Surely there is only a few places on earth are such a visual wonder as the Maldives.
With a palette of vibrant colours gifted by nature to inspire even the most pernickety of artistic sorts, the atolls, sky above and turquoise seas surrounding couldn’t contrast more from the dirt greys and taupes of our cities, lifting the spirit from the moment you arrive.
One of the most spectacularly stunning atolls is One&Only Reethi Rah, a firm favourite of A-listers and royalty, which, thanks to its unusual shape offers a number of individual palm and tropical flower fringed idyllic beaches, perfect for strolling along at sunrise and sunset, and taking a dip in the warm crystal clear shallow waters.
True to the typical character of One&Only resorts, Reethi Rah is luxurious to a fault. The accommodation comprises air-conditioned individual grand and duplex beach villas, delightful, traditionally thatched, with lofty ceilings and marble throughout, and appointed with every mod-con including multi-media entertainment systems, iPod/iPad docking stations, satellite TV, WiFi and more, and have their own plunge pool, lit at night, and wonderful for relaxing in, with a glass of champagne, gazing and the stars and listening to the rustling of coral sand being gently washed by waves beyond. Each villa has its own dedicated host 24 hours a day, a personal golf buggy, sun loungers and a hammock.
If you fancy a change from relaxing on the beach during your stay, there are a host of things to do. There are a number of swimming pools – including a much photographed stunning horizon pool just off the main resort building. The dive centre offers a wide range of PADI diving programmes, and from the water sport and recreation centre you can water-ski, parasail, canoe, snorkel and go on fun banana tube rides. There’s a fitness centre with all the latest technology and instruction on the acclaimed ‘Bodyism’ total health and fitness system. To achieve the perfect golden glow, there’s a tanning hut and specialist which offers consultation on your skin type and tanning history, and can match you with the optimum lotions for you to obtain a lasting tan naturally without burning. They’ll even come and frequently apply it for you too. For those who can’t go without shopping whilst away from home, there’s a shop where you can buy designer swim and resort wear and gifts. One&Only also offer art and wine tasting classes, a kids club for the very young, and ClubOne for teenagers.
The resort owns a number of modern and traditional sailing craft, including its own luxury cruiser which can take guests big game fishing, out to a private sandbank for champagne at sunset, early morning breakfast sails and, to our favourite, to snorkel with turtles feeding on local reefs, a truly memorable experience.
For those who enjoy spa treatments, Reethi Rah has its own ESPA spa, offering wonderful signature treatment facials, massages and more. Particularly recommend the Unwind Signature Experience, which is simply two hours of pampering, soothing bliss. The spa also has its own excellent hairdressing salon, by acclaimed Taylor Taylor of London, who’ve looked after the celebrity tresses of the likes of Kylie, Calvin Harris, and Naomi Campbell.
Whatever your culinary preferences, this One&Only offers dining to delight including excellent Japanese cuisine at Tapasake, where you enjoy the finest sake and sashimi in traditional décor, over the sea, and enjoy the experience of one of the four open air Teppanyaki pavilions in a wonderful sea fronting themed garden. For barefoot dining, head to Arabian inspired Fanditha, which doubles as a pre-dinner favourite cocktail spot, and morphs into a cool club later into the night, and Reethi restaurant offers an eclectic menu fusing flavours from Asia, India and Italy.
One&Only Reethi Rah is a truly special resort you are certain to want to return to, time and time again.