated the staff at the kids club. Though the kids clubs at Niyama and One & Only Reethi Rah were more impressive with their outdoor splash pads and other amenities that Como did not have, Como Maalifushi certainly had enough to keep our little ones entertained.
Part of the kids club at Niyama
As for food, we found the breakfast buffets at both Reethi Rah and Niyama to be out of this world spectacular. There was everything you could want and more. The half board was enough for us at these resorts but I found I definitely needed the mid day bite to eat at Como Maalifushi as it had a much smaller sampling without the excess the others provided. Of course you can fill your belly to it's content, but as for the buffet, it is much more basic with fresh fruit, breads, yogurts and juice on display. They do provide fresh fruit in the rooms at Como Maalifushi but the complimentary ice cream at Niyama and afternoon tea at One and Only were a bit more filling and fun. The restaurants at Niyama were our favorites with One & Only a close second. Though the food at Como Maalifushi was good and I appreciated their healthy spa options, there are better options for my true foodie clients.
Sushi making class at Como Maalifushi was a highlight for James


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