Just about twenty minutes away from Velana International Airport on Paradise Island by speedboat, Paradise Island Resort and Spa, takes up a hefty slice of the expansive turquoise lagoon, it shares with a couple of islands.
The resort sprawls — kilometers and makes use of its land with spectacular landscaping. It’s one of the largest resorts in the Maldives. I happened to travel with family. We receive warm greetings at the pier, after a round of welcome drinks and seamless check in, we are immediately driven to our Villa in a beach buggy.
I had no idea of what was coming up next.. that I was going to witness the most breathtaking view I had ever seen !
With four main categories of rooms to choose from, the unquestionable best is the Water Villa/Haven Villa; two rows of over-water villas march down the lagoon, each with an extension leading to the sea, all the way up to the Farumathi (seafood speciality) Restaurant at the very end that magnificently looms over them all. As we
explore the villas hemming the wooden walkway that crisscrosses over the crystalline water, we see snorkelers below, languidly splashing by observing the scintillating fishes and sharks pups that frequent these waters. The rooms themselves are a delight for honeymooners, with absolute privacy and luxury made complete by the astounding sight of shades of blue as far as the eye can see.
There’s an extension/veranda at each of these villas, with a bathtub in the Water Villas and temperature controlled jacuzzis in the Haven Villas, a couple of beach recliners to soak in the sun, a lounge for a quiet private candle-lit dinner and a private staircase which leads straight down into the sea.
Before we investigate other accommodation options at the resort, we head out to lunch at The Lagoon, which caters exclusively to the guests staying at the Villas.
The Lagoon restaurant is nestled amidst the Water Villas with a pristine view of the blue sea and sky, offers a complete cuisine, rich in variety and taste. A meal here will always be an unforgettable experience.It has elaborated buffet setups during mealtimes. You would have the freedom to choose from Indian, Maldivian, and European cuisines to your hearts content.
After satisfying our hunger pangs, we began our inspection of all accommodation, water sports and facilities that the resort offers.
At the very end of the walkway, stands the vast presidential suite, with exquisite design and luxury. With the aquamarine scenery of the lagoon against a backdrop of azure skies, guests would no doubt feel like they’ve escaped from the confines of time and the rest of the world. The song of the sea and wind lulls the euphoria of decadent peace. There is absolutely no choice except to kick back and relax, to enjoy the tropical sunshine and some serious alone time, while at the same time reveling in all the amenities you could want during a getaway.
You would not want to leave this part of the resort, solely because of the surreal atmosphere it emanates, while the island is still visible some distance away virtually detached.
The Farumathi Restaurant joins the two rows of water villas that march down the lagoon. The sea food restaurant build on the edge of the reef faces the sunrise and the breathtaking Indian Ocean. It offers a unique dining experience with an easy-going ocean view ambiance and serves a variety of seafood including the Maldivian lobster. The adjoining large open air terrace offers a relaxing atmosphere where you can have a drink, a light meal, afternoon tea or an after dinner cocktail.
Those queasy of living over water can choose the splendor of the high-end Beach bungalows, which includes Garden View bungalows(sun villas) and Beach bungalows(sunset villas).
To break the monotony, I had divided my stay between the Water Villa and Sunset Villas. I did not want to miss anything that this little piece of heaven had to offer. After my first 4 nights at the pristine Water Villa, I had shifted to the Beach bungalow.
The sunset villas are more modern, plush, and packed with amenities. The veranda here faces the west-side lagoon which lights up in vibrant gold when the sun dips to kiss the purple horizon, a glorious view that puts the perfect end to a relaxing day. The sunset can be enjoyed even if you’re cuddling in bed, thanks to the large picture window directly across that grants a satisfying view. The sun villas, meanwhile, are further inland and fenced in for private with no view to speak of. There’s a veranda adjoining the room facing the sea where you can lounge sipping on your coffee in the evenings. However, the villas house subtle delights such as a small garden and a better outdoor shower area.
For the guests living at the Beach Bungalows, theres a main restaurant. A Japanese speciality restaurant FUKUYA TEPPANYAKI, for authentic Maldives sushi, and the main bar named Athiri. The main restaurant is a veritable labyrinth of chairs and tables, being the largest restaurant in the archipelago, which gives an effect of adventure to our scrambling to and from the scrumptious and widely varied buffet. We have the freedom to choose from Indian, Maldivian, and European cuisines to our hearts content.
In addition to this, the resort offers a varied range of water activities like snorkelling, Scuba diving, paragliding etc and also day packages which includes island
hopping in a speedboat, dolphin watching, fishing, shark-feeding etc.
In the resort, I have spent the major part of my stay breathing the beauty of Paradise and soaking in the sun. And being a water baby, I was always found in the pool or by the beach or in the Jacuzzi, which did give me a tan but I came back home with irreplaceable memories and happy tan lines.
Paradise Island Resort and Spa has certainly made full use of its land area in offering one of the best varieties of accommodations in North Male Atoll. The exceptional Maldives water villas are Paradise Island Resort’s ultimate accommodation. Bright, spacious, and luxuriously appointed, they are what dreams are made of.
Either facing sunrise or sunset, every Maldives Water Villas features steps down to the crystal clear lagoon below – perfect for swimming or a snorkeling adventure.You can spend your days relaxing only a few feet above the blue waters of the Indian Ocean, soaking up the sun from your private chaise while getting pampered.
Though the number of visitors are high throughout the year – mostly in the hundreds – it often felt to us that we were the only ones on the island. Our Water Villa alone was enough to satisfy the need to escape from the hubbub of the world, and healed the stress from the world beyond.