LUX* South Ari Atoll
There’s a reason LUX* South Ari Atoll is one of the most popular all-inclusive resorts in the Maldives for honeymooners and those celebrating something special: the resort is sublime. The 193-villa property is located in the turquoise waters of the South Ari Atoll, a 25-minute seaplane ride from Velana International Airport and offering quite literally four kilometres of caster-sugar white beaches and nearby coral reefs teeming with whale sharks. The resort itself is relatively fresh from a total overhaul, with many villas brand new, and the new vibe is soothing and modern with lots of whites and greys and beachy vaulted white ceilings. There’s a boho, beach club vibe throughout, and one pool offers a lively atmosphere with reggae music, surfboards and inflatable swans, while another a more peaceful experience. Guests can book LUX’s half-board, full-board of all-inclusive offers including highlights like freshly roasted on-site coffee and dining from six restaurants, including Italian Allegria and Indian Senses. Go all-inclusive for unlimited meals, snacks, mini bar items and alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages.
All-inclusive stay in a beach pavilion from about AED2,315 per night, per couple; luxresorts.com
Soneva has always been ahead of its time, and its all-inclusive package, Soneva Unlimited, is no different. As the sister resort to Maldives icon Soneva Fushi, one of the archipelago’s first and most loved resorts, Soneva Jani is modern and shiny to Fushi’s boho and rustic. What sets Jani apart is it’s made up of five tiny inlets in the Noonu Atoll, creating a paradise world of luxury villas and facilities like a floating open-air cinema and observatory. Guests stay in Chapter 1 or Chapter 2, sharing one main island, with overwater villas made from sustainable wood snaking of jetties. Villas are the epitome of eco, rustic luxury – stone and wood touches, open-air bathrooms, glass-bottom floors and bedrooms with retractable ceilings, some even have slides. Soneva’s brand-new unlimited package allows an experience quite like nothing else: unlimited dining at all of its bars and restaurants, unlimited beverages (including alcohol), unlimited experiences like diving, unlimited visits to Michelin-starred chef dinners and onsite experiences, all experiences for children, mini bar, laundry service and, arguably one of the most fabulous perks of all, unlimited spa treatments and massages in the new sprawling 1,742sq m wellness centre Soneva Soul, including visiting wellness practitioners, Cryotherapy and Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy, Traditional Chinese Medicine and Ayurveda treatments
Soneva Unlimited $920 per person per day, villas from about AED6,520 per night; soneva.com
Four Seasons Private Island at Voavah
The Maldives naturally lends itself to extreme privacy and luxury, and one of the best places to experience the two is at Four Seasons Private Island at Voavah. This totally exclusive, private island in the protected Baa Atoll is rented as a whole, complete with seven bedrooms across three villas swathed in neutral hues with lots of whites and wooden touches, plus charming quintessentially Maldivian thatched roofs. All three have private pools and some have kitchens and private gyms. There’s accommodation for private staff and the resort even boasts its own yacht, seaplane, stilted spa hovering over the lagoon and private chefs. Voavah’s location within the UNESCO Biosphere of the Baa Atoll means snorkelling and diving are superlative – manta rays, whale sharks, a kaleidoscope of tropical fish- all are pretty much guaranteed. Your stay is totally all-inclusive and customisable: whether it’s spa treatments, entertainment from Maldivian dance troupes or lobster-themed dinners.
As far as Maldives grande dames go, few are as revered and imitated as Soneva Fushi. The resort opened in 1995 as the first resort from hotelier and wellness pioneers Sonu and Eva Shivdasani, who fell in love with the idyllic Kunfunadhoo island on their honeymoon in 1988. Fast forward to today and Soneva Fushi has managed to retain its personal, loved, soulful feel, but with a sprinkle of serious luxury thrown in. There are 63 beachfront and eight overwater villas – complete with slides and retractable ceilings showing the brilliant blue or starry sky – plus myriad restaurants and bars, including a beach shack and celebrity chef spot nestled in the treetops. Soneva Soul spa offers IV, Ayurvedic, TCM, and traditional spa treatments. The island itself is covered in dense tropical greenery and home to a colony of rabbits – who make an appearance as you cycle between your villas, beaches, the spa, shops and dining outlets. What makes this island feel even more wholesome and magical is its rigorous sustainability programme and love for the planet: all water is bottled on the island, 90% of waste if reused of recycled or reused. Soneva’s superlative Soneva Unlimited package is also available at Soneva Fushi, with the same perks as Jani, making it one of the most loved and luxurious all-inclusive resorts in the Maldives.
Soneva Unlimited $920 per person, per day, Villas from about AED 4,260, soneva.com
Lily Beach Resort & Spa
Lily Beach Resort & Spa is one of the best all-inclusive resorts in the Maldives for honeymooners, an award-winning destination on the island of Huvahendhoo in South Ari Atoll. Lily offers a Maldives experience that is not just great value for money, but truly blissful. Guests can choose from six villa categories from the earthy beach and lagoon villas to junior suites – all come with private plunge pools, outdoor showers and modern, bright interiors. Outside of the villas, the resort has two outdoor pools, a tennis court, fitness centre, a diving centre, spa – spread across six thatched-roof stilted pavilions – and five dining and drinking options. For the ultimate Maldivian experience without worrying about the bill, opt for the Platinum Package, which includes fine dining, excursions, sports activities and premium alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages.
