What We Love
- One of the original luxury resorts in the Maldives — the place practically invented “castaway chic”
- Seriously eco-friendly
- Villas have direct access to the white sand beach
- Spectacular spa staffed by visiting therapists
- Free bikes parked in front of villas
What To Know
- A 10 percent per night hotel service charge and a two percent per night carbon tax will be collected at the Jetsetter checkout
- About a 35-minute seaplane ride from Malé (where international flights arrive); transfers are approximately $510 per person, round-trip
- Dress code is casual and low-key
- Eco friendly
- Free WiFi
- Kids Club
With its impeccable white sand beaches, palatial thatch-roofed villas and stellar spa, Soneva Fushi sets the benchmark for rustic chic in the Maldives. When husband-and-wife team Sonu and Eva Shivdasani built this rustic retreat on the uninhabited island of Kunfunadhoo, the area was known only to savvy backpackers. These days the Soneva Fushi’s look and vibe are widely imitated, and the resort’s pool has grown considerably more crowded. But the Soneva Fushi continues to define the kind of barefoot luxury that the Maldives are known for, right down to the resort’s “no news, no shoes” policy, in which guests surrender their footwear at check-in.
Bed and Bath
The 65 villas share space on the densely forested 100-acre island, hidden behind swaths of plumeria trees that line the beach. The Shivdasanis are visionary eco-hoteliers, so the resort’s roofs are made from woven coconut leaves, and there are aggressive eco programs on-site, such as a recycling plant, a carbon offset initiative and a seawater cooling system. But luxury abounds: Villas have cozy canopy beds and elaborate garden bathrooms that open onto a rambling stone walkway and outdoor shower.
When hunger strikes, guests can traverse a tree canopy bridge for an organic dinner at the elevated Fresh in the Garden, or have a private beachfront picnic on a nearby desert island arranged by a thakaru (butler). The spa’s extensive menu is supplemented by visiting therapists, including acupuncturists, reiki specialists and naturopathic doctors from around the globe, making Soneva Fushi one of the best wellness retreats in the Maldives. Romance comes naturally at a classic Maldivian resort like this one. But nothing quite matches the experience of snorkeling among the tropical fish just steps from your room or seeing the stars from the observatory in the organic garden — both must-dos at this tropical escape.
How to Get There
The finest white sand; the clearest (and warmest) turquoise water; the lushest green jungle; the freshest food, prepared with love; no news and no shoes...
Soneva Fushi is what vacation dreams are made of. The adjective we used about 100 times a day was "magical". It's like no other place we've experienced, not just because of the eye-popping scenery, but because of the staff, the philosophy and the energy of this faraway island in the Indian Ocean.
One of our lasting memories will be cycling through the trees by night, lit by lamps and torches, along the sandy paths to our villa after yet another delicious, fresh meal. And arriving back to candles lit around our swimming pool, with waves on the beach and a bird up late the only sounds in the stillness of the warm air. Another is waking up and asking each other, "Pool or sea?" before taking a morning dip and rinsing off in our outdoor shower. Then, strolling to breakfast where we'd sit for hours, sipping fresh ginger tea and vegetable juice, eating fruits and vegetables from the onsite garden and reading our books under swaying palm trees with sand between our toes.
While it might sound like a fantasy, it's what Soneva Fushi has been specialising in for over 20 years, making it little wonder that this island retreat is known as the place to visit in the Maldives. And we're so glad we did. The new Out of the Blue bar and dining destination is the perfect spot to while away the afternoon with a snorkel (or an Aperol) while the treetop restaurant Fresh in the Garden makes you feel like you've stepped onto the set of Peter Pan. The Dolphin Cruise is a relaxing opportunity to get out on the water on a gorgeous boat, bubbles in hand, and see the island, while the cocktail party on Soneva's private sandbank makes for the most breathtaking way to watch the sunset. It's little wonder this particular spot plays host to so many weddings, parties and celebrations. It must be one of the most picture-perfect places on earth.
I could go on and on about Soneva Fushi - the attention to detail, the cheese, chocolate and icecream rooms, the attentive yet relaxed service from your Mr or Ms Friday (shoutout to Chelsea, our lovely Ms Friday)...but as with all magical things, it really needs to be experienced to be understood. I'm still pinching myself to believe it really exists at all, and I didn't just imagine it (well, that, and obsessively looking at all our photographs to prove it actually happened!). Thank you, Soneva, for a vacation we'll never forget. Take us back!
