May 06, 2021

Luxury travel: Where to stay in the Maldives


The Maldives is famous the world over for its luxury resorts and turquoise waters. From romantic honeymoon breaks to action-packed family vacations in paradise, island escapes don’t come more exclusive than this.

The good news is you’re almost guaranteed to find a stunning beach and perfect sunny weather wherever you stay. But for the exact experience you’re looking for, your choice of accommodation is absolutely key.

So, whether that means fine dining, diving, or a different vibe altogether, use our guide on where to stay in the Maldives to begin planning the holiday of a lifetime.

How to choose where to stay in the Maldives

So, which island should you go to in the Maldives? If you’re less familiar with this part of the world, you might be surprised to know that each Maldivian resort has its own private island. The country covers over a thousand islands in total that are grouped into 26 atolls, which are simply chains of islands.

Each island here has its own geographical form and features. While other spots are accessible by day trips, the facilities you’ll have the most convenient access to are those that your chosen resort offers. This makes it essential to find a resort that offers everything you want it to if you’re looking for the most relaxing experience possible.

Thankfully, these stunning islands offer a wealth of luxury accommodation options to meet the needs of different travelers. While a stunning beach and crystal-clear waters are a given, other elements you might want to think about when choosing where to stay include:

Atmosphere: Do you want to lose yourself in nature or enjoy the glitz and glamour? Are you planning a secluded couples break or an active family excursion? Many resorts cater to different desires, so consider what kind of experience you’re hoping for.

Activities: Almost all resorts offer excellent diving and snorkeling trips. Extra activities range from adrenaline-fueled water sports like wakeboarding to world-class spa treatments. Golf courses and many more leisure facilities are widely available.

Food and drink: Fancy being cooked for by Michelin-starred chefs every night? Many luxury resorts offer a delectable variety of restaurants to try, along with lavish spreads of everything you could possibly want come breakfast time.

Luxury extras: Luxury is what the Maldives is all about after all. Many resorts feature world-class spas that have become their own attractions, while most high-end accommodation will come with access to a personal butler or thakaru.

Children: Do you want to bring your children along with you or avoid little ones altogether? Some resorts offer spectacular kids clubs while others are effectively adults-only.

The top luxury resorts in the Maldives


The stunning Velaa island resort is located just north from the capital of Malé and offers a sense of total seclusion with its gorgeous private residences and facilities. You’ll find every last detail taken care of to allow you and a partner to focus only on each other and the jaw-dropping surroundings.

The villas here feature private pools, vast terraces, and nature-inspired outdoor bathrooms. Its Teppanyaki grill restaurant meanwhile sits above a three-story wine cellar, while the Aragu restaurant delivers dazzling overwater dining for truly special occasions.

It’s the ideal resort for wedding or honeymoon celebrations, whether that means sharing the experience with loved ones or enjoying privacy as a two.

Soneva Fushi

Soneva Fushi is one of three Soneva resorts in the Maldives and calls itself ‘the original desert island hideaway’. It sits on one of the Maldives’ largest and most nature-rich islands and features seawater swimming pools and treehouse-style villas dotted among dense tropical foliage. Eight stunning overwater retreats were completed in 2020, meanwhile.

Fushi has earned countless international awards over the years including many related to its environmental credentials. The resort is the epitome of barefoot luxury, boasting 100% carbon neutrality, organic gardens, wellness experiences, and a famous mantra of ‘No News, No Shoes’.

One&Only Reethi Rah

Don’t be surprised to spot royals and A-list Hollywood celebrities when you enjoy a stay at the One&Only Reethi Rah. Its palm-fringed, octopus-shaped private island offers crisp white sand, a dazzling array of facilities, and decadent villas that are looked after by a huge team of handpicked staff.

You’ll arrive at the resort by luxury yacht before moving between prestigious spa treatments and delectable meals by bicycle or chauffeured golf buggy. Reethi Rah even operates on its own time zone that’s one hour ahead of Malé, should you want to enjoy an extra cocktail or two at sunset.

Cheval Blanc Randheli

If you have an eye for architecture and interior design, you’ll be delighted by the scenes awaiting you after stepping off the Cheval Blanc Randheli resort’s branded seaplane. The spectacular villas here were designed by Jean-Michel Gathy, an icon of the luxury hotel industry, and feature artistic details beneath cathedral-esque thatched roofs.

When you finally get tired of floating around your own private infinity pool, activities available here include yoga and meditation with wellness masters and diving expeditions with dolphins. When the time comes to dress smart and indulge in the evenings, fine-dining options range from Japanese to Iberian and French.

How to get to the Maldives from the US

The Maldives has four international airports in total, with most visitors flying into the Velana International Airport outside the nation’s capital city. You’ll then transfer to your resort by a pre-arranged speedboat or seaplane depending on the distance of its island.

Considering the lengthy flight time from the US to the Maldives, many find the best way to travel is by private jet charter. This way you can experience luxury and comfort from start to finish, with VistaJet’s private cabin allowing you to stretch out and refuel with à la carte onboard dining and even wine tasting. Our experienced crew will be on hand as and when you need them.

Ready to learn more? Contact us about booking a private flight to the Maldives and starting your luxury trip in style.