Beach villas from about AED2,200; lilybeachmaldives.com
Baros Maldives is often heralded as one of the most romantic resorts in the world, offering a more stripped-back, boutique experience compared to its big-hitting, international competitors. The homegrown, Maldivian resort has been a firm favourite with those looking for since 1973 and is located just a 25-minute speedboat from Male international airport – making it a stress-free all-inclusive Maldives resort to visit for a long weekend. The island itself is renowned for its vegetation and tranquillity, not to mention its turquoise lagoon and sugar-soft beaches, and has just 75 beach and overwater villas, and as a result, guests are known by name, not villa number and favourite drinks are remembered by ever-smiling staff. Excursions make the most of the beautiful island with the most unique being the Piano Bar – a floating platform which is transformed into a yoga studio, massage parlour, picnic site, or anything you want. Other activities include a masterclass in Maldivian survival skills, water toys and the Baros spa. While not strictly all-inclusive, Baros offers a breakfast and dinner package which allows you to put your wallet away for your stay.
Deluxe Villas from about AED 3,220; baros.com
Kihaa Maldives lies in the heart of the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve of the Baa Atoll, a fact which alone makes it one of the best all-inclusive resorts in the Maldives for marine lovers. The charming, rustic and friendly resort opened its doors in 2012 and has been delighting guests since with its pared-back, earthy feel, welcoming staff and great array of excursions and activities. There are both luxury and classic villas to choose from, on the beach and snaking off the hairpin jetty perched above the water, and families and large groups will delight in the three-bedroom Royal Beach Suite and Overwater Villa. What makes this resort so special is that it’s the closest to the world-famous Hanifaru Bay, the world’s largest manta ray feeding hotspot and the place to see these majestic and gentle creatures in their natural habitat. There are various tiers of all-inclusive packages for drinking and dining, and there’s an Island Wide Experience package for those staying a minimum of five nights including a barbecue and sandbank dinner, spa treatment, boat stay and cooking class, to mention just a few.
Beach access villas from about AED1,400; kihaamaldives.com
The Residence Maldives Falhumaafushi
Unlike sister property Dhigurah with its vibrant family vibe, The Residence Falhumaafushi is a favourite with young honeymooners is thanks to its boutique nature, use of organic materials and soothing ambience. The all-inclusive resort in the Maldives is in the beautiful Gaafu Alifu Atoll, part of The Residence Collection by Cenizaro Hotels & Resorts, which operates ultra-luxury properties in beachy locations like Zanzibar and Mauritius. Like its sister properties, the vibe is all beachy and earthy – villas have thatched roofs, cream walls, billowing white curtains, teak accents and antique-style furniture. Each villa, or which there are 94 across the beach and overwater, comes with a private pool and there’s a communal pool with a beach bar offering a more upbeat vibe.
Overwater villa from about AED2,040; cenizaro.com
Kudadoo Maldives Private Island
Anything, anywhere, anytime. That’s the strapline for Kudadoo Maldives Private Island, an ultra-luxury resort in the lhaviyani Atoll home to just 15 villas. The journey starts upon landing, where staff are there to whisk you away into a private lounge while you wait for your seaplane transfer to the island – around a 40-minute journey. From then, it’s to the overwater villa, a choice of palatial 310sq m one-bedroom abode or 390sq m two-bedroom residence. All villas have a 44 sq m private infinity pool, state-of-the-art facilities and technology, a private butler, handmade furniture and exude a sort of Japanese-meets-Maldives vibe. Everything is included in the price, dining, of course, alongside access to the charcuterie cellar, spa treatments and water sports.
Ocean Residences from about AED11,735 per night; kudadoo.com
Adaaran Prestige Vadoo
Adaaran Prestige Vadoo is one of the best all-inclusive resorts in the Maldives for a mini break. For starters, it’s just a 15-minute speedboat from Velana International Airport, eliminating the need for pricy seaplanes or waiting around for transfers. The resort lies in the South Male Atoll in a lagoon teeming with vibrant marine life and boasts sleek modern villas, all of which are overwater. There are five restaurants and bars to choose from and an iteration of the globally known Mandara Spa offering both wellness and beauty treatments. The premium all-inclusive offering is one of the most encompassing in the archipelago, applicable both in and out of the villa. In villa, there’s daily fruit, canapes, chocolates, and a complimentary mini-bar, while outside the villa guests get afternoon tea, snacks, a Japanese set menu experience, mocktails and cocktails, and one shisha per day. Activities are also included like snorkelling and non-motorised water sports, plus you’ll get one floating breakfast and one private beach dinner per stay.
Sunrise Water Villas from about AED2,920 per night; adaaran.com