I have never experience laid back luxury quite like this - the service is impeccable but not over the top and the scenery is the most beautiful in the world.
The breakfast is the best I have ever had, there is every type of food you can get in the world.
One of the best experiences is the sandbank party which happens every Tuesday night. Staff and guests mingle together on an island paradise and get to know each other away from the resort. I can't wait to visit again, Soneva Fushi now holds a very special place in my heart.
Everyone in the Family have activities to do during the stay in Soneva Fushi. Diving Center is excellent. Kid Club is excellent.
Food is good,
The Most impressive is Sunset and its Nature surrounding the resort.
Imagine you are lost in a tropical island in the middle of the Indian Ocean, roaming in the flourishing jungle trying to find a way to the beach. In that way might see some animals - rabbits, chicken, water hen and others crossing your path. And when you finally found it you step into the flawless soft sand, so clean and white that can’t even believe that it’s true. Then you jump into the warm ocean and swim in turquoise water…
Now just facts:
Before arrival spend a couple of hours in Soneva’s lounge in Airport island where we were given a questionnaire in which we put preferences: my diet, pillow type, favorite aroma, bicycle type (we took tandem), interests. All this was taken into account by the resort.
We spent 4 days with my husband at the Soneva Fushi in May 2018. There were 3.5 sunny days and 0.5 rainy.
Staff is very hospitable, always smile and greet you, they know your name. Service in restaurants is great - waiters always come when they are needed but still not bother you. Food is quite various and it is adjusted to your diet. There is also cheese, ice cream and chocolate rooms open all day long.
If it is a rain or you are just tired you can always order a buggy that will transfer you to any place on the island.
Family Villa 46 with pool was clean, no smell, no insects. The view from the villa is just beautiful - you can see your own entrance to the beach. You can also enjoy patio on the second floor. There is another island in front of that side of the beach but it’s not a problem. We have enjoyed our villa a lot as it was spacious and very romantic. The kitchenette was very comfy, lots of snacks and enough bottled water to stay hydrated even in such a tropical climate.
Other activities we liked enjoyed there:
* Paddling, kayaking, snorkeling (the reef is good, lots of different fish, we were lucky and saw manta ray and turtle).
* Sunbathing on the private beach - it was private enough so we could have topless.
* Sandbank sunset trip
* Dolphins cruise. (We found dolphins just in 10 minutes, it was a big group with adult and baby dolphins!)
* Soneva Aqua luxury yacht for a day trip - nice experience -)
* Outdoors cinema - it was really cool, old movies under the night sky
* Observatory (it was a full moon so we saw only the Moon, but on other nights you can see Jupiter with few satellites)
* Riding bike/tandem - I think all our advantures were during bike riding, the island is so big (1.4km length) so we got lost pretty often, but it was cool - in jungles island looks like uninhabited at all. There are several beautiful wild beaches where no villas around.
* Enjoy various kinds of cuisine - we had lunch at the garden restaurant, there was a Sri Lankan cuisine, they were cooking all veggies from own organic garden, it was very delicious! Also, we went to a restaurant on the tree - unforgettable experience as after 6pm in Maldives is fully dark and during the dinner, we really felt that we are in the middle of the jungles, no light around only at the restaurant, fruit dogs are flying by the moon and candlelight dinner, all dishes were just perfect, better even can't imagine - especially scallops were melting in the mouth. All waiters were so friendly and hospitable, we felt like we came to visit old friends :-) The other night we went to Down to the Earth restaurant - cuisine there is also very nice, and portions are just huge! Even it was so good I couldn't finish it. We really loved breakfasts in the main restaurant - such a big variety of fruits, everything is fresh - there is a man cutting it in front of you. Every morning we trying some different dishes as there are European, Chinese, Indian dishes, also good kinds of cheese, charcuterie, different kinds of salmon smoked and fresh, the pastry is fresh and for any taste. Also, there is a life kitchen for fried eggs, omelets, we ordered egg benedict - very nice =) I really liked that all fresh juices were without sugar and water. We tried some ayurvedic products which are set for breakfast, cooling one really helps.
Feeling very refreshed though it was a very short stay. We definitely will come back again for a longer stay!
Thanks a lot to our mr.Fridays Xain! He was so attentive and cared about us so well!
We got an upgrade when we arrived, my husband and two kids. The villa was enormous and we had everything we needed. The staf and our "mr. Friday" was so very kind and friendly. we could´t have asked for more.We wires afraid of the weather is a was in May and all the forecast said thunder rain and grey skies. But we have lovey weather all days. A True dream holiday.