Younger, hipper, with a more flexible approach to tropical island luxury, Amilla has done away with sneaky hidden charges and costly added extras while still cutting a distinctly fashionable figure. Go for the high design, terrific dining, super spa treatments and mesmerising marine life.
In the Baa Atoll, a 35-minute seaplane journey from Malé, sharing the same reef as the Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru, Soneva Fushi and Anantara Kihava Villas. It’s an area known for its deep waters and wondrous diversity of marine life.
Style & character
Amilla Fushi has thrown out the Maldives rule book and gone all Côte D’Azur, with stark Arctic-white architecture, sculptural furniture, oversized sofas and a glitzy pool. All very glam and adult, although magically the hotel manages to push all the right buttons when it comes to families too, with unlimited watersports, creative children’s menus and a kids’ club as big as a village school.
Service & facilities
There are plenty of places to make a splash both in and out of the water. A full on watersports set-up includes everything from snorkels to stand-up paddle-boards to kayaks and Sea Bobs (a kind of underwater scooter). And you don’t need to venture out on a boat trip to see the wildlife; the hotel has its own mini ‘Blue Hole’, where you can swim through an underwater tunnel of coral surrounded by Nemos – if you’re there during the manta ray season from June to October though the Hanifaru Bay trip is a must. The level of service was high, but with a pleasingly relaxed vibe.
- Fitness centre
- Kids’ club
- Steam room/hammam
The Javvu Spa taps into the trend for more all-encompassing spa facilities. As well as offering a range of sigh-inducing massages, there are also manicure and pedicures from celebrity nail technician Margaret Dabbs, an outpost of Louise Galvin’s London hair salon (try a post-sea and sand deep conditioning treatment), results-driven facials from German brand QMS and body treatments by Ila. Plans are afoot to roll out full wellness programmes, incorporating healthy cuisine, meditation, yoga and fitness classes, in the near future.
As well as overwater and beach villas, Amilla Fushi has introduced a third accommodation option – treehouses. All have large private pools (the ones in the treehouses are suspended 12-metres in the air) and a vast amount of indoor and outdoor space. The South of France styling carries through with Colgate white walls blended with nautical stripes, abstract patterns and honey-coloured woods. Bathrooms are enormous featuring dinosaur egg-sized tubs, indoor and outdoor monsoon showers and upmarket Aesop amenities. The only problem is that such classy surrounding will have you praying for rain and an excuse to stay indoors.
Food & drink
The island’s star restaurant, Lonu by Luke Mangan, serves brag-worthy Asian fusion cuisine and splendid locally-caught seafood – don’t miss the sashimi. There are six other places to eat and drink on the island, although strangely they’re all clumped together in one spot. A minor niggle, especially when all the food is consistently excellent. Room service, including breakfast, can be taken in your villa for no extra charge – a nice touch – and if you really don’t want to leave your room, you can visit The Emperor General Store and stock up on freshly-baked breads, Spanish hams and French cheeses to devour in your room.
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